So, with three vault practices completed so far, i thought i would give a quick update on how the training with Apex has been going, and the differences i have noticed in practice.
The first day, Branko noticed I was kind of disappointed with practice. it was the first practice so i was expecting to get back into it and just jump, but Branko is completely breaking us all down to build us back up. So, we do baby hurdle drills at the beginning of practice, and some walking and running pole plants. All using different techniques than what i’m used to. Then, we do several zero step runs which i actually like a lot. It is helping me push out my left hand, like i have never been good at before. Then, we do one step drills, holding the pole above our heads, and emphasizing our left arms. Then, we go to 2 step runs, with a plant. These are all without swinging. Then, we finally move on to 3 step runs. We start with not swinging, and after we get it right, we move on to the swing.
There are so many drills and techniques that i am basically relearning, or learning for the first time than what i am used to from Patriot, but i think it is good to have a different perspective on coaching the vault. It is definitely working so far!
So the ride to the place we practice takes anywhere from 45 min to 75 min depending on traffic, which is not fun when we dont leave campus until 7. By the time we get there, i am lazy from sitting on the bus. But today i had a great practice. Because I have been vaulting a lot longer than the other vaulters we have on the team, Branko has been accelerating me through the zero, one, and two steps, while the 5 other people from Stevens work more on the very short runs. Today, I got to 3 steps pretty quickly. I started off holding at 9’9″, and was doing everything well so Branko kept moving my grip up. He decided to put up bungees, at 7′, 10′ and 12′. So by the end of practice i was wrapping 10′ while holding at 10’6″ on a 12′ 130 from a 3 step! it was exciting, especially since i have only jumped 3 times since august. I was doing so well, but we had to leave to drive back to school. I could have jumped all night! that is the one thing i dont like so far, is that by the time we get to the facility and warm up, there is only about an hour and 15 min left to vault.
But overall, Branko is great. I can’t wait to start taking longer runs, and holding higher. He said he would love to see me go 11′ this year, but by the way i felt at todays practice, i see bigger goals! ECAC qualifying this year is 10’6″, but nationals is only 12′!!
I’ll keep you posted. My first meet is a month from today, CTC relays in connecticut. I cant wait!