Are you good at running? Is steeplechase your option and passion? You may have watched The Olympics and many other competitions and wondered how the athletes manage such a task with a lot of ease and win medals. Below are 5 tips for steeplechase beginners collected from a number of professional athletes worldwide:
Always learn to spot the barrier.
The first advice is to learn to target the barrier from a distance. This gives you the flow and fluidity in your run. Not being able to spot the barrier at a favorite distance can mess you a lot. The secret is training to spot the barrier and preparing to jump at good speed.
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Train both legs.
Naturally, most human beings are born with a weaker leg. It is said that the weaker leg is, in fact, the strongest. To be good in the steeplechase, using one leg, mostly the stronger foot can mess you up in case you miscount your strides. You should train both legs to jump so that you don’t overly on one foot. Most professional steeplechase winners worldwide use either of the foot to jump.
Train yourself of timed acceleration. You can not maintain a high speed through the race. You have to gauge yourself. Mostly, it is recommended by most athlete coaches that you start at a pace that makes sure you are together with the rest of the athletes, reduce the speed to an an average speed, then when approaching the last lap, you speed up and give it your best. Moreover, when approaching the barrier, you have to accelerate so as to increase your horizontal power and velocity.
Work on your landing.
How you land in a steeplechase run dictates how you continue. You must train your body to absorb the forces that come with the landing. To land appropriately, you should make sure that the lead leg is under your body directly. This to avoid excessive braking that may affect your running momentum. Plyometric box jumps will help you deal with these forces. Professional athletes also stated that they do single leg squats, Bulgarian split squats and single leg calf raises. This is to adapt the body to the forces.
You should really train on flexibility. To be a professional steeplechase athlete, you should have a perfect hip abductor and hamstring flexibility. If you are short, the more the flexibility is required. You should additionally make sure that the trail leg is also flexible. If it is not flexible, you may end up falling down or struggling in this type of race. Training to make the trail leg flexible saves you from the strain of jumping unnecessarily high.
The above tips are for steeplechase beginners who want to kick-start their career in the steeplechase and become very successful.