Being an athlete at any level – from just starting out in pee wee to the pros – is all about balance. And while this picture is pretty impressive, this isn’t the kind of balance we’re talking about. We’re talking about balancing your conditioning, your skill and your lifestyle. It is so important to not only be the best competitor you can be, but also to be the happiest person you can be.
Which is why we’ve comprised the Top Ten Tips for Athletic Success (at any age, gender or sport):
- Train to the Nth Power – This one covers a lot of ground in terms of conditioning, so we’re going to cheat a little and give you several tips under #1. Essential to any athlete is an off-season program and year-round conditioning program. Athlete should progress gradually in their conditioning so that they are not doing anything “too hard”, “too fast”, too far”, “too quickly”, predisposing themselves to injury. Off-season conditioning programs should address conditioning, strength training and flexibility. During the off-season, the exercise program is at a lower level, thus allowing tissue healing; and the program should peak right before the competitive season. A structured program should be followed for the greatest benefit. The training program should follow an interval fashion and should be formulated so that the athlete reaches peak fitness during the competitive season, or periodization.
- Train Body Weight Before External Resistance – If you cannot perform 20 perfect push ups while stabilizing your shoulders, core, spine and hip flexors you do not need to get under a weighted bar…Period. Younger athletes shouldn’t be training with external resistance anyway. Athletes and coaches often underestimate the power a good body weight program can bring.
- Train Your Muscles Through Range of Motion – Going along with the above tip, stationary machines should seldom be used. You do not play the game (any game) in a seated or fixed spot, so you shouldn’t train that way. Body weight exercises, resistance tubes & bands, medicine balls, stability balls and other functional training methods help to increase your muscle mass AND range of motion.
- Work Out Your Joints – Going along with the above tip, leg extension machines and bicep curls develop useless strength. You cannot possess coordination in your skill unless you train your muscles to work in groups.
- Train With Movement & Explosiveness – Again, isolation training of muscles does an athlete no good. Focus on specific movements and focus on perfecting those movements with explosiveness and power…all body controlled.
- Vary Your Conditioning - Use all primary methods to train: Strength, Dynamic, Speed, Agility, Endurance, Static, Skill. Your training program must be progressive AND varied. If you spend too much time on one aspect (particularly skill set), your positive attributes will suffer and the negative ones will come out.
- Truly Training With Balance - Every action has an opposite and equal reaction. Although each of us have slight ‘flaws’ to our bodies, they are basically made to be in perfect balance. Train your left side as much as your right. Address pushing and pulling on horizontal and vertical planes. If you can’t handle the load or skill on one side or plane as much as the other, adjust to increase the volume and repetition of the weaker. This will make you better than your competition on the court, field, whatever, but it will make you a healthier athlete, less prone to injuries.
- Core Training - Think outside of the box and the weight room. Core training should begin at the very beginning of Phase I, or when an athlete comes off the off-season (8-12 wks before pre-season). If an athlete’s body isn’t strong and stable enough to take what’s going to be thrown at them during conditioning, pre-season and competition, it WILL break down.
- Flexibility Training - See above. It’s the same thing. Many athletes overlook the importance of a structured flexibility program. Both dynamic and static stretching is all-too-important when approaching Phase I of conditioning and all the way through. A longer muscle is a stronger muscle. Again, a flexible athlete will have an edge over their competition and come away the healthier athlete, being less prone to injuries.
- Avoid Mimicking Skills - This is BIG and might be hard for athletes to resist. But throwing weighted balls or the like will do very little to improve your strength and range of motion and very MUCH to mess up your technique and balance. Loading a technique will do a lot to mess up that technique’s mechanics. Just don’t do it.
- Avoid Burn Out - I know. I know. You love the court, or the field or the pool, or whatever. You join leagues and other teams, enter tournaments and play every second you can get. Take a time out. At least from the competitive mindset. There’s nothing wrong with keeping your skill set sharp, but the point is to become a better ATHLETE. From that you will become the best at your sport. So focus on the other 8 factors necessary here for you to do that.
- Nutrition - If I had a penny for every time I told a client “You Are What You Eat” I could buy out Mark Zuckerberg and put him out of his misery! But it is soooo true. I know that it’s hard. You have school. You have practice. You have friends and a social life. You have a family and parents that unfairly make you do things around the house. And it’s so easy to grab something at the gas station or cruise through the drive through, picking up whatever’s on the value menu. You’re only messing up everything that you’re training so hard to do on the court or field. Plan ahead for the week, or even the day. Make smart choices. If you need some help, ask parents, coaches, trainers and us some things you should be eating, particularly during pre-season and competition season.
