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Just Fly Performance Podcast
64 minutes | 4 days ago
250: Eamonn Flanagan on Plyometric Training Progressions, Jump Testing and Moving the Right Needle in Training
Today’s show brings on Eamonn Flanagan. Eamonn is the lead Strength & Conditioning Consultant with the Sport Ireland Institute where he manages the S&C support to Ireland's Olympic and Paralympic athletes. Amongst other areas of expertise, Eamonn is a leading coach in both the science and practice of jump training and plyometrics, has a PhD. in Sports Biomechanics and previously worked in professional rugby over a decade. Plyometrics and jump training is a common, and enjoyable training topic, one of the reasons being that leaping ability is generally a sign of superior athletic ability. Jump training goes far beyond simply being able to dunk a basketball or reach the top-10 of a highlight series however; as it’s also a useful predictor of various athletic qualities, and if those qualities are actually being improved (often times, we see a lifting related quality improve without moving the needle on important jump related qualities). The data-based approach to jump monitoring can come across as mundane, but Eamonn approaches it from a practical perspective that represents his coaching intuition, as well as that of his sport science abilities. On today’s show, Eamonn talks about what stiffness is, and isn’t in plyometrics, and what makes a good athlete from a plyometric and reactive perspective. We talk about plyometric progressions, and some points of intent Eamonn looks for in plyometric activity that most coaches overlook. Eamonn also talks about the fallacy that coaches can get into when jump testing, and how the test can no longer “be the test” when you use it too often. He also covers what “stiffness” really is in plyometrics, single vs. double leg metrics in jump testing, and how to optimally manage jump testing history in uncovering puzzles of injury. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. For 15% off your Lost Empire Herbs order, head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 05:55 – What drew Eamonn to jump testing and plyometrics in sports science? 08:50 – How Eamonn experimented and learned all aspects of plyometrics simultaneously 09:37 – What does the ideal athlete looks like from a plyometric perspective? 12:20 – How to go about training an athlete’s jump-based weaknesses and the idea of a “minimal reactive strength” 19:07 – Stiffness and reactive strength in the context of jump testing 28:12 – Determining what jump tests to use with certain athletic groups & what tests to use for an explosive short-burst acceleration athlete 40:55 – How often concentric jump testing could or should be done 44:47 – Eamonn’s four phases of plyometric for improving raw metrics & the role of finding relaxation in training 51:58 – One of the biggest mistakes strength coaches make in plyometric training 56:59 – Insights into single leg vs. double leg reactive strength testing & the importance of record-keeping in sports performance and training “When we’re talking about jump testing… I like to keep things pretty simple. So, while I might have access to tools like force plates, when I think about jump testing, I’m more thinking about incredibly simple metrics and I’m more thinking about a variety of different jumps rather than these incredibly in-depth metrics from a single jump.” “I think the beauty of looking at athletes’ plyometric ability is that, for me, there is no one way to do things, there is no ultimate because ultimately, what it’s about is performance. It’s about outcome… and there is an infinite number of ways to achieve that.” “In terms of addressing weaknesses… if you feel that there’s really some areas there where it’s not so much a weakness as a real deficiency, then I think you want to get after that.” “The device you use to measure, as well as the surface on which you perform the tests, can be quiet variable in terms of their impact on...
78 minutes | 11 days ago
249: Angus Bradley on Best Squatting Practices, True Posterior Chain Training, and Managing the “Soccer Ball in Your Ribs”
Today’s show brings on Angus Bradley. Angus is a strength coach and podcast host from Sydney, Australia. He coaches out of Sydney CBD, and co-hosts the Hyperformance podcast with his brother, Oscar. After focusing primarily on weightlifting for the first half of his career Angus finds himself spending as much time “outside of his lane” as possible trying to identify the principles that transcend all human movement. Like many guests on this show, Angus has been well-educated in the compression/expansion training ideals proliferated by Bill Hartman that are pushing our industry forward. Angus is frequently sharing next level knowledge from his social media platform and podcast, and he works with a diverse crowd from strongman to surfing and everything in between. I’ve always been trying to “figure out” weightlifting in context of athletic performance. There are coaches with a lot of different opinions on which lifts athletes should do, and some elite sports performance professionals have athletes do little to even no traditional barbell work. In my own journey, I found myself a much more powerful, but slightly less elastic athlete in my mid-20s after 12 years of loading my body through squats, Olympic lifts and the like. On the flip-side, I’ve had athletes who I honestly believe would struggle to achieve their highest peak without some solid help from barbell work. Rather than only assigning more, or less lifting to a particular athlete, I enjoy knowing the binding principles of barbell work and different body types. In my search for answers, Angus Bradley is a huge wealth of knowledge. He is highly experienced in weightlifting methods and has a deep understanding of the principles of compression and expansion in a variety of exercises, and in determining strategies based on body type. On the show today, Angus talks about squatting and hinging from ribcage and pelvic floor perspectives, the importance and impact of pressure management in how “strong” athletes are at various lifts, and how to train and manage various body types in light of preventing un-wanted compensations and shape changes in the body. This is a podcast I wish I had listened to myself, 15 years ago. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. For 15% off your Lost Empire Herbs order, head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 6:30 Breaking existing paradigms in the performance training industry, and how Angus thinks of the “necessary patterns” of squat, hinge, push, pull for training athletes 12:45 How a squat differs from a hinge from a pelvic floor pressure management perspective 17:00 A re-hash of “expanded” vs. “compressed” types of athletes, as well as a chat on compressive strategies in the big lifts 28:15 The compressive strategies by which athletes actually lift increasing weights in training vs. an increased activation of relative motor units and other factors that tie more readily into athletic performance 44:05 How to look at an athlete who wants to increase vertical jump in light of an athlete’s pressure management strategy 52:30 Some rules of thumb in navigating the day by day process of adding weight in strength training without piling on compressive compensations in athletes 59:15 The errors we have made in posterior chain training, and how to address the posterior chain in context of compression and expansion strategies 1:05.45 How an athlete becomes “quad dominant” and how to work with that in light of pressure systems “The S&C world has always looked to powerlifting, and said, “well you are the squat guys, can you tell us how to squat?” “But there is a certain kind of quality that we are trying to capture when we prescribe a squat or a hinge…. it’s no longer about where the bar is on your body, but what is the muscular strategy at the thorax and the pelvis”
64 minutes | 18 days ago
248: Jamie Smith on Beating “Over-Coaching” Through Natural Learning, Training Menus and Athlete Autonomy
Today’s show brings on Jamie Smith, founder of the “U of Strength”. Jamie Smith has coached a variety of athletes from the novice to elite skill levels, including several NHL, NBA and MLS athletes. He has been a prior guest on the podcast, as well as having done an extensive webinar for Just Fly Sports, speaking on perception-action topics and building robust athletes in a manner that transcends simply getting them “stronger”. As long as I’ve been in the sports performance profession, I’ve realized just how important it is to look at every way you can impact the performance of an athlete, on the levels of strength, speed, mentality, perception, decision-making, special-strength, and more. Jamie is the epitome of a coach who is truly passionate about making athletes better at the sports they play through a comprehensive approach. In the modern day, a comprehensive approach is truly important, since we relate athlete response to that of a machine. Athletes are so heavily coached, scheduled and instructed, that they rarely get the autonomy and creative license they need to reach their own optimal performance. Coaches also tend to mis-place their actual role in the process of working with athletes, and don’t allow athletes enough ownership and say in the training process to the point where they will struggle in achieving their ideal training result, overcoming stressful competition situations, and even in life beyond sport. Last podcast, we went into the perception-action component of making a well-rounded athlete, and this episode we get info full-circle development by means of training variability, the use of nature and natural surfaces, menu systems and athlete autonomy, competition, long-term athletic development, and more. Jamie takes the art of the coach as a guide seriously, and in the world of over-coached and robotic athletes, Jamie is a beacon of light for young athletes looking to reach high levels of not only performance, but also self-efficacy, confidence and life-preparedness. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. For 15% off your Lost Empire Herbs order, head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 04:23 – The benefits of training in nature for young and older athletes 12:02 – The importance of conscious risk-taking in training 13:23 – Thinking about a child’s future in sport, and how training in nature will impact it 17:30 – Improving happiness in youth sports by incorporating fun and playfulness 24:11 – How to integrate nature into training athletes 28:37 – Thoughts on coaching as a dynamic partnership 33:51 – The role of observation in coaching and focusing on strengths instead of weaknesses + A big misconception of coaches 44:53 – What a training session looks like for Jamie’s athletes, and the art of using menu-systems 56:07 – Competition options in older athletes 57:45 – The role of athlete interest and collaboration in the results of a training program “At the beginning of every day, me and my assistant, I brief him and we go over what the objective is, what we need to improve on as coaches or as a whole, as a program, and one of the things we talk about is who can say the least amount of words.” “A lot of people, to wake up the feet, would roll with a sensory ball or spikey ball, shit we did isometrics, we did different gate patterns walking up and down, walking tall, walking in a tunnel… completely barefoot walking through the rocks.” “The big thing I tell athletes is: we want you to become comfortable in uncomfortable situations.” “[Barefoot training is] not great if you’re on a wood floor or a totally flat floor where there’s zero sensory information coming in. It’s really not a whole lot better than being in shoes, to be honest. You have to have these little sensations or irritations and you combine that with differe...
