“Sleep is the most important thing when it comes to recovery,” LeBron James said. “And it’s very tough with our schedule. Our schedule keeps us up late at night, and most of the time it wakes us up early in the morning. … There’s no better recovery than sleep.”
Take a walk through any supplement store and you’ll no doubt be bombarded with endless products promising to boost everything from strength, power and muscle mass to testosterone. While some of these products may be helpful to certain athletes depending on their goals– at least the few that are actually supported by research– there’s one area of performance that supplements rarely do a good job of improving and that’s endurance, i.e. conditioning.
“I don’t know about you, but I love making mistakes. Okay, okay – maybe love is too strong a word. I don’t like making them at the time – but I firmly believe if you’re not making mistakes, you’re not doing everything in your power to get better.” – Mike R.
Facetiousness aside, Tony wants to spend some time discussing a few strategies you can (hopefully) implement today that will make the training programs you write for your athletes and clients more successful…
Over the last several years, the field of strength and conditioning has undergone a dramatic transformation. Instead of designing programs around the sole idea that strength is all that matters, coaches and athletes have embraced terms like “functional movement” and turned to physical therapists to learn more about how the body moves and how it should be trained. In short, “function” and “dysfunction” have become household terms in the field, and both weight rooms and programs around the world have been filled with foam rollers, movement screens, and corrective exercises. While there’s no doubt that all of these can help improve performance and prevent injuries, something is missing…
Coaching cues are extremely valuable, but like anything else, can be taken too far. When deadlifting and squatting, we always want to engage the posterior chain and use the glute muscles to control the hip joint and create hip extension when driving out of the hole. The commonly used verbal cue to create this hip extension is ‘squeeze your butt’. But does squeeze your butt, or any other verbal cue for that matter, always lead to the actual thing happening that you wanted the athlete to do?
To begin to understand hamstring strains you need to understand a concept first expressed by noted Physical Therapist Shirley Sahrmann. Sahrmann stated that “when a muscle is injured look for a weak or inhibited synergist”. The big key to understanding hamstring strains is realizing that the hamstrings are probably not the primary problem.
I am more than happy to present you email interview with Dan Baker, strength and conditioning coach for the Brisbane Broncos and also a published researcher with practical and in “the trenches” insights. – MJ