So we have our speed and our agility, but where does our quickness come into play for developing fitness?
While speed is our ability to move from point A to point B in one direction as quickly as possible and agility is our ability to accelerate and decelerate through a change in direction, quickness is our ability to react and change positions/direction as fast as possible with a maximal rate of force production. Therefore, quickness is the combination of speed and agility.
What does it mean to have functional quickness? To explore this we need to think about when quickness might be used in real world or sport experiences.
If you are running down the soccer field, dribbling the ball in an attack toward the goal what are some reasons you might need to change directions quickly?
- You see a defender coming toward you to block your line to the goal
- You hear a teammate who is open across the field call for the ball
- You feel the ball move further with your dribble than you expected
These different types of visual, auditory, and kinesthetic feedback that you receive during your attack will help you make decisions on your body position, changing directions, and speed or acceleration changes you might need to make in order to be successful in your attack to the goal. Incorporating this type of feedback into quickness training can help the individual be more functional in how they develop their quickness to be more meaningful as it transitions to sport-specific activities.