The key to athletic developmentWORTHINGTON — One of the basic principles of any training program is the principle of specificity.
By: Ryan Seykora, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON — One of the basic principles of any training program is the principle of specificity.
Specificity refers to the development of a program that trains an athlete in a specific way to produce a specific change or result. The similar the training activity is to the actual sport movement, the greater the likelihood that there will be a positive transfer to that sport. The principle of specificity also implies that to become better at a particular exercise or skill, you must perform that exercise or skill. To be a good cyclist, you must cycle. To be a good runner, you must run and a swimmer should train by swimming.
Aside from bodybuilders, sport-specific resistance training requires a more refined approach than simply lifting heavy weights to complete exhaustion. A physiological analysis of any game or event will confirm that most athletes require explosive power, muscular endurance, maximal strength or some combination of all three in order to excel. Rarely is pure muscle bulk the primary concern and when it is, other elements of strength are equally as important.
This is why a proper athletic training program is needed. One such program is the Sanford POWER program.
The Sanford POWER Athletic Training Program’s vision is to be the premier athletic performance program in the region. The No. 1 goal is to improve athletic performance by stressing the principles of proper functional movement. A properly designed athletic enhancement program will not only help improve the athlete’s performance, but can also help address biomechanical issues that could lead to injury over time. The POWER program is broken into different phases from acceleration and agility training to plyometric and strength training.
The Sanford POWER Program uses a variety of different speed drills to enhance an athlete’s acceleration ability. Every speed day for an athlete consists of speed technique drills followed by either assistance or resistive speed training. A majority of speed training is on the ground, but will also use treadmills as a tool to work on technique and over speed training.
The focus of the POWER plyometric program has two main components. The first is the focus on proper jumping/loading position and proper landing mechanics. This is a vital component as it helps teach proper body control, balance and body positioning. This is a key to any athlete, but especially female and young male athletes. The second component involves utilizing explosive movements in the development of power. These exercises are implemented once the basic movements are mastered.
The Sanford POWER Program teaches agility and footwork to the majority of the athletes. This is a very important part of the POWER program as most sports involve a large amount of change of direction. There are a variety of drills that range from basic drills to teach coordination, balance, and proper footwork to more advanced drills that continue to work on the fundamentals but also challenge the athlete with different movements.
The Sanford POWER strength training programs are prescribed based on the level of the athlete. For beginners, exercises are taught to work on proper technique and build a solid foundation for the athlete. This will help the athlete as they progress through the POWER Program for years to come. This program also teaches the Olympic lifts as well as teaching functional movement lifts that will help the athlete move well and reduce their risk of injury.
Proper athletic training can really allow an athlete to take the next step in their performance. The Sanford POWER program and the YMCA can help provide the proper tools to lead the athlete to the next level.