Programming for young athletes
Here’s where I left off yesterday…
Moreover, I’d be willing to bet that 90% or better of the 13 year olds who walk into your facility would ‘fail’ this standard assessment:
- They’re growing and lack mobility
- They growing and lack coordination
- They sit all day and have inappropriate hip functionality as a result
- They’ve been introduced to improper ‘training’ and lack posterior strength
A formal assessment can certainly show us gains, improvements and corrections when performed at regular intervals – and because of that, I am all for them.
But here’s what I’ve learned to be true about coaching young athletes in the trenches:
- You see them less than you’d like to and the ‘homework’ you give them in the way of corrective exercise likely isn’t getting done – at very least not the way you’d want it done
- Your time with them per session is finite, but there’s a whole-lot-o-stuff that needs to be worked on
- Group and team training is almost always the way it goes – any sort of individualized attention must be created through a systematic approach to coaching and programming
- Yes, we all preach to our young athletes the virtue of lessening the load and concentrating on form… But, in the high school weight room when you’re not around, but their peers are, guess whose loading the bar?
This is not a declaration to abandon assessments altogether, nor is it a manifesto encouraging you to throw your hands up in the air and announce the situation hopeless.
It’s a simple decree suggesting that your programming for young athletes practice could aid a great deal in curbing this problem – and doing so not by what you discover ‘formally’ through assessment, but what you know to be true about young athletes:
- They sit all day long, which means –
- They are kyphotic and lack thoracic mobility (and therefore proper scapular function)
- They have tight, weak hips that also lack function
- They don’t have proper strength and conditioning care outside of you, which means –
- ROM is compromised in all major joint
- Form and function of lift technique is entirely unfamiliar
Over the years, I have grown fond of referring to these issues as the ‘Likely Bunch’ and have created a training template intended to meet of the aforementioned needs as a matter of principle rather than what an assessment tells me.
… And tomorrow, I’ll reveal my exact Programming for young athletes Template for you…
Programming 101 AND Advanced Programming? Is that really possible?