Posts

Are you a teacher or a trainer? Lessons for S&C coaches from the PE classroom

Are you a teacher or are you a trainer? The difference might seem trivial, but it is fundamental in how you approach your athletes and sporting environment. Read more

Frans Bosch on agility, perception, and understanding errors

Agree with his methods or not, few coaches have forced us to rethink how we prepare athletes as Frans Bosch has over the last five years. The publication of Strength Training and Coordination: An Integrative Approach started a conversation about how motor learning concepts can be brought into the weight room. Read more

GAINcast Episode 189: Finding true talent (with Paula Jardine)

Many talent identification programs are based primarily on testing, but when we look at what has worked best historically, one-off testing has consistently shown itself to be insufficient. On this week’s podcast, talent development expert Paula Jardine takes a historic look at talent identification and shares some best practices on what works to develop champions. Read more

December 2019 in review: reactive strength

This year we’ve produced 12 great monthly themes. To close out the year our final theme in December was reactive strength. Earlier in the year we looked at a similar topic: plyometrics. In December we wanted to take a broader look at the concept of reactive strength. Plyometrics is one way to train reactive strength, but not the only way. And we also wanted to dig deeper into what exactly it is, rather than just talking about exercises. The end result was 3 new podcasts and 4 new articles on the topic from 7 contributors. Read more

The complete guide to the Reactive Strength Index

In my earlier posts, I have discussed reactive strength (RS) and the use of plyometric training for developing speed and jumping performance. The purpose of this article is to discuss the application of a test of reactive strength using the drop jump exercise. Read more

Assessing foundational strength

Foundational strength is the essence of trainability. We need an appropriate level of coordination and strength through a maximum range of motion to set us up for athletic endeavors. Without it training becomes a game of Buckaroo – loading up and getting work done but waiting to get kicked in the mouth. Read more

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

GAINcast Episode 167: Testing use and abuse

Athletes are reporting to training camp in many sports right now and that often means one thing: grueling fitness tests to check an athlete’s shape. But the testing is getting out of hand. On this episode of the GAINcast we take a close look at fitness and performance testing, with examples of how to do it right and wrong. Read more

Understanding and testing for stability in the context of power generation in sport

This article was co-authored by Peter Colagiuri with the help of Leigh Egger, colleagues at BioAthletic. Colagiuri will release an app for sports injury diagnosis later this year. You can learn more at Sports Injury Online.

There are various components required to create power in the context of athletic performance. Single leg power tasks include cutting or agility during running, jumping for a ball while running and during sprint take off. These tasks are integral in most sports yet a significant portion of our gym based strength training focuses on double leg strength and power. Squats and deadlifts are great for building muscle function but don’t provide a comprehensive platform for athletic function. In order to successfully train and rehabilitate athletes to full athletic performance, we need to ensure that all aspects of performance are adequately addressed. Read more

A critical comparison of vertical jump testing methods

Vertical jump testing has become a staple of assess athletes. Decades ago the standard coach had to rely on the jump and reach test in order to testing jumping ability. Thanks to new technology and research, today coaches can now better analyze sport-specific jumping performance and more easily measure variables other than simple jump height. Jump height remains the most popular measure, but that is slowly changing as more technology enters the weight room. The advantages and disadvantages of different methods of vertical jump testing will be discussed below, with particular reference to the procedures required to obtain valid results. This is important because if the method you use is not valid or measuring accurately what it is intended to, your assessment will be of little value. Read more