Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Change of Pace

The scholastic Track and Field season here in Arizona is rapidly coming to a close. It doesn't seem that long ago we were just getting started. By our standards this has been a pretty successful season with our throwers winning (usually sweeping the top 3 places) in most of our meets. Admittedly the throwing events on the Navajo Reservation do not have a history of high performance like our distance runners do. Throwing on the Rez is probably on a level equivalent to what Cross country running is in Samoa. It's not really culturally or genetically inherent. Still we had two boys throwing the discus 150' this season and a couple girls over 100' which isn't bad for our little corner of the world. For the first time I had 3 boys break 40' in the shot with 3 girls over 30' in the shot. They are all undersized, but only one is graduating this year, so things look positive for the future too. We can attribute some of our "success" to a good weight training program and commodity cheese.Thanks Uncle Sam.
This week we needed a change of pace in our practice routine, something to instill a little fun,but still help us to get better. We decided on some left-handed throws, moving backwards through the circle, and throwing with our eyes closed. These are not our inventions, of course, but we take ideas from whatever sources we can. A few months ago Leif posted a video of Gerd Kanter throwing left handed. Mac Wilkens on his video also advocates doing some opposite arm throws. While some may not see value and call it a waste of time, I think it assists in feeling balanced and helps body awareness and feeling positions. It is also fun to have your throwers compete this way. We had a lot of fun trying to hit 100' left handed.
Next we worked on moving backwards across the circle in reverse fashion. This also helps with balance and feeling the important positions.It is challenging for most throwers at first and fun for high school kids at least.
Finally, we ended with throwing with our eyes closed. This helps young throwers to be become aware of internal feedback and to feel balance and power positions without the benefit of visual ques.

These activities and drills served the purpose. It stimulated interest, generated some enthusiasm, and helped us to improve our kinesthetic sense while having some fun. Of course you wouldn't want to spend too much time on such things, but a change of pace now and then keeps things fresh and more interesting. Especially with younger throwers.
I would like to hear what some of you do for variety in your programs.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Romanian Deadlift or RDL

In the latest "Strength and Conditioning Journal" publshed by the National Strength and Conditioning Association there is an article describing deadlifting. While it does explain some things about the lift, it is mostly a description of the so called Romanian deadlift and some variations. Personally, I do not think that convential or sumo deadlifting has much value for athletes involved in sports other than Powerlifting. While deadlifting is certainly a basic closed kinetic chain total body exericse; I think the deadlift is too slow, the direct stress to the lower back requires to much recovery time, and the alternating grip causes torque in the back that is not necessary, I think there are better ways to accomplish the total body strengthening benefits. I prefer pulls with both a clean and snatch grip (overhand of course) or even clean style deadlifts with a shrug. All are done with a flat back. What follows is an explanation by Jim Schmitz of the origin of a special pulling/deadlift type exercise that has come to be widely known as the RDL. This explanation was posted on the Ironmind website. Below Jim's story are several video clips. One is a pretty good IMO demonstration of the RDL. The feet stay flat, weight is shifted to the heels as the hips drift back. Back is locked in and arched while the bar is lowered close to the body to below knee level. Below that clip is an example of a pretty strong guy doing an exericse that is not really an RDL. His back rounds and his hips do not really move back. Also, he is wearing a belt. Kind of ironic to wear a belt for extra support of the very muscles that you are trying to strengthen. DON'T WEAR A BELT TO DO RDLS!!!! Finally the last clip is the man himself, Nicu Vlad winning gold at the 1984 Olympics. he went on to become the heaviest lifter ever to snatch double bodyweight doing 200 kg in the old 99 kg weight class.

RDL: Where It Came From, How to Do It
By Jim Schmitz

U.S. Olympic Weightlifting Team Coach 1980, 1988 & 1992
Author of Olympic-style Weightlifting for Beginner & Intermediate Weightlifters Manual and DVD
"I get quite a kick out of all the mileage the RDL (Romanian deadlift) has gotten in the world of strength and conditioning. It seems I almost always come across the RDL exercise in every article written about training for power and sport in all the journals on the subject. The reason for my amusement is that the “discovery” of the RDL was in my gym, The Sports Palace, in San Francisco in 1990.

