This is it... the final part of my interview with Travis Hansen.
After this, you have no excuse for not running faster.
Here. We. Go.
YB: What are your thoughts on genetics and speed? How much does the former influence the latter? And what can you do as an athlete if you’re not blessed with a relatively high distribution of fast-twitch Muscle fibers at birth?
TH: ACTN-3 or Alpha-actinin-3 is being deemed as the speed gene by some and genetics are influential to adaptation and progress, no doubt.
This speed based gene manufactures a protein found specifically in fast twitch skeletal muscle fibers that serves various roles in human running speed. I've read some information that every high level olympic sprinter that was tested for the gene came back positive.
With that being said, far too many Athletes fall into the trap of blaming their alleged poor genetics or whatever else, even though they haven't been specifically tested.
Also, many athletes respond very well to speed Training and make great progress who have poor baselines when they start. The genetic issue weeds itself out naturally at the elite levels and most of us fall somewhere in the middle.
The reality is that even if someone has a poor predisposition to running fast, there is so many channels in the nervous system and muscles that athletes and coaches can capitalize on to become faster through training and nutrition and proper recovery methods.
Hormone levels, muscle growth, muscle recruitment, and so much more contribute to someone's speed and everyone can utilize these features to their benefit and become faster. I've seen it too many times in athletes who came in who I'm quite confident were poor responders genetically.
YB: Let’s dive into sprinting technique for a moment. What are some typical technique flaws athletes make when trying to run fast that slow them down without them even realizing it?
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