My Thoughts Monday #21-Jay DeMayo, University of Richmond-The Madness of the Endings In March

“We play to win but few receive a trophy. Take a look at your seniors, they are living trophies. Coaching is about winning but it is also about growing people. Be committed to the person that wears the jersey. Serving them through mentorship is the greatest reward of all.” Matt Johnson via @StrengthCoachMJ on Twitter

Thigymawares My Thoughts Monday is brought to you by GymAware, the leading tool to measure your athlete’s weight room performance. Learn more about “The Rolls Royce” of bar velocity monitoring here: https://kinetic.com.au/gymaware.html

 
This weeks My Thoughts Monday I discuss the collateral damage that comes with Championship Weekend and The NCAA Tournament, and that is players playing their last game. This is something that is a real world challenge for us as coaches, and the time where our student athlete’s may need us the most. We, as coaches, need to keep in mind what Matt said there to help us as a reminder as to what’s really important.

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Flashback Friday, 2013-Dr. Michael Yessis- The Yessis Model, The 1×20 Strength Training Program

“If you want to improve how much you’re going to lift, that’s great, do it. Be a powerlifter. That’s a terrific sport, go for it. But is it for an athlete. For an athlete what are we looking for? Improvement in skill execution.”

Dr. Michael Yessis joined us for his second presentation at The Seminar in 2013 to discuss his 1×20 method of training.  Doc starts out by discussing with us many popular program models that coaches use in order to develop general strength with their athletes. He asks the question as to which of those programs to develop strength and comes to the conclusion that his method is most successful in developing younger athletes, and athletes with a lesser training age. This leads Doc into a discussion as to what our goals, in his mind, should be in our preparation of athletes. He also dives into what separates the 1×20 from other “high intensity” programs and what makes it more effective with low level athletes. This breakdown includes the multiple (10) reasons why he has seen the 1×20 to provide a great stimulus and adaptation in relation to other programming methods.

After he has gone through these 10 reasons he dives into the program itself. This includes a list of the 23 exercises that he typically prescribes. This number may seem high, but when you follow his thought process you can see where even more could be added.

I have personally had great success implanting this method with our athlete’s in their GPP phases of development and couldn’t recommend it enough. Pick up your copy here:  http://cvasps.com/product/dr-michael-yessis-the-yessis-model/

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The Drew Review: LIFT: Fitness Culture, from Naked Greeks and Acrobats to Jazzercise and Ninja Warriors by Daniel Kunitz

drew-review“…the state of the body isn’t something you choose to care about, or leave be, for your body never just is─ it is always either decaying or getting stronger.  Not choosing is still a choice.” – D. Kunitz

I was drawn to this book walking through the isles at the library one day and saw these big yellow letters staring at me.  Those letters were L-I-F-T and being a strength coach, I just had to see what this book was about. LIFT is a great book for anyone interested in the history of fitness or how working out was accepted throughout society from the beginning of time to present day.  But more than just another fitness fad book, Kunitz goes into the implications of fitness and more directly the political and social changes that help shape fitness throughout different eras. The idea (first applied during the Cold War) that “lifestyle reflects the ethos of a society,” is ever present and Kunitz wrote this book to make all of us more conscious of that fact. Also, Kunitz brings up a term constantly in the book called the New Frontier Fitness, which is apparently going on right now in the form of Cross-fit. I for one found the entire last chapter to be focused solely as an advertisement for Cross-fit, but the reason Kunitz focuses on Cross-fit so much is the lifestyle and the wholistic integration this form of fitness seems to elicit.  There are so many Cross-fit enthusiasts out there (good, bad, or in-different), and the point is people are working out which is the goal of this book. Get out there and “practice at life” instead of choosing to decay.

Drew Review LiftThe book is 10 chapters, and is 286 pages long. Each chapter focuses on different fitness styles that influence what we do today.  Beginning with the ancient Greeks then taking some roads to Germany, India, France, California, and New York; Kunitz presents the history of fitness in an entertaining way. The writing of this book can be wordy at times but always supremely articulate which I’m sure will turn people off at times. Another great quality of this book are the people that are noted in the different chapters, I found more resources and incredible stories just from googling half the people Kunitz talks about. Strength coaches will find this book entertaining as well as educate those coaches who may not know exactly where the barbells and dumbbells came from in the weight rooms they use today.

