Archive for “Sports Performance” Tag

Youth Sports Training Program Design Considerations

 

Youth Sports Training Variables

By Art McDermott
 

The purpose of this article to present some of the key variables required for a successfully designed youth sports training and performance program. This topic always seems to produce some VERY strong opinions about what works, what does not and what the latest and greatest techniques may be.
 

Once all the sweating, lifting and marketing are done, sometimes it may be difficult to tell the difference between one sports performance facility and another.
 

With rare exceptions, even a young athlete’s parents do not know the difference between a good program and one that is not so good. As a strength and conditioning professional, it is your job to be able to clarify this.
 

At the end of the day, there is one thing that cannot be hidden from the light. Results. Physical Testing at the start of a summer program and then a retest at the conclusion of the training will always reveal the answer to the single most important question.
 

Did the youth sports training program work?
 

We cannot cover all the facets that go into a complete program in one article. This topic takes an entire semester when I cover it with the physical therapy students at UMass Lowell. However, I will do my best to present to most pressing issues.
 

There are nearly as many different approaches to youth sports training program design as there are coaches in the industry. However, here some of the factors that should be considered when designing an effective program.
 

* Time Frame – How long do you have to work with the athlete?
* Sport – What position does the athlete play?
* Gender
* Time of Year – Is this a pre-season program or an off-season program?
* Muscle balances and weaknesses – If any imbalances or weaknesses are present, are these the result of overuse, a lack of training, injury other factors?
* Level of Experience (Training Age) – Has the athlete be training for years or are they just learning to train or lift weights?
* Chronological Age – What level of physical maturity has the athlete reached?
 

Let’s examine why these elements are important before designing a youth sports training program:

 

1) Time Frame: This is the first question I ask ANY athlete that comes to our facility. How much time do you have to train (in weeks)? This will determine nearly every aspect of the program. How much corrective work can I do? What kind of strength level can we expect to achieve? Will we have time to properly periodize the program? Basically, can we do our job effectively? We have literally had parents call us and say, “My son has hockey tryouts in two weeks and we would like to get some training in. What can we put together?” Short answer: Not much.
 

2) Sport: This is a given. Very rarely can two athletes in different sports be on the same program. The physical requirements from sport to sport vary too widely. This is why having “Today’s Workout” posted on a board is a far cry from a properly designed program. A thorough coach should understand the needs of each sport or at least be adept at doing the research to gain this knowledge. The coach must then customize each athlete’s program accordingly.
 

3) Gender: This one is also fairly obvious. There are particular movements that MUST be in every female’s programs. Among them are: Knee and hip stability, hamstring work and upper body work. ACL injury is epidemic among female athletes but the incidence of ACL tears can be reduced by up to 70% according to some studies, if a proper program is put in place. A disproportionally weak upper body is usually the standard for females and should be addresses as well. As Martin Rooney says, “Who decided it as OK for females to do push ups from their knees?”
 

4) Muscle Imbalances and Weaknesses: While some imbalances may be genetic, many are a result of the trend towards early specialization in sport at too early an age. Examples are: Hip flexor shortening in hockey players, spine injury in gymnasts and figure skaters, dominant arm hypertrophy in tennis players, etc.
 

Muscular Weaknesses abound and have multiple sources. Most younger athletes are weak everywhere…unless they are one of those high-end gymnasts. Pinpointing muscular weaknesses allows the coach to correct them. Once the musculature is in balance, the entire “system” will be able to gain strength more effectively overall.
 

5) Time of Year: This refers back to point #1. The time of year will have a clear impact on exercise selection. Generally, as the competitive season gets closer there is a shift from general work to more transferable strength and power work.
 

6) Level of Experience: This is an easily overlooked parameter. If I am training a gymnast, she could be in her 8th year of high-end training and still only be 15 years old. On the other hand, you could have a 15 year old male who has ever been in a weight room but wants to try out for baseball in high school. Should these two be on the same routine?
 