Olympic and world champion and world record holder Nicu Vlad, of Romania, and his coach Dragomir Cioroslan were conducting a clinic there. They were in the U.S. for the 1990 Goodwill Games that were being held in Seattle and Spokane, Washington. USA Weightlifting, for which I was president at the time, invited Nicu and Dragomir to conduct some clinics while they were here, and my gym was one of the locations. Part of the clinic was Nicu doing a workout where he cleaned and jerked around 220 kg to 230 kg, and then he proceeded to do this lift, a combination stiff-leg deadlift and regular deadlift, but actually neither. He did several sets, working up to 250 for triples.

Someone watching asked what the exercise was he was doing. Nicu just shrugged his shoulders and said it was to make his back strong for the clean. Dragomir also said the same; it was just a lift that Nicu had developed for his back and clean. Well, then everyone was really interested and asked Nicu to demonstrate it with lighter weights and describe how to do it. Someone taking notes asked what this lift was called. There was a long pause and Nicu and Dragomir didn’t have a name, so I said, “Let’s call it the Romanian deadlift or RDL for short,” and every one agreed and there you have the birth of the RDL. MILO publisher and editor-in-chief Randall Strossen was there taking photos.

Let me tell you how to correctly perform the RDL for those who may not be sure. You grab the bar with your clean grip, pull the bar to the tops of your thighs, but don’t complete the lift: knees are not locked out, chest is out, and back is flat. You then lower the bar to about two inches from the platform, keeping your back perfectly flat or arched and your knees slightly flexed, then you return to the almost erect position—but is very critical here not to fully lock the knees—then repeat. Two very important details are 1) your back stays flat or arched at all times, and 2) your knees stay slightly flexed at all times. This lift is almost all low back, glutes, and hamstrings. I recommend 3 to 5 reps with a weight 80% to 100% of your best clean. An interesting side note here is that Yoshinobu Miyake, Japan’s 1964 and 1968 Olympic champion, was at the clinic and he said he did the same exercise back in his prime, the 1960s."

Friday, April 23, 2010


Recently I have come across on youtube some videos from Average Broz Gymnasium. These guys have some great videos of some super strong kids. Today I found a video of the coach John Broz talking about some of his training philosophy.

Here are some other videos from Average Broz Gym

Here is the link to their youtube page- http://www.youtube.com/user/BROZKNOWS

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

I'm Worried

A few weeks ago we hosted a high school track meet here in beautiful downtown Kayenta, Arizona. We had 18 teams from around the 4 corners area (Arizona, Utah, New Mexico, Colorado) with over 700 young athletes competing.In the boys discus and shot we had over 70 competitors in each event with nearly 60 on the girls' side.
While on the surface this may seem like a very positive thing, lot's of kids participating in the great sport of Track and Field (as we call it here in the USA); lot's of kids who are physically active and trying to test themselves in a physical challenge. a look at the results is enough to give one pause.
I actually measured a 24 ft. discus throw (during the boys' competition) and this was not an anomally. While the winning throw for boys was 147'11", the last person to make the finals threw 101'.The girls' winner was 96' with a 77' throw making the finals. The shot was won with 44' and 32' respectively. 37' and 27' were enough to make the finals.

It worries me that many of our youth today are members of school teams and considered to be"athletes", yet many are not even physically fit. I guess the optimist in me says, "While at least they are trying and not home on the couch." The realist in me, however, says, "Where is our society at when anyone can put on a uniform and call themselves an athlete?" Sadly, as we have traveled around the 4 corners this past season for many meets, this is the norm. I have been coaching Track for 29 years now and the steady decline in overall performance and expectations is not merely a figment of my imagination.It is real and measurable.
Last week my son asked how high school Track was when I was his age. I guess my Mother knew that someday I would be asked that question and she had saved a bunch of newspaper clippings in a book. I pulled out the book and looked over the results with my son. Even I was suprised at the differences of 37 years or so. While the winning times and distances were not drastically different in many events, the biggest difference was in the competitive depth. As I looked at the results from 1973,the memories came back. To be on the team and compete in meets, you had to be able to give respectable performances.That is no longer the case it seems.
There are certainly pockets of excellence around the country, Tony Ciarelli's program in Southern California being a notable throwing mecca among others. But I believe most coaches would agree that the general fitness level of our youth has been on a drastic downslide for the past several decades. The measurable performances of Track and Field give hard evidence of that.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Here are some more old track pics from my dad's era. Can you guys guess who the other throwers are in the pictures with him?

