Sunday, May 4, 2008

Remebering Kim Gallagher

Most female 800m dash runners of today have never heard of Kim Gallagher. As Chanelle Price, a Pennsylvania athlete just as Kim was, sets her sites on breaking the High School and USA Junior National records in the 800m and the possibility of making the Olympic team. It is only fitting that we reflect on the accomplishments and career of the women who should be consider one of the greatest American 800m runner of all time.When spectators coaches and athletes speak of the greatest female 800m dash runners you hear name such as Madeline Manning-Mims, Mary Slaney,Joetta Clark, and Jearl Miles Clark, But Kim's Name is never spoken among them. If we were to take a look at Kim's accomplishment and her illustrious but short career You will see way she should be considered in the group as one of the greatest.

Kim's records and statistics
High School Athlete
High School: Upper Dublin
High School All American
placed 8Th at the Olympic trails at the age of 16
12 PIAA State Titles
1979 ran 5000m 16:34.70 Still one of top 10 HS times
1981 Ran 3000m 9:19.67 still one top 10 HS times
1982 800m 2:00.07 High School National Record, USA Junior National Record
1982 Mile 4:16.60 High School National Record
USA Elite Athlete
1984 Ranked # 1 in the US for 800m
# 8 in the US for 1500m
1987 Ranked # 7 in the US for 800m
1988 Ranked # 1 in the US for 800m
# 4 in the world for 800m
# 2 in the US for 1500m
Inducted into Penn Relays and Pennsylvania Coaches Hall of Fame

Kim's greatest accomplishment would come at the 1984 and 1988 Olympic Games. In 1984 Kim won the silver medal in the 800m dash, and in 1988 she won the bronze medal with a time of 1:56.91 this time still ranks as one of the fastest time by an American. In 1988 Kim was the only American male or female to win an Olympic medal in a distance longer than 400m, but the most courageous thing about Kim's career is that she accomplished all these feats while being diagnosed with one illness after another. As an elite athlete she diagnosed with ovarian, colon and later stomach cancer.

As you read this blog and look at her statistics it should make you wonder why she is not in the US Track and Field Hall OF Fame.

So to those of you who compete in the women's 800m as you step on the line and
wait for the gun to start the 800m dash at the olympic trails take a second and remember one of the greatest of all time. " The Great Kim Gallagher"

Kim Gallagher died of a stroke in 2002 at the age of 38

Coach L

Friday, April 18, 2008

Training a Collegiate 4x100 Relay Team

My Philosophy about training a 4x100 relay team works for me but may not work for you. First I believe that your athletes should start fooling around with the baton passing as early as October. During this time they should get a taste of what the relay and the baton feels like. For the coach this is a good time to find out who can pass and take a stick, and who can't, plus this also gives the coach time to teach his/her athletes how to pass, and take a stick with either hand. I usually start doing full 4x100 practices during the late part of the indoor season (if weather permits), I will usually incorporate it in to our speed work days.

SETTING UP YOUR 4x100 RELAY TEAM............

1st leg- Should have a great start, good speed a the strength to run at least a fast solid 150m.

2Nd Leg- Must have very quick acceleration, and be a strong straightaway runner ( this leg is sometimes run by your best 400m runner if you don't have 4 solid short sprinters). Some coaches run their fast athlete on this leg.

3rd leg- This leg is usually your best curve runner. This leg should also have good pick-up speed and be able to hold or increase a lead. Depending on the type of athlete you have on the anchor leg(4Th leg), and your competition will sometimes determine the type of sprinter you run on your third leg.

4Th leg- Should have excellent acceleration, and very fast closing speed, and must have the heart of a warrior(this leg does not always have to be your fastest leg, many times they could be the 2Nd or sometimes even the 3rd fastest leg ,as long as they posses the first two qualities, and you have super sprinters on the first 3 legs)

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Perfecting the 3 Point Start for a Fast 40

The biggest mistakes that I see college players make when running the 40 at the NFL combines is during the start of the 40. The players need to understand that the start is just as important as the spirnt. A good start can be the diffrence in running a 4.4 or a 4.2 40.
A good start for a football player in the 40 is just as important as a good start for a sprinter in the 100m. In reality there is not much diffrence.

There are some very simple methods you can use to correct a bad 3 point start, adjusting a few things such as foot placement, hand placement, body movement and motion will help you drop tenths off your 40 time.

The start: The 40 is done from a 3 point stance which is with the left or right foot forward and the opposite leg back, your arm should be in a fly position (left arm extended back and in the air). Let break the start down a little more so you can learn to get a better start.

(If you are left handed then follow these directions in the opposite manner)

Stand at the starting line with both feet together, move your right foot two feet behind the left foot, than move your right foot about one step over to the right. Place your right hand down on the track with your fingers in a bridge, behind the line (you should be in a 3 point starting stance). Place your left arm in a fly postion (Left arm is bent with the wrist and hand just slightly behind your left hip) lean forward with your shoulders over the line, now your ready to sprint " Or are you" When You drive out of the start position and down the track the first movement you should make is to drive your left arm forward and drive your right arm back at the same time your right leg should be driving from it's power position to a forward motion, from there your motion should be a left right movement down the track with a opposite arm opposite leg action.

Example: when you drive the right leg forward, you should also drive the left arm forward and the right arm back.

Faults: Some athletes get so nervous when there in the start position that their first reaction is to come out of the 3 point stance driving the right leg and the right arm at the sametime or vice versa.
Correction: Remember these words and practice it when working on the start " If you are right handed your first reaction out of the start should be left arm forward right arm back.

Faults: Some athletes have a tendency to have their hips to high when they get in the 3 point start positon

1. Make sure that both the front and back leg are bent at least 45 degrees angle

2. Make sure your body weight is resting on the hand that is down on the track

3. Your shoulders should be rolled forward over the start line.

Common Faults: during the first 5-6 steps out of the 3 point stance some athletes have a tendency to zig zag down the track.

Correction:Keep foot in same placement turn right knee inside slightly when you drive out the start concentrate on running a start line.

Having an expolsive start is only part of the key to running a good 40. below are a few other things that can help you improve.



Speed Endurance


Stay fast & keep " Talken Track"