235 minutes | 25 days ago
247: Dave O’Sullivan on A Foot-Bridge Masterclass for Better Hip Extension Power, Stronger Feet and Reduced Knee Pain
Today’s show brings on elite physiotherapist David O’Sullivan. Dave has worked as sports physio with England Rugby Union in the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan and with England Rugby League in the 2017 Rugby League World Cup in Australia. Dave is the founder of the ProSport Academy and now teaches his step by step pro sport approach that he uses with his own sporting and non-sporting patients in private practice to therapists all over the world. Dave’s mission is to empower people to restore control through their body and minds so they can truly live. He has been a mentor to some well-known coaches/therapists such as previous podcast guest, David Grey. Knee pain and lower limb injury prevention are important topics. Nearly every coach (and clearly therapist) will deal with either preventing or treating these issues with their athletes. I enjoy learning about how to prevent knee or Achilles tendon pain, but I truly enjoy these conversations when we can take these principles of performance and scale them up to modes that can be used in late rehab or full-scale performance training. In today’s talk with Dave O’Sullivan, we’ll go into the basic muscle firing patterns that set up the baseline for performance in any bridging activity. Dave will get into the importance of the Soleus muscle as a lower-body lynchpin, and how to optimally coordinate this muscle, along with the hamstrings in a spectrum of bridging exercises with specific cues for the feet. We’ll take this all the way to how Dave utilizes jump training methods and drivers, along with foot cueing, to help athletes achieve a seamless and confident return to play. Whether you are a therapist, strength coach or track coach, this is an information packed and truly relevant episode. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. For 15% off your Lost Empire Herbs order, head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 6:00 Discussing the systems that have influenced Dave the most in his career as a physiotherapist, and how he has synthesized them into his current system 12:20 Dave’s thoughts on the spectrum between basic rehab, and high performance return to play methods in the actions of the foot 22:40 How Dave wants the foot, and mid-foot to engage through various squatting actions, including the “split slouch” exercise 33:10 Mid-foot supine bridging drills as a regression for athletes who cannot tolerate proper load standing on the hamstring and soleus muscles 43:30 A discussion on cueing the mid-foot and how to cue the foot in rehab exercises, versus dynamic movements such as running or sprinting 50:30 Comparing low-hip position hip bridges with standard weighted hip thrust exercises, as well as the role of heel vs. mid-foot pushing in glute bridge work 1:01:30 How to know when to move athletes past supine bridges and slouches pushing through the mid-foot, and into more advanced work 1:08:45 Using “drivers” to help athletes with various jump landings in a return to play situation 1:17:00 When you actually do want to have athletes push through the big toe, versus when to leave it alone “When they go into the real world; the stress and movement, there is so much stimulus going into the nervous system, it’s so much different than being in the physio room doing 3 sets of 10 or a breathing exercise” “I just want to put load on these tissues, and let the system self-organize” “When that foot hits the floor, the soleus (muscle) is the king…. if you had to have one muscle for knee pain, that’s it…. the soleus takes between 6 and 8 times the bodyweight” “That’s an awareness to me that a lot of athletes have skipped, the mid-foot… athletes who stay on their heels or on their toes miss that mid-foot” “The interesting thing with the mid-foot and the soleus is that the soleus has to work with every other muscle in ...
68 minutes | a month ago
246: Rafe Kelley on The Art of Rhythm, Fluidity and Timing in Athletic Performance Training
Today’s show brings back Rafe Kelley, owner of Evolve, Move, Play. Rafe has experience with dozens of movement styles, playing many sports, including gymnastics, learning dance, exploring parkour and studying many forms of the martial arts and MMA styles. When it comes to human movement, and the story and history behind our movement, Rafe is my go-to expert. Rafe’s students have ranged from world-class parkour athletes, to MMA fighters, to untrained grandmothers. He has been a two time guest on this podcast, and offers knowledge from a source that is largely un-touched by mainstream strength and athletic development. On previous shows, I have talked with Rafe about our movement roots, structured vs. unstructured training, play based training, and emotional and cognitive links between play, performance and adaptation. Episode #174 was one of the most transformative episodes I had done in terms of how it immediately impacted my work in my own group training sessions afterwards. On this show, I wanted to tap into more of Rafe’s knowledge of human movement in terms of his experience with martial arts, fighting and modern dance. The sports performance industry talks about force a lot, but it is critical to look at the best athletes in the world on a level comparing to them with dancers, instead of powerlifters, to get a fuller understanding of the required timings and rhythms. Today’s podcast is a wonderful experience in discussing the deeper movement qualities that really make elite athletes and how we can consider those qualities of rhythm and fluidity in our own training designs. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. For 15% off your Lost Empire Herbs order, head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 6:20 Discussing complexity in training, and how to get more work and effectiveness in a shorter period of time 13:49 Quantifying fatigue in basketball and parkour, and concepts on how risk increases session fatigue, and extreme depth landings in parkour 23:34 Philosophy on movement quality in the martial arts, parkour, and athletic movement in general, and questions on if Rafe takes time out of parkour itself to spend time on movement quality 35:53 Rhythmic qualities of movement in athletics, and how to improve athletic performance from a rhythmic perspective 55:16 Points on the use and relationship of dance and ethnic dance styles, to athletic performance 1:00:08 Animal forms and flow in training and human movement “The neurological fatigue associated with a parkour session is not simply associated with how many approach runs did you do, or how big were the jumps. It was more associated with how much risk, or how threatened your nervous system was by the jumps that you were taking on” “One of the master-keys for re-covering the capacity of my lower limb was tibial rotation drills” “When you are working with a novice athlete, a lot of times the answer is just that they need to do the thing more. But when that doesn’t fix it, you have to ask, “why isn’t self-organization working”.” “If I initiate a punch, I want that punch to land, and I want my hand to be hard, and my body to be hard as the punch lands, but any time is it hard before it lands, is slowing me down, and wasting my energy…. how sensitive is the foot when it is hitting the ground” “The timing of force production is massive; it’s the harmony of the body as its hitting the ground; the ability to find that moment. You have do (purposefully) do things, to get (timing)” “I think of it, kind of like music. Every set of movements or a solution to a problem is like a set of beats. You can have an optimal set of beats, or you can have noisy extra beats that aren’t contributing to the harmony of the piece” “What (Josef) talked about the first time I talked to him was: “When an athlete has ...
