Author: BPSUniversity

Resisted Sprints – Strength/Power Continuum

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Since there is so much activity in this group (and on the Members Only Website discussion board!) with the concepts of Resisted Sprints, we figured it might be appropriate to share clips of this live session.

Note that the “Strength/Power Endurance Continuum” focuses on resisted work that is less specific (Strength, on the left side of the Continuum) and more specific (to the right).
This sequence shown here is one of the THE MOST SPECIFIC, and is placed on the far right side of the Continuum within the Periodization cycle of sprint capacity work. WHY?? The Vertimax Raptor provides very LIGHT resistance – so the body lean, foot strike (with respect to the center of mass), AND the overall ground contact time is very similar to a free sprint (no resistance).

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Hip Abduction Sequence to Multidirectional Speed and Trunk Integration

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Hip Abduction is one of the most important functions of the LINK between lower body function and Integrated Trunk/Spine systems. Maximizing the threshold of lower body functions is ESPECIALLY important with regards to all Movement, Agility, Speed, and Specificity of training. The threshold needs to be maximized by super-setting (complexing) TECHNICAL and/or PLYOMETRIC drills that directly relate to the MUSCLE FUNCTION of the required motion. Since every change of direction (COD) involves certain levels of hip abduction function (eccentric loading AND concentric action), it is imperative that this action is implemented into all Movement protocols. In addition – hip abduction is directly related to Trunk/Spine high level function – especially isometric threshold of trunk lateral flexors and trunk rotators. Both of which are crucial for optimal Movement training.

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Trunk Isometrics to Advanced Movement Progressions

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This detailed coaching video demonstrates various technical drills to complex with advanced movement mechanics during training cycles.  Plyometrics and Footwork drills are great technical drills to complex with full speed movement and sprinting.  However, TRUNK ISOMETRICS at basic levels enhance the plyometric, footwork, and overall technical mechanics.  It's a good idea to set that base of threshold of trunk isometric strength to maximize performance on technical drills.  It's also a good idea to complex trunk AND technical drills with full speed movement and sprint training.

Bone Growth-Youth Development

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Here might be the most commonly asked question a strength & conditioning professional must answer to youth athlete parents.

Question:

“Will my 13 year old child (or younger or teenager) have a stunted growth from lifting weights?”

Answer:

It depends.  It depends if the athlete is exercising biomechanically correct or not.  Stunted bone growth may occur when the open growth plates located at the ends of bones become damaged.  Damaged open growth plates can happen for various reasons, which include an injury from sport or poor exercising technique.  For example, if a 12 yo athlete playing soccer sustains a trauma to the knee in a soccer game, he/she could incur growth plate damage around the knee.  Another way an athlete can sustain growth plate damage in the knee would be biomechanically incorrect weight-bearing exercises.  Say a 10 yo athlete is front squatting and during every repetition their right knee caves in with a valgus moment.  If an expert S&C coach is not there coaching the athlete out of these poor mechanics, overtime knee growth plate damage might occur before the plate close.  However, most youth athletes will not experience growth plate damage from training or in sport as long as qualified professionals are monitoring exercises.

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ADD SOME VARIETY TO YOUR TRAINING!

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We’ve been approached by countless people over the years with the same standard questions about fitness, training, and overall health. These questions get asked by everyone: people who train themselves but are advanced and experienced, beginners looking to get started, even high level athletes.

1. What is the best way to lose weight?

2. What is the best way to get toned?

3. What is the quickest way to get “in shape” for just general, overall good health?

There is countless ways to answer those questions. However, one specific answer that will relate to all of the above “common questions” – Power Endurance and Variety within the Power Endurance cycles.

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“Abs of Steel”

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Whether your goals are to strengthen your abs to be “ripped”, or not, having “abs of steel” will benefit any athlete or any person.  Having strong abdominal muscles along with a strong posterior chain will improve performance.  Performance could mean in sport or just general physical well-being.  Most of our abdominal work at BPS is performed with a slower tempo (232 or 323) since we want our abs under a lot of constant tension to stimulate growth and strength.

Below are 3 trunk & spine exercises that are a must for abs of steel.

