Promote profound physical and mental changes by adding this into your training regimen!
By Andrew Bolter, Vital Pursuit Athletics Founder
Welcome to Vital Pursuit Athletic's blog, where we provide you with the latest insights and information to help you take your training to the next level. In this post, we will explore the many health and performance benefits of sprint training. Sprint training involves short bursts of maximum effort, followed by periods of rest or low-intensity exercise. Whether you are an athlete looking to improve your performance or simply seeking to enhance your overall fitness, adding sprint training to your workout routine can help you achieve your goals.
Let's dive in and discover the many benefits of incorporating sprint training into your training program.
Benefit #1 - Burn more fat, in less time!
Sprint training is a highly effective way to burn fat and improve body composition. According to a study published in the International Journal of Obesity, sprint interval training can result in significantly greater reductions in body fat than moderate-intensity continuous exercise (1). As Dr. Jason Karp, a running coach and author of "Run Your Fat Off" explains, "Sprinting is a fantastic way to burn calories and fat. It raises your metabolism and increases your fat-burning potential" (2). Not only does sprint training burn more calories during the workout, it also increases your resting metabolic rate, meaning you continue to burn calories long after you finish exercising (3).
Benefit #2 - Promote neuromuscular adaptations
Sprinting involves powerful muscle contractions that can improve neuromuscular adaptations, such as increased muscle activation and faster contraction signaling. As Dr. John Rusin, a strength and conditioning coach, explains, "Sprinting forces your nervous system to adapt and get better at recruiting muscle fibers, which translates to more strength and power in the gym" and on the field (4). A study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology found that sprint interval training increased muscle oxidative potential and endurance capacity in humans (5).
"Sprinting forces your nervous system to adapt and get better at recruiting muscle" – Dr. John Rusin
Benefit #3 - Develop confidence and competence
Training sprints and acceleration work will also build confidence and competence. Many athletes do not believe they can be fast, or enhance their ability to get faster - but they absolutely can. At Vital Pursuit Athletics we have helped numerous young athletes build the foundational skillset of speed and power through exposure to sprint training. As the athlete embarks on the journey, a marked increase in self-confidence is seen, mirroring their improvements in speed-based competency!
Benefit #4 - Enhance athletic performance
Sprint training is a popular training method for athletes because it can improve speed, power, and endurance. According to a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, sprint interval training can improve sprint and jump performance in professional soccer players (6). Another study published in the Journal of Sports Science and Medicine found that sprint interval training was just as effective as steady-state exercise for improving aerobic fitness in healthy men (7).
Benefit #5 - Improve Body Composition
Finally, sprint training can help improve body composition by increasing muscle mass and reducing body fat. A study published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology found that maximal strength training improved running economy in distance runners, which can lead to improved body composition (8). Sprint training can also improve insulin sensitivity and fat oxidation, according to a study published in the International Journal of Obesity (9).
Sprinting for Wellness and Performance
In conclusion, sprint training offers numerous health and performance benefits, including burning more fat in less time, improving neuromuscular adaptations, providing a personal challenge, enhancing athletic performance, and improving body composition. Whether you are an athlete looking to improve your performance or simply seeking to enhance your overall fitness, incorporating sprint training into your workout routine can help you achieve your goals.
Trapp EG, et al. The effects of high-intensity intermittent exercise training on fat loss and fasting insulin levels of young women. Int J Obes (Lond). 2008;32(4):684-691.
Karp J. Run Your Fat Off: Running Smarter for a Leaner and Fitter You. Ulysses Press; 2017.
Tremblay A, et al. Impact of exercise intensity on body fatness and skeletal muscle metabolism. Metabolism. 1994;43(7):814-818.
Rusin J. The benefits of sprinting and how to incorporate it into your training. Stack. https://www.stack.com/a/benefits-of-sprinting. Accessed March 31, 2023.
Burgomaster KA, et al. Similar metabolic adaptations during exercise after low volume sprint interval and traditional endurance training in humans. J Physiol. 2008;586(Pt 1):151-160.
Rebelo A, et al. Short-term match-induced changes in physical fitness parameters in elite soccer players. J Strength Cond Res. 2014;28(5):1175-1180.
Astorino TA, et al. Effect of high-intensity interval training on cardiovascular function, VO2max, and muscular force. J Sports Sci Med. 2012;11(3):483-488.
Ronnestad BR, Mujika I. Optimizing strength training for running and cycling endurance performance: A review. Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2014;24(4):603-612.
Whyte LJ, et al. The effects of two weeks of sprint interval training on insulin sensitivity and fat oxidation. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2010;42(5 Suppl 1):S289-S290.