Weightlifting Essay Example: How Sprinters Should Lift Weight
Weightlifting is a practice that has been around for centuries. Since the year of 1896, the olympics included weightlifting as an event this even proceeded today's track and field or athletic events. With the goals of becoming more powerful, stronger, and faster weight lifting has multiple purposes nowadays. As the sport of track and field is becoming more competitive by the minute more and more children are starting to run and even lift weights. Children young as five are beginning to lift weights so they can become the fastest, strongest, and most powerful that they can be. Although, this is problematic as there is debate with how sprinters should lift weight. The answer to this question is that sprinters should lift with high weight with low repetitions, 5-8 reps.
Dr. Jacob Wilson who is on the scientific advisory board of dymatize nutrition stated, “Large fast twitch muscle fibers are recruited with the heavier type of living, 6-8 repetitions, when you recruit them you turn on protein synthesis, and your muscles grow.” He also claimed that “Lactic acid was most present with these types of lift, heavy and low rep.” With a studied conducted at the University of Tampa, data presented that lactic acid is a catalyst for muscle growth. Furthermore, fast twitch muscles are the muscles that are essential to explosiveness and speed. These attributes are necessary for elite sprinters to have, for sprinters must be able to explode out the blocks and to quickly cycle their legs to have high stride frequency. Ultimately, to grow muscles crucial for sprinting, heavy weights on 6-8 repetitions are advised.
A former writer for Verywell Fit covering weight training named Paul Rogers wrote, “The ability to run fast is pretty much determined genetically by your predominant muscle type — the fast twitch fibers and how many of them you have been blessed with.” Although, to maximize the capability of fast twitch muscles, Rogers recommends that athletes lift 2-3 sessions a week with repetitions at 6. The lifts included Romanian deadlift, incline bench press, hang clean, single-leg squats, back squat, and combo crunches. Not only will this maximize the capability of your fast twitch muscles, but athletes will develop “strength and Power” according to Rogers.
World renowned sprinter Usain Bolt claimed his lifting routine “... has helped me with strength endurance," he says. "And it's good to have that strength, because you can run fast for longer periods.” With lifts including squats, chest press, and leg extensions Bolt never decided to do more than 8 reps. This combination of weight and reps was perfect for Bolt as he was gaining strength endurance like stated. Bolt’s coach remarked that the reps should be slow and controlled to maximize the lactic acid. As stated before, lactic acid is a catalyst to muscle growth and development.
Overall, it is understood that for sprinters the best method of lifting weights is higher weight with low reps ranging from 5-8 reps. Despite claims of critics that oppose this practice, evidence reveals that this method is the most productive. With the examples of Usain Bolt, Paul Rogers, and Dr. Jacob Wilson it is clear that low repetition high weight is the advised training method.