  1. Stability – Side Hip Bridge (or Side Plank)
  • We can really target the lateral abdominal muscle to help further sculpt your abs and stabilize your trunk and spine.
  • First, assume the side hip bridge position.  Either with knees bent and on the ground (for beginners) or legs straight and on the lateral edges of your feet.
  • Place the elbow directly under your shoulder with your palm firmly face down on the floor.
  • Maintain a “big” chest and keep your head and toes pointing forward
  • Simply isometrically pause for a progressive amount of time
    • HINT: close your eyes and visualize your abs contracting.
    1. Strength – Reverse Crunch
    • This is an advanced exercise that will ensure “abs of steel”, if you can safely reach this level.  We recommend increasing volume with the previously mentioned exercises before exploring the reverse crunch.  However, this exercise may be progressed as well.
    • Lay in a supine position with the top of your head about 4 inches from a sturdy fixed object like a support beam or heavy bench. You will use the bench or pole to grasp with your hands for support during the exercise.
    • Next, bend your legs at the hips so the bottoms of your feet are facing the sky.
    • Now, push the small of your back into the ground so your abs contract and move the bottoms of your feet directly straight up towards the sky without letting your legs drift toward your head.
    • Again, this motion should be slow with a pause at the top and move slowly back down to the starting position.
      • Progress this movement from going straight up to slightly away from the head and up.  The farther you push your feet away from your head the more intense the contraction will be.  Once you can push your feet almost directly away from your head so your feet are only 10-12 inches above the ground you may progress further.  Now you may be ready to start by pushing your feet straight towards the sky then without returning to the start position lower your legs and feet until they are 10-12 inches from the ground and return to the position where your legs are reaching for the sky.
      1. Integrated Strength – Lateral Landmine Rotation
      • With this exercise you will be able to train your abs to contract through the entire range of motion while the trunk and spine undergoes rotation.
      • Here’s how: Place a standard Olympic bar into a “Landmine” or a crease so the bar doesn’t slide on the ground, yet the top end of the bar can move.  Place the bar in your hands so it is in front of your hips (the barbell be coming from your left side in this position).  Keep your left palm facing up and your right palm facing down as your grabbing the bar.  From here, keep your arms straight as you rotate the bar up and your left.  Once you slowly reach your end range of motion slowly return to the starting position.
        • HINT: never release your abdominal contraction during the rotation, not even at the bottom starting position. 
        • Progress repetitions, sets, and resistance

        **For full video demonstrations of these abdominal exercises plus many more, sign up for our BPSU online university.  There you can listen to and watch coaching cues videos as well as have access to our entire database to build programs and get the best out of any athlete. 

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Row Dissection: Progressions and Tools

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Part 1: Restraint and Effects On Force Output

Keith Shimon MATcs

“What is the best way to row?”  “What is the best row machine?” “Are machines evil or bad, and should I only use barbells, dumbbells, bands, or body weight?”  

As professionals you hear a gamut of questions and exercise mythology.  Is there really a “best row?”   Maybe a “best row” exercise for a specific individual.  It all comes back to the question of “who is it for,” and “what is the goal of this exercise” (Purvis, 2013, Exercise mechanics lecture).   Through the years we have all been introduced to the standard ideology of what a rowing motion looks like.  I imagine that we also have a framework in our head of the basic rules we were told in order to get the most out of any rowing motion, and the specific muscles that the exercise may challenge.  In addition, we have favored machines, dumbbells, kettle bells, cables, bands, or body weight because we were told that it was the best way to row.

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6-WEEK MASS HYPERTROPHY UNDULATING

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6-WEEK MASS HYPERTROPHY UNDULATING

10-6-15
Pete Bommarito, MS, CSCS, USAW, MATCS
Owner/President, Bommarito Performance Systems
Owner/President, Bommarito University

Maximizing muscle growth is obviously an extremely important concept for all different types of athletes and fitness enthusiasts. There is tons of data and research that shows different types of programs, and the hormonal response associated with each. The key is to implement the research into application – but with programs that can be safely and intelligently performed that gets the desired results without running the risk of overuse injuries. Separating a person’s goals into 2 main categories is important – the general population and athletes. The benefit of this undulating program is it can be performed and be extremely beneficial to all types of general population and all athletes at various levels.

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FOREARM AND GRIP WORK – STRENGTH, POWER, AND ENDURANCE – THE UNDERRATED ASPECT OF THE OVERALL PROGRAM

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Maximizing various aspects of strength in the forearms, wrists, hands, and fingers is one of the most underrated aspects of many Sports Performance programs.  Even though these muscles involved are smaller muscles (and in many cases, stabilizing muscles), he various aspects of strength of the traditional bigger/stronger muscle groups of the body is similar.  Absolute strength, high-speed eccentric loading, isometric strength, reversal strength, speed strength, and various forms of strength/power endurance are usually the primary categories that need to be considered with any forms of resistance training.  Implementation of absolute strength and isometric strength are a standard in most programs.  However, the other strength components definitely need to be planned for – especially combat style sports like wrestling, football, hockey, grappling, and many aspects of martial arts.  It’s also extremely important with any sports that involve grip on an external surface – baseball bat, tennis racket, lacrosse stick, hockey stick, etc.

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