Every sport has its own training culture, and it is a difficult balancing act to try and implement your plan without alienating the status quo. After returning to hockey, strength coach Matt Price of the Los Angeles Kings has taken many small steps to fit his ideas into the sport’s existing framework. After four years, the small steps add up into a cultural shift. Price joined us on this week’s podcast to discuss his approach to training, loading, and shares examples from some of the methods he uses with the Kings.
Notes and quotes
Matt Price just finished up his fourth season as the head strength and conditioning coach of the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings. Prior to that work as seven years as the head strength coach for Alpine Canada and played hockey himself. We covered a variety of topics on the podcast, including working with a sport’s culture, managing training loads, and we looked specifically at various training methods he uses with the Kings.
- 2:00 – Getting over being busy: “It’s not necessary to be busy all the time. Being busy for busy’s sake is not healthy. Work will expand to fill the time available. “
- 6:00 – Understanding a team and sport culture and knowing when to push back and lean in. “You can’t come in to a locker room and demand change. But in time you can lean in on the culture and look for opportunities to do things better. “
Managing training loads
- 10:00 – Micro dosing: “Micro dosing is a way to apply small stimulus across any day of the week. We got much better strength maintenance and improved strength qualities during the competitive season. “
- 13:15 – Finding the best time to train: “The athlete’s psychological and physiological status after a game is not in the best situation to adapt to a training stimulus. After a game we focus on getting home, fed, and rested. “
- 14:45 – Example of typical session.
- 15:45 – Chronic vs acute loading.
- 19:00 – The effect of mandatory rest periods on player health and fitness. “The idea of rest is misunderstood; instead of preventing injury it can put athletes at risk. “
Training methods and ideas
- 22:30 – Isokinetic training: “Athletes feel safer with isokinetic training even when they are hesitant to push up the loading on the bar. “
- 26:00 – Training on the road and being creative.
- 30:00 – The focus of short sessions: “Our session focus is strength and intensity. I am not a more is better guy, I’m a better is better guy. “
- 32:00 – Exploring eccentrics, isometrics, and the 1080 quantum.
- 35:45 – Sport-specific training in hockey. “We do a high volume of work on ice, so we want load them in a different plane or different way to make them more robust and fill in the gaps of where they are not doing enough loading. “
- 40:30 – The rise of the Golden Knights and the impact on the NHL.
- 44:30 – Injury prevention.
To hear more on these topics, listen to the full episode above. Also be sure to subscribe to our podcast and review it on iTunes.
The following links were referenced in the podcast or provide some additional reading material on the topic:
- The site theme in June is the art of coaching, with new content coming from some of the best coaches around. Join HMMR Plus so you don’t miss all the content on this topic, as well as past episodes of the podcast, our deep article archives, video library, and more. Join our hangout on June 21 to chat with other members about the topic.
- You can follow Price on Twitter at @mpricestrength. He has also put out some training videos on YouTube.
- For more about hockey, also listen to Swiss coach Arno Galmarini on Episode 137.
- For some related topics, listen to Episode 124 on microdosing with Bill Knowles. For more on the complexity of adaptation, watch HMMR Classroom Lesson 11.