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Ultimate Athlete Concepts Seminar

Lisle, IL
Feb. 12 & 13, 2005
Dr. Michael Yessis
Yuri Verkoshansky

Saturday: Yessis
-First translations were of the Russian Journal Theory and Practice of Physical Culture
stated that his earlier translations were not so good.
-Americans lost out on a lot of the training info we could have gotten from Russia b/c our
media was so fast to claim that all their success was due to steroid use.
-Russians said it was easy to develop physical qualities-1 quality speed is the key to
success in all athletic movements. Ultimate objective should be to develop speed.
-In Russia the scientists worked along with the coaches (sometimes were both)
-Technique is the most ignored aspect of sports performance in the U.S. (this was hit
on often)
-What constitutes good technique?
-For ex.- In upright running, push off leg should be slightly bent @ knee (should be
straight in vert. jumping) Ankle ext. (not knee ext.) is the key extension
-All analyses are comparisons to another model. How do you know if your model has
ideal tech? How do you know if your athlete has the same physical capabilities as your
-It is impossible to watch someone and correct technique. You need to look at film and
be able to watch it frame by frame, there is no other way. Most movements occur so
quickly that you cannot break down what actually happened. Just because someone is a
great athlete doesnt mean that they know what theyre body (or someone elses) is
actually doing.
-Russians found that you can develop individual qualities when you do the total skill.
This does not mean that the skills are blended in. Abilities have to be trained as close as
possible neurologically to the actual sport movement.
-Exercises have to duplicate what occurs. First we have to find out what occurs.
-Specialized Physical Preparation of the athlete

1. General Training (strength)- Physical Preparedness (GPP) get the athlete ready to do
specific training
2. Specialized Training (specific exercises)
-Biomechanics is: Kinesiology + mechanics (physics)
-In sports we call it technique-sometimes called coordination or skill and involves the
nervous and muscular systems.
When the muscles contract with the:
1. Right intensity
2. Right timing
3. ??
Muscles not involved have to be relaxed
Role of Biomechanics:
1. Analyze skill (technique)
2. Select aspects in need of improvement
3. Set up training program
-90% of athletes dont get their hips into it-for example being able to throw with more
velocity-must get the hips into the action
-All training has to be geared to that athlete alone, so you need to do things that are
unique for different positions.
1st thing in training:
-Correcting technique- The soviet method had the best teachers (coaches) working with
the youngest athletes, teaching them basic skills.
-Changes to technique have to start early. As you get into heavy training, your speedstrength will increase and your technique will decrease slightly, but when you go back
into pure speed-skill, technique will increase, even beyond what its highest level was
Eccentric and Concentric Contractions-muscles are gaining tension
-Quick stretch reflexes generates enormous amounts of tension-maybe 90% more than a
slow stretch
-You have to overload the body in eccentric training-i.e. muscles are 50% stronger in
eccentric than they are in concentric contractions
-Eccentric strength is key to strength and explosiveness
-Your skill (technique & coordination) is only as good as your physical abilities allow.
We want to enhance these physical qualities.

