PAN AM Weightlifting Footwork

pan am weightlifting          As a weightlifter begins his hoist, it looks like he is going to jump. He puts his weight on the outside edges of his feet directly under his hips. Pushing aggressively and quickly against the ground with his feet, he lifts the weight by transferring force from the ground to the barbell through a hip extension.  Actually, his feet lift just enough to slide outwards.   After the lift, he lands in a squat.  Part of his training involves ‘taking off’ from and landing in the same place until it is muscle memory.

Balanced Lift

If a weightlifter doesn’t get his feet right, he won’t get his lift right.  He must position his grip on the barbell so that he is lifting over his ‘centre of balance’.  He can’t be too far forward or too far behind.  His trainer would have made references to the laws of physics that determine his body’s area of balance.  The area changes depending on the type of lift. (1)

In the ‘Snatch’, a single overhead lift movement, the bar is horizontal to his feet.  As he drives the bar upwards, it stays over the rear of his heel bone and the front of the balls of his feet.  That’s his area of balance.

The ‘Clean’ and the ‘Jerk’ are lifts with two sequential movements. In the variation called ‘Split Jerk’, there is initially a jump and then a lunge or ‘split’. In the jump, he centers his pressure on the balls of his feet and drives the barbell upwards.  Keeping the ‘jerk’ overhead in the ‘split’ requires appropriate foot action.  His rear foot strikes the floor first gaining traction, followed immediately by his front foot. His body moves forward and ends up directly under the bar. His area of balance goes from the balls of his feet on one leg to his toe of the other leg.

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/weightlifting

http://breakingmuscle.com/olympic-weightlifting/the-2-fundamental-roles-of-footwork-in-the-jerk

http://www.crossfitsouthbay.com/watch-your-step/

https://breakingmuscle.com/video/breaking-muscle-video-bob-takano-the-importance-of-the-jerk-balance-for-footwork

https://breakingmuscle.com/olympic-weightlifting/how-high-school-physics-can-help-us-with-our-weightlifting   (1)

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Indoor Volleyball Footwork

pan am volleyball indoor          Volleyball is always, always about ball control. Footwork shifts players into positions to accomplish this. Even before the ball is set in motion, all the feet are set in place.  Six players per side form front and back rows placing their feet on the court floor according to strict rules. These stipulations ensure that the whole court is covered.

The players’ begin in their staggered stance with feet apart, knees bent, hips lowered, and body weight shifted onto the balls of their feet. When the ball is served, they break formation and ‘run’ combination plays. The setter calls the plays. Each hitter knows how to approach the ‘set’ with forward momentum or how to adjust her footwork if she is not called to take that ball. Volleyball players endeavor to be in the right position (to dig, pass, set, hit / spike, or block) without getting in anyone else’s way.  That takes teamwork and flexible, agile footwork.

Footwork Patterns for Setting:

As the opposing team serves the ball, the right-handed setter watches the ball in flight and predicts her teammates’ responses.  She anticipates a pass before setting the ball for a spike. She stays mobile so she can deliver the set facing the hitter with her right foot forward. The ball, her forehead and hips will align vertically. In the meantime, she reads and responds to the pass:

  • If the ball is passed in front of her, she takes a big step forward with her left foot, followed by a right step as she sets.
  • If the ball is passed off the net, she takes a big left step sideways away from the net and then squares up to the outside antennae. She sets the ball as she shifts weight onto her right foot.
  • If the ball is passed behind her, she steps back with her left foot, squares up to the target and set, shifting her weight onto her right foot. (1)

Footwork Patterns for Spiking:

The right-handed hitter approaches the set with hips open to centre court so she can create more power. She sprints her last three steps …‘Left – Right – Left’.  These are biomechanically-efficient moves to transition onto a ‘planted’ foot position and then a jump. Facing, but a little behind the setter who has timed the ball’s set, the hitter starts low and jumps straight up “punching her feet through the floor and pole-vaulting off her legs”. (2) She hammers the ball over the net and lands quietly on her feet.

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/volleyball

http://www.strength-and-power-for-volleyball.com/volleyball-footwork.html    (1)

http://www.volleyball.org/playing/keywords.pdf

http://www.livestrong.com/article/100917-volleyball-rules-using-feet/

http://www.capitalcityvbc.com/volleyball_articles/volleyball_hitting/volleyball_footwork.php  (2)

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Taekwondo Footwork

pan am taekwondo          In Taekwondo, kicking is the most important technique. They are prolific in variety and can defeat an opponent in a single strike.  Kicks to the head score the most points.  After the ritual bow, the combatant moves into his initial stance. From that position, he launches into an arsenal of forceful footwork. This martial artist can rapidly shift his weight, alternating legs performing in quick succession: a Spin Kick, a Straight Kick, a Jump Kick, a Jump Spin Kick, Double and Triple Kicks.  Apparently, there are even fake kicks.

