I subscribe to a service that provides Speed and Agilty Workouts for Instructors. Lee Taft is a great resource.
Quickness vs. Quick Reactions…posted on Sports Speed, Etc.
One of the roles of a coach is to develop the skills that are going to position his or her athletes the best. For example, sports like baseball, softball and football have athletes playing certain position that do not require tremendous quickness, however do require tremendous quick reactions. What is the difference? Quickness is the ability to move in one direction and change directions with “Quickness” (body control, agility, balance…). Quick reactions are the ability to instantaneously make a change in the current position and accelerate toward the play. This could be the reactions of the arms moving to catch a line drive or hit a curve ball. It could be a quick foot reaction of an offensive lineman to an inside move from a defensive end rushing the quarterback.
Athletic ability can be outlined globally or it can be specific. Training a hockey goalie to be fast at skating and changing directions will help develop athleticism. However, teaching the goalie to have reactive hands and legs to defend the goal is specifically important to being a goalie.
A coach needs to know when to devote greater time to one or the other. It makes sense for professional athlete to spend most of their time on the specific skills needed to play the sport or position. If global foundational skills are not challenged, then there is a loss of athleticism and this can in turn hinder the specific nature of their sport. If we are dealing with youth athletes, then the higher percentage needs to be global foundational quickness to develop overall athleticism. We would then move on to specific quickness when needed.
Love to hear you thoughts,
Yours in Speed, Lee
P.S. – Sports Speed Etc. has devoted two decades to teaching the proper way to improve quickness. Go to www.SportsSpeedEtc.com to grab information on training for quickness. Keep learning, keep growing and keep being great!