Fusion Performance Training https://www.fusiontrained.com New York CIty Personal Trainer Wed, 06 Dec 2017 22:43:19 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.4 The Bandaid Approach https://www.fusiontrained.com/the-bandaid-approach/ https://www.fusiontrained.com/the-bandaid-approach/#respond Tue, 17 Nov 2015 01:00:08 +0000 https://www.fusiontrained.com/?p=2962 Deal with Reoccurring Injuries At The ROOT of the Problem When you have an injured shoulder, you’d think to address the shoulder. So you get a massage, roll it, stretch it etc…  and it starts to feel better. But it just keeps coming back. We’ve all been there, having to deal with nagging shoulder pain, […]

The post The Bandaid Approach appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>

Deal with Reoccurring Injuries At The ROOT of the Problem

When you have an injured shoulder, you’d think to address the shoulder. So you get a massage, roll it, stretch it etc…  and it starts to feel better. But it just keeps coming back. We’ve all been there, having to deal with nagging shoulder pain, back pain, or knee pain. We work them out, it feels good, we push it, and then boom, there it is again!

The problem is that you’re more than likely not addressing the root of the injury. You may feel the pain in a specific spot and deal with it directly, but that’s a bandaid approach. If you want to make an impact, look beyond the pain and go to the source. Sounds really confusing but trust me, it’s simpler than you think. 

“Where You Think It Is, It Aint’!”

In the above model’s case, this person will more than likely have some sort knee pain or shoulder pain. If you look closely, the root of the issues stems from the hip. I know this sound weird but it makes sense if you understand the concept of tensegrity.

Watch this video of Tom Myers explaining how tensegrity is relatable to the human skeleton and how this will help you understand more about your nagging injury.

Tensegrity put simply = everything effects each other. In this case the human body is held up by the soft tissue that guides the bodies alignment. If the left hip is weak and the right his is tight and strong, then you’ll pull one away and it’ll have a trickle down effect (like the image above).

Example:

Athlete X has one trap higher than the other. When doing overhead movements (overhead press, snatch, overhead squat, etc…) athlete X may start to develop shoulder and wrist pain on one side due to being out of position, thanks to…you guessed it the left trap. This mis-alignment causes wear and tear on the body = inflammation = pain.

As typical, the athlete will more than likely treat the acute problem, the wrist and shoulder. However, as we now know they need to address why the left trap is hiked up, maybe due to lower trap weakness and scapula stability issues.

Professional Perspective

…if you’re having nagging pains, don’t just treat the pain but assess it. Then you will be able to develop a pin point plan to treat the CHRONIC issue and not the acute. This is why it’s so important to have a qualified personal trainer, strength coach, and physical therapist in your network.

Believe it or not even NYC trainers and strength coaches have their own coaches too. While many qualified personal trainers and strength coaches have a wealth of knowledge, it’s important to have an outside perspective from another trainer, coach, and/or therapist that you can trust.

My own weightlifting coach and physical therapist have shown me new ways to think, apply, and cue lifts so that it would click in my head. They taught me new ways to hips stabilize my hip that I never thought of, small little tinkering to the movement, and boom it felt so much better.

Long story short, make sure to have a great personal trainer, strength coach, or therapist and if you’re dealing with a little nagging pain look beyond the area of pain but for the source of it.

Train smart,

Team Fusion Trained

The post The Bandaid Approach appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
https://www.fusiontrained.com/the-bandaid-approach/feed/ 0
Crawl, Walk, Then Run…Keys to Dieting Success https://www.fusiontrained.com/crawl-walk-then-run-keys-to-dieting-success/ https://www.fusiontrained.com/crawl-walk-then-run-keys-to-dieting-success/#comments Mon, 02 Nov 2015 01:00:15 +0000 https://www.fusiontrained.com/?p=3022 I read this quote and thought how fitting it was for those trying to achieve their fitness goals. Fitness marketing and uninformed personal trainers will tell you that they can help you achieve your goals in 30 days or something of the sort. The thing is, most people can’t do this because of the shear […]

The post Crawl, Walk, Then Run…Keys to Dieting Success appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
Crawl, Walk, Then Run...keys to dieting success

I read this quote and thought how fitting it was for those trying to achieve their fitness goals. Fitness marketing and uninformed personal trainers will tell you that they can help you achieve your goals in 30 days or something of the sort.

