I started off my track career as a long and triple jumper, so I know how to bound.
But I still feel bounding is important for my sprinters, as well as doing single leg hops (Hops and bounds are a staple in my repertoire).
Why? Several reasons. One is because sometimes you don’t have access to stadium stairs or hurdles.
Sprinting is an explosive event.
Speed training is all about the force-velocity curve (I covered that in several past articles). So to cover the entire range of speed training, we need to break it down into the start (instantaneous power to overcome inertia), acceleration (stride length/speed frequency), and maximum velocity.
In the weight room, the slower velocities will increase strength with progressive training loads and may even cause increased muscle mass (which may be a good thing, but not too much mass where it affects the bodyweight to strength ratio). Therefore this type of training will have the greatest impact on instantaneous power.
Even in the acceleration phase (in between max strength and max speed), we will see longer ground contact times as we are trying to deliver as much force as possible. See the past article on Developing Acceleration: Assisted & Resisted Training Methods.
Thus bounding is one of the many ways to improve reactive strength or elastic strength in speed development.
Kenta’ Bell’s How to Teach Bounding.. in 4 Easy Steps
This short video was produced by Kenta’ Bell. His past articles include Ballistic Power for Better Athletic Performance and Advanced Plyometrics for Jump and Sprint Training. His website is www.thinkingfeet.com and you can reach him at horizontalvelocity (at) hotmail.com
If you are going to partake in bounding, technique should be the first priority, and not overreach for maximal distance. Don’t get so competitive. Of course, this will reduce injuries!
Be sure to watch the entire length of the video as Kenta’ added an bonus feature at the very end.