85 minutes | a month ago
245: Kyle Dobbs and David Grey on Mastering Ribcage Dynamics for Powerful Running, Cutting, Mobility, and Total Human Performance
Today’s show brings back guests Kyle Dobbs and David Grey for an epic meeting of two biomechanical minds. I’ve learned a lot from both Kyle and David on and off of this podcast. Both David and Kyle’s prior episodes have been in our all-time top-listened shows, and I’m excited to get them together for a show. Kyle Dobbs is the owner and founder of Compound Performance which offers online training, facility consulting and a personal trainer mentorship. He a leading expert in integrating complex movement principles into physical training methods for multiple human disciplines. David Grey is a biomechanics specialist based in Waterford, Ireland. He is the creator of the “Lower Body Basics” programs, and has learned under a number of great mentors in the world of movement, S&C, gymnastics, mobility, martial arts, and biomechanics. One element of human performance I’m always looking to become better versed in is breathing, posture, pressure dynamics and how these elements impact our movement and performance potential. From lifting, to running, to changing direction explosively, how we “stack” and align our pressure centers and body structures makes a big impact on how well we can perform those skills and be free of injury. On today’s podcast, Kyle and David go in depth on rib cage dynamics, breathing and pressure management in context of crawling and running. We’ll also touch on posture, training the frontal plane, and finish with some talk on the feet, plantar fasciitis, and thoughts on coaching preferential foot pressures in movement. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 6:05 How Kyle and David look to explain and sequence breathing work within the course of a session 15:05 Ways to observe groups in crawling and locomotion exercises, and how to observe links between those movements and ribcage and breath action 23:50 How Kyle and David address the reciprocal action of the ribs seen in locomotion in breathing and breath work 32:35 What you might see in a crawl or squat that shows that an athlete is compressed, as well as compensation patterns that lead to stiff lumbar spine actions 39:55 How a “ribs first” mentality is critical when it comes to posture and spinal alignment 45:55 Discussing the frontal plane in athletic movement and how muscular strategy switches to respiratory strategy as one moves from lifting to sprinting to distance running 55:25 Training the breath in various exercises outside of ground-based positions 1:06:25 Advice and ideas on dealing with plantar fasciitis in athletes, as well as dynamics of calcaneal motion and how it fits with the rest of the kinetic chain 1:15:25 Thoughts on preferential pressures on different portions of the foot for athletic movements “I will ask my clients to do a toe touch, squat, range of motion, and then we’ll try a positional breathing drill that makes sense in my mind, and if we re-test, it should be better… if it’s not better we are doing the wrong thing” Grey “Your body, from an autonomic position, is going to prioritize breathing over everything else” Dobbs “If you are already in an extended position, and posteriorly compressed in that position, then you don’t have any more extension to actually be able to leverage, so we talk about getting more of a neutral posture, more flexion so that you actually have a larger bandwidth to drive extension when needed” Dobbs “When you look at a 90/90 breathing position, you flip it over and put someone in a crawling position, and it’s basically a 90/90 with a reach up into the sky” Grey “If we can get the ribcage moving, and get people to feel their body and be aware of their body, the breathing can be the result of that sometimes” Grey
58 minutes | a month ago
244: Cal Dietz on Advancing Contrast Training and 20m Dash Splits for Athletic Speed Optimization
Today’s show features Cal Dietz. Cal has been the Head Olympic Strength and Conditioning coach for numerous sports at the University of Minnesota since 2000, has worked with hundreds of successful athletes and team, and is the co-author of the top-selling book “Triphasic Training”. Cal has a multi-time guest on this show, most recently appearing in episode #168 (one of our most popular episodes of all time) on single leg training methods alongside Cameron Josse and Chad Dennis. Cal’s ideas on complex training (French contrast and potentiation clusters) have made a huge impact on the formulation of my own programs and methods. French Contrast as a training ideology and method has probably been one of the most consistent elements of my training for many years now. Cal is never one to sit still, and has recently made further advances in his complex training sets as they relate to our neurological and technical adaptations to these movements. On today’s show, Cal talks extensively about his new methods in complex training for improving sprint speed. As Cal has talked about on previous episodes, even bilateral hurdle hops have the potential to “mess athletes up” neurologically, and so Cal goes in detail on how his complex training sets are now adjusted to address that. Ultimately, Cal has formulated his gym training for the primary purpose of improving sprint speed and sprint mechanics. We will also get into Cal’s take on block periodization, and how Cal uses 5,10 and 20 yard dash markers to help determine an athlete’s primary training emphasis for the next block of work. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 05:10 – Breaking a lot of eggs to make a cake: Training Cal and Joel has utilized in that past that may not have worked out so well for the athlete in the process of growing as a coach 12:52 – Cal’s experience with various methods of training + How he trained his son during covid-19 19:56 – Using running and speed to assess athletes, and creating the required adaptations 25:53 – What led Cal to utilizing block method training and block overloads 29:51 – Interpreting and discussing maximal velocity as a training lynchpin 31:45 – Using squats + Examples of “sprint-centric” exercise sets Cal uses 41:34 – What Cal’s working on: Optimizing exercises for your athletes as individuals + Exercises that are best for your brain 43:09 – Quad-dominant vs. Posterior chain dominant athlete assessments + Cal’s 5-10-20 tool 50:45 – The 5-10-20 tool simplified 54:00 – Exercises Cal would assign for Joel, as someone who needs isometric strength? + The best single leg exercise for building leg strength “Usually I had a download (de-load) week and then I’d change the exercise. Then, I started changing the exercises in the download week so the volume was low… that matched the following week so they didn’t get sore starting with the higher volume… I found that when I implemented a new exercise, that’s when they got sore.” “I trained an agonistic muscle with an antagonistic muscle… so what happened was, it didn’t cause a compensation pattern and it kept the global neurological sequence of the nervous system in the right pattern the whole time and it optimized it.” “Running is one of the greatest assessments of any athlete.” “I call it global neurological sequence, it’s just the order and sequence your body moves.” “Max velocity is an indicator of potential in the nervous system, let’s be honest.” “I would start my first set with my quad-dominant athletes at the rear posterior chain exercise and then cycle through everything, which is actually better, Joel, for my weight room functioning.” “I was able to create a tool off a 10-20-yard dash that told me what their weakest link was in training. So, it’s an indicator of what they need for the next two to four weeks in training...
