GAINcast Episode 261: Building and rebuilding the amateur athlete (with Donie Fox)

We often talk about developing elite athletes, but the amateur sporting world is even bigger and more demanding in many ways. On this week’s GAINcast coach and physiotherapist Donie Fox joins us to discuss how his team have implemented athletic development structure into their local GAA club. In addition we discuss the differences between building and rebuilding athletes, and how the mental side of physiotherapy is the real difference maker.

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Donie Fox is the clinic director at RTP Physio in Ireland. In addition to his work as a physiotherapist, he is also a GAA coach, athletic development coach, and GAIN faculty member.

Related resources

The following links were referenced in the podcast or provide some additional reading material on the topic:

Key quotes and topics

  • 0:00 – Introduction.
  • 2:00 – Athletic development in amateur sports: “We think about what our potential future is with these groups is physically competent adults. That may or may not play sport in adulthood.”
  • 5:00 – Rethinking LTAD: “In the LTAD model you see planks and you see squats and you see pushups, which is a tiny little element of it. It’s only gonna get us so far in developing a physically competent adult.” “Teaching barbell snatch progressions to 11 year old is LTAD.”
  • 14:00 – Educating athletes.
  • 20:00 – Reframing rehabilitation: “Classically rehab was restrictive. Athletic development is the complete opposite term. I think the shift between rehab becoming allowance rather than restriction becomes a very key thing.” “If you can’t run, then you can train legs every day . . . it’s an allowance. You’re injured and I’m gonna allow you to train legs every day.”
  • 26:00 – Coming back strong from injuries.
  • 28:00 – Communication: “Technology has a place. But when it becomes a barrier to communication then we have to be careful of that.”
  • 31:00 – Bringing coaching to the rehab process.
  • 33:00 – Equipment toolbox and facility design: “Sometimes more tools make the toolbox heavier and then you can’t move it.”
  • 42:00 – Homework for patients: “You’re not so good that in two sessions a week you’re gonna be able to get a young athlete or an older person, completely better.”

Complete transcript

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