At MBSC we focus thoroughly on the prevention and reduction of injury. Particularly our hurdle progressions, which are training for ACL injury prevention. As is true with any sort of human intervention (making change to the body, choosing to exercise or improve nutrition) it is vital to remember that training is BIOLOGICALLY INDIVIDUAL. No program is going to work the same for everyone, which is why it is important to use your judgement and regress or not progress, if the client or athlete is not ready. Just because it has been 3 calendar weeks does not mean everyone is ready to move on. You will be doing a tremendous disservice to your athlete, if you do not pay close attention to these progressions. Nothing could be worse than an athlete getting injured (in or out of the training session) and you are partially or fully responsible. “Rule number 1, DO NO HARM” -Hippocrates & Dan John
Also, watch out for athletes (particularly high school boys), trying to be heroes. High school boys will go to the highest hurdle first, do not allow it. You are in charge of the training session and if you let things slide in phase 1 it will follow you all the way through the macrocycle. 1 thing I have learned from Coach Boyle is to not even bring out the olympic hurdles on single leg days. Seeing close to 300 athletes a day at MBSC, we can safely count on 1 hand the number of them with the power and control to rock the olympic hurdles on 1 leg. Just save the big boys for double leg work. The important part of the hurdle hops is the deceleration. The drill is designed to teach the body how to control the landing, not how to jump high. Use good arm action (opposite arm, opposite leg), triple extend, remembering all the sticks should be low and stable. Phase 1, in my opinion is most important, the STICK is the important part, that is what you’re coaching more than the jump. Your finish position should look identical to your start position. With over 100,000 ACL surgeries performed each year, building up that stability and protecting that knee from collapsing into a vulnerable, valgus position is how we perform the pre-emptive strike on ACL injuries.
Again, I’ll repeat, just because the protocol for these progressions is 3 weeks, it in no way is carved in stone. Biological individuality, do no harm, remember..?
There ya have it. Protect your knees please