61 minutes | 2 months ago
243: Jeremy Frisch and Calin Butterfield on Advancing Complexity in Plyometrics, Jump Training Concepts, and Athletic Lessons from Downhill Racing Sports
Today’s show features Jeremy Frisch and Calin Butterfield. Jeremy is the owner and director of Achieve Performance Training in Clinton, Mass, has been a multi-time guest on the show with all-things youth and creative training, game-play and long-term development. Jeremy is not only a strength coach, but also has skin in the game as a youth sports coach, and provides an incredible holistic perspective on the entire umbrella of athletic development. Calin Butterfield is the high performance manager at U.S. Ski & Snowboard. He worked for EXOS for about 8 years as a Coach across all different spaces including Phoenix, Dallas, SF at Ft. Bragg, Adidas America, and the Mayo Clinic. Calin and Jeremy are working together now on concepts related to long term development of ski and snowboard athletes. So often, we have our “standard plyometric battery” in performance training, but we cling to these fundamentals hard when we would be served well to be observing jump training and movement in a variety of mediums to create ideas for our plyometric progression. Studying athletes in sports that demand fast reactions, impactful landings, high risk, and rewards for creativity have a lot to offer when it comes to looking at our own training designs for the athletes we serve. Together, Jeremy and Calin will talk about their collaboration together with skiing, the use and progression of games with young athletes up to college level, plyometric progressions and advancing complexity, and how the natural warmup process in ski and snowboard (terrain park) can give us ideas that we can port over into how we can prepare athletes for sport. There is a lot of great information in this podcast that can be useful for sport coaches, strength coaches and skiiers alike. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 05:25 – The background of Calin and Jeremy’s careers and collaboration 08:30 – How does gameplay fit into a sport like skiing? 16:42 – When people tend to peak in skiing and snowboarding and how this fits into proportion of game play at different ages 24:18 – The power in connecting to the outcome and having multiple avenues to get to that outcome 27:02 – Attrition from training + creating enjoyable training experiences for kids 36:48 – How autonomy and feedback in the warm-up process changes as athletes get older and the reality of “perfect landings” in plyometric exercise 41:52 – The relationship between landing variability and chronic sport landing overload 45:57 – Reducing training down to information + plyometrics and progressions in skiing and snowboarding 48:03 – Long-term development in skiing and supplementing with traditional land-based training 52:37 – What it looks like to build an athlete up in high-adrenaline sport training 55:22 – How the aerial nature of skiing and snowboarding have an impact on Jeremy and Calin in their training process “[Skiing is] an early engagement sport, technically, like there’s skills that you have to learn from a sliding perspective, but that oftentimes turns into really early specialization and spending too much time skiing.” “The mentality of most of the athletes that make it to a high level in ski racing or free skiing… is intense, it’s almost like dare devil, formula one… The game aspect and how it translates into sport, I think, is very much on the physical side. I think the mental side is completely unique.” “What we try to do… is really just force environments that get them to explore their bodies, their joints, how to maneuver around certain objects or other people, and really just try to get the out of their comfort zone and using games, it’s a lot more fun for them.” “We so underestimate the difference between a child and an adult and keeping people in flow states. I just think that’s such a mistake that’s proliferated.”
66 minutes | 2 months ago
242: Bobby Stroupe on Evolved Foot and Upper Body Work, Single-Set Training Models, and the Holistic Value of a Sports Performance Professional
Today’s show welcomes back coach Bobby Stroupe. Bobby Stroupe is the Founder and President of Athlete Performance Enhancement Center (APEC) and has directed human performance systems for nearly 20 years, working with a full range of athletes from youth to professional. In my search for higher-transfer, holistic methodology in sports performance training, I’ve met few coaches who have covered more bases than Bobby Stroupe. On our last show, which aired just over a month ago, we talked about several of Bobby’s “unorthodox” methods in training speed, power strength and more in light of athletic needs, and I still had about half of the questions left on my own list to ask him. Bobby is back on the show to cover the rest of the questions we missed last time. He will discuss his influences and how he got to where he is today as a coach, including some of the mentors and coaches that have influenced the way he trains. Bobby explains how he incorporates heavier strength training into his sessions and how his single set mentality is a huge impactor on performance (and a defining factor of great athletes). Finally, Bobby shares his views on upper body training, as well as training the foot and the relationship between the two. In the middle of the show, Bobby gets into the “8 factors” by which a strength coach can impact an athlete, which was such gold! I hope you come away from this show as excited as I was about coaching my next training session. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 04:41 – The story behind DJ Stroupebob 06:01 – How Bobby differentiates himself and his unorthodox training system from other coaches 07:30 – Influential mentors and coaches Bobby has learned from + Lessons learned from studying animal movement and mastering gravity and space 14:49 – How much time do you spend on heavy-weight lifting versus other types of training? 19:52 – Lifting is like a drug + Metrics Bobby measures and pays attention to 23:17 – From 7-day cycles to 14 or 21-day cycles in assigning the frequency of heavy strength work 24:42 – Bobby’s thoughts on the single set mentality 29:20 – How to get improve your athletes’ single set mentality, especially for overly analytical athletes 31:19 – Applying Parkinson’s Law to athletes 34:36 – Ideas on partnering with sport coaches and incorporating sports specific movements in training 37:01 – Having a holistic influence to make our value seen: 10 ways coaches affect athletes 40:27 – Bobby’s perception of other successful coaches + How to expand your coaching capabilities 43:35 – His approach to and evolution with upper body training for athletes + The relationship between the feet and upper body 46:11 – How do you use weighted gloves, clubs, maces and other training tools? 50:25 – When you should not use weighted balls and gloves 54:12 – Complexities in training the foot + Basic foot functions to see before elevating training 1:01:43 – What is a driver? “There’s no doubt that knowing what gets your athletes going is part of your job.” “You can do high-level, max strength work and have minimal volume on that in the course of an entire training curriculum over time and still get incredible results with a little less of some of the effects of overdoing strength training that you really don’t want… strength training is more effective when it’s not overdone.” “You can see how these different animals with their physiology and their climate and their environment approach tactical movement strategies and technical movement strategies… and for me, in watching that, I think you can learn a lot about how to utilize gravity as a resource instead of relying on strength.” “If strength is what you do most,
99 minutes | 2 months ago
241: Michael Camporini and Justin Moore on Learning to Yield in the Gym, Clarifying “Stiffness”, and Understanding Stretch-Shortening Dynamics in Athletic Movement
Our guests today are Justin Moore and Michael Camporini. Justin is a master instructor and the professional development manager at Parabolic Performance and Rehab. Justin has been a popular guest on the podcast many times in the past, discussing advanced biomechanical principles in regards to things like breathing, positioning in strength training, and much more. Michael Camporini, "Campo", is a sports physical therapist in Phoenix, AZ, and previously worked with athletes of all different levels and ages with experience as a strength coach at Parabolic. He has completed internships with Resilient Physical Therapy and IFAST, as well as completing a clinical rotation with Bill Hartman. You may have heard me speak on the drawbacks of doing too much strength and barbell training many times in the past. Unless we have some ideas of the exact, negative structural changes that happen with excessive barbell lifting strain (and how to reverse them) we might potentially live in a world where heavy weightlifting is some sort of bogey-man we can’t quite define the effects of. This is important because some athletes need heavier training, while others do not. Recently, Justin Moore (who has a long history of heavy strength training) had a significant knee injury that occurred while demonstrating a skipping exercise (he had injured his knee multiple times in the past), that led him to reach out to Mike Camporini to help him create an intervention program, which led Justin to playing flag football pain free and moving extremely well. On the podcast today, Justin and Campo talk about the intervention, the issues Justin had from years of too much lifting strain, and how they reclaimed his range of motion and athletic ability. This podcast goes into many concepts of human function, stretch shortening cycle dynamics, compression versus expansion, defining what “stiffness” really is in context of sport skill, and much more. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 6:35 Justin’s history of knee injury, and his athletic pursuits that contributed to not being an optimally functional athlete 21:35 How Justin would approach taking compressive lifting away from an individual, and what might warrant the need to avoid bilateral lifting in a program 30:35 What KPI’s in terms of range of motion are Justin and Campo looking at for field based athletes who need to run, jump and change direction 40:55 Thoughts on lifting strategies that produce excess stiffness in an athlete’s system, and how stiffness and stretch-shortening action can be specific to athletic action 52:25 Why being overly “stiff” in a standing vertical jump will negatively impact jump height and resiliency and topics on being “expanded” vs. “compressed” 1:13.45 Some of the tests and corrective strategies that Campo and Justin went through to help fix some of Justin’s faulty mechanics 1:24.35 The use of yielding and oscillating work to help improve the quality of Justin’s movement strategy “Those elements, those compressive training strategies that you do over years to build the strength, to build the muscle. Those lead to structural changes and certain biases that you need to give time to create any adaptation in the other direction” Moore “When we look as an individual’s situation, we say, what does this person need to reach their goals, where is their endgame, and then we establish things we need to track and we don’t want to lose” Campo “There is a stretch shortening cycle in Olympic lifting or Powerlifting, it is just going to be different compared to throwing a baseball” Campo “How he is behaving and creating these motion deficits is also influencing how he is absorbing energy, or can potentially absorb energy within his elastic tiss...
