Entries by Vern Gambetta

Achievement triangle

Each year I post this. It is my attempt to delineate the process that an athlete must grow through to be a peak performer. It is a process where many are called, and few chose to get beyond the comfort zone. The key here is that it is a matter of personal choice and forming habits that enable excellence in all aspects of life, not just sport.

The circuit training rule book

Circuit training can be a vital tool in developing athletes. Many years ago I put together a DVD on circuit training, which is now available for streaming by HMMR Plus members. My approach to circuit training has certainly changed over my career, but some of the basic goals, principles, and construction guidelines remain unchanged. Below are the key points I highlight in the video before demonstrating some of my favorite circuits.

Over recovery syndrome

I have identified a new syndrome – the over-recovered athlete. I look at the landscape and I see athletes and teams spending as much or more time doing ice baths, cryotherapy massage etc. as they do in actual training. Rest and recovery are fine and necessary but only of benefit if you first do the necessary work.

Thoughts on getting better

My passion and focus are on getting better at getting better. The longer I coach, the more I realize that we can’t rely on doing more of the same old things we have been doing and hope to get our athletes better. We must use the time and resources better to get better. Here are some thoughts, ideas and concepts I have culled from some of my research and practice on learning:

Walking on eggshells and creating fragile athletes

What I am seeing today is an ever-widening gap between how the athletes prepare for the game in contrast to the actual game demands. This gap is creating fragile athletes more prone to injury than ever before. Due to artificial restraints placed on training load imposed by a negative medical model that emphasis what the athlete can’t do as opposed to what they must do to prepare. In the attempt to “protect” the athlete we have severely restricted training load instead of systematically overloading the athlete to prepare for actual game demands. I was taught many years ago that one of the purposes of training was to make the game easy, in essence to slow it down by imposing stress in practice that was beyond what was imposed in the game. In other words, don’t try to duplicate game demands, distort them!