Sports Performance: 101

Sports Performance training is a HUGE, multi-billion dollar industry, and has been for the past decade or so.  Only in the past few years, however, has it become a household term and something that most high school [competitive] athletes have experienced first hand.  Why, you ask?

It's simple.  EVERYONE wants to be the best they can be.  EVERYONE wants to make that "Select/Elite/Prep/AAU/Club/Fill in the blank" team, and EVERYONE wants to play the sport they love year-round and maybe [just maybe] earn a NCAA Division I scholarship!  And, why wouldn't we want to be the best at our respective sport?

But how do you become the BEST at your respective sport?  Well, we're here to tell you... but you may not like the entire answer.

The best athletes are often times so naturally gifted, that they could put little to no effort into their sport and still remain at the top.  We call those a "needle in a haystack," but often times those statistical anomalies are what we want to model ourselves after, especially when it comes to the work [Sports Performance] we do outside of practice, games, tournaments, to become the "best we can be."  After all, we want to do what the world's best athletes are doing, right?  

Here's an example:

Terrell Owens, former NFL Wide Receiver, 6-time Pro Bowler, and NFL record holder promotes a fitness program that he claims has helped him to become the a top-tier, multi-million dollar contract holding NFL superstar - this band only uses fitness bands.  He does bodyweight exercises utilizing the bands, and says that this was an effective tool for him to get to the top of his game.

So let's say you want to become the best possible Wide Receiver you can be.  You begin your training program using TO's band system, and you do it every single day.  Every.  Single.  Day.  You're dedicated to the plan and you follow it to a "T." Do you think you'll become the best Wide Receiver you can be?

It's not likely.  Here's why..

If you haven't developed a solid foundation of STRENGTH and POWER from focusing on basic barbell movements, you'll never realize your true potential.  On top of that, if you haven't developed a foundation of strength and muscle tissue to support your major joints (knees, shoulders, hips, etc.), you are putting yourself at risk of potentially career-ending injury.  Furthermore, if you don't learn how to train with a barbell doing basic movements like squats, deadlifts, presses, push presses, clean pulls, power cleans, lunges, etc., you will always leave something off the table when it comes to coordination, balance, and overall movement ability.

So what's that mean for you?  How can YOU become the best athlete you can be, and give yourself the opportunity to achieve your dreams and goals?  

GET STRONG.  GET POWERFUL.  GET A BARBELL IN YOUR HANDS!

At Adams-York Sports Performance, we teach all athletes the importance of developing a foundation of barbell movements, and we follow a linear progression program designed to systematically develop strength from week to week.  Our athletes get stronger, adding lean muscle tissue to their frame, which helps to protect their joints from injury and impact.  In addition to our barbell strength training program, we teach all of our athletes to safely and PROPERLY perform Olympic Weightlifting movements and variations (Snatch, Clean & Jerk) which are designed to maximize power output and motor unit recruitment, which directly translates to things like explosiveness, change of direction, first step speed, overall speed, deceleration, acceleration, and stability during impact.  

To help compliment the foundation of strength and power we work diligently to build in all of our athletes, we add accessory work such as sled drags/pulls, weighted step ups, weighted lunges, GHD work, jumps for distance/height/reaction, sprints/sprint starts for reaction/speedwork, medicine ball drills, plyometric drills, and much more.  

To finish every training session, we task our athletes with a grueling, intense, short-to-moderate duration conditioning workout that is designed to tax our short(er) term energy systems - the Phosphogen (or PC) and Glycolytic systems (pictured below).  These metabolic pathways are used to maximize the bodies efficiency during bouts of short but intense activities, but studies have shown that intense activities within these two pathways can have a profound impact on the Aerobic System.  Put simply, our training program will help to improve your athlete's endurance without forcing them to go out and run for 3-4 miles.  We've had endurance athletes (Cross Country) cut back on their mileage, train with us almost exclusively, and get faster in their endurance-based activities.  On the other hand, we've also trained basketball players who are fast and explosive from the first whistle to the last because of their improvement within the Anaerobic energy systems.  Our unique approach to intense, short conditioning sessions is part of what makes our training program unlike anything else offered in the area.

(image found on http://herohealthroom.com/2013/12/04/zone2-training/)

So, what's the takeaway here?  What have you learned about Sports Performance training from reading the info above?

  1. Sports Performance training isn't one-size-fits-all; and in many cases, the best athletes in the world have developed a solid foundation of strength, power, explosiveness, balance, coordination, and overall movement ability [through fundamental strength training] long before they began any specialized programs such as the example used above with Terrell Owens.  
  2. To maximize your efforts and best prepare for your sport, you MUST begin by developing a foundation of strength, muscle mass, power, and stability.  Your best possible option to develop this foundation of strength is to find a qualified, professional strength & conditioning coach like the ones on the Adams-York Sports Performance team!
  3. The dynamic, results-producing programming offered at Adams-York Sports Performance not only focuses on developing the necessary foundational strengths for all athletes, but helps to systematically improve cardiovascular and muscular endurance through its intense, short-to-moderate duration conditioning workouts that are done after strength training/accessory work in each workout session.

Trust the experts.  Weight training, accessory training, and metabolic conditioning have evolved tremendously over the past 20-30 years.  We start all athletes with at least 4 private sessions where we instruct them how to move functionally and safely; we also make them understand WHY we want them to move the way we want them to, so they truly understand how it benefits them.  After that, your son or daughter can continue with 1-on-1 instruction or they can be placed in a small group environment where they are watched closely by a qualified, encouraging, friendly (but tough) strength & conditioning coach.  Either way, your athlete's success and safety are our #1 priority.

Interested in getting started?  We're glad to hear that!  Head over to our Getting Started page to find out the next steps in your athlete's success!  

Have some questions before continuing?  Go to our Contact Us page and let us know how we can help.. we'd love to set up a time to shake your hand and find out how we can be of assistance.  

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