70 minutes | 2 months ago
240: Steven Kotler on Flow State Concepts, Motivation and Goal-Setting for Optimal Athletic Performance and Career Longevity
Our guest today is Steven Kotler, best-selling author and renowned Flow-State expert. Steven is the author of 9 best-selling books (3 of which are NYT Best-Sellers), which include The Art of Impossible, Stealing Fire, The Rise of Superman (Rise of Superman was my initial introduction to Steven’s work) and others. His work has been nominated for two Pulitzer Prizes, translated into 40 languages, and has appeared in over 100 publications. Steven is the executive director of the Flow Research Collective, and is one of the world’s leading experts on human performance. He has been involved in a number of extreme sports, such as surfing, downhill mountain biking and skiing, and has learned (and participated with) from a number of the world’s greatest athletes in this arena. One element of athletic performance that I’m adamant about pursuing is the idea that we must get outside the known field of “athletic performance” and into other fields of human performance to maximize our service to the athletes we train. We can only grow so much without “getting outside of the box” of our typical field education and integrating more global concepts of human performance. In this podcast with Steven Kotler, we discuss numerous elements of neuro-biology and flow as it relates to goal setting, burnout, skill progression, career progression, and much more. This was a podcast that truly integrates many concepts coaches (hopefully) are familiar with, and helps us to understand them more fully from a biological perspective, as well as one we can also integrate into our daily lives. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 5:50 Steven’s favorite extreme sport memory in his years of working alongside many elite athletes 10:10 How risk of injury (or death) impacts a sport from multiple perspectives 14:35 Goal setting for athletes, with a perspective on general biological principles 25:50 Motivational factors for athletes across their career, and why some athletes may burnout 34:55 How solving multiple problems at once is a key to getting more flow out of mundane activities 41:40 Clarifying how coaches can disturb progress in regards to mastery as a motivational tool 45:30 Challenge-skill balance in sport training and optimal progression models in regards to flow states 53:25 The importance of social support networks in facilitation of flow and athletic performance 57:10 How to manage flow with strength work, and how having one big flow day can impact the next few weeks of your training 1:02.50 How to manage the “dial of flow” in regards to daily practice “I always say, “If you can’t get seriously injured, it’s not really a sport” and I know a lot of people who play tennis or golf would disagree with me, and I’m happy for the argument… I do think it’s a different game when that is the stakes” “The interesting thing about peak performance is that, it doesn’t matter if you are going after capital “I” Impossible, or you are trying to improve your tennis game, or you are trying to be a little better at work, the biology is the same, the tool-set is the same, and how you get there is the same” “(In extreme sports with potential mortal consequences) On the inside, it doesn’t feel like that, it feels like progression in any other sport” “We live in a reality that is shaped by 2 things, our fears and our goals” “For sure you need 3 levels of goals in your life… Mission levels goals (I want to be a great runner), high-hard goals (1-5 year step, run the New York Marathon), then you need clear goals, your daily to do list” “Clear goals are one of the pre-conditions that lead to flow” “Properly set high-hard goals will increase motivation by 11-25%” “The biggest driver for humans is meaningful pro...
78 minutes | 3 months ago
239: Nicolai Morris on Reverse-Engineering Athletic Movement Through Gymnastic Progressions and Rough-Housing
Our guest today is Nicolai Morris, strength and conditioning specialist with High Performance Sport, New Zealand. Nicolai is the lead S&C with the New Zealand Women’s (Field) Hockey Team (Blacksticks) as well as coaching an international elite high jumper. From Nicolai’s athletic career origins as a swimmer, she has honed her eye for movement through a wide range of land and sea-based sports and athletic situations. Nicolai has previously worked with New Zealand Rowing in the elite and U23/Junior pathways as well as, multitude of sports in her role as strength and conditioning specialist at Sydney University including swimming, track and field, rugby, rugby 7’s, water polo and soccer. She also worked as the Head strength and conditioning coach for the Australian Beach Handball team and the NSW Women’s State of Origin team. Nicolai is a ASCA Level 2, Pro-Scheme Elite coach, and a Masters in Strength and Conditioning with over a decade of coaching experience. We talk on this podcast often about going beyond simply looking at, and emphasizing weightlifting maxes for athletic performance improvement; moving into some of the finer biomechanical details of speed, jumping and athletic technique. At the roots of all technical ability in sport is baseline human ability to sense and coordinate ourselves in space. Although we have had good conversation on the importance of developing body control and coordination in regards to training children, it’s not often we speak on how to integrate gymnastic and coordinative ability into training with mature athletes, despite the fact that there are so many “poor movers” on this level, whose base line functioning often leaves them pre-disposed for injury. On today’s podcast, Nicolai speaks about her transition as a swimmer to strength coach, as well as a deep-dive into the role that gymnastics and rough-housing work plays in the developmental process of her athletes. She also speaks on building buy-in and belief from her athletes (and team management/head sports coaches) from a female perspective, and we close out the show with a brief chat on blood flow restriction training (BFR). Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 3:40 How Nicolai went from a swimmer to a physical preparation coach 7:45 How Nicolai incorporates gymnastic work and general work to improve movement quality across sports and age groups 21:00 Progressing gymnastic work based on their ability and sport needs 28:05 Correlations between gymnastic movement ability and some of the best athletes Nicolai has worked with 31:15 How Nicolai integrates gymnastic and movement training into her own regimen 36:10 Integrating roughhousing work into training, and differences between genders in this type of work 51:25 Buy in/attitudes of males/females vs. coaches in working as a female 1:01.40 How Nicolai made a big impact with a team by focusing on the needs of her team versus traditional coaching expectations 1:05.40 Nicolai’s experience with blood flow restriction training and the benefits for middle-distance energy system athletes “If a squat would make all athletes Olympic champions, then we would have more people who squat well performing at a higher level… we have to get that transfer and that connection” “You’d ask people to say “what’s the coolest thing you can do into the foam pit”, and they’d do backflips, and gainers…. they’d push their body to a place that it had never been before” “My main 3 gymnastics elements that I use are tumbling, hanging variations, and handstand variations, and depending on what athletes I got, it has a higher relevance… I’m in hockey right now and it has more relevance for my goalies” “The only thing that took my shoulder pain away was gymnastics...
