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GAINcast Episode 62: Player Evaluations

With drafts for many professional sports taking place in the coming months for professional sports leagues in North America, it is a good time to take a look at how we evaluate players. Effectively evaluating a player is about more than measuring their performance, it is about learning about them from every angle and getting input from the entire coaching staff. On this week’s episode we discuss best practices in player evaluations. Read more

GAINcast Episode 61: The Future of Periodization (with John Kiely)

John Kiely is one of the leading minds in periodization. By taking a critical look at current approaches to periodization, he is asking how we can move the field forward to keep up with what science and leading coaches have learned. On this episode he joins us to discuss how current models can be problematic, what other factors coaches need to take into account while planning, the role of stress and team culture in adaptation, and how technology can help coaches. Read more

Greatest Coach You Have Never Heard Of

You know John Wooden, you know Geno Auriemma at UConn or the late Pat Summit but how about Jim Steen? While the coach at Kenyon College the men’s team won twenty­-nine consecutive National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III championship titles while the women’s teams won twenty­-one.  That record of fifty titles surpasses those of any other coaches in any NCAA sport. I had the privilege of working with Jim’s teams for two of the championships, but even better than that every spring Jim comes to Sarasota with his family and we get together for lunch. His passion and energy and wisdom are so contagious it always gets me charged up. As an aside I have NEVER heard Jim talk about mental toughness! Read more

Mental Toughness?

I abhor the term “mental toughness” and all the implications and baggage that comes with it. It is not part of my coaching vocabulary or practice. I want to help my athletes be mentally strong and understand why they are doing what they are doing. There are tough workouts and there are easy workouts all directed toward one goal: preparing a robust adaptable athlete who is ready to thrive in the competitive arena. That requires mindful highly focused training that is done with intent and purpose. Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 97: Extreme Ownership

A central tenant of strong leadership is being invested in and taking ownership of your team’s tasks. Coaches are in a leadership role, but unfortunately not all coaches are strong leaders. This week’s episode looks at the book Extreme Ownership by former Navy SEALs Jocko Willink and Leif Babin and discusses what ownership means, what it is made of, and lessons coaches can use to improve their leadership. Read more

GAINcast Episode 58: Q&A

Most episodes are dedicated to the questions we are currently confronting, but this episode we’ve asked listeners what is on their mind and address several listener questions on topics like creating buy-in to athletic development, keeping an open mind as a coach, velocity-based training and more. Read more

Beyond the Bullsh*t: A Sneak Preview

There are just a few days left to sign up for our upcoming HMMR Media seminar in London at a discount. The event will take place May 20th with myself and John Kiely, but early registration ends on Friday. So sign up now and don’t miss out. Below you’ll find a sneak preview of some of the content. Read more

A New Kind of Seminar

Last week we announced the upcoming HMMR Media seminar in London with me and John Kiely. You can learn more and sign up here. While much of the content will be new, it is not our first time presenting on this topic. We put together the first edition of the seminar last year in Limerick, Ireland. The idea was to create something different. Rather than just describing the latest and greatest periodisation plan, we wanted to give coaches the tools to create their own method. As the saying goes: give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. Having a good process is essential in creating your own method. We explained how to do that and provide examples of it in practice. Read more

GAINcast Episode 57: The Strength Coach & The Way of the Dinosaur

After a string of more hospitalized athletes, CBS took a look recently at the problems across collegiate strength and conditioning. Their findings point to certification as the problem. Certification is not the problem. The problem is deeper and requires us to analyze and define what our role as a coach is. On this week’s episode Vern discusses the issues with the profession and current certification programs, as well as how coaches education programs can be improved to address this. Read more

2017 Reading

Here’s a look at some of the books I have been reading so far in 2017: Read more