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Since the early 1900’s, the squat lift has been the bread and butter for building strength in the legs. Almost every athlete in every sport has performed a version of the squat lift in their training. The problem with squats is that many athletes don’t like to do them because they are hard and in some cases when done improperly will cause injury and pain. The problem is that due to the influences of power lifting and strongman sports there are a lot of athletes that believe that squats are the only lift they can do for their legs. The squat lift works the legs very well and is a great lift but there are better alternative lifts that can be used instead that eliminate the risk of injury and pain. The lift that I believe is a great alternative is the step up.
Anatoly Bondarchuk, the former Soviet throws coach did some studies on whether back squats or step ups would be most useful to his athletes. His studies led him to conclude that a particular form of what we'll call the high step-up had two significant advantages over the standard back squat. Bondarchuk concluded that high step-ups, firstly, produce greater gains in thigh and hip power and secondly, cause fewer injuries. He started having his athletes use step ups instead of squats and convinced many other coaches to do the same. Many of the athletes using step ups began to make gains in power that they weren’t doing back squats. Bondarchuk concluded due to his studies that heavy back squats are potentially dangerous to the structure of the lower back. Recent studies have shown that the back squat places a load on the structure of the lower back in the bottom position, that is at least twice as heavy as the load on the bar. According to Bondarchuk the faster you descend and the faster you reverse direction and begin to arise from the bottom in a squat, the greater the load on the lower back will be and the greater the chance of injury. Also as athletes try to increase weight in the squats it gets harder to maintain good technique. Bondarchuk concluded that it would be safer to use a form of weighted step-up.
The Step-up is done by stepping up onto a platform with some form of weights and then stepping back down from it. Although it is an incredibly simple exercise, there are a few variations and things to be aware of. The ideal position for the leg to be in at the start of the step up should be with hamstrings parallel to the ground. This basic exercise works the hips and thighs, and by adjusting the step height you can favor either more of the quadriceps or the hamstrings. A higher step works the hamstrings harder and a lower step targets the quadriceps. So if an athlete is weak in the hamstring area, he should use a slightly higher bench to step up onto to. According to research done by Osse Aura, a professor of biomechanics at the Finnish Institute of Physical Education, the hamstring muscles should be approximately 75% as strong as the quadriceps muscles. If that ratio is not maintained, the chance of injury increases, while the chance of maximum performance decreases. If the quadriceps of a certain athlete are too strong, that athlete should use a higher than normal box height and thus place more stress on the hamstrings. If, on the other hand, an athlete's hamstrings are too strong, the box height will be lowered so that the quadriceps may be stressed more completely. In addition to the step height, speed and number of reps both play crucial roles in determining the effectiveness of this exercise. These general rules usual apply; the reps will be lower and the breaks longer when training for maximum strength and the reps higher/breaks shorter for hypertrophy goals.

According to the article BULGARIAN LEG TRAINING SECRETS written By Angel Spassov and Terry Todd, the Bulgarian and Soviet Olympic weightlifters both abandoned squats and made their lifts in the snatch and clean and jerk higher than ever before. They use the example of Leonid Taranenko, the current holder of the world record in the clean and jerk in the superheavyweight class to prove this claim. Taranenko has done the clean and jerk with a weight of 586 pounds. It is perhaps more amazing that Taranenko didn’t do any type of squat for four years before breaking the world record. Besides his practice on the snatch and clean and jerk, the only form of heavy leg training that Taranenko does is the high step-up with weights. One thing coaches in the Soviet Union and Bulgaria noticed was that those athletes, both lifters and those in other sports, who dropped the squat and used the high step up developed more complete muscularity than those who simply squatted. Many of the coaches say that the legs of those who work hard on the high step-up look more like those of someone who did sprinting and jumping as well as squatting. Apparently, the balance required in the high step-up calls more muscles into play, producing fuller, shapelier development.

