SPEED IS A FUNDAMENTAL COMPONENT OF MANY SPORTS, AND THE ABILITY TO SPRINT IS OFTEN A DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTIC OF SUCCESSFUL PERFORMANCE. THIS ARTICLE REVIEWS EVIDENCE EXAMINING SPEED DEVELOPMENT DURING CHILDHOOD AND ADOLESCENCE, WITH A SPECIFIC FOCUS ON THE IMPACT OF MOVEMENT SKILL AND PHYSIOLOGICAL AND BIOMECHANICAL FACTORS. GUIDELINES ARE PROVIDED TO ASSIST STRENGTH AND CONDITIONING COACHES WITH LONG-TERM PLANNING OF TRAINING TO MAXIMIZE SPEED DEVELOPMENT THROUGHOUT CHILDHOOD AND ADOLESCENCE.
1Cardiff School of Sport, Cardiff Metropolitan University, Cardiff, United Kingdom;
2Sport Performance Research Institute New Zealand, AUT University, Auckland, New Zealand; and
3New Zealand Football, Northcross, New Zealand
Conflicts of Interest and Source of Funding: The authors report no conflicts of interest and no source of funding.
Jon L. Oliver is a senior lecturer in Sport and Exercise Physiology at Cardiff Metropolitan University.
Rhodri S. Lloyd is a Lecturer in Physiology at Cardiff Metropolitan University and also a board director for the UK Strength and Conditioning Association.
Michael C. Rumpf is a National Sport Scientist for New Zealand Football and has recently completed a PhD in sprint running kinetics and kinematics in youths at Auckland University of Technology.