Speed is arguably the most important physical performance quality in field sports. Training to develop speed should ensure that the session is based on quality of repetitions, not quantity. Therefore, quantitative analysis of a training session should ensure this is the case.

How to do it

Use a fatigue index.

Quantifying fatigue

If your session comprises of 6 sprints, for example, calculate the fatigue index as follows:

  • Best Time * 6/Sum of Six Times
  • For example, your athlete has performed six sprints recording times of 5.1, 5.2, 5.3, 5.4, 5.5, 5.6 in any order
  • Quantification = 5.1 * 6 / Sum of 5.1, 5.2, 5.3, 5.4, 5.5, 5.6

In our example, our athletes scores 0.95. The closer your athlete’s score is to 1.0, the closer your athletes is to their best performance time over repeated sprints in the session.

Implications for the training session

  • Speed training (95-100% max effort) requires long rest periods to avoid fatigue. Anywhere from 10-15min in between reps
  • Use the quantitative data to support your coaches eye with regard to technique