Explosive Running (note: almost all running he talked about was of upright or top speed
in nature-he did not mention very much about acceleration running mechanics)
A. Running technique
B. Physical qualities involved
C. How to correct and/or improve A and B
-The more specific the training is, the more improvement youll see.
-Movements and ROM have to be duplicated
-In what ROM are muscles involved when running? For example, the hip flexors are
involved just after push-off until the femur is just below (straight down from) the body.
The 4-way hip machine is a worthless way to train your hip flexors for running. In
running, the hip flexors drive the knee forward, not up, should be active behind the body
only-once the femur crosses the body, momentum is what carries it up.
1. Running Analysis (upright running)
-Dont need a total analysis, just look for key actions
1. Posture (tall)
2. Push-off-knee, ankle, hip
3. Direction of push-off
4. Swing Leg-knee drive
5. Separation between thighs
6. Touchdown-pawback
7. Support leg-bend in knee (ecc. action to stop you from sinking down when your foot
hits) Improved leg strength (squats are important to reduce the amount of sink here) is
used to reduce the excess up and down motion when running.
2, 4, and 6 are the most important qualities to develop to improve speed.
1. Erect Posture- (only lean when you accelerate)-need to be tall to run with your hips
and to put hip flexor on maximal stretch at push-off.
-World class sprinter will only have 1 inch of up&down movement when sprinting. Can
rest a teacup on their head. Eccentric action is also used to be able to stop yourself-How
good is your eccentric strength? This is key for being able to make quick cuts.
-Back extensions (as they are commonly done) are good for static strength of the low
back, not dynamic strength. For dynamic strength, you need to place the pad under your
waist, not your hip or leg.
2. Push-off-Ankle is extended, knee slightly bent, hips are slightly flexed and relaxed.
Push-off is mostly at the ankle joint (Others I think would disagree with this-Much more
power generated at the hip vs. the ankle joint)
Hamstrings are not used behind the body, they should be relaxed. They should only be
used in front of the body for touchdown/pawback.
-Touchdown/pawback-bringing of the thigh backwards to contact the ground (ex.-horse
running and kicks up all kinds of dirt behind its hooves)

3. Direction of Push-off-has to be forward-feet cant be out, this directs force out to the
side (also knee drive and arm drive at the shoulders have to be straight ahead)
4. Swing Leg- How quickly can you drive the leg forward?
5. Separation Between Thighs- World class sprinters will have a lot of separation in flight
phase = great flexibility. Turnover is great to have, but you better be covering ground.
Stride Length is a key element for improving speed for 90% of the runners. You get more
bang for your buck when training to improve this quality. When you achieve optimal
stride length, then go try to improve stride frequency.
Improved Stride Length for the same amount of work, you go a lot faster. It is very
hard and taxing on the athlete to increase stride frequency, this is especially true for

-Electronic timing-most accurate-hear about all the high school kids running 4.3 and 4.4
fortys. Someone who could run a 4.2 electronic timed forty yard dash would be a world
class runner.
Must train players for the movements of their sport
-ex.-David Boston-great physical stats, looks good, but not a great player. Training was
geared all for numbers, not for helping him become a better athlete. Adam Archulleta
also falls into this category. No sport specific skills in his training, all of his training was
geared to develop physical qualities.
-Women are generally a lot more flexible than men, and have a tendency to hyperextend
(slightly) their joints in movement.
2. Aspects in Need of Improvement and Training Program Exercises
A. Knee drive with tubing (active cords) (Knee drive is key)
B. Push-off Explosive heel raises with hold, ankle jumps, leaping
C. Pawback Circling, glute-ham raise (also w/active cords), reverse hyper
Pawback may be deficient in about 80% of athletes.
D. Support Delay squat Very slow descent w/pauses in various spots as you go down
to develop isometric strength when running to hold body position
-Squat w/hold
-Altitude jumps & drop downs
E. Thigh separation- lunge w/active cords (back knee relatively straight), you also want
strength in this ROM
F. Leaping and leaping with active cords (leaping is one of the best drills for push-off)

