Archive | November, 2010

Unique Client Case Study: Tony Trains Through Disability

29 Nov

Tony Santilli is a personal training client of mine who serves as an inspiration for everybody he encounters. Tony is a former Marine who suffered the loss of his leg over 40 years ago while fighting for our country in the Vietnam War. As an above the knee amputee Tony has not slowed down. At 68 years young Tony is a skiing instructor for other disabled veterans and also enjoys waterskiing and bike riding. Tony is a pleasure to train and presents special challenge for me as a coach. Programming for him requires a little more creativity in order to provide a well balanced workout that will not only benefit his health but also his performance.

When programming for Tony the first thing to take into consideration is his limitations. Programming for an overweight 68 year old can be difficult enough without accounting for an above the knee amputation. Luckily, the eager enthusiasm that Tony maintains has allowed for continued experimentation of new training techniques. The major goals we laid out for Tony at the beginning of this program were as follows.

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One Leg vs. Two Legs: Why Is It Always A Battle?

23 Nov

Last week a friend of mine sent out an e-mail to me as well as a few other coaches to start a round table discussion on uni-lateral and bi-lateral training.  The e-mail was centered around the Tim Henriques article this past week on T-Nation entitled Unilateral Movements Make You Weak. While I think that this title is a gross generalization I understand his viewpoint to a degree. You can lift more weight with two legs than you can with one and bilateral movements lend themselves better to hypertrophy. We know this. When it comes to training for sports and injury reduction training on one leg seems to make more sense. We also know this.

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Synergy Athletics Accelerated Strength Seminar Review

17 Nov


On the early morning drive up to Lebanon, New Hampshire I was not quite sure what would be awaiting Brendon and myself when we arrived at the River Valley Club for the Synergy Athletics Strength Seminar. Knowing that the seminar would feature some sort of workout I looked to save myself by taking Friday off and getting a good night sleep prior to Saturday. We got to the River Valley Club around 9 AM to find what looked like a commercial health club, complete with a girl working the towel desk and a whole slew of elliptical trainers. Uh Oh, had Joe Hashey, Jim Smith and Scott Caulfield gone soft? “Where was the strength training equipment” I thought. All I saw was ellipticals and soccer moms. This was until a rather built older gentlemen named Tom spotted the puzzled look on our faces and said “You must be here for the seminar I’ll show you other weight room.”

Behind an unassuming door in the back of the commercial gym was a truly impressive strength training heaven that is maintained by competitive strongman Scott Caulfield.  The training facility featured 30 yards of turf, brand new Olympic platforms, a bunch of squat racks, Atlas stones, numerous sized tractor tires and more weight then you would ever need. In addition to all of this it also had a gigantic climbing wall. I said to myself “This place is F’ing awesome!” Soon after the presenters and attendees trickled in and the fun began.

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A Whole Bunch Of Videos

15 Nov

Here are a whole bunch of videos for your viewing pleasure. I’ll spare you from a long introduction paragraph since it’s late on a Sunday and I’m sore and tired from spending my weekend at the Synergy Atheltics Seminar in Lebanon, New Hampshire. A review will be coming later this week.

Dan John is Coming to the East Coast!!

This year the MBSC Winter Seminar will feature only two presenters. Dan John and Mike Boyle. If you could only choose two lecturers from the strength and conditioning field who would you choose? These are mine no doubt. The day-long seminar will feature a lecture from Mike, TWO LECTURES FROM DAN, plus an extensive hands-on section. The hands-on section will feature practical application of methods used by Dan John and the MBSC staff. I think this seminar is a MUST if your on the east coast. Here are a couple videos of Mike and Dan dropping knowledge to get you fired up.

Shoulder Prehab Thanks to Nick Tumminello

This past week we were lucky enough to have Nick Tumminello come and perform an in-service staff meeting for our entire staff at MBSC. Nick, as always had a whole bunch of innovative ideas in his presentation. One thing I really liked was the way he is executing his shoulder prehab at Preformance U. Here is some videos of me reproducing the Y and L shoulder prehab exercises he showed us. Thanks to Nick for sharing his knowledge! I learned a way to make this exercise even better from Smitty at the seminar this past weekend. A video will be coming on Wednesday.

Thoracic Mobility Thanks to Sue Falsone

In addition to having Nick present last week we also were treated to a presentation on the thoracic spine by Sue Falsone. (Are you jealous yet?). Sue is one of the foremost experts on the T-spine and is a great casual presenter. I was able to see her presentation in Providence this summer at the Perform Better Summit but gained even more insight with her presentation the second time around. Here are some of the T-Spine drills that she shared with us.

Ana Tocco’s Blog

Ana Tocco is a great young strength and conditioning coach who also happens to have graduated from UMass Amherst alongside me and is going to be one of my roommates in no less than a week. She is in up and comer with some great insight and she trains hard!! Here is a video of her practicing her Turkish Get-Up. Someday she will reach Neghar status. Someday.

Keiser Circuit

Here is a video of me performing a circuit almost entirely on the Keiser machine. Anthony Morando and I really have begun to enjoy performing circuits on this because of how fluid the motion is. Here is an example of one we did almost entirely in the ½ kneeling position.

White Men Can Jump by Dave Rak

9 Nov

Editors Note: Today we have a guest post by David Rak. Dave is a fellow strength coach at MBSC who is also currently interning at Cressey Performance in Hudson, Masschusetts. Dave competed with Brendon Rearick and myself over the summer in a combine competition and won partly because of the giant improvement in his vertical jump. Dave is a great young coach and has made some impressive training improvements so far in his young career. Dave wanted to share some insights on his vertical jump training, check it out below.

So I just recently jumped 36.2” which is a personal best (yes I have witnesses).  Whats my secret? Well there actually is no secret. You don’t need an Air Alert DVD and you don’t need funny looking Jump Sole sneakers that guarantee 10 more inches on our vertical, these are all a waste of your money.  If you want to jump like Jordan you just need to start training the right way.

And no Mars, it’s not the shoes…’s the training.

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