- Hydration - Ok, so this one goes along with #8, but many athletes don’t properly hydrate. Best case scenario, you’re not performing at max capacity. Worst case scenario, you have a heat stroke on the field and don’t make it. Not pretty, but it happens EVERY year. And chugging a glass of water or bottle of Gatorade when you feel thirsty is not gong to work. You need to hydrate throughout the day. Good rule of thumb: Take your body weight, divide by 2. This is the number of ounces you should be drinking every day. Add in a glass for every serving of caffeine you drink. Add in a glass for every hour that you’re doing profuse sweating.
- Off The Court - Be a good athlete, but just be a good person. While there are plenty of athletes to look up to these days, there are many who are less than stellar role models. Trust your instincts. Do what you feel is right. Do, say and act towards others the way that you would want to be treated. And please, please, please…think before you post or tweet. Once you do that, it DOES NOT go away. Your friends, family, coaches and scouts WILL see your social media activity. Get involved in community events. Somewhere there is a younger athlete that wants someone to look up to…be that someone.
So we hope these tips help you…both on the court or field and off. Our goal is to not develop athletes in a particular sport, but to help all kids be the best athlete they can be. Our camps and clinics focus on this ideology, which is why we believe they’re met with so much success.
Erin Morrow & Greg Holmes
Fitness & Wellness With an EDGE!
Gone are the days when pregnant women were told to ‘Get Your Rest’; ‘Don’t Reach Your Arms Above Your Head’; ‘Have Someone Else Lift/Do That’, etc. Today’s moms-to-be and new moms are more active, more fit and more healthy than ever…and it’s showing in their babies!
For several years now, professionals and doctors have told expectant moms to get up, get moving and exercise (within reason and within each individual’s own limits); but now researchers say that a pregnant woman’s workout will also aid her baby’s nervous system.
A recent study found that compared with those of sedentary women, exercisers’ fetuses had better control during breathing movement, a sign that development of their respiratory and central nervous systems was on track.
They also had significantly lower average heart rate and more heart rate variability, both promising predictors of health.
The exercising moms-to-be (between the ages of 20-35) walked at a moderate to vigorous pace, did stationary cycling or ran at least 30 minutes three times a week and supplemented these cardiovascular workouts with strength training exercises.
And what about supplements for mom & baby? It’s common knowledge that folic acid is a must-take when pregnant to prevent certain birth defects. But this vitamin is believed to be even more vital than ever. Women who hope to become pregnant that take the vitamin for at least a year before conception also reduces the risk of preterm birth by at least 50%.
Did you know that if you are an expecting mom and considered obese, 20% is is a number you need to be aware of? It’s the percentage of decrease in an ultrasound’s ability to detect fetal problems in obese women compared with normal-weight women.
20% is another percentage women who take antidepressants throughout pregnancy need to know. They’re 20% more likely to give birth prematurely. However, surprisingly, the same % of depressed women who aren’t treated for depression while pregnant will experience pre-term birth. These numbers are compared to only 6% of women who aren’t depressed give birth prematurely.
So what does all of this mean for expecting women? These findings and statistics may seem overwhelming, especially considering everything else you need to learn and prepare for to give birth. But having a good fitness, nutrition, stress management and overall wellness plan in place for your pregnancy is key to keeping both you and your baby happy and healthy, both during the pregnancy and after…and is the absolute best gift you can give your little one! So if you need help with your plan, don’t hesitate to contact us…we can help. We hope these stats gave you something to think about and consider if you’re pregnant or expecting to become pregnant!
On the flip side, after all that careful planning during the 9 months (and sometimes earlier), not much prepares you for losing the baby weight after delivery. We can help with that, too. Check out our awesome Power Mommy class (and check out the awesome sale we have going on right now – details at the bottom)…
**You MUST pre-register to attend. To participate in the summer session, at any time, you MUST be pre-registered by June 1st…registration for the entire summer is cut off that day. To do so, simply contact us at 614-735-9890 or 614-746-9185 or you can shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
-Fitness Instruction that focuses on endurance, agility, core and power, fat loss and lean muscle retention
-Pilates and yoga based instruction
-Supplemental health & wellness topics
-Must bring your own mats
-Fun filled atmosphere where you build friendships, camaraderie and share your goals with like-minded moms and their little ones
-Bring your little one to incorporate into your workout…use your Bjorn, backpack, stroller or just freestyle it. Little ones 5 and under only please.
