Feb 23, 2004

Cincinnati Clinic Recap: Princeton High School

"Winning is the science of being totally prepared." -George Allen

Cincinnati Clinic Recap

This past weekend we traveled the 9 or so hours from Kansas City to Cincinnati in order to hear two coaches speak on strength, conditioning and nutritional topics. Mike Shibinski is the head strength coach at Princeton High School in Cincinnati, Ohio. Coach Shibinski spoke to a room of approximately 50-60 coaches and very diplomatically mentioned that he does not incorporate power clean type movements in his training. As we were sitting in the front we could not see the reaction on the faces of the football coaches in the room. However, judging by the number of questions Mike fielded after the lecture they were paying attention. These guys could not believe power cleans were not being used to train football players.

That was the same feeling we had when we were challenged to take them out of our training practices. "What? Not use the power clean? How are we going to train Power?" A coach sitting next to me said,"Some people believe this and some people believe that." People, eliminate the word "believe" from your vocabulary in terms of training methods. You believe in God or such. To believe is an element of faith. Strength training is science it either is or it isn't. Power is not developed by moving fast. Power is a by-product of moving fast.

Coach Shibinski does an outstanding job of educating the coaches and players he works with. He gave us all a 30 page booklet that he gives to coaches and athletes outlining the what's, why's and how's of Princeton Viking Strength Training. One thing I have observed is that serious strength coaches, olympic or non-olympic are very knowledgeable and work hard to share that knowledge with those around them.

We wondered how many coaches would return for Mike's second lecture after they discovered his stance on the "secret", (a.k.a. power cleans). A credit to the football coaches in attendance at this clinic as they chose to come back. In fact they must have brought a friend because the second session had more people than the first!

Mike brought 4 of his athletes to demonstrate various conditioning drills and when I visited with them they were very excited about the work Coach Shibinski was doing with them. We learned a lot and are grateful for coaches like Mike who are not afraid to make a stand for safety in the weight room.

In an upcoming article we will post our comments concerning Dr. Ted Lambrinides' lecture on Nutritional Supplements.

Feb 2, 2004

Dear StrongerAthlete: More Common Sense

"To believe in something and not live it is dishonest." -Ghandi

This picture was created for Jim Bryan by his wife's Photoshop class. He writes, "Real billboard doesn't exist. Funny thing is that some people in our area have been driving around trying to find it."

Dear StrongerAthlete: More Common Sense


(APPLAUSE)........WELL DONE! Great website. How refreshing it is to see something like this, considering the internet is littered with opposing viewpoints, opinions/theories and flat out misinformation. With regards to Olympic style lifting for athletes, plyometrics, Swiss balls, various "quickness enhancing" drills, and other gimmicks many coaches use to enhance athletic ability, you guys are RIGHT ON 100% with your articles.

I am a Certified Athletic Trainer who also "specializes" in the training of athletes. I currently practice/teach sports medicine at the high school level as well as work at a health club and I do several yearly public speaking (local) engagements on these very topics. I literally had to do a double take when I came across this website and started reading your articles. The articles are pretty darn close word for word to what I lecture about and have been for the last 6 years.

I was a college football player/track athlete and was brought up on the Olympic style/plyometric philosophy (I didn't know any better at the time and trusted my strength coaches that this was the safest, most effective way to train). It wasn't until I went through a formal education program and did a lot of research in Exercise Phys/Kinesiology and studied motor learning that I "converted" and started doing just the opposite, so to speak, of that style of training.

I just simply cannot understand what part of "not transferable", "violation of specificity" and "overload principle" many strength coaches do not understand (especially the ones that claim to have an educational background in some exercise science field)! It seems that no matter what research I provide and how credible it is, many coaches choose to not go for it. I guess its either pure ego, lack of common sense or just plain old being stubborn.

As you probably would agree, it is very frustrating and also very hurtful for athletes who are often caught in the middle. I admire your ability to remain calm, cool and collective in your articles having to continually explain the same things over and over again. Then there is the safety issue. Even if all those "explosive" movements did work and they did make athletes more explosive, the safety issue alone should deter any coach from recommending them to their athletes (especially the skeletally immature ones). But, they don't work as advertised...and as you have stated many times, elegantly at that, the only thing doing power cleans will make you better at is...power cleans! Trying to get people to believe that explosiveness, balance, quickness/agility are all TASK and SKILL SPECIFIC is one of the most difficult things to do, in my experience anyway.

Great informational site here and I have book-marked it to use as yet another very credible resource for all the "non-believers" out there. Thanks and I look forward to future conversations and dialog with you guys.

Dan Davenport


Thank you for you kind words and we are glad you enjoy the site. We started this website a couple years ago because we were frustrated with the misinformation as well. We have helped high school coaches take a more responsible look at their Olympic-based programs and are proud of that. Letting people know of a method that is backed by science is important. Much of what they read is misleading and flat out false. This is unfortunate for the athletes. It takes people like yourself to spread the word on safe, efficient, and productive programs. Please do keep in touch. If you have any stories that you would like to share with us, we would like to read them and post.



***No Liability is assumed for any information written on the StrongerAthlete.com website. No medical advice is given on exercise. This advice should be obtained from a licensed health-care practitioner. Before anyone begins any exercise program, always consult your doctor. The articles are written by coaches that are giving advice on a safe, productive, and efficient method of strength training.***