G. Posture back raises/extension

3. Training Program
A. Exercises to make technique changes
B. Exercises to develop strength, flexibility, etc. to make technique changes
C. Exercises to increase strength of key joint actions
D. Exercises to increase speed and explosive power of key joint actions
E. Exercises to improve partial aspects or total skill, or combination of both
-Exercises do not have to duplicate the total skill
-Doing the whole skill doesnt improve performance very much-have to work on the parts
of the skill
Criteria for Specificity of Strength and Explosive Exercises
1. The exercises must duplicate the exact movement (joint action as seen in running)
2. The exercises must involve the same type of muscular contraction used in the actual
3. The special exercises must have the same ROM as the actual run
-Every landing, you want maximum force generated (you dont want to absorb force, you
want to withstand force) upon landing, 80% of forces are withstood by eccentric
contractions. Ligament/tendon structures give back 80% of force put into them on
eccentric actions.
-When running, your foot is only on the ground for about .1 seconds, and your landing is
only about .05 seconds. You must have the ability to withstand and also use the force in
this short amount of time.
-Foot problems are rampant b/c of the shoes we wear and we dont do anything to
strengthen our feet. The foot (and arch) has to be strong enough to withstand the forces
of landing.
-Yessis recommends the Barefoot Science System this is an insole that is used to
strengthen arch, and progressively develop the strength of the arch. Most effective and
simplest way to develop the arch.
-Specificity of training-ROM where hamstrings involved (concentric contraction) is from
in front of the body during pawback until the leg is underneath the body (vertical)
-ROM where hip flexors are involved (concentric contraction-knee drive) is from pushoff to underneath the body (vertical)
-As leg swings forward, great tension is built up in hamstrings, they are put on eccentric
stretch. They then contract concentrically to bring the leg down and back.

-Push-off prepares the hip flexors (eccentric load) to swing the leg back forward
-You want your leg as far back behind you as possible to put hip flexors on as much
stretch as possible
-Yessis says hamstring pulls typically occur on push-off
-Ex. to develop hip flexors-lay on a slant board, let leg hang down and back so your hip is
on stretch and perform leg lifts
-Wall Drill-Holding a wall w/someone sitting on the your shoulders, another athlete
would be holding one of your legs back to put hip flexor on stretch, you would
isometrically contract against this, then your leg would be let go and you drive your knee
-Reverse Hyper is great for developing pawback, use free weights or resistance cords
-All drills you must have the athletes visualize the sport movement they are mimicking at
the same time-For example a runner has to understand that this is what I do when Im
-If you can get an athlete with a brain, you can make him a superior athlete than one with
all talent and no brain
-Glute-Ham-hips must be in front of pad, he has his athletes perform this with a flat back,
so you wont typically be able to go down all the way to vertical b/c of hamstring
tightness-at the bottom, dont round your back off-keep it straight to decrease momentum
and place more of the work on your glutes and hamstrings. Must also get to parallel
before you bend your knees.
-Good Morning is a great warm-up exercise
-Straight leg toe touch is bad for the ligaments in your low back, it tends to loosen the
ligaments of your spine-a tight back is a lot better than a loose back
-When you get arch in your low back, you automatically stretch your hamstrings
-Leaping - single leg bound with knee drive ahead-this is a hard exercise
-Strong pawback leads to the foot landing right under your body-this will eliminate
braking forces
-Every runner and every limb is a little different
-According to Russians, you should have a 3:1 quad to hamstring strength ratio-Yessis
explained that this is the way nature designed you
-Back Raise - hips are on the pad, you should have a rounded back and raise yourself up
into hyperextension to strengthen your erector spinae