7) Chronological Age: This one varies in a very important way from Training age. Actual chronological age looks purely at the physical maturity of the athlete. Keep in mind that one major factor impacting program design is onset or completion of puberty. If an athlete has significant androgens present in their system, additional intensity and volume options become available.
 

While not all-inclusive, I hope this article demonstrates the need for a properly designed youth sports training. From the testing procedures used to the energy system program used, making sure each program the right program for your athletes is vital for the athlete’s success as well as yours!
 

 

Blueprint to Building Your Ideal Youth Fitness Business Video

 

Youth Fitness Business Building Success

 

Do you wake up each day excited to go to work?

 

I’m sure you are passionate about helping your clients or athletes achieve their goals but are you doing EXACTLY what you want to be doing?

 

Well, if your answer isn’t an enthusiastic YES, then I have something special for you.

 

IYCA Expert Dave Gleason did a presentation where he shares the exact plan he used to dump an unfulfilling career as an In Home Trainer to open his dream facility and build an ultra-successful business serving the hottest market in the industry: Youth Fitness & Sports Performance.

 

http://youth-fitness-specialist.com/

 

In this Free Video you will discover the secrets to never having to work with another single client you don’t love again while building the business or career of your dreams!

 

I wish most fitness pros would enjoy what they do half as much as Dave enjoys what he does… and in this video he’s going to share exactly how he turned his passion into a thriving youth fitness business.

 

Remember why you got into this industry and start loving your career again. Here is a blueprint to how Dave made that happen for him and how you can do it too.

 

Turn your fitness passion into profits starting with this video ->

 

http://youth-fitness-specialist.com/

 

Dedicated to Your Success,

 

Pat

 

P.S. – Check out Dave Gleason’s youth fitness business presentation where he shares his story on how he went from an In Home Trainer who didn’t really enjoy what he was doing to building one of the top youth fitness businesstraining facilities in the U.S. while loving every minute of it.

 

http://youth-fitness-specialist.com/

 

 

4 Levels of Youth Sports Training Business

 

Youth Sports Training Business Success

Youth sports training business success

 

By Ryan Ketchum

 


Training youth athletes can be hard.

It might be one of the most enjoyable experiences in all of coaching, but it can be difficult to gain traction in your community if you have no previous relationships with coaches or sports organizations. The toughest part, much like any other aspect of business, is getting started. Once you have a little momentum behind you all it takes is consistency to grow your youth sports training business at an incredible rate.

 

For some reason it has taken me a few years to figure out just how easy and simple building your youth sports performance business can be if you follow the right steps.

 

Over the past several months I have implemented this system into our business with great success. It is almost scary how easy it is to follow and how quickly it can have an effect on your bottom line.

 

The greatest part of this system is that it doesn’t require you to be great at marketing or selling. I modified this system so that any coach can sell with the experience of their coaching and the results that come because of their great coaching. All you have to do to make this work is be consistent and dependable.

 

The first level of building an incredible youth sports training performance business is leveraging your network to build relationships with coaches, parents and leaders of youth sports organizations. You should focus on an area that you already have traction in and put all of your energy into it. If you aren’t sure where you might have traction I suggest you focus on middle school or younger athletes and female athletes. Stay away from football unless you are established or have some great connections. Building relationships is easier than most people think, but it requires you to step out of your comfort zone. For a little while you have to take a back seat to being the expert and ask for advice. Call up coaches, parents and organizational leaders and ask their advice on what they see a need for in their sports training. Take them to lunch, grab coffee and don’t step on their toes!

 

Once you have established a relationship and secretly found out what the biggest need in that sports community is (that is why you asked for advice earlier) you can offer a solution. The next step is offering a free clinic to help the coach or organization’s athletes better prepare for their sport. This clinic should be catered to meet the needs that were unveiled by those in your network.

 

To make this clinic extra successful you should have as much done for you material as possible. Write the emails for the coach, set up times that are convenient for the entire team, create the fliers and deliver the copies, etc. The easier you can make it on the coach or those in charge the more likely it is that you will get access to a lot of athletes.

