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4 Tips To Maximize Performance & Prevent Injury

Thursday, June 23, 2016
Nate VanKouwenberg, MA, CFSC, USAW

“Hard work without talent is a shame, but talent without hard work is a tragedy!” –Robert Half

Talent is only a small component of what it takes for an athlete to be successful! For every talented athlete, there are hundreds, if not thousands of others just like them. It’s what an athlete does beyond their regular practices and games that will make them stand out above the rest. If you’re not willing to put in the extra time and effort to gain an edge on your competition, someone else is and you’ll be left behind!

It takes a lot more than just walking in the weight room door to maximize performance and prevent injury! Over the past 12 years, we’ve helped countless elite level HS, College and Pro athletes take their game to the Next Level, while drastically decreasing the risk of injury by offering the latest in scientifically proven training methods.

Here are four of our favorite tips to maximize performance and prevent injury for elite level HS/ College athletes!

  1. Follow a structured program that is in line with your goals!

    1. Are you training to be a bodybuilder, power lifter, or athlete?! Training methods for these groups of people are very different!

    2. Sports Performance programs should be comprehensive, including mobility, corrective exercise, power, speed, agility, strength and conditioning. Lifting is just one ingredient of this recipe.

    3. Leave your ego at the door! No one on the field cares about how much you bench or what your abs look like! When it comes to training, Cool and Hard does not always equal good! Again, train to be a better athlete!

  1. Commit to a consistent training schedule!

    1. Once in awhile, or when I can isn’t going to cut it! Consistency is key to maximizing physical development.

    2. Schedule your workouts first, then schedule everything else around your workouts. How serious are you about reaching your goals? You may need to make sacrifices!

  1. Work with a certified strength & conditioning coach!

    1. It doesn’t matter if you have the best program in the world if it’s not performed correctly and/or individualized to meet your specific needs! A certified strength coach can modify a program to meet your needs based on goals and physical abilities. HS and College kids often guess when it comes to how much (weight/ intensity) and how many (reps/ volume). This can lead to plateauing and even injury.

    2. Training independently can be dangerous! Safety should be the first priority of an experienced strength coach! It’s critical that athletes at all levels receive feedback on technique and other variables to eliminate training related injuries and maximize results!

    3. Pick your strength coach/ training facility wisely! Unfortunately there’s a lot of crap out there! Just because someone has their own gym, has letters next to their name, or posts cool stuff online, it doesn’t mean they know what they’re doing. Be sure to take experience, reputation, track record with other athletes and philosophy into account!

  1. Focus on “The Other 23” hours of the day! LIVE like an elite athlete!

    1. Although quality of training is a huge factor when it comes to performance and injury prevention, it’s all a waste of time if you neglect your time outside of the gym!

    2. Train hard, Drink water, Eat well, Get enough sleep, Stay out of trouble, Be a nice person, REPEAT!

Although these 4 tips seem like common sense, we see many athletes, parents and coaches that have great intentions, but are missing the boat on these pillars of success.

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