-Hip Adduction/Abduction - Standing, leg straight and use tubing for resistance. This is
to hold hips stable and prevent hips from tilting. You need strong abductors for running.
Side lunges are a good exercise for this-also are the best stretch for your groin.
Front Lunge Back knee straight to increase the separation you get between thighs. You
want no forward lean, as this decreases the amount of stretch on your back hip flexor.
Use overhead lunges to prevent this.
Pawback Standing, using tubing as resistance.
Forward Knee Drive Wall drill using tubing, but stand a little more upright. Tube
should be anchored (end not on the leg) between knee and hip height. Want to come all
the way up-just past vertical. In the back end of the movement (leg behind you) start
with your knee slightly bent.
Knee Extension Standing, using tubing. Momentum allows the thigh to travel up some.
This is also good for stimulating pawback after the swing out.
-Elite athletes Make training conditions harder than the actual competition-beginners
arent yet ready for this kind of intensity
-Most plyometric exercises done in the U.S. are just jump exercises
-Strength and flexibility training comes before introducing speed and explosive training
-Yessis believes that an athlete should squat with feet under hips to get a direct line of
force. Should go as deep as their physical abilities allow while still keeping back arched
and limbs in alignment
-When knees come in (common in bball and vball players) on squats, you just have to
keep coaching the technique hard. Thinks its more of a concentration issue than a
strength issue. May also be due to (also in jumping) to having flat feet-this is correctable.
-Russians say that the poorest athletes are ones that are completely symmetrical.
-In the initial stages of training you want more strength. In the elite (ex. D-1) athletes, if
you put them on a heavy strength training program, the slower they become. The elite
runner cannot lose speed. If youre going to increase strength, make sure you dont
decrease speed. For increases in strength, you must use explosive movements to retain
-In running, both thighs should line up during the support phase (knee drive forward
w/heel close to butt). The butt-kick drill is the worst drill you can do for your athletes, as
you swing your knee forward, your knee should be traveling forward under your butt.
Thigh should be traveling forward (not backward as in a butt-kick) when heel is close to
the butt. Concentrate on driving thigh forward. This will automatically bring heel

underneath the butt. The foot comes up as a consequence of the thigh driving forward.
Get separation.
-There isnt a single athlete out there that cant be better. This is why you dont compare
your technique to the best guy out there-you cant know how good his technique is.
There are always individual differences in technique.

Sunday: Yessis
-Can you play better? As a whole were too focused on training numbers.
-Touchdown (800-1500m run is more like a sprint than a long distance run)
-In every push-off (sprint or cutting) think: Im pushing w/the hips Drive the hips
forward. A runner bent over is trying to drive their head and shoulders rather than driving
their hips forward.
-Any good landing should be flat footed. Need tremendous strength and power in the
lower leg to stay on just the ball of the foot. Very few can do this. Upon landing, ball of
the foot should hit first, followed by the heel, not heel first.
-All push-offs have bent knees.
-See a lot of turnover in football running-very little stride length/separation.
-You need to develop the strength of the muscles in the exact action they are used in the
movement-this is why you need to know technique/biomechanics.
-Should be able to get 90o separation/rotation between hips and shoulders.
Ex. hips are facing straight ahead, you should be able to turn your torso/shoulders so your
chest is facing straight to the right or left without turning your hips or feet.
-If youre too weak in the midsection (rotational strength) you wont be able to control
your hips and you will get a lot of excess rotation.
-May take as much as 6 months to change an athletes technique.
-Acceleration running is different than full speed/full stride running. You still get
extension of back leg and knee drive forward, however.
-Prepare athletes for positions/movements they may face on the field.
-Agility is the ability to change direction while in motion. This takes technique.

-Plant outside your body-body stays inside plant foot, inside leg swings free-This foot
shouldnt touch the ground, but it also shouldnt come high off the ground, and that knee
shouldnt come up either. This is unnecessary movement.
-The faster you are going, the lower you have to get to change direction, and the wider
your plant foot has to be. Keep the body inside.
-Dont want to try to stop with the inside leg, then you end up with both feet on the
ground. Takes two steps to cut instead of one. Need tremendous eccentric strength in the
cutting leg to do this.
-Dont want torso leaning toward the plant leg. Best case-you want the torso leaning
away from the plant leg.
-Want to have the plant foot flat so you have more area to push with. Dont want to be on
the inside edge of the foot.
-Dont want the knee or foot of the free leg coming up. This is wasted movement. The
rope or ladder drills with high knees done in football reinforce this.
-On occasion you have to make a cut on the inside leg, but it should be very rare.
-Majority of the players that slip on the field slip because they tried to cut on their inside
-Yuri does not advocate any depth jumps (with the jump up) from heights over 75 cm.
-Key is how quickly the change is made from eccentric phase to concentric phase.
-Should not be on the ground more than .15 seconds, and you should be trying to get to a
ground contact time of .1 seconds (which is the same as in running).
-Start off at a low height (ex. 1 foot) and progress up.
-When introduced to Olympic lifters in Russia, the heavyweights didnt like the depth
jumping drills so when they do them they only go from a height of about 1 foot.
-If you go too high, you wont be able to duplicate the speed of the execution necessary
for running.
-Gradual build up on the altitude drops (drop and stop) to develop eccentric component of
-Depth jump-step off (dont jump out) and go straight down and straight up, you dont
want horizontal movement.
-You want to withstand the forces rather than absorb them.
-Depth jumps/plyos will help you maintain strength