 

When selling this free clinic idea to a coach you must explain how it will help them. How is this going to make their life easier and their athletes better? How can they use this in their practices and training?

 

Once you have established a date and set up the clinic your only job is to show up and be ready to wow the parents, coaches and athletes with your knowledge and coaching ability. Connect with the kids, make it fun and give them what they want. If you can show immediate results and improvement with the kids speed, agility or strength you will have won them over.

 

At the end of this free clinic it is time to move onto the third level. We must speak the language that coaches and parents are used to hearing, we have to do the unspeakable when talking about long term athletic development, we must offer a short term sport specific and skill specific academy!!!!

 

You might be wondering why we would offer a short term program if we have already won these athletes and their parents over?

 

The reason you offer a 6-8 week program to start is because that is what they are conditioned to believe will produce the best results. Create an offering that will help get them prepared for the season or improve a specific skill. The goal for the 6-8 week program is to educate them on the long term athletic development model and continue to build a relationship with the athletes and those in charge.

 

You can offer this program on site at the team’s location or at your own location. Many times it is easier to take the athletes off site to your location. We have got the athletes in our funnel now and we should do our best to move them into our long term training programs.

 

This 6-8 week program should be low cost, with a specific purpose. Our goal here is not to make a lot of money, but rather to gain the confidence of the athletes and the community. It is a great way to “slow cook” your leads and earn their trust. This works particularly well if you are new in the sports performance community.

 

Towards the end of the 6-8 week program you will now attempt to move these athletes on to level 4. This is your long term development program, your core offerings and strength and conditioning program. After 6-8 weeks of education and a phenomenal experience it should be an easy sell to get them into your programs so that they can continue their athletic development with you.

 

The key to transitioning these athletes from the short term to long term program is understanding their needs at the time of the conversion. If they are going in season it would be silly to recommend a three time per week training program, however you could offer a one-time per week program to ensure they maintain their results and continue to make progress so that come playoff time they are in the best condition. If they are going into an off season you will want to make the most appealing offer, which is a complete off season solution for them.

 

To recap here are the 4 levels of youth sports training business success:

Build and develop relationships

 

Set up FREE Clinics

 

Convert into low cost short term programs with specific training focus

 

Convert into long term development program

 

If you follow these simple steps you will have no problem becoming the go-to resource for athletic development and youth sports performance training in your community.

 

 

youth sports training business success

 

Impact Training: The key to youth fitness and performance success

 

 

by Ryan Ketchum

 

The title of this blog might be a little misleading.  I am not going to talk about ground contacts, high impact training exercises, or anything related to movements or programming.  I want to discuss the impact that we have on the youth that we work with and the effect it has on your business and, more importantly, their lives.

 

I always tell our staff that we have a profound impact on the perception of this entire field every time that we work with a client or athlete.   This is something that I have used to make sure I give the best in every session for the past 6 years, and built a thriving business because of it!

 

Think about dentists, doctors, chiropractors, massage therapists, and any other service profession, if you know someone that has had a single bad experience they automatically have the perception that all others in the field must be the same.   Do you ever want to be the cause for someone thinking that youth fitness and sports performance coaches are anything but exceptional people that have a high level of knowledge and skill? 

 

I shudder at the thought of giving someone the perception that all coaches were terrible at their profession, didn’t care about the clients/athletes, and got people hurt.

 

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Organized Chaos in Kids Training Programs


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Kids Training Programs Guest post by Phil Hueston

 

Most sports performance kids training programs (yes, maybe even yours) have 2 fatal flaws:

 

1) they don’t look anything like sports

 

2) they’re B-O-R-I-N-G!

 

 

Consider these questions:

 

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Special Needs Youth Fitness

Youth Fitness For Special Poulations

As you saw in my post from yesterday, the IYCA’s mission from Day 1 has been to provide world-class educational solutions for Fitness Professionals who work with any and all young people.

