The What, Why and How of Overspeed Training

What is Overspeed Training?

Overspeed training is an effective method to recruit new muscle tissue to enhance performance when an athlete accelerates their body, or parts of their body, at speeds greater than regular competitive speeds. An overspeed training session typically has the athlete performing at a rate of 8% to 13% faster than the athlete’s fastest speed. As the athlete is training at the higher speed new muscle motor units are engage within the same muscle tissue, building and developing speed and agility.  Great overspeed training is now available to the general public, not just professional teams through revolutionary technology available to you at many of your local physical therapy locations.  This is accomplished with the AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmills that use differential air pressure to reduce the athlete’s body weight down to as low as 20%.

Why is Overspeed Training So Valuable?

Overspeed training can be very effective at extending the range of motion and engaging muscle tissue that typically are not triggered. Without the right equipment, training at these high intensities can cause injuries because:

  • Balance needs to be supported
  • Proper running mechanics should not suffer at higher speeds
  • Ground reaction forces should be minimized to decrease impact and stress on joints

There are several devices available on the market for towing, such as rubber bands and pulleys. But only the AlterG can allow you to safely load the muscles and increase speed and agility to attain a higher level of performance.

“I think it’s the best piece of equipment made for running in the last 30 years, the most revolutionary piece of equipment, without a doubt!”

Alberto Salazar
Director of Nike Oregon Project
American Running Legend

How is Overspeed Training on the AlterG Treadmill Effective?

Alter-G’s Anti-Gravity Treadmill is a highly effective athletic conditioning tool for both recreational and competitive athletes by allowing the user to train longer, run faster, gain additional strength, and enhance cardiovascular performance while minimizing impact and stress on their joints.

  • Strengthens and improves coordination of muscles, which in turn protects surrounding joints.
  • Promotes the full range of motion while minimizing stress during athletic conditioning.

The AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill® creates a lifting force using Differential Air Pressure (DAP) Technology. The athlete wears neoprene shorts and zips into a pressurized, airtight enclosure which calibrates to their exact body weight. The intuitive control panel allows the athlete to change his/her weight, reducing it by as much as 80% in precise 1% increments.

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  1. Posted March 13, 2013 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    So how does an athlete affectively set up the alter G for over speed training? ie. If I currently use it and drop 5-10% of BW How would I set up incline, speed and duration of time?

  2. Kate
    Posted March 13, 2013 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    Hi Kyle,

    If the goal is to get speed work in, I would keep the incline at 1% and focus on leg turnover rather than a high incline. There are different types of speed intervals that are beneficial. 30 second speed repeats with 1 minute slow jog recovery between repeats is very good.

    Over speed means having the ability to run slightly faster than you would be able to sprint on full body weight because you are assisted by reduced gravity. We don’t have tables for how much you can increase speed with reduced body weight %, but that’s something the person can gauge based on how it feels to run faster.

    If you have any other questions, feel free to reach out to!

  3. Posted March 13, 2013 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Kate. I’ve been using the G-Trainer since November 2012 and have included it in my weekly training. I usually set the incline at 2-3% and based on that days specific w/o if running at 90% and I want to get the full effect of my 10K pace (6:01) I will set the G-Trainer to 5:50. Which is roughly 8% of what was written…I think 😉

  4. Kate
    Posted March 13, 2013 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

    That sounds great Kyle, keep it up! 🙂 Feel free to reach out to us with any future questions about your runs!

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