February 3 "If the enemy opens the door you must race in." –Sun Tzu, The Art of War
Often times when we meet other coaches and begin discussing strength training, we find that most, if not all, have never heard of training philosophies similar to the one we promote at StrongerAthletes.com. These coaches either respond in one of two ways. Some develop a keen interest as we tell them that our so-called, "non-traditional," methods have been around for decades and that the likes of high schools through NFL teams use these methods. Others will disregard us as if we were the newest cult since Hale-Bop.
We do not blame these close-minded coaches for their perception. They have been brought up with a background that training must be done a certain way. Chances are these coaches train their athletes the way they were trained by their coaches. These guys, assuming they are football coaches, probably run the same offensive and defensive systems they ran as players for that is what they are comfortable with.
Many coaches turn to popular literature and coaching videos to help educate them on the current trends. A popular catalog that is distributed to coaches all over the country is published by Championship Productions. (Let us say this is not an ad for their company just an example of popular coaching products.)
The Championship Productions catalog offers a variety of books and videos on topics from "Wing-T Schemes" to "Defensive Line Play". Contributing authors of these books and videos include coaches from the nation’s top programs including Kansas State, Iowa, Iowa State, Miami, Georgia, Texas, Washington State, Virginia Tech, Penn State, Marshall, Nebraska, and Florida State. Many coaches, who receive this catalog use these resources to grow and learn from the best.
On the Strength & Fitness page of the January 2003 catalog, 11 books and videos are listed. Assuming that most coaches are unfamiliar with our training philosophy one would think that resources about that philosophy would be limited. However, I was pleased to discover that 4 of the 11 products were aimed at safe, productive and efficient training methods. Another 4 were aimed at training that would promote what we feel are unsafe movements, but would fall into the mainstream. The remaining 3 of the 11 items are most likely of little use to the traditional sport coach doubling as the strength coach such as, "Strength Ball Training" and "Buddy Lee’s Instructional Jump Rope Video & Magic Speed Rope Cross Trainer".
Our point being that 1/2 of the products aimed at strength training for football, or other traditional interscholastic sports, promote safe, productive, and efficient methods. It is our hope that more and more coaches will become aware of these and increase their working knowledge of strength training.
Listed below are the items a coach seeking sound strength training instruction might want to purchase. Again, this is not an advertisement for Championship Productions, but it should be known that the following images and descriptions come from their website.
We feel that all coaches who work with kids in the weight room should continue to grow and learn about their profession. If you are new to safe, productive, and efficient training ideas or you are already a believer we suggest you make these products a part of your curriculum.
You can contact Championship Productions online at www.ChampOnline.com or by phone 1(800) 873-2730.
If you know of any other products of this nature that would be useful to the strength coach please let us know and we’ll post ‘em up!