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Flashback Friday, 2013-Kelly Starrett-Integrating Screening, Diagnostics, and Performance: The pinnacle of evaluation and identification is your programming

“The only thing that we need to evaluate on our systems is test and retest. Does it work or not? Is it an observable, measureable, and repeatable phenomenon? That’s all we care about.  When I make a change in position mechanics I expect to see some commiserate change in output, in wattage, in performance.  That’s how I know I’m making changes.”

Mr. Mobility WOD joined us in 2013 to break down interworking’s between evaluation, performance training, and rehabilitation. After he dissects the current state of these professions K-Star gets into his health care model where the Strength and Conditioning Coach is in the center of this model.  This leads us to The Coaches Dilemma. This is the issue that coaches have where they are receiving poorly prepared athlete’s, with less time to work with them than the sport coach, and the activity of the sports gets in the way of improving/correcting issues. This is why it’s so important to be an “expert” in positioning, as opposed the “sport”. This is what leads him to lagging indicators vs. leading indicators.

He gives us a break down of how he looks at a training session including what he see’s needing to be done in an hour and a half session. This includes how he uses movement as a diagnostics tool and also how to challenge body positions. Within this includes how positions in exercises and the performance of some movements tie directly into physical therapy. This all leads to some actionable ideas where coaches can make a few tweaks and leverage even further. Kelly goes through different positions and examples oh where there could be issues along with come cues to correct them. These breakdowns include the shoulder and hip. These examples lead directly into his movement hierarchy.

There are a few audio issues with this talk. None of which were in the main aspects or points of the talk

To download your copy follow the link here: http://cvasps.com/product/kelly-starrett-integrating-screening-diagnostics-and-performance/

 

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Throwback Thursday, Interview with James Madison University’s Olympic Sports High Performance Team

I had the great pleasure of having Dr. Christian Carter and Coach Willie Danzer on campus the other day to hang out and talk training.  It was a great discussion for the afternoon.  These guys are doing great things up in Harrisonburg, and I can’t thank them enough for coming down.  This is the first (of hopefully many) discussions we will have here where we ask coaches the simple question: “What are you doing right now that you are excited about?” and “What do you do best?”  This idea came to me from a visit with NC State Strength and Conditioning Coach Bob Alejo.   Coach Alejo asked me these same questions, and all I could think about was how great those questions are, and how great it would be to ask other coaches and share that info with our readers.  I hope you all enjoy the podcast and the rest to come!

 

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ENGAGING STUDENT-ATHLETES IN “THE PROCESS”: PART 2

This is part 2 of a 2 part series by Coach Haycock. Make sure to check out Part 1 here http://cvasps.com/uncategorized/engaging-student-athletes-process-part-1-katlyn-haycock/

TASK #4: Be present at other team events

More often than not, the student-athletes we work with will see us in the weight room.  However, we cannot forget to attend other team activities when our schedules allow.  First and foremost, it is important to make it to competitions when able.  We need to have a vested interest in improving performance in the given domain of competition.  We should see our student-athletes compete, not only to observe what weakness we can improve upon and strengths we can fortify through lifting or conditioning, but also to demonstrate to our student-athletes we care about improving their performance as whole.  We are here to help them reach their potential in sport, with strength and conditioning practices being our tools of choice.

Team practices are also a great opportunity to get “face time” with our student-athletes and the coaches.  Culture is the foundation of any team.  In practices, we can gain a glimpse into how the coaches expect the student-athletes to conduct themselves, how the coaches interact with the student-athletes, how the athletes respond to the coaching styles, and the overall atmosphere of team training.  Practices are opportunities to speak with the coaches about current key elements they are trying to introduce or enforce into the team culture.  We can then find ways to include those into S&C sessions.  Herein lies a connection between the sport training and strength and conditioning work, making all three components come together as “training.”  When our student-athletes see the best performances come from having all the puzzle pieces together, they become more engaged in working on the individual puzzle pieces.