The thing is, most people can’t do this because of the shear amount of changes. You go from eating out to preparing your meals, watching tv to working out x5-6 days a week, and so on.

If somehow they do stick with it, they’ll more than likely fall off the wagon and slide back to the same routine after a few months, not sound pessimistic.

Why?

It’s clear that many people yo-yo diet or exercise. Meaning they’ll diet and train really, really, really hard for a few weeks/months and then something happens… it all becomes too much, they’re not getting the results they want, schedule sucks, and so on… now it’s back to square one.

This method of training and dieting isn’t sustainable, it’s WAY too much to go from nothing to being on point 24/7. No matter how much people hate hearing this you need walk first.

We all know those people that take on multiple tasks, get spread too thin, and then get nothing accomplished vs. the person that focuses on one job, crushes it, and then moves on. This is EXACTLY like training and dieting, the focus and tasks get spread too thin.

With that said, here are x3 tips to help you stay pin-point focused to get from walking to running:

Crawl, Walk, Then Run...Keys to Dieting Success

Habits

This is probably one of the BIGGEST aspects for long term success. Habits need to be VERY specific and need to be focused. Stating general non-specific habits will set you up for failure.

Things like:

“I’m going to workout this week”

This opens you up to many excuses- “I’ll workout tomorrow” which leads to the next day and so on.

A better habit would be something like:

“I will go to the gym, do 15 minutes of cardio, 20 minutes of weights- Monday and Saturday”

This is specific and very focused- you have specific days and a time frame for the workout. It’s also not overwhelming because 35minutes during the weekday and 35minutes during a weekend isn’t asking for much. NO one is so busy that they can’t prioritize 35 minutes at the gym.

Crawl, Walk, Then Run...Keys to Dieting Success

Accept Failure

The reality of any journey is that there will be bumps in the road. You have to accept that there will be peaks and valleys but as long as you’re consistent, you WILL inevitable get there.

Fitness sleazy marketers will sell you the “easy” way of doing things and promise you nothing but lies.  This has mis-lead so many people, thinking after one little bump in the road that’s it’s not working.

Despite the doctored photos or manipulated sales tactics, the truth is we ALL will fail at one point. However, that doesn’t mean you need to quit. With each bump in the road, you learn from it, adapt, and keep moving forward.

You can do drastic measures that have short term effects, like juicing but that will only cut water weight and you’ll immediately revert back to old habits when you implement whole foods again.

It’s a band-aide approach that only gives you false results. Accept that this will take time and completely forget about those BS 30 day transformations. Stay focused on YOUR path!

Crawl, Walk, Then Run...Keys to Dieting Success

Be Truthful

It’s common to hear,

“I’ve been dieting and exercising for x5 weeks but haven’t lost ANY weight”

The thing about this statement is it’s just not statistically possible IF you’ve truly been exercising and dieting consistently.

Let’s break it down:

One pound is 3600 kcal, a deficit of 720kcal a week is needed to lose one pound over a 5 week span. This equates to a deficit of 103 kcals a day and this doesn’t even include calories utilized during a workout, so clearly something is missing.

If we dig deeper, I’m sure there is a reason why this person hasn’t lost a pound. Initially you’ll hear something like,

“I’ve been eating nothing but lean meats and veggies”

…dig deeper

“well we had a company outing so I had to have pizza and a few drinks, I need to live my life”

dig a little deeper…

“I rewarded myself with a pint of ice cream for working out consistently for two weeks”

and so on…

Whatever the situation is, you have to be truthful with yourself. You can’t expect results when you counter your diet with more calories somewhere else.

