People Who Kick Buts: Arthur Lydiard
In every little village in the world there are great potential champions who only need motivation, development and good exercise.
- Born on July 6, 1917 and passed away on December 11 2004.
- A New Zealand runner and athletics coach.
- Lydiard’s ground-breaking impact on distance running was recognised by Runner’s World, which hailed him as All time best running coach.
- Lydiard competed in the Men’s Marathon at the 1950 British Empire Games in Auckland, coming thirteenth with a time of 2h:54m:51.6s.
- Lydiard presided over New Zealand’s golden era in world track and field during the 1960s sending Murray Halberg, Peter Snell and Barry Magee to the podium at the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome.
- Arthur Lydiard died 11 December 2004 of a suspected heart attack, in Texas, while on a lecture tour.
- Periodisation comprises emphasising different aspects of training in successive phases as an athlete approaches an intended target race. After the base training phase, Lydiard advocated 4 weeks of strength work. This included hill running and springing, followed by a maximum of 4 weeks of anaerobic training.
- Lydiard was renowned for his uncanny knack of ensuring that his athletes peaked for their most important races and, apart from his tremendous charisma and extraordinary ability to inspire and motivate athletes, this was largely a product of the periodisation principle he introduced into running training.
- Lydiard was a strong promoter of running for health, encouraging easy distance running for its cardiovascular health benefits at a time when people thought distance running was unhealthy and potentially dangerous.
- In 1961, with his group of followers, Lydiard organised the Auckland Jogging Club, a world first.