 

We have become the #1 Youth Fitness & Youth Sports Performance organization on the planet because of our unmatched desire to bring the very best information possible to the marketplace.

 

Our recent ‘Special Needs youth Fitness‘ course is an example of that commitment.

 

But consider this….

 

We don’t ‘dabble’ in youth as a secondary target for our educational material.

 

We don’t offer other options for certification.

 

We don’t brand ourselves as anything other than exactly what we are…

 

The #1 Solution for All Things Youth Fitness.

 

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2 Lessons on Business & Life… Taken from the World of Youth Sports Training

Youth Sports Training Tips

 

Most professional Trainers, be them Fitness Gurus or Sports Performance Experts, may not ever take the time to realize that much of what we hold true and dear in our pursuits of enhancing both the health and ability of young athletes, also translates to the world of business and life as well.

 

Perhaps this lack of ‘connecting-the-dots’ between the two is more than just something that has been overlooked – it’s because the values on which we pride our work with young athletes is far too limited in scope to be accurate.

 

Let me explain that.

 

Our industry holds strong to the notion that short-term, ‘work ’em hard’ training situations that involve high intensity on everything and a slow, methodical infusion of skill on nothing, is what best serves young clients in their need to get better (faster, stronger etc) now.

 

But how often does this gun-slinging approach to life or business prove successful?  And can we take lessons from that as it relates to developing young athletes in Youth Sports Training?

 

How many times do we become handicapped by vein, unplanned and quick attempts to overhaul our businesses or restructure our lives in short periods of time?

 

Think about it.  How many New Year’s Eve goals for the impending year have you set (be them business or life alterations) only to find yourself exactly where you were in November come March?

 

Here’s another one for you.

 

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Youth Fitness Training vs Long Term Athletic Development

 

Youth fitness

A) What do I call my Athletic Development or Youth Fitness services to parents and Coaches who are otherwise laypeople and without knowledge of industry jargon?

 

As with any marketing effort, your best potential gain comes when you are tailoring your language to the audience you are dealing with.

 

When discussing and defining your services to Parents of young athletes or Coaches, the following words and phrases evoke the strongest emotional connection and familiarity:

 

a. Sports Performance Training
b. Sport Specific Training

 

Although we are defined internally as ‘Long-Term Athletic Development’, the uneducated ear will not understand or draw a connection to that title.

 

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My Top 4 Reasons For Attending the 2010 IYCA International Summit

IYCA International Summit


1) Earn Valuable CEU’s:

 

Just for coming to the 2-day main event, you will receive a full 12 CEU
credits from the IYCA.

 

That’s enough to renew whatever level certification you’re on with us.

 

In addition to that, we are in the process of becoming accredited through
NSCA, NASM, ISSA and more.

 

A world-class education PLUS critical continuing education credits that
you can apply to multiple fitness organizations.

 

I can’t think of a better ‘bang for your buck’ than that!!

 

–> Reserve Your Seat At the IYCA Summit Today!

 

 

2) Your Future in the Fitness Industry:

 

According to the ACSM, the Top 10 fitness trends for 2010 include two
specific demographics that the IYCA International Summit is being based
on:

 

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Steroids in Youth Sports

 

 

Youth Sports and Performance Enhancing Drugs

Should we just say enough?

 

Legalize steroid use at the professional and Olympic level
of sport.

 

They’re going to be used anyway.

 

Just make it legal and stop the madness of masking agents,
scandals and cover-ups.

 

What do I really think?

 

Not a chance.

 

Kids deserve mentors who speak with a degree of common
sense.

 

We make it "okay" at one level, the connotation is that it’s
"okay" in general.

 

Yeah, it’s a headache and, quite frankly, a topic I’m growing
weary of having to deal with.

 

But to me, kids are MORE than worth it.

 

What do you think about steroids in Youth Sports?

 

Leave your thoughts and comments below –