82 minutes | 3 months ago
238: Alex Brooker and Mike Guadango on The Power of Belief, Placebo Effects in Training-Rehab and Becoming Your Own Coaching Superhero
Our guests today are Mike Guadango and Alex Brooker. Mike and Alex (“Brooker”) met when Alex interned for Mike at DeFranco’s gym a decade ago, and they now have a podcast together, “The Mike and Brooker Show”, in addition to their coaching careers. Alex is the owner and operator of Pathfinder, a private training service focused on performance psychology and physical preparation for professional athletes. In addition to traditional schooling, Alex is now pursuing his PhD in Self-Hypnosis at the University of Bern. Mike is currently a Coach, Writer & Owner at Freak Strength. He has been mentored by coaching greats such as Buddy Morris and James Smith, and started his career working at DeFranco’s gym. Mike has coached levels of athletes from many different professional sports to Olympic medalists to pre-pubescent athletes, as well as consulting for high caliber athletes and coaches worldwide. As an ever-optimistic individual, it’s important for me to have conversations with those who have a different way of looking at what actually works in the world of sports performance. In the coaching world, it is extremely easy to have worked with an athlete who has achieved a high result, and then rationalize the factors that led to their success. It is very easy for us all as coaches to think of our own training as highly optimal, but a question to ask is how often and effectively we truly challenge our reasoning? In looking at training closely, it is helpful to fully understand the power of belief, as well as placebo effects in not only training, but also pain science and rehabilitation. Understanding human adaptation to training and rehab stimulus requires, not only an understanding of the body, but also of the mind. In today’s podcast, Mike and Alex “Brooker” talk about how they have evolved themselves as coaches, moving into the realms of hypnosis/mental training, acupuncture and rehabilitation. We spend a lot of time chatting about the power of belief and the ability of the mind to supercede a “poor” training program, and how the fundamentals of adaptation style can be seen in rudimentary rehab. Finally, Mike, Brooker and I spend some time discussing some training points such as play, competition in training, and training transfer. This was a fun show with speakers of 3 clearly diverse viewpoints, which always makes for great discussion. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 6:15 Mike and Brooker’s moves into more alternative forms of human performance, and a philosophy of when to move on from hair splitting in strength training methods 15:00 Thoughts on a system that prioritizes play and autonomy as a substantial shift in a positive direction towards the sports performance industry 32:30 Thoughts on whether or not gym training should carry mental, emotional and physical elements of what is required of a person in their sport 46:25 How and why our interventions in strength, performance or pain reduction actually work, and how much we really know about these mechanisms 55:55 How Mike and Brooker diverted from the traditional routes of strength, performance and data in athlete performance training 1:05:30 More on Mike and Brooker’s “skill stacking” in their human performance pursuits 1:13:10 Mike and Brooker’s use of high-transference exercises to athletic performance 1:15:30 In 10-15 years, where do Mike and Brooker picture themselves “Even if there is a difference between the two (exercises), and transferability, how much of a difference is it really?” “15% of who you are as an athlete, you actually have some type of control over” “The more high talented people you work with, the room to improve them in the gym gets smaller,
81 minutes | 3 months ago
237: Patrick Coyne on Holistically Challenging Athletes, Evolved Speed Training, and the Art of Sports Performance “From the Heart”
Our guest today is Pat Coyne, coach and owner of Black Sheep Performance in Cincinnati, Ohio. Pat started helping clients of all levels reach their fullest potential after his career as a 4-star high school football recruit ended in college due to injury. Pat started Black Sheep Performance in 2018 on the side of a house in Cincinnati, OH. Within 3 years BSP organically outgrew itself, working from renting gym space, to a barn, to a state of the art 11,000 sq. foot training facility. Pat has mentored under some of the top coaches in the nation, is a progressive thinker, and gets great results with his clients in his fast-growing business. When I moved back to Ohio in July, I connected with Pat shortly thereafter and have gotten several training sessions and conversations in with him since then. Pat has a training style that fuses many of the elements I consider essential: A great environment, room for exploration/creativity, competition and reaction, as well as an integration of modern speed training methods, such as those taught by multi-time podcast guest, Adarian Barr. As such, it was only a matter of time until Pat and I sat down together and recorded a podcast. Two of the big things that Pat and I are both passionate about are being life-long learners and then looking at (and experiencing) the holistic effects of things like the training environment, athlete autonomy/creativity, and the effects of music, rhythm and reactions on performance. On this podcast, Pat and I go into his background as an athlete and coach, his thoughts on structured vs. unstructured/open training, his progressions on speed training, rhythm, timing, how he challenges athletes on a holistic level, and some deeper discussion on the evolution of the human/sports performance industry. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 5:30 Pat’s medieval gear in his gym, as well as his background as a top-ranked high school quarterback, and his transition into strength and conditioning 11:15 What Pat believes held him back from being successful on the college level after being very successful (and physically fit and gifted) in high school, and what he would tell his younger self from his place now as a coach 16:00 How Pat uses games and a holistic approach to connect dots in his training programs/process 27:40 Ideas on how structured versus unstructured training, as well as the importance of being in the moment without expectations, in the training setting 46:50 How Pat’s speed training process has changed over his years as a coach 54:15 A chat on rhythm and timing in coaching speed and athletic movement, as well as using musical beats to time up various training movements 1:04.00 What Pat sees as the evolving purpose of the profession of a strength coach and the deeper purposes of training and coaching in the physical realm 1:14.15 Three things that go into Pat’s mind before each training session that tell him “this is what will make a great session” “(To my younger self) I would go and spend time doing everything that I didn’t want to do” “You have these training sessions which are comfortable and build people up, and it’s very ego driven to where you have your athletes feeling to where they crushed the day, and there is truth in that. But.. how uncomfortable did you make your athletes in a healthy way, in a safe environment, to where they could fail, to where you could see how resilient that athlete is becoming” “I want to see the full human being first, then we can smack the weights” “I feel like you make the most progress when you are having fun… why does a kid make progress so fast. Why do we throw that out when we are working with a pro athlete?” “They may have got their asses kicked,
72 minutes | 3 months ago
236: Bobby Stroupe on The Rising Tide of Performance Transfer to Sport: Locomotion Complexes, Vortex Plyometrics, and Time-Space Constraints
Our guest today is Bobby Stroupe, founder and president of Athlete Performance Enhancement Center (APEC). Bobby has directed human performance systems for nearly 20 years. His coaching ranges from youth athletes to some of the top names in multiple professional sports, including first round picks, as well as Super Bowl and World Series champions. Bobby is well-known for his work in the physical preparation realm of Patrick Mahomes, quarterback of the recent Superbowl champions, the Kansas City Chiefs. After doing 235 episodes of this podcast, and opening up my eyes to more and more of the performance space, I’m always excited to find those coaches who are spearheading creative and effective training methods in athletic performance transfer. When I recently watched Bobby Stroupe’s presentation at the recent “Track Football Consortium” regarding his methods in working with Patrick Mahomes, I was like a kid in a candy shop, viewing training methods that replicated many time and space requirements of sport play without being mechanical or contrived. Bobby is not only a holistic and open minded coach, but he is also an incredibly thorough and detailed thinker. There are so many points of carry-over in what Bobby does, I believe that studying his work is essential if we are to reach the point of getting our training to truly transfer to the field of play. Bobby achieves this transfer in a way that still pays homage to traditional principles of force development and human performance, but is able to add in the tri-planar and chaotic nature of what athletes will encounter in sport. On today’s podcast, Bobby gets into a variety of his “unorthodox” training methods, including locomotion complexes, tri-planar plyometrics and strength training, complex training, long-term development, and athlete autonomy. Again, with the interest of transfer to sport in mind, any aspiring coach should be familiar with the work of Bobby Stroupe and Team APEC. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 6:15 What Bobby and I have learned about coaching from being fathers of young children 11:00 Bobby’s take on working with athletes from a young age, and how his team approaches long term athletic development 21:05 Bobby’s thoughts on being able to follow elite athletes for an extended period of time, as many professional athletes have been working at APEC since they were quite young 23:25 How human locomotion is taught using “locomotion complexes”, triplanar and scalar breakdowns of basic motions such as skips, caraocas, and gallops 36:40 Multiplanar jumps and how Bobby will complex these movements in with more static strength training means 46:35 Using different body alignments in strength training movements, as well as Bobby’s work with lunge matrixes using different foot positions 56:26 Bobby’s background with therapeutic education, and how that has impacted his work as a strength/physical preparation coach 1:04:00 Bobby’s take on the efficacy of technology for training athletes “What we want kids to say is, APEC is so fun we went up there and played for an hour and I wish I could come every day” “If someone comes up and tells us what we want them to do with their kid, we tell them that generally, it’s not a good fit” “Typically, middle school, with what we do, the girls are fairly dominant by the time they are in 7th grade” “We want to educate the individual on what makes them unique, what are their gifts?” “You will not find more variance than (coaching 40 middle school kids in one session) that in any training situation” “The number one rule of locomotion is “you do not restrict an athlete in space”” “There’s no better way to (calibrate) than letting the body move through space on i...
