Arthur Leslie Lydiard was a New Zealand runner and athletics coach.
23 Facts About Arthur Lydiard
Arthur Lydiard has been lauded as one of the outstanding athletics coaches of all time and is credited with popularising the sport of running and making it commonplace across the sporting world.
Arthur Lydiard spent much of his early life training to become a shoemaker.
Arthur Lydiard competed in the Men's Marathon at the 1950 British Empire Games in Auckland, coming twelfth with a time of 2:54:51.
Arthur 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.
On 6 February 1990, Arthur Lydiard was the 17th appointee to the Order of New Zealand, New Zealand's highest civil honour.
Arthur Lydiard became a life member of Athletics New Zealand in 2003.
Arthur Lydiard died 11 December 2004 of a suspected heart attack in Texas, while on a lecture tour.
Arthur Lydiard's ground-breaking impact on distance running was recognised by Runner's World, which hailed him as All time best running coach.
Arthur Lydiard constantly clashed with unimaginative and officious athletics administrators in his native New Zealand and in the countries that called upon his strong personality and coaching expertise to establish national athletics programmes.
The marathon-conditioning phase of Arthur Lydiard's system is known as base training, as it creates the foundation for all subsequent training.
All of the training elements were already there in the training of Roger Bannister, the first miler who broke the 4-minute barrier for the mile, but Arthur Lydiard increased distance and intensity of training and directed the sport periodisation towards the Olympics and not the breaking of records.
Arthur 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.
Snell, who after retiring from athletics in the mid-1960s went on to obtain a PhD in exercise physiology, stated in his autobiography No Bugles No Drums that the marathon-conditioning endurance aspect of Arthur Lydiard's training was the primary factor in his success as a world-beating middle distance athlete.
The Arthur Lydiard system has been challenged since it was formalised and crystallised in the early 1960s.
Horwill differs from Arthur Lydiard in that he believes that all aspects of training must be present in a training programme at any time of the year and periodisation is a matter of simply emphasising one aspect of training such as speed or strength during a particular phase in which all the other training components are present.
Arthur Lydiard believes that the Lydiard system ignores training at such intermediate paces between the extremes of long, slow, distance running and fast, anaerobic, track work.
Arthur Lydiard was forced to leave both countries because of what he perceived as a lack of support for his coaching efforts and the needs of athletes there.
Arthur Lydiard's advice is often seen as complementary to those given at the time by Percy Cerutty, an Australian coach, Paavo Nurmi, the Flying Finn, and Mihaly Igloi, a Hungarian coach.
The first signs of positive results from Arthur Lydiard's visit came when Juha Vaatainen won the 5.000 and the 10.000 meters in the 1971 European Athletics Championships after blasting sprint finishes.
Arthur Lydiard was inducted into the Order of the White Rose of Finland for his efforts.
Arthur 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, Arthur Lydiard organised the Auckland Jogging Club, a world first.