Saturday: Verkoshansky
-Weightlifters were the first to use specialized training to improve their performance.
-Strength training too often carried out as a separate entity to sport, when it should only
be an organic part of the whole process.
Criteria for selecting specialized training exercises:
1. Duplication of movement-no bodybuilding, no stretching
2. Method of energy production has to be the same
-Mike Mentzers methods can be used and have their place in sports other than
-Many American coaches dont know how to resolve training problems
-Tudor Bompas book on periodization is a very erroneous book
-Kurz-no good
-Read some German authors, which are based on Soviet methodology
-Snyder, Haare, Markin (sp?) These writings are both theoretical and practical.
-Have a system of organizing training and doing things. In American literature, there is
no system, everything is all mixed together.
3 Key Factors to Training
1. Power of work that is done
2. Development of energy system to use power in aerobic/anaerobic conditioning
3. Development of motor ability to display this power
-Need exercises that can duplicate movements with the power demonstrated in the sport.
Key element is to increase the power of the system so we can display it in competition.
-Develop full potential of the capabilities the athlete has and fully utilize this potential.
-Russians had a system to prepare athletes and their motor potential.
-What to do to raise these 3 key factors
1. Increase energy production through specialized methods specific to sport event. Not
bodybuilding, powerlifting, stretching, or aerobics.
2. Have to develop a specialized system of training that isnt in America. Put scientists
and coaches together to create a system.
-How can we teach athlete to fully utilize motor potential?
1. Through technical preparation.
2. Have a good system in the U.S. for technique applications

3. Work with equipment manufacturers to develop ways to enhance this.

4. Has to be an American system, not someone elses.
-Isometrics-popular fad in the 60s
-Shock Method developed by Yuri in the late 60s. This method is only for high level
athletes. Americans started using it for everyone and we have abused the term
-Yuri developed the Shock Method, not plyometrics. Americans didnt understand the
SM and how to use it properly.
-Have to have an organization of training and know where everything fits.
-Shock Method is the last thing you do. Before doing the SM, you have to do all kinds of
jump training and strength training (specialized exercises of both of these methods, not
general exercises)
-SM is a culminating training event after doing everything else.
-Has to be a systemic order and progression in how you do these. You cant mix things
together all helter skelter, otherwise you will confuse the body.
-Coach who doesnt understand physiology of the body (this is a key element) can do
more harm than good to an athlete.
-Without physiology and biomechanics, you will never have a high result in sport.
Main Principles of Training
1. Principle of speed of movement. Gradual increase in speed.
2. Application of specialized exercises in training.
3. Have to prepare body. Have to have general physical preparation (GPP) before you
have specialized physical preparation (SPP). Do many different types of training, but
each one must build on each other.
4. Everything has to be in its right place and time in training. I.E. dont do heavy weight
training and cross-country at the same time.
Strength Abilities Needed by Athletes
1. Maximal Strength (must be able to display this)
2. Display of strength with maximum speed (most important)
3. Starting Strength
4. Reactive Strength (stretch reflex)
5. Strength Endurance This has been ignored in the U.S.-for example in running, you
have to have the ability/endurance level to repeatedly drive your knee forward over a
period of time.

Factors we have not looked at in the U.S.