With that said, it’s hard for some people to recall what they’ve been eating. A good way to counter this is to take pic of your meals or use a diet tracker app. If you’re honest, this will be a great way to pinpoint the issues.

Crawl, Walk, Then Run...Keys to Dieting Success

Conclusion

The bottom line, if you want lasting results there isn’t short cuts. It maybe uncomfortable at first but these changes will become habitual and you’ll soon realize that it wasn’t all that bad.

Stay focused on the long game ✊

Team FusionTrained

The post Crawl, Walk, Then Run…Keys to Dieting Success appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
https://www.fusiontrained.com/crawl-walk-then-run-keys-to-dieting-success/feed/ 1
Do Ice and Contrast Baths Work? https://www.fusiontrained.com/do-ice-and-contrast-baths-work/ https://www.fusiontrained.com/do-ice-and-contrast-baths-work/#respond Mon, 21 Sep 2015 19:19:37 +0000 https://www.fusiontrained.com/?p=3009 Ice baths and contrast baths may seem crazy to the average joe but for athletes this is a common site and occurrence especially for contact sports like hockey, football, rugby, etc… Ice Baths vs Contrast Baths Ice baths Ice baths are exactly what it sounds like, ice water immersion. Typically the athlete will immerse their […]

The post Do Ice and Contrast Baths Work? appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
Do Ice and Contrast Baths Work?

You’ll have to build your tolerance if you’re sensitive to cold 🙂

Ice baths and contrast baths may seem crazy to the average joe but for athletes this is a common site and occurrence especially for contact sports like hockey, football, rugby, etc…

Ice Baths vs Contrast Baths

Do Ice and Contrast Baths Work?

The recovery facilities at South Carolina.

Ice baths

Ice baths are exactly what it sounds like, ice water immersion. Typically the athlete will immerse their full body in ice water around 12c/53f (+/-) 5c/10f.

Contrast baths

Contrast baths are alternating immersion of hot and cold tubs of intervals from 1-5 minutes of each (cold/hot) for rounds of 3+. Typically the temperatures run between 5-10c/40-50f – 35-39c/96-101f.

Do Ice and Contrast Baths Work?

Theoretical Benefits of Cold Tub and Contrast Baths

Most athletes use cold tubs or contrast baths to expedite their recovery. This process is supposed to :

  • Reduce inflammation from the rigors of practice and training.
  • Constrict blood vessels to “push out” waste products built from training and competing.
  • “Calm” the nervous system down.

Is it Effective?

Do Ice and Contrast Baths Work?

A Plus One for Contrast Baths

Vaile et al (1) did a comparison of contrast water therapy, passive recovery, and no intervention = just rested for symptoms of Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). They found that contrast water therapy was associated with faster restoration of strength and power measured by isometric force and jump squat production following DOMS induced leg press exercise when compared to passive recovery.

“Therefore, contrast water therapy seems to be effective in reducing and improving the recovery of functional deficiencies that result from DOMS, as opposed to passive recovery.” (1)

Plus One for Contrast Baths AND Ice Baths

Higgins et al (2) did a study on 24 male rugby players divided in x3 groups:

  • One immersion cold therapy 2x5min at 10c/50f
  • Control group- 15mins of neutral environment rest
  • Contrast bath (5 cycles of 10c/50f- 38c/100f

The test was to see the performance and recovery between 2 games completed in one day. The two forms of hydrotherapy were administered following the first simulated rugby game.

“Overall trends indicated that both treatment groups (contrast baths and ice baths) had performance results in the second simulated game above those of the control group of between 2% and 6% across the physical work stations replicating movement characteristics of rugby union. In conclusion, trends in this study may indicate that ice baths and contrasts baths may be more advantageous to athlete’s recovery from team sport than passive rest between successive games of rugby union “. (2)

Essentially they found that the immersion cold therapy and contrast bath helped the players better perform by 2-6% greater than simply resting for the second game.

Do Ice and Contrast Baths Work?