68 minutes | 4 months ago
235: Rob Assise on New Ideas in Complex-Training Methods and Advanced Bounding Progressions
Our guest today is Rob Assise, track coach at Homewood-Flossmoor High School. Rob has 17 years of coaching experience, and has been a regular speaker and writer in the realms of track and field, plyometrics and speed training. He previously appeared on episode #95 and #196 of the podcast. One of the more fascinating ideas that I’ve been working with over time, as a coach, has been the idea of using a “long-burst” training movement of around 10-30 seconds, to help improve the power output of “short-burst” movements, such as a jump or short sprint. Dr. Mark Wetzel spoke about this in depth on a recent episode and his take on it has confirmed things that I’ve seen anecdotally for some time, as well as read up on years ago in the mysterious “Greatest Sports Training Book Ever” by “DB Hammer” with the “AN1” and “AN2” bracket systems. Rob has taken those bracket systems and has done some creative training work with them recently, where he has also infused “infinity walks” which Dan Fichter talked about on a recent episode, into the mix. Rob talks about that today, as well as ways that this concept can be taken creatively for track and field athletes. In the second half of this show, Rob and I talk plyometric concepts, and how to build bounding and plyometric training “from the feet up” and “from ground contact times upward”. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 6:35 Catching up with the struggles of being a high school coach in this period of history 9:50 How Rob has been creating workouts with complementary energy system brackets (i.e. a speed-endurance energy system work recovering a sprint system, and vice versa) 18:50 Ideas on how to optimize track and field events based off of game play and opposing energy systems 28:35 How Rob has observed warmup preferences and tendencies based on an athlete’s neurotype 31:35 Rob’s take on teaching bounding and bound progressions, as well as ideas with bounding with different foot strike emphasis 50:05 Using power metrics in conjunction with bounding using the Muscle Lab Contact Grid, as well as contact time based bound teaching ideas 56:55 How Rob manages contact times for depth jumping, hurdle hops and traditional plyometrics 60:40 How Rob’s thoughts on speed training have evolved over the last few years, as well as “bleed” versus “blast” methods in working flying 10 sprints “A typical thing we’ll do right off the bat; we’ll do an altitude drop, something intense, then they’ll go into doing something like a speed Russian lunge for 30 seconds, and then they’ll go into doing an infinity walk, or crawl or carry, for about 90 seconds, and then they’ll do something to failure, like hanging from a bar or doing a cross-crawl superman or something like that; something that falls into one exercise recovering another” “One thing that might be overlooked the most on the infinity walk is the vision component” “I’ve thought about the idea of, do a couple of (high or long) jumps, then go to a basketball court and play 3 on 3 real quick (and then come back to do more jumps)” “We would just give athletes at the start of practice on a Friday an option to do whatever they wanted to do in the warmup. The type 1’s would always do something where they were competing. The Type 2’s, it would depend who they were hanging out with. The type 3 would literally go through the same warmup they would go through every day… if you just give athletes 10 minutes and watch what they do, it tells you basically what they are” “We work heel to toe on a low intensity (to teach bounding)” “I think you have to rotate through the ball of the first metatarsal when you are doing the lateral bound; you are also getting more of the lateral sling involved with it” ...
67 minutes | 4 months ago
234: Dan John on The Art of Letting Go, Relaxation, and Conquering the “Monkey Brain” in Power Performance
Our guest today is Dan John who is a strength coach, track coach, master’s track athlete, best-selling author, and all around sage of wisdom on all-things strength training for athletics and life itself. Dan’s work has been profoundly impactful on my coaching, and training practice. The older and more experienced I get as a coach, the more I find his reduction to the essentials, as well as global thinking, extremely valuable. Dan appeared on podcast episode #96 with one of my favorite conversations since the start of this podcast series. If you’ve been around elite coaches and athletes for long enough, you start to realize trends that go beyond the sets, reps and training prescriptions that work their way into the results that are being achieved in competition. Elite athletes are strong enough for their sport, as well as being (hopefully) adequate in general physical measures, but they also tend to have elite levels of relaxation and tension management. Many times, the best competitors carry a different outlook on competition itself. For today’s show, Dan covers ideas on the art of “letting go” and achieving better performance through superior relaxation and tension management. He also gets into some of the creative coaching practices he utilized for his throwers, such as playing unique games, “range” throwing, constraint based turns in the circle, and super-setting kettlebell work with throwing. Finally, other important elements, such as the importance of being “deprived” of a good training environment, and elastic athletic performance are addressed in this conversation with a strength and track legend. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to www.lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 6:00 Things Dan thought was under-appreciated or went under the radar in the original “Easy Strength” book, (and a discussion on the idea of what is truly important in training, and not digging too far into details until basic standards of performance are met) 13:00 The usefulness of games for track athletes in regards to their overall conditioning with a level of specificity to their sport, and examples of games that Dan would play with his track athletes 17:00 The power of not having expectations in having one’s highest performance 24:00 Thoughts on the “right amount” of effort in one’s skills and events in competition 0:36 The art of deprivation, etc. in regards to training equipment or commonly used exercises 45:00 A chat on the integration of kettlebell training into athletic movement 50:50 The art of relaxation in throwing, sprinting and even weightlifting exercises, as well as a unique coaching system for varied tensioning in the athlete’s body during lifts “I coach the hands and feet, I try to make them like mini-trampolines (a lot of bounce to the hands and feet)” “The shoulders and the hips, I use the old Chinese medicine term, the “4-knots” tight enough to stay on, loose enough that you can un-string them” “We as Americans have this love affair with these dressed up fancy programs on a spreadsheet… and it’s all crap… until they are throwing over 200,210 (feet) we don’t have to worry about the small details” “With my throwers, we do almost zero conditioning, but on Friday’s, we always play a game” “When you have no expectations, you let things happen (specifically in context of track and field throwing)… life at its highest end.. it’s effortless” “It’s the art of practicing letting go… I think that a true meditation might be as good as (that extra little bit of conditioning) because practicing letting things happen, especially in track and field (is important).’ “Track and field is nothing but “bows and arrows”. When you high jump, you turn various parts of your body into a bow and arrow,
77 minutes | 4 months ago
233: Lee Taft on “High-Velocity” Games and Reactivity for Developing and Established Athletes
Our guest today is athletic movement specialist Lee Taft. Lee is one of the most highly respected game speed development coaches in the world, and has taught his methods around the world. Lee combines an extensive knowledge of sport movement and physical education means and brings this into the physical preparation space in a meaningful way. Lee has appeared twice prior on the Just Fly Performance podcast and has been a great source of practical ideas and knowledge on speed development for me over my years as a coach. One of the big things I find more and more coaches looking for is ideas on the long term development of an athlete. By the time an athlete gets to high school, let alone college and the pro’s, the vast majority of the “ground-work” has been done in regards to the speed and reaction abilities of that athlete-specific to their sport. Unfortunately, there are many pitfalls for young athletes, who miss many critical windows of early development for a variety of reasons. This podcast is all about the development of speed from a young age, how velocity rules training (even if technique is “ugly” early on) as well as some varied topics on Lee’s take on warmups for training, and sport, as well as thoughts on vision training and low-box training for athletes. Whether you work with youth, or established athletes, or are a sport parent, this is essential information. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster and Lost Empire Herbs. