Home Posts tagged "Training"

4 Tips to Improve Your Training

If you want any of my sales or marketing techniques to really work for you, you have to be great at what you do. And that means delivering results for clients time and time again. Two guys can help you do that as well, if not better, than anyone else I know.Here are four tips from Mike Robertson and Eric Cressey to take yourexpertise to a higher level - where it needs to be. Continue Reading...
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Ft. Lauderdale Seminar with Eric Cressey

Tired of dealing with aches and pains at the gym? If so, don’t miss this seminar! Who: Eric Cressey, performance enhancement specialist, and one of the fitness industry’s leading authorities on corrective exercise strategies and injury prevention What: Joint-Specific Mobility and Stability: A one-time opportunity to learn from one of the industry’s best how to prevent and correct the most common musculoskeletal problems once and for all! Topics to be covered include: -Functional Anatomy of Various Joints -Static and Dynamic Assessments -Corrective and Preventative Exercise Programming -The Art of Hardcore Corrective Exercise: How to Maintain a Training Effect While Correcting Imbalances -Troubleshooting Resistance Training Technique When: January 5, 2008: 9AM-4PM Where: Bahia Mar Beach Resort and Yachting Center 801 Seabreeze Boulevard, Ft Lauderdale FL, 33316 (888) 802-2442 Cost: *$99/person prior to December 20th, $129 thereafter; *$20 off for those with a valid student ID Contact: jonboyle at mac.com for more details
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Indispensable Lifts

Any lifts you would say are indispensable, no matter what type of sport one is involved in?

Well, we know people need to squat, deadlift, bench, row, and do chin-ups, but for whatever reason, the big ones I see people overlooking are single-leg movements – and I’m not just talking about lunges. You need to look at three different categories:

1. Static Unsupported – 1-leg squats (Pistols), 1-leg RDLs
2. Static Supported – Bulgarian Split Squats
3. Dynamic – Lunges, Step-ups

From there, you can also divide single-leg movements into decelerative (forward lunging) and accelerative (slideboard work, reverse lunges). I’ve found that accelerative movements are most effective early progressions after lower extremity injuries (less stress on the knee joint). I think that it’s ideal for everyone to aim to get at least one of each of the three options in each week. If one needed to be sacrificed, it would be static supported. Because static unsupported aren’t generally loaded as heavily and don’t cause as much delayed onset muscle soreness, they can often be thrown in on upper body days.

Of course, I’m the corrective exercise guy, so people obviously need to be doing their mobility and activation drills along with plenty of scapular stability and rotator cuff work.

Eric Cressey
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Cricket: Training for Speed-Strength

Q: Cricket is essentially a “speed-strength” based game - hitting, throwing and running. However, it requires players to play for long periods - anything between 2-6 hours a day. How can players include these opposing factors in their training?

A: One of the things you always have to concede with any sport is that you're always going to be riding a few horses with one saddle. Ironman competitors will never squat 500 with their aerobic training stimuli, and powerlifters won't compete in Ironman events because training to do so would interfere with their strength gains. All other sports fall somewhere in the middle between these extremes.??From a general standpoint, you train to become more efficient as an athlete. First, you have to do so biomechanically by ironing out muscle imbalances. You need to be a better athlete before you can be a better cricket player. So, mobility and activation work, soft-tissue quality initiatives, and appropriate resistance training is key to success on this front.??Next, you have to be efficient in the context of your sporting movements - and that's where tactical work comes in.??What you're referring to with this question is one-third of the efficiency equation: metabolic efficiency. The more aerobic a sport, the sooner you'll need to prioritize intensive metabolic conditioning in the off-season period. So, a soccer player would require it sooner than a football player. I go into great detail on this in The Ultimate Off-Season Training Manual.??Cricket is a bit of middle-ground, though. From a duration standpoint, it's clearly a long event at times. However, it isn't necessarily continuous; it's more along the lines of what you see in baseball - which is basically a completely anaerobic sport. You sprint, stand around for an extended period, and sprint again - possibly even 30-60 minutes later! Just because the matches/games last 4-5 hours doesn't mean that they're aerobic - or that you need to train for them with repeated bouts of high-intensity exercise with INCOMPLETE rest.??My suggestion is to do what it takes to be fast and powerful - and let the duration of the matches just fall into place. Attend to nutrition/hydration and recovery protocols well, and the physical qualities you've built will sustain themselves in spite of the duration of the match. And, if you're crazy athletic, chances are that you'll win those matches a lot sooner.

