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The (sometimes) Top 5 (sometimes more) Of The Week 6/20/2020 - June 20th 2020

The (sometimes) Top 5 (sometimes more) Of The Week

*If you aren’t the superstar, do you know what role you can play to best serve the team? Maybe you aren’t the girl who sets state scoring records, maybe you aren’t the guy who always seems to get all the press; but you could be the defender who shuts down the opposing teams attack quickly enough to allow the star player more time with the ball. You could be the one who makes the pass that sets up the goal.

You probably will not get the same accolades from parents or the local papers but you can bet college coaches will take notice. Your high school coaches will rave to college scouts about the kid who does whatever it takes to help her team win. This is something I wish someone had taught me when I was younger.

 *I saw a tweet where a sport coach bragged about putting his freshman football team through the popular CrossFit workout “The Murph”. What a waste of practice time.

I get the need to push these kids and “build some toughness” (It does not build toughness but I get the mindset. But, you can push the kids AND improve the physical qualities needed to play football at the same time! “The Murph” just makes these kids better at doing “The Murph”.

This coach probably doesn’t have access to a strength coach and that’s the problem. If schools are serious about the health, safety and development of their athletes, they really need to consider adding a strength coach to the roster or, at the very least, consider consulting opportunities. I worked as a consultant for a local high school field hockey team last fall and it worked out well for everyone.

It’s not enough to make kids puke anymore.

*As I touched on last week, training for speed can be extremely beneficial for “grownups” and, obviously, athletes. Something I have started doing this summer is to add in some speed specific workouts every 3 sessions or so. We are throwing medballs, sprinting, jumping onto boxes, throwing odd objects like chains and tiny humans. Our regular strength training exercises will be performed at a lighter resistance with the intent to move as fast as possible. If you train 3 days per week, you could dedicate 1 day to upper body strength training, 1 day to lower body strength training and 1 day to total body speed training. If you train 2 days a week you could keep that same template and just rotate through the days. However you choose to set it up, add some speed days into your training!

*The more experience you have, the more variation you might need to continue making progress while minimizing wear and tear on the body. Every exercise targets a specific group of muscles and distributes stress across specific joints. When you load an exercise the same way, think of a barbell squat loaded with weight plates, you are targeting the exact same muscle groups in the same angles and you are distributing stress to the exact same areas. Over time, the muscles stop adapting as well and the joints start to take a pounding due to the same stress applied in the same direction, week after week, year after year.

A simple solution is to pick 3-5 variations of the exercises you enjoy and rotate them every 1-3 weeks. You could back squat with traditional weight plates for 2 weeks, you could then use chains instead of weight plates for 2 weeks, you could swap out the chains for bands for 2 weeks and then you could switch to a plate loaded front squat for 2 weeks. The powerlifter Matt Wenning taught me that trick.

*Summer 2020 is all about training economy. I have come to the conclusion that most of my clients and most of my athletes would prefer to be in and out of the gym within an hour. Most can only train two or three days per week and that doesn’t leave a lot of time to cover everything we need.

That is where single leg jumps come in handy. with one exercise my athletes can train explosive strength and power and, when coupled with a single leg landing, deceleration, stabilization, and injury prevention. My grown-ups can increase strength power and balance using single leg jump variations. Single leg jumps will be a staple of summer 2020

*Good article on mindfulness and how it can give you an edge.

https://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/mindfulness-training-quietly-gives-elite-athletes-edge/

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