Negative for Ice Baths

Kylie et al (3) did a test on 40 UNTRAINED volunteers using a eccentric loading protocol with their non-dominant leg. Participants were randomized to three 1 min immersion in either ice water or tepid water. Results showed NO significant differences in minimizing markers of DOMS.

With that said, there’s a few issues here. Untrained individuals will more than likely not be aware of the subtle differences that ice water immersion therapy can potentially elicit. Basically any soreness would be apparent to them, no matter what because it is all new. Also, most studies show a total of 10minutes of immersion, this study showed bouts of 1 minutes immersion x3 rounds.

Do contrast baths or ice tubs really work?

Conclusion

When it comes to research on recovery it’s very difficult to keep consistent parameters and repeatable effects. Each sport and position has it’s own unique variables causing various levels of “wear and tear”. To top this each athlete’s recovery process will be different depending on how often they played, how hard they trained, the aggressiveness of the athlete, how conditioned they are, and so on.

In my experience when there is trauma- think football – then ice baths have been shown to be very effective to help the player get back to practice feeling more “refreshed”. I’ve found this to be the same for overuse sports like cross country, triathlons, weightlifting, soccer, etc… where there is constant pounding on the knees, ankle, feet, or back. A lot of these sports are also trained all year long. So many athletes will play club on top of their seasonal high-school team games. This will require extra intervention for recovery to help them perform at an optimal level and sustain the rigors of each game and practice.

In the end there doesn’t seem to be conclusive evidence that show it’s beneficial however I haven’t seen research that shows negative effects on performance. Through my years of coaching, I’ve found it to be very effective for most athletes.

Which to do, contrast or ice bath? It really just depends on the availability and trial and error, every adapts different. Some facilities have the finances for contrast baths, they felt amazing but realistically the average Joe will not be able to do this. Ice baths may be an easier alternative where you just need a tub, cold water, and ice.

Do Ice and Contrast Baths Work?

Some people have a much higher tolerance for cold.

Many people may look at these recovery strategies as strange and over the top. But for athletes that are pushing their bodies to another level they have to step up their recovery process just as much. This includes foam rolling, epsom salt baths, ice baths, TENS unit, compression gear and so on.

Train smart,

Team Fusion Trained

Research

  1. Vaile, JM. “The Effect of Contrast Water Therapy on Symptoms of Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness.” Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research (2007): 698-702.
  2. Higgins, “Evaluation of passive recovery, cold water immersion, and contrast baths for recovery, as measured by game performances markers, between two simulated games of rugby union.” Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research (2012).
  3. Louise, K. “Ice‐water immersion and delayed‐onset muscle soreness: a randomized controlled trial”. J Emerg Trauma Shock. 2010 Jul-Sep; 3(3): 302.

The post Do Ice and Contrast Baths Work? appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
https://www.fusiontrained.com/do-ice-and-contrast-baths-work/feed/ 0
The Cost of Using a Waist Trainer https://www.fusiontrained.com/the-cost-of-using-a-waist-trainer/ https://www.fusiontrained.com/the-cost-of-using-a-waist-trainer/#respond Mon, 07 Sep 2015 01:00:53 +0000 https://www.fusiontrained.com/?p=2999 If you’re not familiar with what a “waist trainer” is, it’s exactly what it sounds like. Similar to a corset, that’s not nearly as tight but is marketed as a way to lose inches off your waist. It’s been SUPER popularized by celebrities, I’m not sure who started it but seems like the Kardashians have […]

The post The Cost of Using a Waist Trainer appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
The Cost of Using a Waist Trainer

If the Kardashians where it, it must work

If you’re not familiar with what a “waist trainer” is, it’s exactly what it sounds like. Similar to a corset, that’s not nearly as tight but is marketed as a way to lose inches off your waist. It’s been SUPER popularized by celebrities, I’m not sure who started it but seems like the Kardashians have been pushing this new trend.

2C0237C100000578-0-image-m-8_1441492325095

The Benefits of a Waist Trainer

  • Small waist

That’s pretty much it.