The foot is at its height of combative power in these knock-out moves.  Depending on which kick he executes, the fighter uses various parts of his foot.

The Heel is used in the penetrating Side Kick. Its relative toughness is also suited to landing a punishing KO on the opponent’s head with the Axe Kick or the Hook Kick.

The Ball of the Foot, the area directly underneath the toes, is exposed when they are pulled back. This area is engaged in Frontal, Snapping Kicks and aimed at the opponent’s solar plexus, stomach or chin. The toes must be pulled back in Front Snapping Kicks or they could be broken on impact.

The Instep, at the top of the foot, is exposed when the toes are pointed forward.  It is a useful surface for kicking the side of an opponent’s body or head. Turning Kicks or Roundhouses engage the instep.

The Edge of the foot is prepared for striking by turning the foot down so the sole lies horizontal to the leg. The outside edge can then be used as a striking surface in Side Kicks much like the heel. Due to the small surface area of the edge of the foot, a more painful kick can be inflicted with this slightly more advanced technique. The edge of the foot is often used to snap boards in displays of Taekwondo breaking.

The Sole of the foot provides a big surface area and is mostly used in Taekwondo to force the opponent backwards. In this way, Pushing Kicks are more of a defensive maneuver. Nevertheless, a well-timed pushing kick can knock the wind out of an attacker.

The Knee is banned for use in Taekwondo competitions for good reason. The knee is a formidable weapon and can knock an opponent out in a single, low-risk strike. Knee techniques may be taught in Taekwondo as part of self-defense. (1)

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/taekwondo

http://www.taekwondoanimals.com/taekwondo-kicks

http://www.ir.isas.jaxa.jp/~cpp/TKD/technique/stances-e.html

http://www.talktaekwondo.co.uk/guides/taekwondo_standing_kicks.html (1)

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Squash Footwork

pan am squash          Squash players maintain a continuous physical, mental and emotional connection with the ball.  This parlays into skillfully executed footwork and winning shots in a graceful game of active deception. At the highest skill level, players try to outwit each other – anticipating not just the bounce of the ball but ‘reading’ their opponents’ moves, adjusting their counter-moves, and trying to make their own next move even more ‘unreadable’.  Good judgment lies behind good predictions which can then lead to good reactions. A player must get to the ball before his opponent even hits it.

Anticipating the Moves

What are the keys to early anticipation?  A squash player uses the ball’s travel time to read his opponent’s body language in his set up and stroke. He checks all the visual cues, weighing them against his familiarity with the player. He assesses footwork relative to the ball’s position, weight transfer, length and height of back swing, racquet grip, and angle of wrist.  He knows what to do…unless, the opponent ‘pulls a fast one’ and strategically pauses, leaving his shot option to the last microsecond.

Making the Moves

Anticipation doesn’t take place in isolation.  The squash player uses the ball’s travel time to position himself to retrieve all possible shots. In between shots, he generally moves back to the ‘T’ at centre court and gets ready. He does a fast hop and quarter squat, a ‘split step’, landing on feet shoulder width apart to regain balance.  The split step stretches all the muscles that will propel the player instantly and powerfully to the ball.

Squash players do not ‘run’ through the ball in the way that tennis players are trained to.  By the time they get within striking distance of the ball, squash players have already stopped their centre of gravity, transferring weight into the shot and then moving back to the ‘T’.  Lunges are the move of choice with the many directional demands on the body, especially if the ball is low.  A reaching lunge can be elegant; the non-racquet arm counterbalances the outstretched racquet arm. The ball gets a good whack, hopefully as the opponent was blinking.

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/squash

http://www.bettermovement.org/2011/movement-of-week-squash/

http://www.squashgame.info/squashlibrary/9/19

http://squashmagazine.ussquash.com/2014/05/movement-and-shot-mechanics-full-court-press/

http://www.colorado.edu/StudentGroups/squash/movement.html/

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Sailing Footwork

pan am sailing

On Board

The windsurfer races on a board,

On water in the wind.

His feet ride and steer in the chop and the swell;

Windsurfing, by nature, is elemental.

The rider watches the wind, its direction and speed.

Two feet planted so his hips can turn.

Facing upwind, the cold starts to burn.

Hands steer the boom, arms straight out.

He stands, bends, and leans as need be.

He takes the weight off both feet, switching them up.

The wind blows high; he curtsies low in the curve.

Weight forward to his toes, his sail foot hits his back leg.

Watch the luff! Take control! He brings his weight inboard,

Slips the new front foot forward; he knows where to go.