1. Display of strength capabilities should be an integral, organic part of the total training,
not a separate part.
2. Incorrect to strength train after practice (in the same day it is better to perform lifting in
the morning and skill work in the afternoon)
3. Strength training is to strengthen the whole body, not just the muscles
4. Can use strength training to develop other systems of the body (ex. aerobic system).
Can be used to develop energy resources in the body, which is extremely important in
-Effort put into training is key. It is the effort put into the weight thats important, no just
the amount of weight lifted.
Question & Answer
-Shock training-you have to be physically prepared-refer back to the Main Principles of
-In weightlifting, heavyweights didnt like the Shock Training much. Middleweights saw
some success with it.
-Shock Training should be applied as late as possible in the training continuum. For
young athletes, the movements they encounter in their actual sport is enough of a
-Early specialization in one sport should be avoided at all costs.
Top 3 exercises for improving vertical jump: (although Yuri states there is no magic 3there has to be a combination of lifting, shock method, and the actual jumping)
Mentioned that Parallel Squat is the top strength exercise. Combine this with the shock
method and specific jump training.
-Should only use the Shock Method when the athlete is in season, b/c this is probably the
only time when athletes physical capabilities (fitness) are at optimal levels.
-They will need at least a week off from SM before competition b/c of the high central
nervous system stress.
-Zatsiorsky was a statistician in Russia and then drifted into biomechanics.
-Shock Method stimulates the CNS as well as the PNS and is totally different than
plyometrics and incurs more nervous system stress.
-Overspeed training is not an option for high-level/elite sprinters-might be ok for

Sunday: Verkoshansky
-Biomechanics and technique also follow microcycles somewhat. Training volumes are
up when compared to earlier times and the physical preparedness of the human body has
improved a lot.
-In sport, now it is almost impossible to work on all parallel tasks at the same time. For
example: strength and endurance. There is a tremendous need to solve this problem.
-Primary challenge of Yuris group was to find ways to change the organizational
principles of training.
-Early 80s steroids dominated sport. Anti-doping agencies got stronger. At this time,
Yuris lab was prohibited from doping by Russia so they had to find new ways improve
performance. The actual work for this started in the late 70s.
-Data from high jumpers
-All of the 12 leading jumpers used the complex training methods. Every microcycle
they work on all parameters of training. Speed, tech., power, etc.
-This led to bad principles (i.e. strength work and endurance work at the same time)
-Not acceptable to have all these different stressors in the same microcycle.
-Body would respond with a very general adaptation-got a little stronger, little better
fitness, but biological power didnt increase at all (energy potential is a very important
component of sport)
-His lab created a new type of program.
-Energy Potential Ability of your body to support sport movements through metabolic
processes over a period of time (not just power or speed, but everything)
-Designed more sport specific exercises to increase energy potential.
-100 meter sprint uses two mechanisms of power:
1. Anaerobic maximal power-alactic system is required for starting acceleration. As you
transfer to the longer part of the race, you go to:
2. Glycolytic power for the finish.
-Require power for acceleration, need power from different sources for the finish-mainly
great glycolytic power.
-Speed/power sports are well researched, sports that require more endurance are still
relatively un-researched.
-Middle-distance (400m or greater) and endurance runners used to neglect all forms of
strength training but ran great volumes.
-Avg. speed of a middle distance runner is 7 m/s, so they would train with this velocity.

