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GAINcast Episode 54: On Target

Recently I published an article on HMMR Media discussing the role of specific strength exercises in team sports. It is a difficult question that I often get confronted with since I speak and write frequently about specific strength. Contrary to what many people thing, it is not about simply putting work into different categories in training. Good training is about making sure each element is on target, no matter its category. On this episode we talk about how to stay on target and how we often ignore on field training as a means of physical preparation. Read more

GAINcast Episode 43: Focus on Function

Coaches have a near limitless inventory of exercises to select from and navigating this topic can be difficult since even two exercises that look nearly identical can cause vastly different adaptations in an athlete. On this week’s episode we give some suggestion on how to evaluate the application of an exercise to your goals by focusing on the function. Read more

GAINcast Episode 15: More Than The Exercise

You look around social media and you will instantly see athletes and coaches sharing their latest greatest exercises. These exercises become the focus and whole programs are developed around them. But training is not just about the exercises; they are the means, not the end. On this episode of the GAINcast Vern discusses why training is about more than the exercise.

This Episode’s Question: Exercises are the building blocks of training, so why is it that athletic development is about more than the exercises? And what is it about then?

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HMMR Podcast Episode 31: General Development

Two weeks ago on our podcast we talked about specific development, what we look for in specific strength exercises, and what to keep in mind as a coach. On this week’s episode we take the same approach to general development. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 29: Specific Development

Nick and I talk all the time about the simple exercise classification scheme we have taken from Bondarchuk. We try to focus more energy on the specific developmental exercises (SDEs) where the competition movement and strength training converge. But what do we look for when we choose an “specific strength” exercise from this category? And what are some of our favorites? On this week’s episode we dive into those questions. Read more

The Bondarchuk Dictionary

Over the next few weeks I am putting together a multi-part series on Bondarchuk’s training methods for the Freelap USA website. It is my goal to explain setup and application of Dr. Bondarchuk’s system as it was taught to me and how I understand it. Some of this information might be a review session for readers on this site, but I hope the series will also include some new information for everyone. Read more

Specific About Strength

At the start of the month I published an article in Athletics Weekly about specific strength. In it I give a brief introduction to exercise classification, specific strength, and some tips on implementing it to your event. Tom Crick also helped provide some great graphics to illustrate a few examples.

The article is adapted from my book The Ball and Chain where I cover this and other topics in more detail in Part IV: Training for the hammer throw. If you like it and want to learn more, pick up a copy of the full text. We also have some additional resources on this topic available for HMMR Media members, including Nick Garcia’s article on exercise classification for throwers and a post I wrote about specific strength in theory and practice. But this article isn’t just about the hammer or about throwing; it takes a look at a general idea that can be applied to any sport or event. Read more