The Side Effects of a Waist Trainer

corset25f-4-web

1908 X-Ray of a corset narrowing the rib cage.

The Cost of Using a Waist Trainer

Normal Rib Cage

Dr. Ludovic O’Followell of France wrote a medical paper written in 1908 discussing the potential negative side effects of wearing corsets. This was the era where corsets were very popular, and despite the lack of technology (x-rays were just developed in 1895) Dr. O’Followell wrote about how dangerous they are.

Potential Side Effects:

  • Narrowing the bottom rib cage = can impair lung function.
  • Compress organs against the spine and/or shifts down into the lower abdomen = could cause long term digestive issues.
  • Eating can be difficult- as we talked about your organs are displaced, so allowing them to work in normal function via swallow, digest, and do anything properly may become difficult. Apparently gas is also a big issue when you where a waist trainer.

The Cost of Using a Waist Trainer

Conclusion

We know that if anything is too good to be true, it more than likely is too good to be true. Just like “Juicing“, these are quick fix fads that have no scientific evidence to show that it truly does what they market it to do.

With that said, yes the waist trainer/body shaper could potentially help you minimize your waist size but at what cost? It’ll move organs and fat around but it will NOT help you reduce your total body fat percentage. While the waist trainer/body shaper will not be as drastic as a corset this doesn’t mean the side effects are to be ignored.

It’s even come to the point that questionable “The Doctors” tv show has even talked about the dangers of waist training. That’s really bad if a celebrity based tv show is standing against this popularized trend. Maybe they’re changing their ways since a report was published showing that a significant amount of their show was not evidence based.

In my eyes, if you’re going to go through all the pain of using a waist trainer/body shaper why not just do it right the first time? Workout and eat a balanced diet. It’s a win-win you’ll look better, feel better, and your health is not at risk. To top that exercise is good for your skin too, so if you’re looking at it from a pure aesthetics point of view, working out has so many positives I’m not sure why people are fighting to avoid it…

If you’re still interested in wearing a waist trainer/body shaper, Molly Fittzpatrick, wrote a great post about her experience wearing a waister trainer for a week. She goes into detail explaining the everyday situations like choosing outfits to hide the waist trainer, the difficulties of navigating the subway stairs, eating, etc…

*I just read someone mentioned pregnancy squishes the organs too, to justify promoting the use of a waist trainer. While this might be true, there is a hormone (relaxin) that is released to help with laxity, that helps open up the hips to make room for the baby, amongst other things. This is a NATURAL state the female body prepares itself for. Simply stating that your organs are “squished” too, is not the case, there’s a biological response to a pregnancy. There is no natural biological response from a waister trainer, other than forcefully pushing the organs, lungs, and rib cage out of it’s natural position, shape, and function.

Train smart,

Team Fusion Trained

The post The Cost of Using a Waist Trainer appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
https://www.fusiontrained.com/the-cost-of-using-a-waist-trainer/feed/ 0
Validity of Compression Gear https://www.fusiontrained.com/validity-of-compression-gear/ https://www.fusiontrained.com/validity-of-compression-gear/#respond Fri, 28 Aug 2015 01:00:58 +0000 https://www.fusiontrained.com/?p=2986 Compression gear has been a hot ticket item in many sports now. Take a look around central park and see all the runners wearing bright knee high socks, weightlifters wearing compression pants, basketball players wearing compression elbow/shoulder sleeves. Even good ole Brett Favre is advocating compression gear for achy joints and so on. With all […]

The post Validity of Compression Gear appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
Validity of Compression Gear

Compression gear has been a hot ticket item in many sports now. Take a look around central park and see all the runners wearing bright knee high socks, weightlifters wearing compression pants, basketball players wearing compression elbow/shoulder sleeves. Even good ole Brett Favre is advocating compression gear for achy joints and so on. With all the popularity, do they actually work?

Validity of Compression Gear

What Are Compression Socks/Pants For?