Additional team events where we may have opportunities to attend include team meals, games on the road, or recruiting-related activities.  Team meals tend to be more relaxed and let the student-athletes see that, yes we are, in fact, human.  We can talk about something other than squatting and sprinting.  The same goes for team travel.  Our student-athletes have the opportunity to see us in “real clothes” and have conversations with us about topics other than training.  Sometimes we also have the opportunity to meet with recruits during visits.  These recruiting trips give the current student-athletes a chance to hear things from our perspective, and it also allows any future student-athletes to have a little familiarity with us and with the weight room.  Maybe, then, freshmen year will be slightly less intimidating as they begin their initial S&C programs.

Our presence at team events outside of the weight room demonstrates that we are sincerely interested in how the teams perform outside of the weight room, that we are another member of the coaching staff as opposed to a separate, stand-alone entity, and that we do have interests that extend beyond lifting or conditioning.  We become more relatable to the student-athlete with the hopes this will transfer to buy-in and greater engagement from the student-athlete.

TASK #5: Include and educate the student-athletes

When working with the student-athletes, we need to remember two important things: 1) The student-athlete is the one completing the sessions we program, and 2) every student-athlete will respond differently to a training plan.  Educating and including the student-athlete (beyond just proper technique for performing the exercises) by explaining the specific goals for a training cycle and asking for feedback regarding the program is helpful to us as coaches, and it also motivates the student-athletes to more intensely engage in their training and take ownership of their training.  Further engaging the student-athletes in a training session may reveal some unanticipated responses to our program designs, and will open the door for greater communication with the student-athletes, while also increasing their awareness of how training impacts performance.

Once we have their feedback, we must make sure to acknowledge that we have heard and understand what the student-athletes said, and that we are actively seeking ways to incorporate their feedback when appropriate.  Is there something a number of the student-athletes thought was not beneficial or even detrimental to performance?  Do they have suggestions of how modifying an exercise may make it more applicable to their sport?  Do the student-athletes notice that they are working a specific muscle group in practice that is not covered in the weight room?  Do they feel certain exercises have more carry-over?  These are all questions we can use to pull some feedback from our student-athletes. \

As coaches, part of our job is educating these student-athletes, but we cannot forget that some of the most impactful lessons are those discovered by the student-athletes themselves.  We can promote this through posing certain questions that have the student-athletes monitor personal progress, and have them report findings back to us.  Do they feel they have put in 100% during this training cycle?  In which areas have they seen the greatest improvements?  What areas of weakness could they work to strengthen?  Do they feel they could have performed better had they more fully committed to training?  In asking questions like this, we can help the student-athletes to be accountable to themselves and teammates.

While sometimes it may be difficult as coaches to hear corrections or suggestions from our student-athletes, remember we can always be better.  If that means making an alteration based on feedback from a student-athlete, perhaps due to an unintentional oversight on our part, we need to consider it a learning opportunity.  At the end of the day, our goal is to provide the best possible training program and coaching to our student-athletes.  No one wins if we let ego infringe upon our goal.

TASK #6: Continue to cultivate the team culture in the weight room

The weight room is an excellent venue to work on growing and enforcing the team culture.  Before the season begins, we can meet with the sport coaches and learn what the team has defined for goals in the upcoming season and what expectations the coaches have set for the student-athletes.  We should discuss with the coaches how they are implementing practices and what they are going to be emphasizing during the practices.  Once we know these things and have a more in-depth view of how the team operates, we will be able to incorporate certain aspects into our lifting and conditioning sessions.

Additionally, we can meet with the team captains and hear what their visions and expectations for the team are that season.  We can work with them to show we are here to help and that we want to hear from the players, not just the coaches.  This is another way to engage the student-athletes and have them take ownership over their training.  When the team comes to the weight room or heads to the field for a conditioning session, we want them to be excited to train.  We want to create a positive training environment where the student-athletes can build self-confidence and also have confidence in the training plans the coaches have designed to help them achieve their goals.

Gathering this information helps us to understand what the team is working towards, and presents a consistent message to the student-athletes.  They hear the same phrases and directives in practice as they do in the weight room, making the components of training cohesive as opposed to separate entities.   We want the student-athletes to view strength and conditioning (if they do not already) as another necessary component of training.  The more we can incorporate the team culture into our programming and educate the student-athletes, the more the student-athletes, and the sport coaches, will trust we are working to design and coach the best program to meet their needs for improving performance.

