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Showing posts from February, 2018

Next Level

So, there are those of us who work out regularly to look and feel better and improve our general health.  There are those of us who just like to lead active lives and enjoy nature and the occasional physical activity.  And then there are those of us who like to challenge themselves to push past our perceived physical limitations and see how far down the rabbit hole we can go.  While this last one is certainly an admirable pursuit, as are the other two, I must say it is the one I most commonly see go sideways.

If you are contemplating taking things to the next level with your training, you must first sit down and realistically assess what you are about to take on.  Next level training is not just about pushing yourself in the gym, but also managing your personal life, your recovery, and your expectations.  It also means knowing when to go low and slow and when to go hard.  The most common mistake a lot of people make is that they think next level means going harder all the time.  But,…

Technical Strength

*reposted from practicalstrength.blog

Technique.  Its something we as coaches are constantly correcting, describing, cueing, and obsessing over.  Seems simple, right?  If you want to perform at your best, you need perfect technique.  And yet, that concept is probably the most misunderstood, misapplied, and outright ignored concept in physical training. In the interest of increasing the amount of time my son actually devotes to practicing his cello, my son’s cello teacher posed this question to us today: “If you knew someone had to perform one hour of vigorous physical activity a week, how would you train them for it?”
For the record, this cello teacher was born in the Czech Republic and was not only raised in a vigorous music teaching environment, but also a vigorous physical training environment.  And according to him, there’s not much difference.  Both are extremely physically AND mentally challenging.  A lot of people don’t understand actual Eastern Block training methods that don’…

Always Training

Years ago, and by years I mean 25 years ago, I was a somewhat accomplished equestrian. I rode, trained, and showed horses in a number of disciplines: hunter/jumper, dressage, fox-hunting, and simple pleasure riding. If you aren’t familiar with the intricacies of training horses for simple riding or competition, you might be shocked at the subtleties that their training involves. Everything from their behavior in the barn to how they respond to simple and more complex commands is the result of constant reinforcement of good cues, positive reinforcement, and an engaged mind on the part of both the horse and trainer. 

One thing a lot of people don’t understand about horses is how very sensitive horses are to simple body language. Although we all have the impression from cowboy flicks that horses are primarily driven by violent kicks and slowed down with a jerky rein, the truth is, they are capable of taking most of their requests from small changes in pressure and position of the sea…