Paleo Fitness Sprinting Skill Drill: Strides

Running, like all other movements, is a skill. But since sprinting is such a high-speed movement, it deserves some extra attention more than most other movements. Proper sprint preparation and mechanics can mean the difference between a great workout and a hamstring tear.
This skills training focuses on steps. Running strides are a common running technique that can only be described as something between a sprint and a sprint. They help you prepare the body for fast sprints and train proper sprinting mechanics.
It is best to perform the steps barefoot and on an unpaved surface (try to work on the football field in a public park, but be sure to keep the field well maintained so as not to land in a pit and injure yourself).
Check the previous figure to see what the steps look like, and refer to the following list on how to perform the steps:
<> Perform sprints in a manner similar to the sprint exercise (six to eight rounds of 60 to 100 metres), but feel free to adjust the distance as needed.
As you start, gradually accelerate to about 85 percent of your maximum speed in the first two thirds and then gradually slow down in the last third of the stride.
<> Focus on the form as you make great strides. Make sure your foot rotates quickly, hitting the ground on the ball of your foot in line with your hip (don’t overdo it).
<> Think of ‘quick arms’ on a stride, and match pumping your arms with pumping your legs.
<> Just like walking, steps should be an opposing motion, meaning your opposite arm and leg move together—that is, when your left leg goes up, your right arm goes up, and vice versa.
<> Maintain a fairly straight trunk.
Keep in mind that the steps are not supposed to be difficult. Don’t do it so fast that the warm-up becomes as hard as your exercise. Long strides are drills, not sprints.