“The Start” has always been a hot topic for sprinters. When I say “the start”, I am referring to the reaction time, and the first 2 steps out of the blocks (or block clearance). They say a lot of races are won and lost on “the start”, though that doesn’t seem to bother Usain Bolt, as he can recover from a “bad start”.
Choosing starting blocks for training sessions can be complicated. For competition, you aren’t given a chance to choose your starting blocks. If you are an Elite or International athlete, you know the differences between your typical “Collegiate” starting blocks versus the ones you’ll be using at Worlds or Olympics.
So choose one that will emulate the situation as close as possible. I’ve talked about how to choose starting blocks in several past articles (scroll to the end of the articles under “Related posts”).
Gill Fusion F10 Starting Blocks
Up until last year, I have always been a fan of the conventional Gill National Starting Blocks, and most of you probably own or use the Collegiate Starting Blocks. (You can find them in the USA on their website)
The above photo shows the difference between the F10 (blue, left) and the National (green, right).
Below are 3 videos on my YouTube channel. One is unboxing and assembling, one is setting it up at the track, and finally, a sample Start from last year (just before I ruptured my Achilles in August).
Unboxing and Assembling
Setting up at the Track
Sample Start with the Gill Fusion F10
Note how I do not have anyone “holding” or “stepping on” the blocks for me, because they do not slip. The explanation is in the second video.
The Moye Starting Blocks (Add On)
I am adding the section on the Moye Starting Blocks because I think it is relevant. It is available as an add-on to any Fusion series starting blocks (Fusion II, F4, F8, & F10)
I think a lot of coaches and athletes don’t know the difference between “quick” and “powerful”.
A few years ago when I was watching the Marc Magiacotti’s 100 meter videos, he showed an easy drill for showing athletes the difference between “quick” and “powerful” where quick = slow, and powerful = fast. Another one of those “ah-hah” moments. Thanks Marc.
You see, you can be quick, but not fast. You can be fast, but not quick.
The Moye Starting block is named after the inventor Charles Moye from Akron, Ohio in 1989.
The Moye Starting block (or the Moye starting position) concept is simple. The angles of the blocks are much different than conventional starting blocks. The rear block has a very steep angle, and the front block has a low angle for the heel of your front foot. The front shoe has the spike plate and needles in contact with the synthetic track surface.
With the Moye blocks, the sprinter has a higher hip position than conventional starting blocks which will result in a greater vertical force rather than a horizontal force when leaving the blocks. Thus the sprinter will get out “quicker”, with quicker steps and quicker turnover, but at the expense of horizontal power.
Related Posts on Starting Blocks
- Starting blocks are overrated!
- How to improve your 100 meter start: Quickness vs Power (and the Moye Starting Block)
- How to choose starting blocks
- Technological innovations in track and field
- The Olympic starting gun and starting blocks controversy
- Track and field starting blocks evolution
- Frank Wykoff on the track & field starting blocks controversy