Lee Taft on Assessing and Coaching Speed Effectively

To me, Lee Taft is more than a highly-respected and world-renowned athletic movement specialist:

He has been a constant mentor and role model who helped shape my thoughts on speed training.

A former physical education teacher, Lee began his career in the world of physical preparation in 1989 and has since been helping people take their speed to the next level.

In addition to his work as a coach, speaker, and consultant, Lee has also created numerous books, videos and courses on speed development, including Complete Speed and The Speed insiders Academy.

Lee is a thought-provoking individual who continues to contribute and facilitate educational progress in the world of physical preparation and remains as one of the most influential people in my career today.

Lee joins me today to discuss how to coach speed effectively. He describes the process he uses to evaluate athletes and how it has evolved through the years.

He talks about the role of mistakes and failures in athletic development and underscores the necessity for competition in speed training.

He shares guidelines on effective speed training and discusses why coaches shouldn’t cue athletes on the first rep.

And last but not least, he highlights the importance of understanding intent and shares his advice to young coaches who want to get serious about training athletes for speed.


Ensure that athletes understand their intent. With multi-directional speed, ensure they understand where to apply force to move their mass to where they want to go. – Lee Taft


This week on the Physical Preparation Podcast:

  • The seven patterns of movement and Lee’s big rocks in assessing an athlete
  • What Lee’s evaluation session looks like and the first assessment he learned to facilitate
  • Lee’s general rules on coaching speed training
  • The difference between “low-functioning” and “dysfunctional” issues and how to approach them
  • Why coaches shouldn’t cue athletes from the get-go
  • The role of failures and mistakes in learning and success
  • How conscious effort can often get in the way of skill learning
  • Lee’s perspectives on speed correctives and how he applies them to his system
  • The tendency to over-complicate things in the world of coaching
  • Why young coaches need to understand the basic laws of physics
  • The value of being a generalist when it comes to athletic movement


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