Eric Cressey

Get your Questions Answered.

Don't Make The Same Mistakes as your Competition. Utilize Your Off-Season.
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A Single Off-Season

The hits on this particular night pinged loudly off the bats, traveled far, and were seemingly endless. With contributions from up and down the lineup, the Lincoln-Sudbury Regional baseball squad had piled up 13 runs by the end of the second inning.

The Boston Globe on Eric's High School Baseball Players
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“Puny and Weak” ISO “Size and Strength”

I was considering purchasing The Ultimate Off-Season Training Manual. I just wanted to ask if it is useful for the average joe to use. I'm an 18 year old guy who's a senior in high school. I don't partake any sports per se. So, I don't have a season. Maybe I'll play a game of football or soccer or throw some hoops around with the guys.

But, right now I'm a puny, skinny, 130 lbs. 5'8 teenager. I was wondering if this manual can help increase my muscle size, increase my strength, speed, and explosiveness? Also, I just stopped smoking a couple of days ago. So, my cardiovascular capacity pretty much...sucks! Is there any information on how to improve my cardiovascular endurance?

I was also thinking of getting Magnificent Mobility to increase flexibility. Also, in regards to nutrition I own Berardi's Precision Nutrition, so I got that area covered.

Thanks for bearing with this long post. I hope to hear from you soon.

Good question - and I've actually received the same inquiry from a few people now. Here's my (admittedly-biased) take on things:

If you've read stuff from Mike Robertson, Alwyn Cosgrove, Mike Boyle, Kelly Baggett, and me (among a few others), I hope one message you've taken away from the articles is that the ordinary weekend warrior would be a lot better off if he'd train more like an athlete. The strength work athletes do helps you move bigger weights and build more muscle while burning more calories to stay lean. The movement training keeps you functional and helps you with energy system work to keep your body composition in check. The mobility work keeps you healthy and functional so that you can stand up to all the challenges in your training programs without getting injured.

This manual shows you how all those pieces fit together at different times of year, and it also provides a lot of "stuff you just ought to know" if you train. Another cool thing is that you'll actually start to watch sports on TV in a different light; you'll begin to pick up on the little things that make each athlete unique.

And, if all that isn't enough, you've got 30 weeks of sample programming to keep things interesting. :)

Again, great question!

Eric Cressey

Get Your Questions Answered.

Crush the Competition.

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The Underrated Exercises

What are the three most underrated and underused exercises? Does it differ across gender?

Well, I'm not sure that the basics - squats, deadlifts, various presses, pull-ups, and rows - can ever be considered overrated or overappreciated in both a male and female population.

Still, I think that single-leg exercises are tremendously beneficial, but are ignored by far too many trainers and lifters. Variations of lunges, step-ups, split squats, and single-leg RDLs play key roles in injury prevention and development of a great lower body.

Specific to females, we know that we need a ton of posterior chain work and correctly performed single-leg work to counteract several biomechanical and physiological differences. Namely, we're talking about quad dominance/posterior chain weakness and an increased Q-angle. Increasing glute and hamstrings strength and optimizing frontal plane stability is crucial for resisting knock-knee tendencies and preventing ACL tears. If more women could do glute-ham raises, the world would be a much better place!

Eric Cressey
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Maximal Strength Yields Maximal Vert

With the tests, etc, what would you need to look for in a powerlifting exclusive athlete. Obviously they would focus on strength, but is the speed and rate of force development exercises (reactive training) beneficial as well?

I'm thinking making the SSC more efficient would be beneficial as long as strength is maintained and focused on as well.

Definitely - you're on the right track. There are quite a few lifters who use box jumps and the like in their training. The main interfering factor for a lot of guys is body weight; they just get too heavy for the pounding. If you're 242 or below, though, I think there is a lot of merit to using them. I've subbed in box jumps and broad jumps for DE squat days when I needed to deload or just get the bar off my back for a week.

Interesting little aside...

My buddy Greg Panora was in town back in December for the Christmas holiday, so we got a lift in together. For those who don't know Greg, he's the world record holder at 242 (broke Steve Goggins' old record a few months ago - 1000+ squat, 700 bench, and 800+ deadlift). He lifts at Westside.

