So for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. This is the most simple form of physics and at the basis of human form and movement. The thing that amazes me is how many "coaches" forget this important notion or may be they just don't understand the concept. There are so many "concepts" or "gimmicks" out there.
When looking at technique or a technical model remember the human body is not a machine, the technical model should be a base for what an athlete looks like, however athletes come in many different shapes and forms.
You can look at the three fastest men on the planet. They all look different, Usain Bolt is tall and thin, Yohan Blake is short and stalky, and Justin Gatlin is a hybrid of both the fore mentioned. To make generalizations that would be beneficial for all three could be done but each one still has to have their own distinct style and method.
The reason I bring up this topic is I've listened to coaches, read blogs, and hear coaches spewing information that is not based on any of Newton's principles. Maybe it's a lack of knowledge or maybe too much belief in their own knowledge. I'm fortunate because I am able to surround myself with some of the most brilliant minds in the world. If you haven't read Ralph Mann's book on the sprints and hurdles then you need to go out, buy it, read it, then read it again.
If you don't understand it then just live by these easy principles:
1. The fastest people create the greatest forces in the shortest amount of time
2. Strength to weight ratio is critical, so athletes need to be "fit" and strong
3. If you are looking at a technical sprint or jump issue that happens distally from the body you must first look at whats happening proximally (the feet only can do what is created at the hip)
4. The body cannot get into ideal positions if there is a lack of postural stability and postural integrity
5. It takes hours to become an expert, so quantity needs to be balanced with quality
6. Always learn, seek new knowledge, The first book every coach should read is: Neurophysiological Basis of Movement
7. Finally ask questions, we are afraid of sometimes seeming ignorant, ignorance is not a bad thing, it is simply a lack of knowledge
As we have gone back to a mini base and recovery phase after the indoor season it has reminded me of things that make "professional track" so different then college and high school.
1. The post collegiate season is completely different and has no definitive end, it differs athlete by athlete and event to event, being too influenced by the collegiate calendar can be very detrimental
2. The travel has a huge effect on performance and success is finding ways to train and compete at a high level while dealing with jet lag and over 20 hours of travel
3. During World championship and Olympic years the trials is just as important as the actual championship, so first you must achieve the standard and second you have to perform at the championship
4. Don't underestimate the importance of securing a big mark, to play with the big dogs you have to show you belong there
5. The Diamond League is a broken system but it's the only system we have, so meet directors and agents can determine world rankings more than the performance of an athlete, you can get more world ranking points for a 5th place finish and 7.90m jump then an 8.20 jump at Mt Sac
6. You need to find an environment that helps the athlete and is athlete centered, in the end all college coaches get paid for coaching the collegiate athlete so that will always be their priority
7. In the jumps and sprints, most Olympians and Medalist come from south of the 38th Northern parallel
8. Male Olympians in track are roughly 27.5 years of age and women are 28.5 years of age, so college should not be the end of the road
9. You have to be Eurocentric, meets will fly you while your in Europe but if your not a medalist they are not going to fly your from the states
Just some various thoughts and contemplations as we head into outdoors and establish our world and national rankings. Cheers
The hardest thing about an off year, is the off year. This year there is no major championship for American track athletes and really the next major for us is in Beijing in about a year and half time.
We still have important things to accomplish because we will try to win a diamond league title so we can get automatic entry into the world championship. There is still the ability to try and get into the diamond leagues as to increase world ranking, and we still have the US Championships in our home state of California.
The goal is to be Eurocentric this summer. Meaning to be based in Europe because we need the ability to get around and compete through out Europe and with our roster we have, we have a tough time supplanting each other in regards to meets.
Our roster includes three combined jumpers who have jumped 8.29 lj and 17.70 tj, 8.10 lj and 16.99 tj, and 8.15 lj and 16.97 tj, a 16.89 tj, a 8.19 lj, a 8.22 lj, 7.25 lj, a new addition of a 6.97 ljer, a 13.89 tj and 6.60 lj, a 14.02 tj, and 14.16 tj; that is an amazing group but one that needs a European hub for the summer.
It's a fantastic problem to have but we need to get over 8.30 in the lj, more 17.40 tj, more 14.20 tj, and more 7 lj. We will quietly keep progressing and creating medalist, Olympians, world finalist, and national champions.
Meantime at the training center we will have some amazing athletes as world record holders, world champions, and international athletes train and live a=in Chula Vista this spring. Go to www.runnercard.com and come check out some meets in the spring, you may see your favorite field event athlete.
