N2 Sports Performance Program
MORE IS NOT BETTER BUT BETTER IS BETTER WORKING OUT HARD vs WORKING OUT SMARTER
Often time parents and or coaches will bring young athletes to me in order to help them improve some aspect of their childs athletic performance, their physique or to improve their chances of being noticed by a college recruiter. The general train of thought is that the athlete is missing some component or element that is inhibiting their ability to meet their goals.
The approach that I take with any parent, coach, or young athlete is measured and methodical. When it comes to crafting a program that has the intention of substantially improving performance capability, the amount of work that is done up front is invaluable.
Sometimes the athlete is anxious to get started but without a firm understanding of their past experiences and their current environment there’s no way that I can legitimately inform or prescribe an effective program The ability of the human body to perform is a complex issue and when everyone involved understands the big picture and agree’s it becomes easire to move forward effectively.
However, because we are dealing with young people there are common I begin with; human development, cultural values and our western way of life.
Physical Human Development
One consistent aspect of human growth patterns is that we develop physically within our individual genetic blue print. Some will grow limb wise at a faster rate than torso. When this occurs it results in certain functional movement patterns.
So when it comes to how an athlete walks, squats, bends, runs, jumps, etc…it takes a trained eye to help the athlete identify, address and correct whenever possible within their unique genetic makeup.
Some things will be easy and others will be difficult.
Cultures and sub-cultures develop likes and dislikes and value certain things over other things. Although the United States is made up of many sub-cultures we as a whole value winning over development. How we choose and pick individuals to make up our teams points to this fact. We place kids in groups based upon their present growth and size status and influence them to play certain sports or positions that seem a “better fit” for them because of where they are presently. A child who matures quickly often times stops in physical development and the other kids catch up in middle and or high school. How that young person was handled by the adults in their younger years can have both a positive and negative effect upon both their participation and performance. This must be acknowledged and addressed by whoever is selected to take this kid to the next level.
WAY OF LIFE
It must be stated at this point that the more technologically advanced a society or family becomes the more inactive and sedentary they become. Comfort becomes the norm vs the exception. One look at what is in demand in housing floor plans, most desirable options on a vehicle and how we design our work space all cry out comfort and convenience in order to maximize a feeling of greater output. The tendency towards laziness is common place and this effects how young people approach physical and skill development. It can also set into motion all types of communication difficulties as old-school meets new-school.
In conclusion as a performance coach and personal trainer with over 30 years of learning and practical experience, getting to know a client is crucial before any specific plan can be designed and taught. In Part 2 I will go about explaining my functional philosophy in program development regardless of the sport.
PART 2—PERSONAL SPORTS PERFORMANCE PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT
THE SPRT APPROACH
Specific performance readiness training works to prepare individuals to perform at their greatest potential in the safest and most effective way that will enhance both what they put into it as well as what they get out of it.
In part 2 I will introduce the concept of PAL. Posture, arms and legs represents the PAL approach. The human body is equipped to handle fight or flight and everything in between. Given the choice our bodies will always prefer the path of less-resistance. Concern for comfort and survival leads us to adopt certain postures and joint positions. This while making task easier to perform will sacrifice accuracy and execution.
Posture be it dynamic or stationary sets the tone in many sporting, hobby and employment activities. Being aware of the positions of temporary relief that we as humans take on is half the battle. As coaches we teach the athlete as well as the parent or coach to “scan the body” from head to toe in order to recognize the problem areas. We work to educate so as to allow the client the ability to assess where they are in space. The awareness factors work in a long way to help one maximize their performance. Maximizing potential injury occurrences be they chronic or acute is equally important. When one trains in consistent positive postures the realization of this quality showing up during play and practice is far more likely.
Arm positioning and movement is very important in order to maximizing power transfer thru the torso, understand the places of tension that limit proper arm action regardless of skill execution is vital. The enemy of efficient arm action is tension. Hands and shoulders must be kept relaxed through our movements. Only minimal tension necessary to perform the task at hand is important. When strong grip is necessary the athlete must learn exercises that facilitate the building of the grip and other associated muscles without over training the hands and under training opposing groups.
Leg positioning from the feet up must be deliberate and intentional. Regardless if one is stationary or moving multi-directions, how you position and where on the bottom of the foot that is applying the pressure is important. The ankle, knees and hip joints work in concert to apply force into the ground via Newton’s 3 law. Where you push into the ground determines where the power will be delivered. Undo stress at the knee joint and hip joint has been a source of acute and chronic pain and substandard performances. Be it taking off, slowing down, change of directions, pushing, landing, jumping…..maximizing output and determining outcome.
SPRT coaching helps athletes and coaches to put the skill of movement in multi positions and directions into workable plans. What we design, coach and re-coach will show up during completion time. We do NOT do drills for the sake of becoming good at doing drills.