The main use for compression gear is to help with your overall performance and for recovery via promoting blood flow in stagnate areas, i.e your legs from standing all day. Originally, compression garments were meant for bed-ridden individuals but it’s made its way into the fitness field and the marketers capitalized ALL over it.

Validity of Compression Gear

Compression Socks/Pants Marketed Benefits

  • Increase endurance.
  • Increase strength.
  • Reduce inflammation.
  • Increase power output.
  • Increase stability.

Compression Sock/Pants Research Studies

There is a difference between marketed benefits and actual research based benefits.

Lovell et al (1), found that compression garments helped reduce blood lactate concentration and heart rate. Based on this they hypothesized that you can expedite your active recovery, which can be important for intermittent sports that consisted of repeated bouts of sprints and low intensity runs- think soccer.

de Glainville et al (2) found that the compression garments also helped with the recovery process too. This study was done with 14 trained multi-sport athletes using a 40km cycling time trial performance. Immediately after the baseline test the compression group placed their pants on for 24 hours and then were retested. They found that the performance time in the second time trial to be “substantially improved with compression compared with placebo garments”.

However they were able to fully conclude why this happened:

“Mechanisms behind the improved performance after wearing thecompression garments remain unclear. It has been suggested that wearing graduated compression garments postexercise acts to increase venous blood flow thereby enhancing stroke volume and cardiac output (3), which may enhance muscle blood flow and subsequent recovery

Hill et al. (4) did a study on recovery for marathon runners and found no “significant improvement in muscular strength nor a significant attenuation in markers of exercise-induced muscle damage and inflammation.” However they did found it to have improved subjective perceptions of recovery.

Kraemer et al (5) did a study on vertical jump performance for D1 volley ball players and found that they did not increase maximal jump power output. HOWEVER, it did help with “repetitive vertical jumps by helping maintain higher mean jumping power”.

Do Compression Garments Work or Not?

Validity of Compression GearThe research isn’t strong enough to definitively state that it will help with an athlete current performance. However, it does strongly suggest that it can help with the athletes recovery process, there by helping them be prepared for the following match or practice. What happens, who knows? It’s assumed that the compression gear helps promote blood flow pushing out the waste products and pushing new nutrients in thereby promoting recovery.

In regards to the repetitive jump performance, there’s a few studies that suggest compression garments help with diminish oscillation of the muscle. What does this mean? Theoretically, the less movement the more the muscle is able to fire on all cylinders and generate more power.

My thoughts, I personally like wearing compression pants and can see it’s benefits for all athletes. How it works or what happens who knows, maybe it’s proprioception? What I do know is that when I put on a good pair of compression pants, my legs feel better during the workout and post.

Compression Brands

I personally like the full pants but others like stockings. I’ve tried the 2xu stockings and can say it’s pretty uncomfortable, I don’t like how the top end squeezes my thighs, basically making my legs feel like a sausage about to explode.

Validity of Compression Gear

Japanese brand compression tights that will be making a big splash in North America.

For pants, I like the CW-X and 2xu– which I believe are similar to Virus tights. I typically lean toward the CW-X because they don’t sag down and aren’t see through, however the 2xu feel generally tighter all around.

I’ve tried the Skins and Adidas compression tights and can say that I did not like them one bit. They are more like ‘spandex’ then ‘compression’ tights, very loose fitting which defeats the purpose.

Thanks for reading and let us know if you have any questions by commenting below.

Team Fusion Trained

 

Research Citation

  1. Lovell et al. Do Compression Garments Enhance the Active Recovery Process after High-Intensity Running? Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research 25.12: 3264-268.
  2. de Glanville et al. Positive Effect of Lower Body Compression Garments on Subsequent 40-kM Cycling Time Trial Performance. Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research. 26:2: 480-486. 2012
  3. Chatard, JC, Atlaoui, D, Farjanel, J, Louisy, F, Rastel, D, and Guézennec, CY. Elastic stockings, performance and leg pain recovery in 63-year-old sportsmen. Eur J Appl Physiol 93: 347–352, 2004.
  4. Hill, et al. Influence of Compression Garments on Recovery After Marathon Running.  Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research. 28:8: 2228-2235. 2014.
  5. Kraemer, et al. Influence of Compression Garments on Vertical Jump Performance in NCAA Division I Volleyball Players. Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research. 8/1996