This year has been like any track season, it's had it's ups and downs.
Lets start with the downs.
Will Claye strained his hammy at nationals (luckily nothing to serious), Chris Benard missed the world team by 6 cm in the long jump and 1 cm in the triple. Ronnie Taylor strained his hammy, after missing time due to his groin. And finally Tyron Stewart missed the final at world's because I was being cute and thought 8m would make the final and had him pass his 2nd jump in prelims. He missed finals by 1 cm.
Now the goods.
Will has won medals at every championship and needs a well deserved rest. So sometimes God has plans that are unseen to us initially. Chris PB'd in both the long jump and triple jump this year by 46 and 49 cm respectively in each event. Troy Doris PR'd and established himself in the top ten after having to take a year off for knee injury. Tyron won his first US Championship and had the third furthest jump in the world indoors.
So now that we head to outdoors I know what we must due and things we must do to recover and not repeat those mistakes. So I feel blessed and honored to work with and amazing group of athletes. And sometimes we are at our lowest when we claim to the highest and achieve the greatest.
So today I watched the women from the USA win the silver and bronze medal at the winer Olympics. Knowing Nic Taylor and his finacee Elena Myers and having scene the work they did day by day at the track at the OTC, I know a little bit about the work done to create that silver medal. Yes she had a chance to win the gold, but her accomplishments mean she will be able to run the gammit of Olympic medals by winning the gold next time to go along with her bronze and silver.
I didn't enjoy the comments from the peanut gallery and social media. People who have know idea the countless hours that have come down to less than a 50 second run. People see the victory and agony of defeat but they don't see the journey, the struggles, the highs and lows. So I start off by saying amazing! Congratulations and everyone who supports you is so proud.
This weekend we head to USATF Nationals in Albuquerque, New Mexico. I leave tomorrow with a surprising sense of ease. I know the athletes are ready and now they just have to display their God given talent. I know that despite a win or loss, making a team or not, and whether they perform their best or not they will go well prepared. The Olympics reminded me it's truly not about the actual meet but the journey we have been on to get there. The daily and weekly sacrifices they have made, the improvements they have made, and their will to be successful and reach new levels that haven't been reached before. So to all the athletes competing this weekend I wish you luck, God speed, and this quote, "Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn
It's the 10th week of training and how time has flown. This year in my training group I'm fortunate to coach Will Claye, Tyron Stewart, Bryce Lamb, Ronnie Taylor, Markeith Price, Jeff Skiba, Chris Benard, Troy Doris, Arnaud Assoumani, Amanda Smock, Brittney Reese, April Sinkler, Toni Smith, and work a little with Akheel Whitehead and Lex Gilette. It's a very talented group of athletes all with different personalities but all with a passion to achieve success and driven to a common goal. That is to better oneself from practice to practice and repetition to repetition.
In these weeks I've discovered and employed many techniques to keep them progressing and getting stronger and faster. But at all times we remain grounded to the principle of progression and building both a physical and technical foundation. I'm truly excited to see the fruits of our labor but also know that my athletes need a break from me. We start after the first of the year competing and building to indoor nationals and indoor worlds. Exciting is an understatement! Please follow each and every athlete because their stories are amazing, cheers and have a happy and safe holidays.
In San Diego we are fortunate to have rain about every three years. We definitely are fortunate to have it rain on a recovery day, and when I say rain I mean a light misting and maybe some decent drops of rain.
That's a perfect seg-way into what I wanted to talk about. That is the ability to concede rest and recovery. On a day like this I don't want exercises that may cause loading to the legs or pressure on the human system. I'm giving both the Central Nervous System and Endocrine Sayt It's a day when forces are non-existent and the emphasis is core and body stability. We do a routine of yoga, light biking, body weight exercises, and no running of any kind.
It's amazing the ability of the human body to adapt and like Ward's law adapt to the time averaged forces that are applied to it. But it's important we don't break this rubber band of tension but allow it to recover before we start to pull it apart again.
So my goal is to update my blogs bi-monthly. I have no true reason why I can't honestly do it more often except I think it would get stale.
I've just completed my hiatus from coaching and begin my more "normal" schedule. As with coaching normal is a very loose word, because a true coach has to change and adapt on the fly. It is truly finding a balance between being grounded and having the ability to change.
