Letter from the Editor, November 2017

Hello readers, and welcome to the November 2017 edition of The Hurdle Magazine. A couple days I, along with several coaching friends, conducted the Team Steve Speed & Hurdle Camp at the JDL Fast Track in Winston Salem, NC. It was a great camp, attended by fifty athletes ranging in age from 10 to 17, with one masters athlete. A great time was had by all and the athletes learned a lot. I won’t be including any articles about the camp in this issue of the magazine due to time constraints, but will definitely do so next month. Let me go ahead and break down the lineup of articles for this month’s issue.

Fitness expert Melinda Burris Willms is back with another outstanding article, this one entitled “Warm Up, Layer Up, and Drink Up.” This article focuses on injury-prevention habits that you’ll want to practice when training in the cold weather months.

All the rest of the articles in this month’s issue are by yours truly, beginning with a personal story, “I Faced the Cold,” about my first race back from three weeks in the hospital and another two weeks at home after being treated for the rare blood disease, aplastic anemia, at the age of seventeen. It’s been a while since I’ve written a personal story, and I had written a shorter version of this one a while ago, so I wanted to go ahead and flesh it out and publish it, and hopefully it can provide some inspiration for you readers.

“Block Start Practice” is an article in which I discuss the method by which I conduct block start practice sessions in such a manner as to ensure that the athletes maintain high quality in each rep and begin to develop their race instincts. You only get one rep on race day, as I always say, so practicing the mental aspect of attacking the first hurdle is just as important as the technical aspects of the block start and clearing the first hurdle.

“Start Practice with the Fellas” takes the concept of the “Block Start Practice” article and applies it to an actual block start practice session that I conducted with four of my hurdlers. The article is centered around photos taken by the parent of one of my athletes of one rep over four hurdles. In the article, I provide commentary for each photo, guiding the reader through the rep, from getting into the blocks to clearing the first hurdle.

This month’s workout, “Falling Starts Workout,” is a workout designed to improve a hurdler’s ability to accelerate through the first hurdle, as younger hurdlers especially tend to fixate on the first hurdle too much and therefore stand too tall too soon while approaching the hurdle.

For this month’s great race, we’re flashing back to Colin Jackson’s world record race in 1993, when he ran 12.91 at the World Championships in Stuttgart, breaking Roger Kingdom’s world record of 12.92, set in 1989. Jackson ran a phenomenal race, and was followed by fellow Englishman Tony Jarrett in 13.00. American Jack Pierce finished third in 13.06.

Enjoy the articles, and keep working hard. Some of you might be starting up your indoor season before the next issue comes out. If so, good luck in those early-season meets. As always, thank you for your support.

Steve McGill

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