strength

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Upper Body Strength Matters

  We spend a lot of time focusing on pressing with the strength training for athletes. The bench press is the king of pressing exercises, closely followed by the military press. Now, while it is true that we’ll never perform sports while lying on our backs and pushing something away from us, these are still important exercises because they help to strengthen the upper body and to ensure that this is not a week link in our athlete’s performance.  ...

Prioritize For Program Success

weights

Prioritize for Program Success   Today a strength and conditioning coach has way to many things that they have to develop. The internet and equipment companies don’t make this any easier because both things muddy the waters and distort what our athletes need. Today a strength and conditioning coach is expected to increase strength, improve power, develop speed and agility, work on core strength/endurance, develop mobility, increase muscle size (if necessary), educate athletes on nutrition, warm the athlete up for...

Lifting Weights Really is Good for Your Brain…

People have said for awhile that exercise is good for the brain. That’s a pretty broad statement and is usually associated with anecdotal evidence. In the Journal of Applied Physiology, Church et al have an interesting study looking at strength training and something called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF).   BDNF is a protein that supports the survival of neurons in the nervous system, as well as growth and differentiation of new neurons. It is important for memory, neurogenesis (growing new...

Athletes Need Strength

A lot of my social media posts talk about the importance of strength for athletes. For me, this is an important prerequisite ability to be successful in speed, changing directions, jumping, throwing, kicking, hitting, in fact just about everything that our athletes do. With this article we’re going to talk about why strength is important, how it should be developed, and diminishing returns.   Reasons why strength is important for everyone: Running, jumping, and changing directions are about exerting force...

The Kettlebell Press is Important for Athletic Strength

The standing kettlebell press is one of the best kettlebell exercises for an athlete’s upper body strength. This exercise works the muscles of the shoulder, triceps, and develops a strong core to support the weight overhead. Additionally, as we’ll discuss later, it also allows for a great many variations. In this article we’re going to talk about how to perform the exercise, make some programming recommendations/examples, and talk about modifications.   Who needs to use this exercise: This exercise is...