-Strength component of their legs were completely different from that of a high jumper,
so they could not match the strength component of a high jumper.
-Did not do traditional body- or power-lifting exercises.
-Exercises were created where athletes could create power at the speed and movement
similar to the actual event.
-Interval work-set with resistance.
-Simple exercises: jumps with bar on the shoulders (40% of squat max-trying to get 10
jumps in 10 seconds), split (scissor) jumps with a bar-1 where they would try to go as
high as they could, 1 where they would keep their center of gravity in the same spot and
try to scissor their legs very fast, squat jumps-holding a dumbbell between their legs
(24-32 kg), knee lifts w/weight attached (similar to the ones Yessis showed).
-Athletes would perform sets of 10 seconds of work, followed by 10 seconds of rest.
Repeated this 8 times, this would be one set. Take 4-6 minutes rest, repeat again up to 3
or 4 more times.
-During the year they first introduced this, they were able to reduce the volume of
running of their mid. distance runners from the traditional 6-7,000 km/yr to 3000 km/yr.
Their performance results improved dramatically. They kept this data quiet, as they
feared if it got out, people would laugh at the study and results.
-The exercises you select are very simple. The secret to success is the method you use in
implementing them.
-Goal was to create maximal anaerobic power and in particular alactic power. (Not sure
if I got that written down correctly)
-2nd variation-could do the same type of work for 20-30 seconds, and this would lead to a
greater glycolytic capacity rather than alactic power.
-They would measure lactate after each 10 sec. interval. At first, the curve of the lactate
went down. The accumulation of lactate was much less than prior to doing that type of
training. Also at the end, the accumulation of the lactate was much less. Lactate went up
with the second variation. This research was done in 1984.
Research on 12 high jumpers
-Separate all components of training in time.
-Speed-strength and technique training were completely separated.
-1st use a block of strength training, then in a postponed effect of that block, use technique
-Saw tremendous results with this.
-At the same time analyzed 12 Russian sprinters who hadnt done well. They combined
stressors in the same microcycle and performance decreased. Proved once again that this
method was flawed.

-Sprint workouts cannot be put together with strength training.

-This would lead to an increased tonus of the muscle-too high and it affected
-This led them to change to the block style training.
-Train (focus on) one ability at a time. There is some maintenance work done in each
block to retain skills developed in earlier blocks.
Principles of the Block System:
1. 1st Block 2-3 months- The primary goal is to change the energy structure and increase
energy potential (development of strength is also important here). Intensity of work is
relatively low. Energy potential has to be very specific to your sport. During this time,
also work on technique to a very limited extent. Primarily imitation of technique-by
doing it part by part, not the whole skill.
2. 2nd Block Intensification of specific work. Lots of technical and speed application.
Apply technical work while gradually increasing the speed application. Also achieved a
transitional period for the 3rd block.
3. 3rd Block Maximum increase of energy potential throughout the competitive season
-Presentation of adaptive processes presented in Zatsiorskys book may not be correct.
Book may not reflect processes of adaptation the way they actually occur.
-Athlete accumulates certain types of potential during training. Athletes use this during
the season-This is an absolutely wrong assumption.
-Value of the block system is that the energy system is increased all the way up to the last
-Have to understand adaptation processes and principles. Different biological systems
adapt in different time frames.
-Cardio-pulmonary system- We want to increase cardiac output, this can be achieved
during the first block.
-2nd Block Intensity is increased, power (volume of blood/minute) of cardio-pulmonary
system is increased.
-3rd Block only in this block can you increase blood flow and heart rate to their maximal
-In process of systemic training, you create reflex-reactions of the distributions of the
blood flow of the body part. Organs which are involved more, receive more of the blood
-Peripheral blood flow-Intensity/physiology. Training of distribution of blood flow
should be achieved in the first block. Initial block is higher volume/lower intensity.

-1st Block develop oxidative potential of muscle, in particular slow-twitch fibers.