I have had knee problems my whole career that has plagued my performance. Me and my older brother also have a genetic back disease called Sherman’s syndrome, which causes daily pain. I have done many sets and reps of squats in pain due to tendonitis of my knees, back problems, and foot injuries. As a thrower it is important to have legs as strong as they can be since all power in the throwing events is produced in the legs. Because of injuries and problems I have had, I decided this year to implement more step ups into my program. Some variations I have implemented this year are the parallel step up, the high step up for my hamstrings, the low step for my quads, and a fun variation of the lateral step up which helps with stabilizing muscles in the legs, such as the adductor and abductor muscles. These lifts have helped me gain leg strength without the normal pain I have been accustomed to. After a couple of months this season of doing this, I have noticed that my knees are feeling better and my back is not in pain which has not only helped my throwing but also my other athletic performances. I have also been able to sleep better and perform daily functions with more ease.
When my older brother returned home from serving an LDS mission, and knowing the problems his back would have with squatting, decided to do step ups in order to help him get back into shape. My brother has always been a big back squatter, but he didn’t want to cause the stress and pain that would come with heavy back squatting. He decided to do step ups for 3 months to help him recover and get his legs back into shape for throwing. He saw huge gains in a short amount of time and noticed that his legs got their strength back sooner than any other major muscle groups in his body. That track season proved to be a very successful one as he improved all of his personal bests from before his 2 year mission. He attributes some of that success to the gains he was able to make pain free through step ups. I recently did some squats to see how they would feel for my body. While doing them I noticed that I had reduced pain, and I felt more stabilized while performing the lift and was able to lift a big amount for me. I have concluded that implementing step ups into my program has not only helped my over all body strength but has also helped me gain the leg strength I need without causing pain. I also feel that doing both step ups and squats in the same program is beneficial and both lifts can help the other have gains. I have seen gains in my overall lifting strength especially in such lifts as snatch and cleans and I have seen gains in my throwing distances.

Works Cited
"Barbell Step-up." ExRx (Exercise Prescription) on the Net. Web. 14 Apr. 2010. .
OverSpeed 2002. "OverSpeedTraining - Articles: Bulgarian Leg Training Secrets." OverSpeed Training. Web. 14 Apr. 2010. .
Spassov, By Angel. "The Step-up : a Real Squat Alternative? - Straight to the Bar." Straight to the Bar. Web. 14 Apr. 2010. .

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Why Do It If We Know Better?

Below is another article I read recently on the TRAINING AND CONDITIONING website. As before, there are some concepts I totally agree with and I appreciate the way Vern Gambetta expresses them. There are a few things that I don't agree with, such is life. But overall I am in total support of the concept "Why do it if we know better?" There are so many sacred cows out there that are thoughtlessly perpetuated. The NFL combine bench press 225 lb. for max reps comes to mind. No knowlegable strength or football coach that I know really believes that it has anything to do with football performance, yet many still invest a great deal of time, energy, and even money trying to produce high numbers in this useless endeavor. Let's not be afraid to get off the lemming express and think for ourselves. In the most recent Milo magazine (another one of my favorites) Bill Starr wrote a column on how the old York Barbell Club lifters all had their unique methods of training, often in contradiction to one another.He stated that some responded best to low volume work while others thrived on high volume training.Some only did the competitive lifts while others included a more general body building type routine. The only constant was that each athlete found out what worked for them and were smart enough to follow it. I know I, myself, have fallen into the trap of hanging on to some exercise that seemed to be working for someone else when it was obvious that it was only beating me up. It takes a certain amount of integrity and courage to admit that there are some exercises and/or programs that don't work for you when others around you seem to be thriving on them. Know yourself and be honest and courageous enough to follow your own instincts. I like to call it "cutting the fat". Don't do anything that doesn't need to be done. Training should lead to increased performance, not become a ritual that is repeated regardless of outcomes. If an exercise doesn't have a specific purpose in your program, or produce a measurable outcome, then don't do it. A lot of teenagers come into my weight room and immediately park themselves in front of the mirror and proceed to do set after set of seated dumbell curls. I always ask them why they persist when it is so obvious to all that their arms are not getting any bigger. I explain to these lost souls that they will never be able to develop 18" arms on a scrawny 135 lb. body, then I kindly direct them to the squat racks. (The whole premise is flawed anyway,the reason they want big arms is because they think girls like big arms. Us more mature men realize that girls are really attracted to big bank accounts, not big arms) Anyway, below is the article with a few comments from me in Mustang Red.

"Why is everyone so infatuated with the ham/glute raise and the Russian/Nordic hamstring curls? These are both exercises that I threw out of my toolbox years ago because I found that they were ineffective and predisposed the athletes to injury.
I am not sure what people are trying to accomplish with them. They are both training muscles. I prefer to train movements that stress muscles in an appropriate manner for the desired training objective.
I really like the concept of training movements, not muscles, although I personally like the feel of the Glute/Ham Raise. For me personally, it seems to help me align and strengthen my SI joint which tends to be a problem area. That may not be true for others.
No doubt the hamstring muscle groups are very important in movement, but they do not work in isolation, nor do they act in slow eccentric moments and they work both at the knee and the hip. I hear another buzzword as justification, they work the posterior chain--so what?
I hate Buzzwords too. Please don't say Core Stability in front of me or talk about "functional training" in the same sentence as stability balls. If you are interested in Pilates, then please go somewhere else to workout.