The post Validity of Compression Gear appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
https://www.fusiontrained.com/validity-of-compression-gear/feed/ 0
Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training? https://www.fusiontrained.com/should-the-olympic-lifts-be-used-in-sports-performance-training/ https://www.fusiontrained.com/should-the-olympic-lifts-be-used-in-sports-performance-training/#comments Thu, 20 Aug 2015 20:45:12 +0000 https://www.fusiontrained.com/?p=2971 The Olympic weightlifting variations have been extremely popular to utilize in the sports performance training world. Many coaches and trainers look at Olympic weightlifters and see the extremely powerful, coordinated, athletes that they are and believe this training system can be adapted to develop their own athletes. Skill Sets of a Weightlifter The most popular skill […]

The post Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training? appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training?

The Olympic weightlifting variations have been extremely popular to utilize in the sports performance training world. Many coaches and trainers look at Olympic weightlifters and see the extremely powerful, coordinated, athletes that they are and believe this training system can be adapted to develop their own athletes.

Skill Sets of a Weightlifter

The most popular skill set of a weightlifter is their power, it’s not uncommon to see big 105+ weightlifters able to have impressive jumping abilities. Weightlifters also have incredible strength, mobility, and development that many coaches prefer their athletes to have.

However, many look at the top weightlifters and fail to see that these athletes would more than likely excel in various other sports too. So did the weightlifting movements and variations develop their explosive ability or is that part of their genetic make up?

Vector Forces

Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training?

A “Vector” is defined as: “a quantity that has magnitude and direction and that is commonly represented by a directed line segment whose length represents the magnitude and whose orientation in space represents the direction.”

To be an efficient Olympic weightlifter, the lifter must understand how to direct their force into the platform, for the majority this means that the force should be applied in a vertical direction.

This means the weightlifter is very efficient with application of force into the ground, which will have natural carry over to a vertical jump- IF they know how to efficiently lift. Keep in mind that a majority of weightlifters you see are usually international lifters = elite = training since they were very young (8-14yrs old) and are more than likely training x2 a days. At the minimum, there is a LOT of volume and a “survival” of the fittest system, meaning the system weeds out the “weak” for the genetically gifted.

Good Clean vs. Bad Clean

Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training?

I want to take a step back and show the differences of force application with a good clean vs a bad clean

Good Clean

The good clean shows the lifter pushing into the ground in a vertical trajectory but also having a smooth first pull that set him up for an explosive and efficient 2nd/3rd pull and a perfectly timed catch.

Bad Clean

The bad clean you can see the lifter taking the force off the legs, and loading the back in flexion, pulling with the arm, bar crashing, and then catching the bar in flexion. This type of pull changes the mechanics when you get into the second pull, places undue stress on the lower back, and places the athlete at a much higher risk of injury during the pull and catch.

Don’t get me wrong, that’s a LOT of weight and a very powerful athlete. BUT what’s the risk vs. reward for this type of lifting?

Research

Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training?

I started this post with every intention to have research based observations but many of the reviews I’ve read have a lot of missing variables.

For instance:

Powerlifting vs. Olympic Weightlifting

Channell et al (3) did a test on football players dividing them up into powerlifting and Olympic weightlifting groups. They concluded there wasn’t a meaningful difference in the vertical jump between the two groups:

Powerlifting group showed a vertical jump increase of 2.3% vs the Olympic weightlifting group with a 4.5% increase.

One issue is that the powerlifting group didn’t do much that mimicked the triple extension of a vertical jump vs the Olympic weightlifting group that pretty much mimics it in every way.

Weight Training vs Weight Training + Plyometrics

With that said, there are studies that show resistance training alone does not significantly increase your vertical jump vs. resistance training plus plyometric. Eliyahu et al (1) reported a 3% increase in a weight training group and 11% increase for a weight training + plyometric group of high school athletes. Big difference when you add in a plyometric element to your training.

