The craft of coaching

Everyone wants to be an artist nowadays, coaches included. The art of coaching is not only the site theme in June, it is held up as the holy grail of coaching. Take a step back, however, and it’s not the art of coaching that actually separates the top coaches. More often than not, it’s the craft of coaching that the best coaches have truly mastered. Read more

May 2018 in review: training speed

The old saying goes “you can’t teach speed.” Or, I should say, that’s how the old myth goes. Not everyone can be Usain Bolt, but everyone can get faster and, no matter the sport, speed is crucial. Unfortunately the topic of speed is surrounded by gurus, myths, and misinformation. Throughout the month we have looked in depth at training speed by cutting through the bullshit and sharing best practices to help coaches learn how to train speed better. Read more

HMMR in Houston

We’re proud to announce our next seminar tailored specifically to training for the throwing events. On June 16th Nick Garcia and I will be presenting at Rice University in Houston. Through both classroom instruction and demonstrations, we’ll show you various ways to program for the heavy throws, share our training plans, walk participants through key exercises and progressions, and more. It willl be a great opportunity to learn and see first hand how to put a program together in a variety of ways. Read more

Martin auf Deutsch

Next week marks the eight year anniversary of when I fully relocated to Switzerland. I’ve been busy coaching the entire time, having athletes capture 20 national titles, but often I feel like I am better known in the US and UK than here at home. Part of the reason for that is that nearly everything I write or talk about is in English. The other reason is that the field of strength and conditioning here in Switzerland is decades behind the English-speaking world and our neighbors such as Germany and France. Read more

April 2018 in review: beyond the barbell

Coaches need a lot of tools in their toolbox. If all the strength coach knows is the barbell, then they are limiting their ability to solve more complex problems. Therefore for the site theme in April we chose going beyond the barbell, bringing together 3 new videos, 2 podcasts, and 5 articles to look at different ways coaches can solve problems with other training methods. All the links are below, but first I wanted to share a few ideas that crystallized in my mind this month. Read more

March 2018 in review: training culture

After several months of looking at training methods and exercises, for the March theme we focused instead on culture. The role of culture in training cannot be denied, but while we acknowledge its importance, we rarely look at the topic in much depth. We hoped to change that this month by bringing together new input from John Pryor, Chris Gallagher, Vern Gambetta, Jonathan Marcus, Steve Myrland, Nick Hill, Craig Pickering, Nick Garcia, Clay Erro and more top coaches. Links to all the new resources, as well as some greatest hits on the topic from our archives, are included below. In reviewing all the new material again last weekend, I also pulled together a few key points from a month of discussing culture. Read more

February 2018 in review: transfer of training

Another month, another theme. In February we gathered some different perspectives on transfer of training from elite coaches. We discussed how some commonly held ideas may not hold up, how coaches have found unique solutions to transfer, and what processes coaches use to refine training and identify transfer. Links to all of our resources from February are below, as well as some additional articles from our archives. When reading through all the content again, three main points on transfer emerged. Read more

We all just want to be Litvinov

Like most hammer throwers, I was shocked to learn yesterday that former world record holder and Olympic champion Sergey Litvinov unexpectedly passed away. I only had the chance to meet him once, but he had one of the biggest impacts on my development as a thrower and coach; right up there with my two main mentors Harold Connolly and Anatoliy Bondarchuk. Read more

January 2018 in review: performance testing

For the fourth month in a row we’ve taken a deep dive into one topic and brought together different approaches and thoughts on the topic to help coaches reflect on it. In January, the topic was performance testing. Personally I learned a lot from different coaches, different sports, and different levels. We’ve looked in depth at specific testing programs, as well as taken a step back to learn testing philosophies. Links to all of the new resources are below, as well as links additional resources from our archives. When I reviewed everything again, three main points emerged. Read more

A guide to assessing trainability

As we discuss all the time, athletic development does not follow a fixed linear path. It is a journey where two athletes of the same age can start at completely different points even though they might end up in the same place. For coaches, this creates some problems: how do you know where to start with an athlete you inherit and how do you track their progress? Read more