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Follow this link to a very interesting slide show from a seminar on athletic performance published on the APEC-S.com website. It looks like it must have been a great seminar.
Here is a a note of caution for all of those enchanted by plyometrics from the Sports Injury Bulletin site.
Plyometric training can improve speed, strength and power. But can it also cause serious injury? Here’s a review of the literature:
An athlete’s hunger for success is fuelled by a constant supply of new products and training principles. During the past decade plyometric training has increased in popularity and is now considered to be an essential training method for athletes competing in a wide variety of sports. Donald Chu, one of the most prolific writers in this area, considers plyometrics to be the ‘icing-on-the-cake’ that can enhance an athlete’s ability, allowing him or her to remain at the cutting edge of their sport (1992). Donald Chu is not alone in this and many other respected coaches believe that, when performed correctly, plyometrics can improve speed, strength, acceleration and explosive power.
Click here to read the rest.
The TKRI group here in Saint Louis trains outdoors in a park most of the summer. Saint Louis summers are hot and humid. It is remarkable to see how quickly performance and attention fades when students are getting dehydrated.
I encourage all of the students to bring a water bottle with them to class (along with their bug spray, sunscreen, and notebooks) . We take frequent breaks in order to stay hydrated. I don’t want anyone dropping their partner because they are getting woozy from dehydration .
Click here to read John Milton’s paper “The Brain and Brawn of Athletic Performance”.
For the coach and athlete, the primary goal of the training process is to enhance performance. However, it may be argued that enhancing performance is actually a process of intentionally repeating stimuli (exercise), which result in recovery-adaptation, while attempting to avoid overstress-overtraining. There are basically two methods a coach and an athlete can use to enhance the stimulus-recovery adaptation process:
1. Reasonable planning and execution of the training program, which should include not only the training stimulus, but also built in rest.
2. Adopting reasonable methods of enhancing recover-adaptation other than training (e.g., nutrition, nutritional supplements, possibly massage or vibration).
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The study, authored by Cheri Mah of Stanford University, was conducted on six healthy students on the Stanford men’s basketball team, who maintained their typical sleep-wake patterns for a two-week baseline followed by an extended sleep period in which they obtained as much extra sleep as possible. To assess improvements in athletic performance, the students were judged based on their sprint time and shooting percentages.
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Hmmm, my athletic performance could use some improvement…
Published on the Sports Injury Bulletin Web Site
by Heidi Meehan
At some point during their career, a number of endurance athletes report experiencing a suppressed athletic performance, often in conjunction with one or more other physiological and/or psychological symptoms. Among others, these symptoms may include chronic fatigue, disturbed mood states, increased susceptibility to upper respiratory tract infections, changes in resting heart rate and disturbances in sleep patterns. Athletes experiencing such symptoms may be suffering from, or are at increased risk of developing, the overtraining syndrome.
Published on Grapple Arts web site
Many fighters find that they always come down with a cold or injury before a competition. This is often attributed to bad luck, but luck actually has very little to do with it. Most of the time these setbacks are due to overtraining, which is defined as a systemic deficit resulting from the stress of excessive training. In plain English this means that training is breaking your body down faster than you can recover from it. The pernicious pre-competition flu, therefore, is due to overly severe training and/or insufficient recovery, reducing the body’s ability to repel infections.
The purpose of this article is to investigate and summarize the phenomenon of overtraining, particularly with regard to combat athletics. One important goal is to alert you to some important signs and symptoms of overtraining, allowing you to cut back on your training before it is too late.
Published on SIRC web site
By Craig Angle ME.d ME.d ATC, CSCS
A major sports challenge for coaches today involves helping their athletes develop an effective balance, between their training, competition, recovery, rest cycles. The balance challenge consists of determining the amount and type of training stress, competition stress, recovery, and rest away from a sport, an athlete experiences. An imbalance in the cycles described above, in combination with non-athletic stress, such as that experienced at home, work and/or school life, can lead to overreaching and eventually overtraining.
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The squat has often been referred to as the “king of exercise.” As an exercise of the popular American weightlifting sport of Power lifting, the squat is a competitive movement where maximal performance is sought. However, what relationship does the squat hold in terms of athletic performance among athletes?
In my opinion, the squat is the most important strengthening exercise an athlete can do. Virtually all sports, with the exception of water sports and polo, are “ground-based,” meaning the athlete’s legs are in contact with the ground throughout the duration of the sports activity.
Can you think of another activity that is largely “ground based” that involves the muscles of the hip and leg?
Read the rest here.