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6. Strength training will stunt a young athlete's growthThis is another myth held over from a different time. On a daily basis, kids as young as 7years old are playing organized sports year round, tackling, getting tackled, sliding, fallingetc.. These loads on the body can have a much greater physical impact than a well designedstrength training program. Though we don't usually begin training with weights with prepubescent athletes, they can benefit from body weight exercises such as push ups, lunges, situps, etc. This will increase muscular efficiency, speed up recovery, improve coordination andoverall speed.7. The harder the workout, the better the resultSome athletes (and coaches) have this mentality that if a workout doesn't reduce them tocomplete exhaustion and/or make them vomit, that it wasn't an effective workout. I can tellyou that those who have this mentality probably see a lot of injuries and frustratingperformances. The purpose of a workout is to stimulate an adaptation by the body. If the bodyis forced to do too much work in a given time period, it will break down. The skill incoaching is to stimulate the adaptation in the body, without reaching a point of diminishingreturns.8. Interval training is the same as speed trainingRunning repeat 100s, 200s, etc will not improve top speeds. Even running repeat 40s withshort recovery will not improve acceleration and top speeds. Speed work is defined at 2-8seconds of maximal intensity running with full recovery. That means at least 2 minutes of light dynamic movement between each effort. This goes against the experience of somecoaches, but simply put, is the only way to improve speed. An athlete must be able to focuson proper form and maintain intensity in order to get faster. If they do not recover properlyfrom each interval, they will not be able to replicate proper mechanics with consistency andthey can not improve.9. Flexibility won't help you get fasterBoth coaches and athletes spend so much time on the skills of their sport, speed training andconditioning that they often forget a fundamental component of success: flexibility. Afterpractice or a game, the muscles are warm and loose. Now is the time to work on increasingflexibility. So many athletes suffer injuries or compete below their capacity because poorflexibility inhibits their range of motion and speed. We see this often in the hips and hipflexors where athletes' stride length appears conspicuously short. Most often we see this inmale athletes who will lift weights, train hard and then skip out on their cool down andflexibility work.10. Lift your kneesI hear so many parents and coaches yelling to their kids when they want them to run faster orwhen they are beginning to fatigue, "Lift your knees, Get your knees up". This is one of themost backwards cues we can give to athletes. The way to run faster is to apply more force tothe ground. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, so the more force you apply tothe ground, the more the ground will give back. So when we cue athletes to lift their kneeswe're doing two things incorrectly.