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Head to lostempireherbs.com/justfly for 15% off of your purchase! Timestamps and Main Points 6:10 What coaching athletes in the private sector was like in the 1990’s, as well as the state of athletes in that time period, versus the 2010’s and beyond 10:40 Some of the big rocks that have caused young athletes time to get taken up, and increase pressure and strain 15:40 Fun games and warmup ideas for athletes 28:55 How Lee designs his warmups and creates a competitive situation with reactive tracking work 32:30 How Lee links his warmups to the rest of his workouts, and how he will utilize games that fit with the greater theme of the session 35:10 Key performance indicators that Lee looks at in regards to how well his game-speed training is transferring 45:40 Some things that are doing a disservice to athletes early on in their development of game-speed, etc., and the importance of maximal velocity training for young athletes, and how skill development can come along gradually 57:00 Advice for an athlete in their warmup for a sport game (versus warming up for a practice) 59:55 How Lee looks at vision training from a “raw” perspective 1:09.10 How “low-box” training works and how Lee uses it in his performance regimen “Back then, it was really common for parents to say “Lee, we need something for our kids to do, what do you got? Now days, it’s the opposite” “We talk about ACL’s now, like we talk about drinking water… it was this big news (back in the 1990’s)… mentally kids are not absorbed in any one process, because they can’t” “I could get results quicker back then (in the 1990’s), just through sound training, because (the athletes) had more to give me. Now, you take one step forward, you take another step back” “Sometimes I don’t want then thinking… just go play, react!” “I love soccer related things for athletes that don’t play soccer, it’s tremendous for the groin and adductors, especially when they aren’t used to doing it” “Kids don’t know how to read spin (on a ball) unless they are exposed to it” “Days vary, because if I sense the athletes are fatigued, tired, bored, upset, we play a lot… I’ll sprinkle in teaching while they are playing, but that will be the bulk of the workout” “We’ve put them in situations where they have to make good decisions, and that’s how I judge (KPI’s for game-speed transfer)”
64 minutes | 4 months ago
232: Dan Fichter on Infinity Runs, Sensory-Motor Optimization and the “Neurology Driven” Warmup in Athletics |Sponsored by SimpliFaster
Our guest today is Dan Fichter, owner and operator of WannaGetFast, a sports performance facility in Rochester, New York. He is one of the leading experts in applying clinical neurology into athletic rehabilitation and sport performance applications. Dan has been mentored by a variety of elite coaches, therapists, and neurologists, and has trained numerous professional athletes and Olympians across a variety of sports. He has been a multi-time guest on the podcast, with one of the most popular episodes of all-time being a joint discussion with Chris Korfist on “DB Hammer” training methods (an old-school classic). It’s somewhat of a “woke” term to mention the nervous system in training, as Matt Cooper said on a recent podcast. Although it is easy to pay homage to the nervous system as the ultimate controller of training results, it is much more complicated to actually observe and specifically train the CNS. This is where people like Dan Fichter are awesome resources in regards to being able to take the complex inter-disciplinary work on the subject, and tie it into simple methods we can use in our own practices. On today’s show, Dan runs through a wide swath of nervous system training topics, centering on isometrics, as well as their role in light of long term athletic development, crawling and the nervous system, infinity walks, as well as his keys to a good warmup from a neurological perspective. There was a huge amount of practical training gold in this episode. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster, supplier of high-end athletic development tools, such as the Freelap timing system, kBox, Sprint 1080, and more. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 7:00 The top 3 things Dan learned from Jay Schroeder that have stuck with him over his years as a coach, particularly that of isometric exercise and intention 13:30 How isometrics specifically help create a condition for the body to solve a functional problem 20:30 How Dan’s exercise distributions have been altered over time (isometrics, bodyweight and traditional lifts) 27:00 Where Dan fits on the “5 minute hold” to shorter isometric hold spectrum 31:30 Questions on, “are isometrics alone enough to help an athlete overcome their injuries” 34:45 Crawling and links to neurology, as well as why it’s important to crawl in an extended posture position and the head up 39:45 How sensory stimulation precedes motor output in athletes, and the importance of stimulating athletes on a sensory level 47:00 The power of infinity walks in empowering an athlete on a neurological and sensory perspective, and how this can tie into, and be complexed with, other athletic skills 54:45 Things that Dan finds essential in the warmup process for his athletes 56:25 The electrical ramifications of tapping the heel in an athletic movement “As Jay says, “everybody is fast, and everybody is strong, they just can’t display it”” “Every step you take, the body finds the easiest and safest path, to complete the task” “When it comes to neurology, you have to hit it perfect, and when you hit it perfect, magic things happen” “Jay used to say this all the time “water will find the crack”” “One of my most favorite things I’ve learned from Jay’s was “quick style” exercises; my favorite exercise is a towel curl press, where they curl (the towel) up, they press it over their head, they pull it down, and then they extend their triceps, so there is everything about upper body movement in one exercise, and as Jay says, it’s recovering you while its training you” “When you get into studying the brain, it’s a flexion/extension synergy” “When you trace a complex movement, your cerebellum lights up like it’s nobody’s business” “For a 10 year old, I have them hold isometrics as long as they can… the younger you are the longer we’ll hold it. The older you are,
63 minutes | 5 months ago
231: Dr. Mark Wetzel on “Energy-System Oscillation” for Explosive Performance, Recovery and Maximizing Isometric Transfer | Sponsored by SimpliFaster
Our guest today is Dr. Mark Wetzel, chiropractor and neurology expert based out of Nashville, Tennessee. Mark has been a guest on the show several times before, speaking about the physiological and neurological elements of the training method of “extreme isometrics” as well as the fantastic results that he achieved from using the method with a high school baseball team. Isometric holds of all sorts have become very popular in training in recent years, and for good reason. Where typical “up and down” lifting is a bit of a shotgun approach to performance, isometrics can isolate very specific elements of our physiology, and allow us to devote the body’s resources to these specific elements, rather than a wider array of general elements that we find in more traditional strength methods. One of the things you may remember Mark talking about on previous shows is the idea of “cycling through the energy systems” while performing a long isometric hold, and if one can make it through all of these energy systems, then a large benefit can be derived by the athlete. In recent conversations with Mark, he has been taking this further by teaching me how training maximally in one “energy system bracket” can optimize your performance in another “energy system bracket”. For example, most people in track and field are familiar with the idea of feeling more “warmed up” to do an explosive jump after running a 100 or 200-meter dash maximally. In the team sport world, playing a pick-up game of basketball is often a better warm-up for explosive jumping than doing basically any sort of “traditional” warmup that you might find. On the podcast today, Mark and I dig into these concepts, as well as reinforcing many important elements of the isometric hold itself, such as breathing, intention, posture and much more. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster, supplier of high-end athletic development tools, such as the Freelap timing system, kBox, Sprint 1080, and more. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 5:05 Why do an “extreme isometric” for 5 minutes, instead of just 2-3 minutes in length 17:40 What Mark sees in the midst of fatigue in an extreme isometric hold and how this resonates with what happens in sport and life itself in uncomfortable circumstances 26:00 The role and sequence of breathing in isometrics and exercise in general and how it contributes to one’s results and recovery from other bouts of training 33:00 Staying in a parasympathetic state, and letting the body choose when it wants to go sympathetic 35:00 The role of intention and focus in isometric lunges and beyond 43:50 Thoughts on the idea of using one energy system to recover another, and how a longer duration burst can improve a lower duration burst and vice versa “The last 2 minutes (of a 5 minute extreme isometric) is when you can really tap into that Cori cycle” “When we lose focus during (those last minutes of an extreme isometric lunge), we have to restart the (energetic) process” “It’s not so much like, I need to grunt it out and hold that 5 minutes because it’s going to make me better at what I’m doing. It’s more about how much can I stay focused and how much can I hold the intention of what I’m doing in that 3-5’ window is going exponentially make you more successful at whatever you are trying to accomplish outside the isometric” “When you talk to yourself (positively) you release dopamine; and dopamine is going to help you hold on (to the isometric) slightly longer. Changing how you view yourself is going to help you hold on to that isometric” “When visual people start to suffer (in an isometric) their eyes start wandering… if you are an auditory person, you are going to yell a lot, and if you are kinesthetic, those are the figety ones” “Isometrics will teach you to keep calm through real life situations”
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