Urban Youth Track Ready To Start Season

  • 6/13/2017 4:27:35 PM
  • Jeff Alan
  • Local Sports

MANSFIELD, OH-  The Mansfield Urban Youth League Track Team is gearing up for another season under coach Bruce Woodson who has been in charge of the squad since 1998.  "I'm sorta like one coach, coach it all type guy," says Woodson.  "I got one coach that kinda helps me.  Mark Graham, he helps me in sprints.  I also have Martin Jones who helps with the shot and disc, but beyond that."

Woodson's team ranges in age from five to 18.  "I got anywhere from 30-45 kids in the summer and I might have 15 in the winter I do have an indoor program but it's small."

The Mansfield Urban Youth League track team averages right around seven meets a year between the second week of June and the middle of July.  "We travel around Ohio and our nationals are usually out of state.  Last year it was in Houston.  This year it's at Eastern Michigan," said Woodson.

Two of Woodson's athletes run hurdles, Kyree Wellington of Mansfield St. Peter's and Zahra Graham of Lexington.  "When you do hurdles it's more than one thing," says Wellington.  It's not just three steps it's the movement with the three steps and the speed you gotta put in and also what to do to maintain that."

For Graham, it's about form.  "I work on my form like my arms so that they are not going all over the place.  Yes, you are scared about hitting the hurdle and falling over, but as soon as you start and get used to it, you're not worried about that."

"First of all they have to learn how to get over the hurdle," said Woodson.  I spend a lot of time with fundamentals learning how to get over the hurdle and bringing your trail leg through.  If you learn how to get over the hurdle as far as one leg at a time then bring your trail leg through you won't fall.  We spend a month or two doing that until we actually let them run and it drives them nuts.  But, when we actually get to the point where they can run hurdles they know the drill."


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