Posts

Moving beyond the plank

There is a tendency within the education and scientific world to measure things. We benchmark things or test things, create an intervention, and then measure again to see if progress has been made. As the human body is immensely complex, we can’t measure everything, so this process requires us to isolate and reduce to simple measurements. What starts out as in innocent project can quickly become a dogmatic approach to training or education, where we “teach to the test” and lose sight of what our original aim was. Read more

How we use the barbell and how we can use it better

Racks, benches, bars and platforms dominate the space in most high school and collegiate weight rooms. The iron temple arms race is alive and well. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 175: Rediscovering play (with James Marshall)

Play is often disregarded as a form of training, but it is a lost art that can be a valuable tool in developing athletes. Over the past few decades, the rate of play has drastically declined among children worldwide. James Marshall has put this point front and center in his approach to long-term athlete development. On this episode of the podcast Marshall joins us to discuss play and how it can be incorporated into more formal training sessions. Read more

Commonalities of movement

Human movement is fundamentally beautiful and flowing. Step back and look at sports from a movement perspective, not a sport skill perspective, you will see a commonality in movement, a beauty and a flow. Start with walking gait. Overserve the opposition of the arms and legs and the counter rotation of the shoulders and the hips. Look for this across movements. Gait is a great place to start! All throws look fundamentally the same, all jumps look the same, acceleration, regardless of the sport looks the same. The only thing that changes is the implement, the surface and the uniform in the sport. When I coach I look for the commonalities in movements and coach those commonalities. All sports involve some combination of the following movements: running, jumping, throwing, pushing, pulling, reaching, lifting, bending, extending, stopping and starting. Read more

The State of GAIN: connecting the dots

It has been one month since GAIN 2018 finished. Eleven years ago, when we started GAIN there were 16 attendees including the faculty, this year there were 89. While the best chance to learn from everyone is to be at GAIN in person, we also are sharing some resources for those that could not make it. Last month I put together some reflections on GAIN 2018. This month on the GAINcast we share one evening’s gold medal roundtable with six members sharing experiences supporting Olympic champions. Below you can watch the first keynote from GAIN where I introduced this year’s theme: connecting the dots. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 163: Coaching in the NFL (with Buddy Morris)

Training for the complex demands of American football can be a difficult task. Training within the constraints of the NFL is even harder. On this week’s episode Arizona Cardinals coach Buddy Morris joins us again to talk about coaching in the NFL, including the role of sports science, training loads, the impact of the collective bargaining agreement, and the state of the sport. Read more

Some food for thought regrading functional movement

As a coach, particularly as a conditioning coach, following the functional path has at times been frustrating but ultimately a very satisfying experience. The path has been narrow and very winding at times and clear and well-paved at others. Beginning on the path there were more questions than answers. I found there were not a lot of sources to go to initially. But the farther I got down the path the more I found signs that many people had been there before. I would see a concept here, a training method there, hear a presentation or read an article. All of them were on the track, but there was no unified direction. I realized that in athlete development there were commonalities that had to occur to achieve successful development. Read more

GAINcast Episode 117: Moving, fast and slow

Movement is the foundational feature of sport. If you can’t move, you can’t play. Heck, it’s the foundational feature of life. Looking back at history, if you couldn’t move, you wouldn’t eat. On this episode of the GAINcast we talk about the basic principles of good movement, building better foundational movements, and helping athletes connect them through training progressions. Read more

Training the legs better

Last month on the podcast, Martin and I discussed some of the various training methods we use to target leg strength. As this month’s HMMR Media site theme is “beyond the barbell” it made sense for us to dig a little deeper into the methods we use outside the weight room and what options are available to coaches in this regard. Read more

Why? Why not?

Why does the Newtonian, mechanistic reductionist approach that focuses on minutiae and the parts persist? Why not a quantum approach that focuses on relationships and connections, flow and rhythm. The former is comfortable because it allows people cleaner definitions and seemingly straightforward solutions, in some ways it is simplistic because all you have to do in that approach is be a technician. If you understand how all the muscles work, what inhibits, what lengthens, what you need to activate and then what you need to integrate it all fits into a neat clean little box. Just follow the algorithm and push a few buttons and everything is fixed. Read more