Greg is box squatting 495 + greens and blues for speed, and he glances over and sees the Just Jump platform and asks what it is. I tell him we use it to check vertical jump, so he wants to try it. He gets on in beat-up old briefs, Chuck Taylors, and a belt - at a weight of 250 - and jumps 35". Probably could have gone 38" with a deload and proper attire.

Anyone who says maximal strength doesn't matter for jumping and athletic ability is absolutely full of crap. :)

Eric Cressey

Lift Heavier. Jump Higher.

Do You Have Similar Questions? Get Them Answered.
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Children and Elite Athletes: Similar but Different

Just like kids need to learn to ride a bike or read, they need to learn how to use their bodies properly; this is really the premise behind training. Training can improve reaction time and enhance functional capacity, so your athlete can move faster and more easily. And, a solid exercise stimulus can build bone density, decreasing osteoporosis risk down the road. Improving athleticism through training also has amazing effects on a young athlete’s confidence, and research has shown that athletic success has a favorable effect on your sprinter’s classroom performance.

Unlike elite athletes, kids are growing and not all activities are appropriate for them.
This is true for all types of sport, whether recreational or competitive. For kids, injuries at young ages can have long-term impacts on their adult lives. A child’s nervous system, endocrine system, cardiovascular system, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and bones respond identically to that of the elite athlete – just not necessarily on the same level.

Eric Cressey

Train your athletes right.
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Introduction to the Maximum Muscularity Series

Typically, whenever a trainee aspiring to improve his physique utters, "I want to gain muscle and lose fat...", he is immediately greeted by eager critics from opposite ends of the spectrum. First, there are those experts that pounce on the opportunity to suppress such a bold quest. They proclaim that such a task is doomed for failure, and simply respond with an unscientific, "You can't. Choose one or the other." In contrast, there are those that say that such a mission is rather simple. While the former cynics are just downright ignorant, the latter faction is just as useless, offering no other advice than one must train hard and eat right. Uh, duh! With that in mind, we'd like to introduce a plan that we feel will lead to what many call the Holy Grail of Bodybuilding: Maximum Muscularity. The term "Maximum Muscularity" elicits a beautiful vision of the classic physique of someone like Arnold or Serge Nubret. Maximum Muscularity isn't just about being ripped...yet of beanpole proportions, nor is it just about being huge--yet uncomfortably rotund. Rather, Maximum Muscularity is fusion of the two: being Ripped and Huge; it's about becoming a walking, super-sized anatomy chart. It's about pushing the envelope of one's capabilities to add muscle and lose fat. In a broad sense, the ultimate goal of Maximum Muscularity is to gain muscle mass and lose fat mass. However, the principles of Maximum Muscularity also apply to gaining muscle while keeping bodyfat constant OR to losing fat while maintaining all hard-earned muscle--both scenarios involve a drop in percent body fat. The context in which you view the aforementioned goals is paramount to the realization of these favorable scenarios. Rather than asking "How do I gain muscle and lose fat at the same time?", we ask you to ponder, "How do I gain muscle and lose fat in the same training period?" Our reasoning is very simple; at any given moment in time, the body is either in a state of anabolism (i.e. tissue-synthesizing: muscle or fat gain) or catabolism (tissue-destroying: breakdown of triglyceride, glycogen or protein stores). This is not to say, however, that one cannot control the shift from anabolism to catabolism or vice versa at various times throughout the day. With the Maximum Muscularity protocol, you will do just that. This approach departs from the traditional Bulk and Cut scheme to which so many trainees adhere. This plan is especially well suited to those individuals who tend to store fat easily and gain more fat than muscle during traditional bulking cycles; it can and should be applied year-round and for long-term purposes. In short, there is absolutely no need to deviate from the Maximum Muscularity plan, as it is easily adapted to suit any physique goal and provides great versatility. Gaining muscle and losing fat in the same training period is the culmination of diligent training and dietary practices. Paramount to achieving this lofty goal is the creation of a superior anabolic state and enhanced insulin sensitivity through various dietary and training measures. From a nutritional standpoint, you'll be paying specific attention to nutrient timing and energy intake to capitalize on and manage your body's hormonal milieu in order to promote muscle gain and fat loss. Likewise, your training protocol is of paramount importance to providing the anabolic and metabolic stimuli necessary to accomplish such a mythical feat. That said, stay-tuned as this series unfolds. a special thanks to Tim Skwiat who co-authored this series Eric Cressey www.EricCressey.com
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  • Avoid the most common deadlifting mistakes
  • 9 - minute instructional video
  • 3 part follow up series