The 2015 Seminar saw the return of many past presenters, and the first we will discuss is Dr. Ben Peterson’s talk “Using Data to Improve Metabolic Specificity and Conditioning for Team Sport Athletes”. Ben went through a review of his 2013 talk, Effect of Aerobic Capacity on Repeated Sprint Performance, and added his recent finding through his work with Catapult connecting that presentation to all the data he gets to see on a daily basis to improve the practitioner’s ability to individualize based on sport, team system, and player tendencies. There’s a couple huge points we need to hit before we go into how this fits into how we train athletes:

1) He asks “Is Repeated Sprint Ability a good definition for team-sport metabolism?” It’s probably not because linear sprinting has a very different metabolic demand than cutting, jumping, cod, and sport movements. He then goes on to give his own definition that he says “is wordy, long, terrible, and doesn’t fit in a nice box in a text book,” but to be frank, I really like it. The problem with defining this and what makes it hard is you’re attempting to put a bunch of stuff that happens in many different sports, using different systems, by different athletes, in one “box”. Therefore, it’s always sport, system, and athlete specific, so a true definition is difficult to set.

Ben 12) Dr. Peterson’s research (along with may others) has shown that increasing O2 is important, but what can we do to piggy back that? He discusses metabolic efficiency and mechanical efficiency and how they are the two determining factors in performance. That’s where we start with how this connects directly with other principles we follow here.

Now let’s talk about the greatest similarity. When you break everything down that Ben talks about he is trying to use this GPP phase as the ground base of making the game “more aerobic”. Now, he’ll hate me for using that terminology, but will understand what I’m saying. We are trying to make as much of the work done in competition be performed before we get into the area of maximal work capacity. So in other words, we are trying to increase the intensity of work being done to get there, and/or increase the duration that we can stay there, right? Now, how do we do that? I believe that answer to that is improve techniques utilized in the sporting exercise because this fits right in with Ben’s GPP model.

Titled the PSCP GPP Model, it follows many of the principles we utilize here when dealing with our energy system work to piggy-back what we are doing in the weight room. It takes care of the metabolic efficiency and actually follows very similar (not exact but pretty damn close) to what we do already. We are looking to build what we call the “mids and lows,” that I discussed on a podcast with Keir Wenham-Flatt, in the early stages of development. He uses 4 different “methods” to improve it. I’m going to touch upon 3 of them:

Ben 21) Metabolic Push-Can we “push” the line out increasing both the time and intensity required to “cross over” to the maximal work capacity work. This is a bunch of lower intensity work that Dr. Peterson gives some really awesome and specific examples of how to implement. This has been and probably always will be, our starting point for all conditioning programs/GPP.

Ben 32) Metabolic climb-What work can we do to “climb up the O2 line”? Meaning, what work can we do in our GPP to increase the work being done before we “cross over” to accumulating a higher level of metabolites. Again he gives a great description of this programming that matches very closely to what we use in our GPP with our athletes.

Ben 43) Metabolic Pull-How can we get this intersection to move way to the right to increase the intensity and volume of work that we can preform prior to crossing the line? Ben’s prescription for this is what we have done in the later stages of our training, and it is really effective.

Let’s keep these methods in mind and look at the rest of a program. What is something you can do that will help in assisting this final goal of making the game more “aerobic”? We believe that these three specific things work in great coordination with he PCSP Model to help make the athlete more efficient and improve their ability to not just repeat outputs, but to increase the outputs that they are repeating. These three are:

1) General sporting technique work- Improve how the kids cut, accelerate, change direction. As we know improving technique will improve speed of movement and efficiency of movement. So if they move faster and more efficiently then we have “pushed” that line out more, right?
2) Specialized Exercises-See the reasoning above, but this is something that so many people sleep on, in my opinion. Teach them exercises that carry over to things that we can affect. How do they cut? How do they accelerate? The lunges that Dr. Yessis has talked about repeatedly would be an amazing addition here.
3) Extensive jumps used to teach elasticity-again we are looking at efficiency right? So why not teach the body to me more elastic so that you “bounce” better? If you can spring better you SHOULD cut better and accelerate better because you are utilizing the SSC at a higher level of efficiency.

So there you have it. Three easy additions from Dr. Peterson’s programming that we use here that should fit like a glove to help improve performance in your early GPP model to build a larger base for greater improvement later down the line.

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  1. Pingback: Flash Back Friday, 2013-Dr. Ben Peterson- The Effect of Aerobic Capacity on Repeated Sprint Performance - CVASPS

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