CONCLUSION:

These six tasks are a great starting point we can use to engage our student-athletes in the training process.  There is purposely an overlap between the various steps, which serves to create a cohesive training environment, bringing together training in the weight room with the sport training. While these are not the only methods, they can help us to build a solid foundation with our student-athletes.  As we get to further know our student-athletes and understand what inspires and motivates them, we will be able to develop our own methods to more fully engage them in training.  Some of the greatest moments as a coach are when we have our student-athletes buy-in to our strength and conditioning program, immerse themselves fully in the plan, and ultimately see them improve performance and continually excel as all the puzzle pieces come together.

Who is Katlyn Haycock?

KH MichiganKatlyn Haycock joined the University of Michigan Olympic Sports Strength and Conditioning team as a graduate assistant in August 2011 and currently serves as a strength and conditioning coach for Olympic Sports. She is responsible for program design and implementation for men’s and women’s swimming and diving, field hockey, and women’s soccer. In her time working at the University of Michigan, the women’s soccer team has made three NCAA Tournament appearances, while the Field Hockey team made a Final Four appearance following their regular-season and tournament conference championships in 2017. The men’s swimming and diving team has been five-time Big Ten champions (2012, ’13, ’14, ’15, ’16) and NCAA champion (2013), along with the women’s swimming and diving team, who has been back-to-back -to-backBig Ten champions (2016-1 8). Additionally, Coach Haycock has been the S&C coach for Club Wolverine Elite since the winter of 2011 and designs the dryland training plans for the Club Wolverine age-group swim club. Prior to joining the Michigan staff, Coach Haycock worked as an undergraduate assistant with Syracuse University Strength and Conditioning (Olympic Sports), assisting with the women’s tennis, lacrosse, soccer and ice hockey teams. She also completed internships with EXOS (formerly Athletes’ Performance) and Etcheberry Sports Performance. Along with coaching, Coach Haycock is a contributor to the Volt Athletics Blog, and has presented on Off-Season Training for Women’s Soccer, and been a co-presenter for Gearing Up for Game Day: Game Day Conditioning, Fueling & Hydration and Hands-On Training for Agility. Follow her on social media here: Twitter: @KatlynHaycock and @umichstrength; Facebook: Michigan Olympic Sports Strength & Conditioning

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Flashback Friday, 2013-Joel Jamieson- Review of a Camp the preparation of a UFC Champion

“Sometimes even if you put everything in place right athletes don’t do what they’re supposed to do and hopefully learn from those mistakes.”

In Joel’s fourth presentation at The Seminar, he gives us a glimpse into how he prepared one of the best pound for pound fighters in the history of the UFC.

This talk starts out by Joel giving an overview (including definitions and how he works off those definitions) of the principles behind what he does. This include: programming, training variables, testing and assessment. These lead him directly into how he defines training block, and how he sets up each block for DJ. This also includes what he looks at, including durations of general and specific blocks.

He then touches upon periodization of the week, and training load monitoring.  Both of these are highly impacted by the late Charlie Francis. Joel then ties it all together by sharing with us his “Programming Worksheet.” This includes what he’s looking at and into to help prepare his athletes.

The programming he used with DJ follows right after this.  Joel gives us a bit of background on DJ, where he came from and a good look into the process he went through to get where he is now. He then shares with us how he and Matt break down and assess the program based on the upcoming fight. These also include specific evaluations they do just with DJ. That brings us to DJ’s camp, and what the prep set up actually looks like.  Joel has it copped up in 2 week “blocks”, and gives examples of how each of these blocks flows into the next. This rolls straight through from general prep to the weight cut/taper right up to him walking out to fight.

Download your copy of this fantastic presentation HERE

 

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ENGAGING STUDENT-ATHLETES IN “THE PROCESS”: PART 1, by Katlyn Haycock

The importance of weight training can often be over-looked or not viewed as an essential component of training.  Additionally, we are still waiting for strength training in the early stages to be appropriately implemented on a wide-spread scale.  What does this mean for the collegiate strength and conditioning coach, though?  The combination of these two factors means often times S&C coaches find themselves working with student-athletes who are stepping foot in a weight room for the first time.  It also means coaches will be working with student-athletes who either do not understand the benefits of weight training or are uncomfortable in the weight room, or perhaps both.  As the coach, it is our job to teach, educate, and inspire every athlete to carry out the training programs we design.  This leads to the question of how exactly do we engage our student-athletes in “the process” of S&C, something they have little to no experience with, and something that pulls them out of their comfort zone? 