Done slogging, now hydroplaning, the fun begins!

It’s like low-level flying up on this board.

Front foot forward, lean in, back foot across.

Shoulders squared up to his knees and hips,

Can’t look down or he will get tossed.

He feels with his toes and maintains his grip,

Pivot at the ankles! Press on the toes!

Twist the front foot forward, up to the nose.

Point the toes! Get the weight off the board!

Get the speed up, flatten the board, ride it on the edge!

Heading upwind, finally on flat water and in control.

He lifts his front heel, forcing its arch in the strap,

He sees all his toes. OK good.

Weight riding fine on the ball of his foot,

He feels with his feet, the water’s not choppy.

His body moves left as the rig moves right,

His back foot’s flat, not carving the turn yet.

Ready to jibe; feet to the tack.

The wind picks up, his pulse instep.

Foot straps on, plane sailing ahead.

[Apologies to true windsurfers.]

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/sailing

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windsurfing

http://pritchardwindsurfing.com/how-to-get-planing-on-your-windsurfer/

http://howtowindsurf101.com/how-to-windsurf-in-the-footstraps/

http://www.windsurfing.org/train05.htm

http://www.magma.ca/~slaby/wind/learn.htm

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Rugby Sevens Footwork

pan am rugby sevens         Seven to each team, rugby players pass the ball backwards or kick the ball forwards towards their opponents’ goal area. Rugby is a multi-directional, full-contact sport. Footwork is aggressive, evasive and varied as they – for example – lift the jumper in a line out, hook the ball with their feet during a scrum, and free the ball with their feet during a ruck. The players hone their skills of acceleration – to move into open spaces when they have ball possession, agility – to move laterally, backwards or forwards to follow the ball, and balance – to withstand a tackle.

Agile Footwork – Swerving and Side Stepping

A ball carrier will swerve to avoid being tackled. He moves right up to the defender, both hands holding the ball in front.  He swerves to the right (or left, with opposite scenario) using the outside of his left boot and the inside of his right boot.  Moving the ball to his right hand away from the defender, he sprints into available space.

The side step, on the other hand, is an instantaneous change of direction by a ball carrier on the run from a defender.  Keeping the ball in both hands, he chooses a new direction, shortens his stride, steps wide with his outside leg, shifting his weight there. Looking like he is going to take off from that angle, he quickly shifts his weight to his other leg, pushing off with his outside leg.  While the defender is off balance, the ball carrier accelerates out of reach.

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/rugby-sevens

http://www.irbpassport.com/?page=beginners&p=21

http://www.rugby.com.au/Portals/18/Files/Coaching/Level3Papers/S.Hedger_-_Fast_Feet_Lvl_3.pdf

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/rugby_league/skills/4217044.stm

http://www.teachpe.com/rugby/techniques/sidestep.php

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Handball Footwork

pan am handball          The referees keep their eyes on the handball players’ feet. They look for violations of the rules. For example, the ball must not touch below the player’s knee and certainly, kicking is not permitted. Players are restricted to three steps while holding the ball. If they exceed that limit, the referees card them. Handball players organize their movements to receive the ball on the left foot in front move. Then on their final of three steps, they have optimal take-off energy to pass or take a shot on goal. It is a “left, right, left” or “fake, drive, jump” pattern.

Watchful offside betters focus on the goalkeepers.   This is a high-scoring game, for example: 28 to 23, 38 to 33, and 35 to 32. With all the fast-moving offensive action, goalkeepers are on their toes for the entire game. They are busy but not bustling. Their moves are slow compared to their team mates.  But when the ball arrives it is a good bet that they spring into action.

Goalkeeper’s Footwork

Balance and instant reactions are important. Goalkeepers start and return to ready position with feet shoulder-width apart, weight on the balls of the feet and knees slightly bent. They move side to side in small even steps following the ball, reducing angles when an attacker advances. Feet spring with hands up and out to save high shots on goal, feet slide and go wide for low saves. Two informally-named footwork styles in response to low shots:

  1. The Yugoslavian style:

The goalkeeper takes a deep side step with his whole leg and same side hand movement. Body weight transfers to that leg and its foot is ‘open’; the inside of the foot is ready to stop the ball.

  1. The Scandinavian style

Sliding on the heel of the leg closest to the approaching shot on goal, the goalkeeper extends one or both hands towards the foot of that leg.

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/handball

http://mnteamhandball.blogspot.ca/2009/08/few-words-regarding-footwork.html

http://livesports-betting.com/are-you-a-handball-passionate/

http://www.wikihow.com/Play-Handball

http://teamhandball.ab.ca/clientuploads/goalkeeper-First+Step.pdf

http://www.videojug.com/film/how-to-handball-goalkeeping

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

      TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM