Friday, November 30, 2012

Preparation for Winter Football Training

Before we get into the videos, I want to congratulate three of my clients - Jason Grote, Andrew Horstman and Austin Schmidt. All three of them received All - Ohio honors this week. Jason and Andrew have been clients of mine since they were in junior high and it is great to see that all the years of hard work had paid off for them. FYI - Jason was a slow, flat - footed, knee brace wearing kid at one time. He made 2nd Team All Ohio at Guard - at a 195lbs! Andrew made 2nd Team All- Ohio at Punter and is also one of the best athletes to ever walk through the doors of my gym. He has a chance to punt or play a variety of other positions at the college level. Austin has only been at Soar for 1 year and made outstanding progress this spring. He is heading to Illinois on full scholarship. Congrats again to all three guys.

 So what are we doing right now to get our football players ready for intense winter training? Boring old GPP - building a base. Remember, these guys just came out of 4 months of collisions. The last thing they need one week into training is a heavy bar on their back or tons of mindless agility training. Here are some videos our GPP

 After 2 - 4 weeks of GPP - its time to move on to getting jacked up and fast!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Assessing Proper Squat Depth

Squatting is without question one of the best ways to develop lower body strength in athletes and the general fitness population.  Its benefits are almost unlimited.  Need to burn fat  - squat.   Need to jump higher  - squat.  Need to run fast  - squat.   Need bigger legs   - squat.     All of my athletes and adult clients squat.   They front squat, back squat, KB golbet squat, high rep squat, max effort squat and dynamic squat.   It all depends on who they are, what part of their off- season they are in and what their goals are.  

One often overlooked or taken for granted part of squatting is the depth.  Different strength coaches and trainers have different opinions on what the depth of a squat should be.  There are those people who believe that Ass to Grass Squatting (femurs below parallel)  is the only way to go.

This kind of squat is accepted in some circles.    Not in my circle.   Ever.  Yes she is low  - but in my opinion the knees are too far forward and her back in flexion.   Keep in mind that is the bar only.

There are others who only believe in  box squats and there are those who think that squatting to a box is for pussies.   To me, it is finding the best depth of squat to for each individual client.  To ensure proper depth of squats at Soar, we use various heights of boxes .  Plus I have found it is way easier to get someone to sit back in their squat confidently when there is a box behind them.

My goal is to always to get my clients to get as strong as they can to the lowest depth that is appropriate for them.  Keep in mind that I am not training power lifters.   Whether or not their squat will qualify in a meet is irrelevant to me.  Making sure they are at their strongest and healthiest to play their sport is my only concern.

The video below shows what I look for when determining the box height for a new client.

Remember - the purpose of the video was finding the proper depth. Breathing, sitting back, keeping the chest up and pushing the knees out are techniques that we are constantly working on as well.

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