TASK #1: Build trust and respect

This must be the first step, as it is the most important component in developing “buy-in” and getting our student-athletes to become engaged in the training process, and can be applied to any sport.  A great place to begin is viewing the situation from the athlete’s perspective.  He or she has come to university to compete in a specific sport and earn a degree.  In some cases, the student-athlete may have met us (the S&C coaches) on an official visit, but in others, the student-athlete may have no idea that he or she will be lifting weights and doing conditioning sessions with another coach.  The student-athlete’s background will play a role in influencing whether he or she will be comfortable, let alone confident, in the weight room.  

Next, we need to educate ourselves in the sport, but look beyond just reading research and watching film.  We need to strike up conversations with coaches, spend time at practice, chat strategy and performance styles with the players, get out there and give it a go!  The more familiar we are with the sport, the more strategic we can be in developing a program and the easier it will be to explain our programs to the student-athletes in relatable terms.  That is the key-  the ability to effectively convey exercise selection in relation to what the student-athletes do in their sport increases the chance that they will come to understand the benefits and invest energy into the training.

Finally, we need to be accessible to the student-athletes.  While we do need to set limits (yes, we as coaches need our “official” days off, too), we also need to be sure our athletes know they can speak candidly with us, that an open line of communication exists.  We should be receptive and take their words into consideration.  We do not want to be the elusive figures of the weight room.  As coaches, it is our job to continually reassure the athletes (and the coaches) that we are here to help improve performance in their given sport through developing their physical attributes (strength, power, and speed).

TASK #2: Deliver a consistent message

After we determine what our message is- whether it revolves around our training methodology, the rules we will establish in the weight room, etc.- we must hold firm!  If a student-athlete acts against the defined message, we need to be sure to impose the defined consequences.  Every time.  There are no favorites.  We must apply the same consequences to both the top performer and the freshman redshirt on the bench.  Having this defined and consistent message is essential.

That being said, do not rule out evolution of the message.  We need to consistently be looking for better ways to help our student-athletes grow and develop.  New research, new coaching staffs, and our own personal experiences will play a role in how our messages evolve over time.  In order to maintain consistency, however, we need to share these changes and the reasons for changing with our student-athletes.  We need to make sure our student-athletes understand fully our expectations from Day 1.

TASK #3: Incorporate one-on-one interaction

As collegiate S&C coaches, we typically work in team settings where this may be more of a challenge, but it is possible!  Say hello to each student-athlete during a training session.  Provide a coaching cue and briefly ask how classes are going or ask how practice was.  If we let our student-athletes know we are interested in their general well-being and not just how much they are lifting that day, they will be more apt to trust the plan we have worked with their sport coaches to develop.

Another opportunity to incorporate one-on-one interaction lies in cuing.  When we work with student-athletes on technique, we can ask which cues are the most helpful or which cues “clicked” with them.  The student-athletes can then write these cues in their programs and we can use them in subsequent training sessions.  We may not be able to memorize all of them right away, but we can refer back to the programs and work to add a few each day.

In utilizing these two small steps, we can have a significant influence on a how a student-athlete goes about training and communicating with us. These will help to develop trust and engage the them more in their training.  It is not difficult for a student-athlete to blend in among teammates.  If we spend even a minute of our time during each session to touch base with individual student-athletes, we can better understand our student-athletes, perhaps develop better-suited training programs, and cultivate a mutual level of trust.

In the next installment, we will discuss three more tasks to use when working to have our student-athletes engage themselves more in their S&C training.  Stay tuned!

Who is Katlyn Haycock?

