Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Track What You're Doing

The off-season is in full swing, and now is the time to get bigger and stronger. With this being said how are you tracking your progress, how do you know you are getting better and how do you know if your doing enough, or too much?

On the strength and conditioning side of a players development keeping track of progress is pretty easy. The player records the resistance being used and how many reps and sets he completes. If the player has some experience with resistance training, the player may also utilize percentages of maxes. The maxes can be estimated or actual. Determining which to use will usually be determined by the experience the athlete posses in resistance training. A player should be proficient in an exercise before attempting to do a maximum lift. If the player keeps track of the weight being used and challenges himself everyday, he should see progress in strength every few weeks. Not every movement will increase strength but expect some to. Tracking of this progress is also very motivating, getting stronger increases a player's motivation to improve and will increase confidence in his own abilities.

The principle of tracking can also be used for conditioning purposes. Knowing how far and how long it takes to complete drills is just as important for conditioning as resistance training. Knowing these stats can keep the player on track for increasing conditioning and speed of the athlete. We all want to know how fast a player is. But we also want to know how he adapts to conditioning and how much is enough to keep him in peak form before, during, and after the season.

Keeping track of your progress for performance factors is not a new idea. Getting into a routine and making sure you record your progress is a habit that will pay off in confidence as well as increased performance. Recording even your skill sessions will help increase your performance and become more effective in practice sessions. For the last few years I have been working with many players that record everything, and when I say everything I mean everything. They record every swing with a bat, what they were working on, and how successful the session was. They record every ground ball, every throw in practice and special workout sessions. We chart this progress to increase the player’s performance; we know exactly how much work they have done each week. This allows us to increase or decrease special practice time based on the target reps and sets of specific skills. We enter each week knowing what we need to accomplish and then get it done in an organized and effective manner.

To help players and coaches, a few sample record sheets have been posted on the website. These sheets can be printed and used, or serve as a design for your own. Remember if you want to know where you are, you have to know where you have been.

Go to the Training Resources Page.

Brian Niswender MA,CSCS
Co-Founder BaseballStrengthCoaching.com

1 comment:

  1. You also gain certain health benefits from toning your muscles. abdominal exercise can give you an energy boost and being fit and active keeps your immune system boosted for added benefit.