First State Sports Medicine and Strength Symposium

First night in Newark, Delaware in quite a while.  I was pretty concerned about being well rested for the conference, so after getting in to town just after 10pm, I did my best to get in bed…around 3 am.  Clearly, seeing friends was more important.

Bed at 3am.  Awake at 7.  Ouch.

Shower, clothes, out the door for breakfast. Newark Deli and Bagel still makes a mean breakfast sandwich.  (Taylor ham, egg, and cheese, on a cinnamon-raisin bagel, if you were wondering.)  I arrived at the University of Delaware’s Bob Carpenter Center, excitedly paid the fee for the seminar, and ran in to the lecture hall to begin my educational endeavor.  The lectures discussed hydration strategies for athletes, spine board management, progressions of Olympic weightlifting, fascia, conditioning programs for athletes, and training the central nervous system.

Now, I clearly can’t go into full detail on each presentation, because I don’t have the right or ability to do it proper justice.  Instead, I have some 1-2 sentence take away points that I think would be the most promising.

I expected hydration strategies to be “pound water when you’re exercising.”  In fact, it was quite the opposite; UD’s Assistant Director of Athletics for Sports Medicine, Andrew Reisman, M.D., advised the use of electrolyte based sports drinks to minimize the loss of salts through sweating.  He added that for the heaviest sweaters, measures should be taken pre-exercise to add the requisite electrolytes and fluids to their bodies, as to minimize the risks of dehydration and hyponutremia.  Very vital information.

Spark notes on Spine Board Management, Olympic Lifting, and Fascia:

Be prepared for anything that can arise.  Athletes lives are in your hands.

Olympic Lifts are great.  When done properly.  Take precautions with Overhead Athletes.

Fascia.  Stretch.  Do everything symmetrically.    EVERYTHING.  Oh, and Foam roll.

Now, on the Conditioning and the Nervous System.

The major point given by Jason Riddell from American University was an explanation of the conjugate method of training.  He explained that he uses bi-weekly lifting sessions in season.  One day is a max effort day, and the second day is a dynamic effort day.  The dynamic effort day is based on creating the fastest bar speed; about lifting as quickly as possible, not as heavy as possible.  By alternating between max effort and dynamic effort, you increase both, and ultimately gain strength and power.  Undulating periodization at it’s finest.  It’s a great idea, and hopefully when I learn more about it, I’ll be able to discuss it in greater detail.

The discussion of conditioning by the head basketball strenth coach from UNC Wilmington was awesome.  Mostly because I agreed with everything that he said, but also because he showed video footage and gave his personal rationalizations behind his programming.  To increase work capacity, his athletes perform different complexes, circuits, and intervals, which create the most drastic metabolic stress, therefore increasing their performance the most efficiently.  What’s this mean?  No LSD.  In fact, he said the farthest his athletes ever run at one day is a mile, and only because it’s tradition.  Very cool.

Now, I stumbled upon  google searched for it because he’s a genius video by Mike Boyle discussing doing traditional aerobic conditioning.  The shear simplicity makes it impossible to disagree.  Much like other things which Boyle has said, people will find problems with his reasoning because it is different from what they do, or have done habitually for so long.

If you listen to what Boyle is saying, and if you consider the role of the trainer and coach as an economist, why would you do aerobic training?  If you want to get the most bang-for-your-buck, then you shouldn’t do it.  You should superset, and strength train in such a way that creates a cardiovascular effect.  It’s possible.  It’s what happens in athletics.  We need to facilitate the proliferation of these ideas to the general public.

Hopefully today I’ll be able to get some video footage of some good conditioning work I’ll be getting done.  I’ll put it up so people can see a good example.

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