Kettlebell vs Weightlifting

Otto et al (2) did a study on the effects of weightlifting vs. kettlebell training for vertical jump, strength, and body composition.

Vertical Jump: Kettlebell: +.22cm  vs. Weightlifting: +.93cm

Not a huge increase in either but this test is limited since, the kettlebell group is limited by the weight of the kettlebell and the application of force leans more toward the horizontal vs vertical trajectory.

Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training?

Practical Application

In the end, the research I found didn’t come up with much, however my practical experience as a weightlifting coach and strength and conditioning coach hopefully will have some positive input on your decision.

Every coach has to work with their limitations- time, space, equipment, experience and skill of the athlete, etc… If all things were equal, I’d personally stay away from the Olympic lifts and derivatives excluding the pulls. Here’s why:

Simplicity: in my experience teaching the lifts to NON-weightlifting athletes adds in too many complications. When we compare the simplicity of doing pulls or plyometrics vs power clean, snatch, jerk etc… it’s clear that the pulls and plyometrics movements are much easier to execute in the shortest amount of time. This is VERY important if you have your athletes for a few weeks out of the year.

If you’re at the college level, you’re more than likely limited by your coach to athlete ratio, example: having 20 athletes to one coach = the quality of training goes down. To top that, if you’re at a smaller school, the process of development of your athlete from freshman to senior is limited due to the amount of transfers, especially for talented athletes.

Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training?

In my opinion, simplicity should be one of the top factors in a coaches program. Keep in mind that there is nothing wrong with simplicity, as Bruce Lee says “Simplicity is the key to brilliance”. The simplest programs are the easiest to execute and ones that can be executed with excellence.

Finally, for most coaches, the end goal is force application. We can simplify the movements, spend our time on other modalities, and get the same or more benefits through the pulls, med-ball tosses, weighted jump etc… versus the power clean, snatch, jerk etc…

Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training?

Risk of Injury: weightlifters do reps and reps of the same movement, so the movements are second nature to them. However, this may not be the case for a lot of athletes and they may have limiting factors – i.e. mobility, injury, coordination, etc…

To add to this, most athletes lifts are atrocious, by the time they get into triple extension it’s more like they are doing a hip bump, pulling them into hyperextension = diminishes the purpose of the lift and increases risk of a lower back injury. Then the athlete will catch the bar in a super wide stance and catch the bar on the chest = no bueno.

HOWEVER…

The power cleans are really fun to do and if you find that team enjoys it and can do them effectively, I see no reason not to put them in the training program. Especially if this boosts the “fun factor” and increases team morale. This is where the coach should look at their teams/athletes abilities and decide what is right for their development.

Translation to Sport Improvement

In the end, I believe coaches need to look beyond the abilities of athletes from other sports and focus on what is right for their athletes and the limitations they have to work around. The fact is, you can develop power output through various plyometric and other modalities very effectively and with time efficiency.

Finally, we should remember that the weight-room is ONE small piece in our athletes overall development- energy systems, running mechanics, sport skill, reactiveness etc…

Train smart,

Team Fusion Trained

Research:

  1. Duke, S and Eliyahu, B , D. Plyometrics: optimizing athletic performance through the development of power as assessed by vertical leap ability: an observational study. Chiropr Sports Med 6: 10-15, 1992.
  2. Otto WH. Effects of weightlifting vs. kettlebell training on vertical jump, strength, and body composition. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. 1199-202, May 2012.
  3. Channell et al, “Effect of Olympic and traditional resistance training on vertical jump improvement in high school boys”, Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 2008, vol. 22(5), p. 1522–27.

 

 

The post Should The Olympic Lifts Be Used In Sports Performance Training? appeared first on Fusion Performance Training.

]]>
https://www.fusiontrained.com/should-the-olympic-lifts-be-used-in-sports-performance-training/feed/ 1