SPEED AGILITY AND QUICKNESS OR SAQ Speed Agility and Quickness or SAQ as it is more commonly known had its beginnings working in the world of professional sport. With SAQ Training, the power of applied sports science can be put into practice by everybody, from beginner level to elite performance, under the supervision of an expert physio. What do these terms mean? Speed is the ability to accelerate in a straight line. If I play a team sport for example soccer in a 50/50 contest when the ball is 10 meters away, the person with the greatest acceleration or speed wins the ball for their team. SAQ improves athletic speed by using drills aimed at:
- Starting ability great for the 50/50 contests in football codes and getting to a low drop shot in tennis or squash (acceleration)
- Stride length (increase after initial acceleration)
- Stride rate (number of steps per time)
- Speed endurance
- Sprint form and technique by utilizing the correct muscles and tendons in the correct sequence not only does you risk of injury decrease (in recent research a 80% reduction in ACL injuries were noted for soccer players put through an SAQ program), but you become more efficient using the required muscles which in turn improves endurance.
Agility is the ability to rapidly change directions without the loss of speed, balance, or body control. As with other fitness components, agility is specific to a particular movement pattern and requires control and coordination Craig (2004). In multidirectional sports agility is the utmost importance to win the point or dodge an opponent to create a scoring opportunity. Agility in the SAQ program is improved through a series of drills incorporating ladders, hurdles and cones designed to optimize neuromuscular patterning and condition (through correct technique). Like any other physical attribute, agility can be trained and improved through repetition and overload of correctly and carefully sequenced movements as provided by the SAQ instructor. The benefit of correct change of direction technique is not only to create scoring opportunity but also to reduce the risk or ankle and knee problems with explosive change of direction. Being quick is related to speed but not the same. You might be able to run fast if you have enough time to increase your speed, but how fast can you move off the line? This is “quickness.” If you can perform a task in a brief amount of time, you are quick. Many sport plays never allow enough time for max. velocity, so quickness is actually more important! How does this benefit me?
- Training is provided by a qualified physiotherapist (an expert runner himself), and be taught proper running technique throughout training program.
- Improved sporting performance through improved agility, speed, power and quickness (to win the 50/50 or dance around the opposition)
- Lots of fun and catered to all levels
Reference Craig BW (2004) What is the scientific basis of speed and agility. Strength and Conditioning Journal, 26(3), 13-14.