KH MichiganKatlyn Haycock joined the University of Michigan Olympic Sports Strength and Conditioning team as a graduate assistant in August 2011 and currently serves as a strength and conditioning coach for Olympic Sports. She is responsible for program design and implementation for men’s and women’s swimming and diving, field hockey, and women’s soccer. In her time working at the University of Michigan, the women’s soccer team has made three NCAA Tournament appearances, while the Field Hockey team made a Final Four appearance following their regular-season and tournament conference championships in 2017. The men’s swimming and diving team has been five-time Big Ten champions (2012, ’13, ’14, ’15, ’16) and NCAA champion (2013), along with the women’s swimming and diving team, who has been back-to-back -to-backBig Ten champions (2016-1 8). Additionally, Coach Haycock has been the S&C coach for Club Wolverine Elite since the winter of 2011 and designs the dryland training plans for the Club Wolverine age-group swim club. Prior to joining the Michigan staff, Coach Haycock worked as an undergraduate assistant with Syracuse University Strength and Conditioning (Olympic Sports), assisting with the women’s tennis, lacrosse, soccer and ice hockey teams. She also completed internships with EXOS (formerly Athletes’ Performance) and Etcheberry Sports Performance. Along with coaching, Coach Haycock is a contributor to the Volt Athletics Blog, and has presented on Off-Season Training for Women’s Soccer, and been a co-presenter for Gearing Up for Game Day: Game Day Conditioning, Fueling & Hydration and Hands-On Training for Agility. Follow her on social media here: Twitter: @KatlynHaycock and @umichstrength; Facebook: Michigan Olympic Sports Strength & Conditioning

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Flash Back Friday, 2013-Henk Kraaijenhof- Helping the Best to Get Better developments in improving performance by training and recovery.

“Here’s the questions, we have all this knowledge, and books, and articles, and seminars, but it’s only theory, it’s only theory. How can you apply this to this individual athlete? It’s a big question always. There are a lot of interesting things, but tonight when you’re out on the track or out on the field, what to do? Armed with that knowledge how do you apply it? It’s very different.”

Henk’s first of many presentations at The Seminar was Helping the Best to Get Better in 2013. Henk starts out sharing with us how he got into athletics, what brought him to coaching, and how he got paired up with Nelly. Finding Nelly brought him to the realization that the idea of survival of the fittest won’t work in Holland due to their limited population. Henk’s introduction leads him into discussing some general thoughts on training from a philosophical sense and the colleagues of his who have impacted his philosophy as a coach.

This breakdown the influencers in Henk’s training philosophy brings him into the coaching research he did with his athletes. He broke down and researched the biomechanics of their movements (he did quite a bit of this work focusing on the start) and what he saw in this work. He touches upon the physiology of his athlete’s, how he looked at his athletes, what he found to be important, and how training and training implications impacted that. This leads him to the impact of the brain, how he monitoring the CNS/brain stared with archers and leading into special ops personnel, and how to train the brain and why it is essential. The brain ties right into his discussion of science vs art when it comes to training. This discussion includes why the same program leads to different adaptations in different people, placebo effect, and how mind set has a massive impact on results. He then dives into stress, and how it is the “great equalizer” in training and competition. Stress has a huge impact on performance, and “peaking” and Henk touches upon how he’s see this impact performance in his athletes throughout the years. Henk finishes off his presentation by going over the most important lessons he has learned in his time working with athletes.

This talk is full of research that backed what he did and looked at and looked for in training, along with fantastic real-world examples of what he did and saw with a world record setting sprinter in an exceptionally simple breakdown with great analogies to make sure that each point gets across to each coach in attendance.

To download this awesome talk follow the link here:
http://cvasps.com/product/henk-kraaijenhof-helping-the-best-to-get-better/

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Thursday Throwback-Cal Dietz-Single Leg vs. Double Leg Training: Addressing the Controversy

Coach Dietz was kind enough to sit down and discuss his latest article “Single Leg vs Double Leg Training: Addressing the Controversy” with me this week.  In this discussion Coach Dietz talks about why he decided on this topic, how his oscillatory method fits in and how using Track and Field and Swimming athletes help show the validity of methods you use in training.  You can find more on the oscillatory method and video examples at his page www.XLAthlete.com Enjoy.

Original Post:

Cal Dietz 12-7

 

ENJOY THE CONTENT?

THEN YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT THE COMMUNITY!

The Community is an extension of The Seminar providing EXCLUSIVE content from some of the best practitioners in the world! Follow the link below to check it out!

https://cvasps.com/community/

 

#StrengthCoach, #StrengthAndConditioningCoach, #Podcast, #LearningAtLunch, #TheSeminar, #SportsTraining, #PhysicalPreparation, #TheManual, #SportTraining, #SportPerformance, #HumanPerformance, #StrengthTraining, #SpeedTraining, #Training, #Coach, #Performance, #Sport, #HighPerformance, #VBT, #VelocityBasedTraining, #TriphasicTraining

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