Fall ball and a long summer of competition is coming to an end, and I know a lot of you athletes are wondering what to do with your time now.
Allow me to make a suggestion….
GET INTO THE GYM!
Now that it is the beginning of the off-season, let’s consider some variables:
Your body needs a break from playing your sport competitively. Let it happen.
Work on your specific needs (mobility concerns, attacking weaknesses, etc.)
Assess and evaluate where you are in the fitness-fatigue paradigm. Are you a high performance race car, or are you a dump truck at this point in time?
Time to set NEW goals for the off-season and the upcoming season.
Let’s dive into these variables one-by-one.
General Physical Preparation (GPP)
After a long summer season, your body is surely thanking you from taking time off (including your arm for you baseball folk).
This phase of your training scheme will focus on regeneration of your tissue and essential mobility which allows the body to fully recover so that it can handle higher forces come the later months. We call this General Physical Preparation.
Part of our job as Performance Coaches is to reduce the likelihood of injury. That being said, the last thing we would want to do from a training standpoint is mimic the motions of your sport. This is why it is called a “general” phase.
Rather than just focusing on getting stronger at this time during the training year, we want to start addressing and eliminating your weaknesses. Whether it be a mobility issue, single leg stability, aerobic capacity, we want to make sure we get all of those buckets filled as soon as possible.
At Infiniti Performance, we take a holistic approach to training. As much as we want our athletes to get quicker and stronger, we take movement quality into consideration. To avoid layering strength on top of a dysfunctional movement, we must first clean up that same dysfunction or weakness.
Assess and Evaluate
At Infiniti, we train our athletes 70-75 minutes per session. We express that their time spent with us is a controlled environment. However, we cannot control the other hours in the day.
This is why we have developed the Athlete Readiness and Training Optimization Scale (ARTOS). We want to make sure our training is aligned properly so that we take those other hours into consideration.
If your athlete feels as if he is too stressed out with school, doesn’t know how much he/she should be eating, now is the time to discuss these variables so that 1: the athlete becomes self aware of habit, and 2: this behavior develops into a positive habit when we approach the competitive season.
Upon evaluation, we always end with discussing our training goals. This time of the year is exciting because we get to hear about the success our athletes have had throughout the year.
While setting goals is an important component to the training process, we need to continuously set goals and re-evaluate throughout the off-season.
Any goal we set must be a SMART goal: specific, measurable, action-based, realistic, and time-based.
Not only should our goals be SMART, but we need to SHARE them with others! We want our athletes to know that we are part of their support team. Research has shown that those who write their goals down and share them with others, have the highest success rate.
So, have a nice trip and fall into the off-season!
Jarad Vollkommer, CSCS
Assistant Director of Training
Infiniti Sports Performance