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Relax-Restore-Retreat

When I was working as an assistant strength coach at Texas Tech for the legendary basketball coach Bob Knight, I started to realize the extent that athletes can lack in recovery and restoration. Though most fans wouldn’t view basketball as an extreme sport, the durations of continual work with little rest are astounding! Players are constantly either playing, practicing or traveling to games all year. Read more

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Lessons from GAIN 2015 – Randy Ballard on Trainability Assessment

Randy Ballard is an ATC who works with Volleyball and Track & Field at University of Illinois. Over the past three years Randy has taken elements of Kelvin Giles PCA (Physical Competency Assessment) and combined into a trainability assessment he calls I-FACTS – Illinois Foundational Athletic Competency System. It is a trainability assessment because it is designed to do just that, determine the athlete’s ability to train – where on a continuum of progression will you find kinks in the amour and adjust training accordingly. It is a reference to determine an entry point for programming training. Read more

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Just Thinking?

The past couple of weeks I have totally immersed myself in reading and research working to challenge myself and upgrade my knowledge. Being basically ADHD I can’t seem to focus on one area, I seem to keep coming back to the body as a complex system with a myriad of interactions and incredible ability to adapt to virtually any stress we impose upon it. One of the areas I have dug deep into is the whole epidemic of hamstring injures. The studies that I am reading just seem to ignore the hamstring as a link in the kinetic chain. Read more

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Thoughts on Function

Function is meaningful movement, it is not an isolated event, and it is movement that is leading toward something not an end unto it self. Movements that are less functional are movements that repeat themselves and are isolated. For example the leg extension or leg curl repeat themselves, they are essentially an end in themselves. Contrast this to the lunge that is progressive and can lead to many variations. The body is a link system and movement involves the timing of the movement of the links of the kinetic chain. It is helpful to visualize the process as total chain training moving from toe nails to fingernails. The outcome is functional sports training which incorporates a global systems approach to training & rehabilitation. Read more

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Why Use FMS?

I have been outspoken in my criticism of the FMS over the years; I first evaluated the FMS back when it started. My initial evaluation and opinion based on my experience and study has not changed as it has grown in popularity. It is a borderline waste of time that generates random numbers without transfer to real life situations. Stop and think, stop sheep walking and doing something because everyone else is doing it. One argument recently presented to me was that it is used at NFL Combine. And the NFL also still uses isokinetic testing. If we use the NFL as our example of a thought leader we are in bad shape (see their enlightened response to the concussion crisis). Read more

Training expert Vern Gambetta spoke about long term athlete development.

Injuries

Change the focus from injury prediction to injury prevention. Make injury prevention a transparent part of a comprehensive training program that addresses sport demands & individual athlete needs on a session-by-session basis. Start simple with a multi-stage warm-up that prepares the athlete for the demands of the session – warm-up to train or play don’t play to warm-up. Read more

Training expert Vern Gambetta spoke about long term athlete development.

Can Do

Instead of looking at ways to predict injury and search for hidden dysfunctions I prefer to spend the time looking at possibilities to determine their level of trainability. I focus on what the athlete can do and use that as a starting point. Read more