Posts

Training the legs through movement

Never sacrifice movement for load. That mantra forms the foundation of my approach to training. This is a ‘hot topic’ in some coaching circles. Coaches, especially those in gyms, like big numbers. Lifting heavier weights each week shows progress and is easily measured. But at what cost? Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 220: The shark tank (with Mike Potenza)

On our last episode we looked at how some youth and amateur coaches are dealing with the current pandemic. This week we get some feedback from the pro level with Mike Potenza. He shares how the San Jose Sharks are managing their athletes through this situation and how that compares to a typical offseason approach. We also discuss training flexibility, his in-season training philosophy, player monitoring, and more. Read more

Understanding and preventing leg cramps

If you’re someone who regularly exercises, you’ve likely experienced the feeling of a cramp, or, more specifically, exercise associated muscle cramp (EAMC). During my career, I regularly suffered from leg cramps at highly inopportune moments, including on the start line of the 2011 national championships 100-meter final, which prevented me from being able to compete. Cramps are common, with well over half, and in many cases over two-thirds, of athletes across a variety of sports reporting having experienced it. Given the wide occurrence of cramping, you might think that it would be well understood. You would be wrong. Read more

March 2020 in review: quarantraining

As the coronavirus pandemic has spread around the globe and forced athletes into quarantine, we’ve put together resources on how you can keep training at home. Over the past few weeks we’ve published 23 new articles, 2 new videos, and 2 new podcasts on the topic from a dozen different contributors. Below are links to all of our new resources, as well as highlights from our archive on the topic. Read more

The role of adversity in development

We find ourselves in very strange times, with the COVID-19 causing shut down of all but essential services. As a result local and international competitions have been cancelled or postponed, including the Olympics, Paralympics, and World Under-20 Championships. Even finding a place to train is nearly impossible. Read more

GAINcast Episode 185: Constructing circuits

Circuits are often seen as a tool for beating an athlete down, but when used properly they can be an effective tool for developing specific qualities. As many athletes are now confined to their homes, understanding and utilizing proper circuit construction is more important now than ever. On this week’s GAINcast, Vern dives into circuit training, best practices, and examples of different types of circuit construction. Read more

Sample weekly plan for circuit training

On this week’s GAINcast we discussed constructing circuits. Below is an example of how we would plan three circuit training days a week for swimmers during a strength endurance phase. Read more

Bodyweight exercises: precision, variety, and progression

In modern coaching, all kinds of modes of exercises are paraded around, often to the exclusion of others. Bodyweight exercise is one mode of training that is making a comeback, even before the onset of the recent pandemic. Read more

Mastering bodyweight circuits like a Jedi

Last week I wrote about programming in the time of coronavirus, with a focus on athletes that had access to at least limited equipment. This week on Instagram I have been posting videos of the general strength circuits I have given athletes that have no training equipment. The objective of each circuit is to cover the lower body, upper body, core, as well as all three planes of movement (sagittal, frontal, and transverse). I learned these from my college coach Glenn McAtee and find them just as useful nearly two decades later. Read more

Social coaching while social distancing

In times such as this, many things can come to mind that will comfort us in the unknown. Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” Regardless of your beliefs or opinions, this text goes on to explain the ebbs and flows of life and how little control we have over the events in our lives. Read more