Thursday, June 28, 2012

"Just Do It!" ... With a Purpose

As a clinician and a coach, I am constantly looking for new and more effective ways to improve my athlete's health and performance. It can be extremely easy to get bogged down and lost in the many treatment options and training techniques that exist and continue to appear. All too often, I see programs and treatment plans that are either haphazardly put together or loaded with multiple activities for the same end. There does not seem to be a plan or purpose. I can be just as guilty about losing sight of the method to my madness. To keep focused on the task at hand, I ask myself a couple questions when developing overall general training plans and putting together the more specific daily activities: (1)What is my overall goal? (2) What are the need to do activities? In the treatment and care of injuries, athletic trainers and physical therapists use therapeutic modalities each with a specific reason for its use. Is there still an acute inflammatory reaction? Is there swelling? Are there soft tissue restrictions? Is there weakness? What is the underlying cause of the condition the athlete is in? Answering these questions will help outline the plan to answer the focus questions: "What is my overall goal?" "What are the need to do activities?"; and guide you to a purposeful treatment plan. The same is true with the performance training of athletes. "What is my overall goal?" "What are the need to do activities?" These questions can be answered by knowing other more specific details. What is the developemental stage of the athletes you're working with? What are the sport-specific demands (movement patterns, metabolic needs, strength requirements, etc)? What is the training cycle (in-season, off-season, etc)? Don't just do it. Do it with a purpose! David Yeager, ATC, CSCS Co-Founder

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