How about the total kinetic chain and fitting the hamstring in that context? The hamstrings must be integrated and coordinated to be effective in doing their job.
I agree that closed kinetic chain movements are the best way to insure balanced and functional development.

To help understand exercise selection lets look at the three movement constants. Start with the body, which is what we are trying to change and get to adapt through training. The second constant is gravity--an ever-present force that constantly loads the system. Last but not least, there is the ground where we live, work, and play.

I like this concept. Simple, basic, and common sense.
Without applying force to the ground we cannot move. Lets look deeper into the body and look at hamstring function and its architecture that helps to determine its function. In running linear and multi-directionally, the hamstrings' main job is to decelerate the foreleg and in stance extend the hip, along with gravity it also helps to flex the knee (not it's primary job).
Based on its architecture (the pennation angles within the muscle) it is designed for speed and large amplitude movements. They work in all three planes of motion, not just the sagittal plane. The hamstrings work synergistically with all the muscles of the hip and the leg to produce the required efficient movement. They are like any good team player; they can't do their job without help.
Succinct and to the point. Nice example of closed kinetic chain in action.

Now lets look at the specific exercises. The ham/glute raise isolates the hamstrings through a limited range of motion. It works in a horizontal orientation against gravity. No use of the ground and slow speed of movement. The Russian/Nordic hamstring curl basically isolates the hamstring at one joint, the knee through a very limited range of motion. It is a very slow, almost grinding eccentric movement that places tremendous abnormal stress on the distal hamstring. And there is no use of the ground. Based on basic exercise selection criteria, both of these exercises fail on all counts.
So what should you do instead? The solutions are actually quite simple and involve no fancy names and have minimal equipment needs--just manipulation of the three movement constants. Lunges and lunge and reach in all three planes of motion with appropriate resistance. Step-ups with both a low and a high box, simply provide a no-frills integration into the total chain.
These exercises train force reduction, force production and have high proprioceptive demand. They involve triple extension and triple flexion at a relatively high speed. Simple, get all the parts working together to produce efficient flowing movement that will transfer into the competitive arena.

I love it. Well said. No fancy names or equipment needed. Just basic functional movements in the bodies natural patterns. Of course Vern Gambetta doesn't need me to support or agree with him. He is making a fine living and has been for many years by selling sound training principles. More power to him. Heed his point though, just because it works for Koji, Reese, or Gerd; it may not be the best way for you to train. Train smart and be an independent and self-reliant athlete.
Vern Gambetta, MA, is President of Gambetta Sports Training Systems in Sarasota, Fla. The former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox, he has also worked extensively with basketball, soccer, and track and field athletes. He is a frequent contributor to Training & Conditioning. Vern also maintains his own blog.


I have competed the last two weekends and things have been going ok. I haven't thrown as far as I know I can and as far as I should be. But, it's early on in the season still and things will turn around. Posted is a picture of me with LJay Silvester and Jarred Rome, both olympian discus throwers and some recent lifting and throwing vids.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Only the Strong Survive

Like I tell my students, "What good is all that reading, writing, and math if you are weak?

Also there is finally a demonstration of a good reason to bench press.
Of course if this mouse were a real man, he would have snatched it. lol
Never underestimate the anabolic properties of cheese.
(click on the arrow and wait a few seconds to load)

Live strong!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Ljay Silvester Video

I have known about this video for a while but thought I would share with all of you. This is a collection of old film from practices of Jay Silvester and then later on some other BYU throwers including my father when he was competing in the 70's. There is also some film of Glen Passey throwing the discus at Utah St. Univ. who according to my knowledge is the lightest person ever to throw over 200' in the discus. I believe he was 180 lbs or somewhere close to that. The film has video of LJay as a college student and then later on in his career. Other people in the film include Raimo Pihl, Anders Arrhenius, Rolf Engels, and Ken Lundmark in the HJ.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Back to Basics

Posted here is an article I recently read on the "Training and Conditioning" web site. While I agreed with much of it, there are somethings I don't agree with. Of course that is to be expected. If we all thought alike, we'd never make much progress. I will use the article as a discussion point and post my comments in BYU blue.