So for me during a hiatus I dream of new things to do for the new year. How to improve from the previous year, see what worked, what needs tweaking, and what challenges lie ahead. I also educate myself. I try to read and discuss or look at notes I wrote down during the previous year from other coaches and athletes I've had the pleasure of speaking with.
The three books I read this year were the following:
Practical Programming for Strength Training
I always like to either use the books for references or refresh my memory from what I learned years ago in Grad school. Plus times are a changing so you need to stay up with the latest and greatest.
So on Monday Sept 30th we start the quest for Poland 2014 and for some the quest for Rio 2016. We have a great stable of athletes: WLJ 7.25m,6,91m,6,67; MLJ 8.29,8.21,8.19,8.14; WTJ 14.16m,14.06,13.89; MTJ 17.70,16.96,16.85,16.66,16.64;
I'd like to say we have one of the finest groups in the world. So please pray for our growth and success, until next time,c
Fall training is a very important starting point for any season. As with any living organism homeostasis is something that helps us from maintaining a healthy and injury free living. In athletes it is just as important. We as coaches must thrive for balance from our athletes. We train the right side or left left side according to the individual but how often do we make sure that the alternate side is trained also. I dont expect an athlete to be bale to jump 7 meters off the left and right leg. But I do expect the same balance and flexibility on the "other" leg. Whether its the dominant of non-dominant leg they must be able to create similar forces, if one leg is over working the other you will have a variety of issues come up. So make sure your balancing your trianin
Jordan's are one of my material weaknesses in the world. They in all sense of God and just plain humanity are a little in humane. They run about $120-170 and are close to half the average household income of a family in Ethiopia.
I show my Jordan's because they symbolize something I had taken for granted today. My blessings!
Most people who know me, know I was born in Korea and was adopted at the age of 3 by two wonderful people in Southern California. I grew up with a loving home and though we didn't have a lot of money we weren't poor.
I write this because of a situation that happened to me today. IT MADE ME REALIZE HOW BLESSED I TRULY AM. Even though we didn't have a lot of money or material wealth I was always blessed with someone in my life who gave me a great opportunity.
Today I was at my girlfriends house on my vacation and I was beginning to mow her lawn. As I made my third or fourth pass down the lawn in the backyard her dog ran towards the front gate. I stopped to see what she was barking at and I saw a middle aged black woman approach the gate. I turned off the mower and headed towards the women. She politely asked," can I do some work for you". I assessed the situation, she didn't appear homeless but not well kept either. I replied, "sorry but this is not my place and I'm already mowing the lawn, thank you but no thank you." She then asked, "Can I have fifty cents"? I again replied, "sorry but I don't have money one me." I knew this was a lie because in my wallet in the house I had $20. She smiled and she kindly went on her way. Me being so apprehensive I went into the house to make sure I locked the front door . For all I know this lady was a crackhead.
As she left I saw her walk down the street pushing a lawn mower and knocking on the door of a few more houses where the lawn appeared to be needing a good mow. I was so embarrassed and I went back to mowing the lawn. As I walked up and down the lawn the guilt and shame started to overflow in my mind. When I was growing up I always had a neighbor like Mr Grover, or Coach like Coach Woodward, or a Mr Eddy, or a Coach Reidmiller that allowed me to mow their lawn or make a few extra dollars, or gave me opportunities that lead me to where I am today. She wasn't looking for a handout.
I pride myself in being a Christian but more so a decent human being. I had just failed miserably. A person who was adopted by two White parents, was half Black and Korean, had made a judgement on a person and didn't help someone less fortunate. Me, with all the blessings that I've received over the last year and I was tested and I hated myself for it. I finished mowing the lawn and I was so distraught and actually had tears in my eyes. I felt so bad because I had the opportunity to help someone and I didn't want to be bothered.
The minute I finished mowing the lawn I went running through the streets like a mad man searching for the women. I found her about three blocks over and she had not found any takers yet. I introduced myself and told her I was a liar and that I was sorry. I handed her the twenty dollars and said that I wish I could give her more. From the initial conversation I didn't see her wonderful smile. Not like it matters but she was mentally challenged, which made me even more shameful. Despite her disability you could see that she was a lover of life and so appreciative, her smile and just the way she carried herself you could see every minute breathing is truly a blessing . I said my good byes and she said I was an angel and God bless. But little did she know that she was the angel and a reminder of how truly blessed I am.
The next time I'm tested will I fail as miserably as I did today? I hope not, Lord willing
Head Coach and founder of Maximum Velocity Athletics.