Summer Session Start & End Date |
Monday June 4th 2012
Friday September 28th 2012
Get your workout in in the morning or evening |
8:00-9:00 a.m or 6:00-7:00 p.m.
4 Days a Week |
Monday – Tuesday – Thursday – Friday
2 Convenient locations |
Carriage Place Common Park; 4900 Sawmill Road; Columbus, OH 43235
Goodale Park; 120 W. Goodale St; Columbus, OH 43215; Southwest Corner by the old baseball diamond/backstop
4 Convenient Packages |
One Session $17
One Week of Sessions (4) $60
One Month of Sessions (16) $192
One Summer Unlimited (May-Sept) $499
1 Power Sale Going On |
Buy 1 single session, get the 2nd session FREE = 2 sessions for $17
Buy 1 week of sessions, get the 2nd week at 1/2 off = 2 weeks for $90
Refer a FRIEND |
Bring a friend and get your session for FREE. Refer a friend and get CASH BACK. Contact Power Flex for details.
**You MUST pre-register to attend. To participate in the summer session, at any time, you MUST be pre-registered by June 1st. To do so, simply contact us at 614-735-9890 or 614-746-9185 or you can shoot us an email at email@example.com
**Space is limited in each Power Mommy, so sign up today! See you Monday the 4th!
What is Brown Fat? Can it be the key to weight loss? Can it really make you thin? We weigh in on this topic with today’s blog: All About Brown Fat!
Brown Fat is a type of fat found most abundantly in newborns – presumably to help regulate their body temperature. Adults are believed to have little amounts. Unlike more recognizable white fat, which stores surplus energy, brown fat burns energy to generate heat.
Researchers have studied brown fat for several decades in the hope that unlocking the mysteries of the unique fat could result in treatments to speed up metabolism & promote weight loss.
Promoting brown fat growth really is a plausible approach to weight control. It is attractive because of its simplicity. If more of our fat were brown fat, we would be leaner and better able to resist obesity.
Brown Fat Derived From Muscle
Professionals have identified what they call a “master switch” in mice, which promotes the production of brown fat. Brown fat and white fat have completely different origins. Brown fat is derived from muscle.
They’ve also described a different trigger for brown fat-the protein BMP-7, which is known for promoting bone growth.
By learning that we can stimulate the production of brown fat in mice in research situations, it is not unreasonable to think that we can also do this in humans.
Can Brown Fat Make You Thin?
Brown Fat Can Burn Off More Than 9 Pounds of Bad Fat Each Year
By activating the brown fat in your body, you could lose 9 pounds or more of bad white fat every year — without having to eat less or even exercise more.
New studies show that more than half of adult men and women have enough brown fat in their bodies to burn off substantial amounts of white fat — if the brown fat somehow is stimulated.
Brown Fat and Health
How does it work? Brown fat becomes activated when you’re cold. Activated brown fat burns white fat as fuel. It’s a very inefficient process that gives off heat — and consumes a lot of fat.
New studies show that:
- Obese people have less brown fat than lean people do.
- Men have less brown fat than women do.
- Older people have less brown fat than younger people do.
- People with high blood sugar have less brown fat than people with normal blood sugar.
It’s likely that more than half of all men and women have at least a third of an ounce of brown fat in their bodies — and that’s just in the neck, where brown fat is most easily detected.
If fully stimulated, they calculate that 1.75 ounces of brown fat would account for one-fifth of a person’s total resting energy expenditure — and that’s virtually all from burning off white fat, not sugar.
Finding ways to promote brown fat activation will have a major impact on the obesity epidemic.
So how can you boost your brown fat levels and burn off that white fat? Find out more by reading this article…
We’re just getting our blog started here at Power Flex and we have literally thousands of topics that we want to educate and entertain our readers on. But we’re always happy to hear from you, too. Have a topic that you’d like to know about? Question? Shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Give us a call at 614-735-9890 or leave a comment on any of our social media outlets: Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
Until next time, stay healthy & active!