"It doesn't matter if it is a sport coach telling you what they want out of a strength and conditioning program or a strength coach telling you what their program does for an athlete; a common mantra we hear is: bigger, faster and stronger. It's true, that is a common mantra. In fact, a friend of mine has created a very successful business that takes it's name from that mantra. Yes, BFS was conceived at BYU in the early 70's. I always tell my ahtletes that I'll take stronger and faster over bigger any day. Although I don't think any coach would complain about having all three.
But when training athletes, it's better to begin by addressing two questions:
1. Am I giving my athletes the ability to create more force in a shorter amount of time?
I agree. Rate of force development is the key factor and often not understood.
2. Am I asking this athlete to perform movements that will help them create force in the time their sport happens?
What movements could an athlete perform that would be more valuable than their actual event?
Whether it is the baseball swing happening in 100-120 ms, or the foot being on the ground for 80-200 ms, sport happens within a limited time and distance. So in most sport applications, we should train to develop concentric velocity. A lot of things go into creating concentric velocity, but let's look at a couple of different force/time curves of styles of training.

As you can see, an explosive-ballistic style of training creates more force in a shorter amount of time than traditional heavy-resistance training does. This in turn results in a greater degree of rate of force development. According to Figure 20.01 (see above), heavy resistance training does create more force than explosive-ballistic training after 300 ms, but not many sport tasks happen in that time frame. In fact, an untrained individual will produce a higher amount of force earlier in the force time curve than a heavy resistance trained athlete will. Unfortunately for the heavy resistance trained athlete most sport tasks occur in an 0-200ms window.(1)
Indeed the graph shows this, however what the graph represents is unclear to me. What is it really representing? Normally a Force Velocity Curve is set up with the velocity as the vertical axis and force as the horizontal axis. Clearly strength training will shift the curve to the right. We often use graphs and statistics to illustrate ideas, but sometimes they are not representitive of real life experiences. For example; I have been told that China has a large population and that 4 out of 6 babies born world wide are Chinese. OK. My wife and I have six children and not one of them was Chinese! How is that for hillbilly logic? lol
Explosive-ballistic training
If the above statements are true, it is important to determine what explosive-ballistic training is. Explosive movements require moving an object with as much velocity as possible, which often involves the reflexive and elastic components of the muscle-tendon complex.
Agreed. Also, the heavier the object to be moved, the more force that will be needed to move it.

Heavy resistance training involves more of the cross sectional area of the muscle. Ballistic movements are when you propel an object--such as your self (jumping), or an object (throwing a medicine ball). Explosive-ballistic training develops something called speed-strength. Speed-strength is the ability of the body to create a high amount of force in the shortest amount of time. This is what actually happens in just about all sport movements out on the field or court.
(Italics mine) Exactly!!! So why try to duplicate it in a contrived exercise, just practice your event.

I think this concept is gaining traction as more coaches apply it to sprinting and lower body movements, but I believe there are even more opportunities for coaches to apply explosive-ballistic training. Take a throwing athlete for example--when is the last time you have witnessed one of them actually training their arms explosively?
I see it every day in practice as throwers use explosively throw shots, discs, javelins and hammers of varying weights, both light and heavy as well as the standard implements.
I believe there is a time and place for all methodologies and all elements of movement have to be present in training. One of the first things a coach needs to do is take into further consideration the time constraints that exist in their sport, then honestly evaluate if their program can maximize their training efforts.
SO, if your time is limited, what is more important than throwing your implements?
Obviously, every sport has different requirements that dictate the athlete's performance. Thus the days are gone of creating athletes that are just bigger, faster and stronger. To maximize athletic performance you have to answer the questions: How big? How fast? How strong?
And the most important question of all..... Are you throwing farther?

As a coach, you have to know the given factors of each movement task that you are trying to train. In future blogs, I'm excited to tell you more about factors such as kinematic versus kinetic analysis, basic movement efficiency, stability and numerous other athletic components. I'm also excited to share how I apply them to the training of athletes in tasks other than running or jumping. "
Do we really have to analyze all that? If we are lifting smart, won't we get stronger? Won't the increased strength make us faster? If we are training and eating smart, won't that lead to an increase lean body mass? If we are throwing (or practicing our sport) isn't that the most specific training we can do? Isn't that how any top level thrower trains?
Nick Pinkelman is an Athletic Performance Trainer at Explosive Edge Athletics, in Eden Prairie, Minn. During his career, he has worked with high school, college, and professional athletes.

1. Plisk, Steven S. Speed, Agility, and Speed- Endurance Development. In: Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning. R.W. Earle and T.R. Baechle, eds. Champaign, IL Human Kinetics, 471-491, 2000.
Cleaning 250 kg. for 2 reps. How is that for rate of force development?