-2nd Block- develop contraction ability of slow-and fast-twitch muscles. At the end of the
2nd block, it is very important that you increase the oxidative abilities of fast-twitch fibers.
-3rd Block increase biological power of body. Cardiac abilities and muscle abilities melt
into one unit at this stage. This explains the athletes energy potential.
Power Application (for power athletes)
-3 parts which can fit into one block.
-1st step Maximum strength and explosive strength development
-2nd step Explosive power and starting power (produce maximum effort at the beginning
of a movement)
-3rd step Reactive ability of neuromuscular system (ability of muscle to switch from
eccentric to isometric to concentric)
-This is the primary means for increasing power in speed-strength sports.
-These methods are primarily used in speed sport games as well as track and field.
-Sprinters-1st block of training:
1. Use multiple, short, alternate leg jumps (I think by leg jumps he means single leg
bounding). No more than 5 to 8 jumps per set. Have to jump as far as they can.
2. Alternate leg jumping Stay low, jump quick and as far as they can-up to 80 meters.
3. 50 meter alternate leg jumps from starting position for time. Very high correlation
between this and 100 meter sprint time.
1. Development of maximum strength and endurance.
2. Explosive power and local muscular endurance.
-Musc. end. is a very little studied subject and there is not much knowledge about this.
-Ways to increase local muscular endurance (sequence)
1. Semi-long distance running
2. Elastic running Imitation of a run with a very short stride and very hard push-off.
This will be limited by endurance of the calf muscle.
3. Aerobic fartlek Concentration of lactate in blood should stay relatively low (this is
very important)
4. Running uphill
-Must explain to the athlete not to run uphill with a bent-leg position (this is easier for the
-Training effect of uphill running is very low
-Has to be completed with a very vigorous push-off and full extension and high lift of the
opposite thigh/quat
-Running on sand is a non-specific exercise.

Question and Answer

At what point is an athlete too heavy to use Shock Methods?
-Based on how well the athlete is prepared.
-If ankle/knee/hip are in good shape, heavy people can do it.
-75 to 110 cm are the most effective heights to do depth jumps from (use lower heights
with less prepared/heavier athletes)
-Shock Methods must be properly used. Must not land with too much force. Must
absorb some of the force. Athlete also has to understand the principles.
-Knee joint angle should be around 135o, but the athlete wont know what this is.
-Primary two things for SM: (also refer back to Yessis section from Sunday for info)
1. Landing phase-athlete has to be prepared to absorb all shock (has to be soft on the
2. After landing, the athlete has to reach maximum height (jump as high as they can)
-SM 1st two parameters This will determine how long the athlete is on the ground.
However long of a time it takes to optimize the soft landing and maximal height of jump
(these are the two most important pieces to the method) will be the optimal time on the
ground. This is very individual, though.
-Optimum work load is approx. 4 sets of 10 jumps, 3 times per week max. Depth drop
height of 75-110 cm, but this is for elite athletes only, not beginners. Must also reduce
the drop height for heavier individuals.
-Can actually ruin an athletes career by not doing these properly and landing as soft as
possible. Ex.-American shot-putter doing depth jumps from 4 and 5 feet high wrecked
the joints in his lower body.
-Bodybuilding exercises are beneficial to shot-putters (as 1 part of their training-they do
need mass). They also need a lot of rotational work and things such as kettlebell throws.
Bench press work-weight on the bar shouldnt be maximal. 1 rep is sufficient, slow on
the way down, then react at the bottom to explode the bar up.
-Slide 38-this is for endurance athletes, not applicable for power athletes.
-Landing parameters-slide 39-very complicated.

Val Nasedkin from OmegaWave translated for Yuri on Sunday and spoke briefly on
some of the conditioning training Yuri mentioned for the middle-distance runners:
-Hypertrophy of slow-twitch muscles is easy to develop. We know this from
bodybuilding. This is important for mid- to long-distance runners. More cross-sectional
area means more mitochondria. This gives them a greater capacity to remove lactate.

-In the conditioning exercises described, the time frame of application (10 sec. on, 10 sec.
off) of the fast-twitch muscles is so short that youre not allowing lactate to accumulate,
but at the same time, you are increasing the cross-sectional area of the fast-twitch muscle
fibers for the mid. distance runners. Will provide different results for sprinters because
they have a lot less slow-twitch fibers, therefore they have a lot less mitochondria and
less of a capability for removing lactate from their system and their lactate curve will go
up as a result of this kind of training, and lactate will accumulate, decreasing the quality
of work they can perform.
-Endurance athletes, at an early age, you want their heart to stretch (not thicken) to
increase the volume of space in the heart and the cardiac output. This is achieved by
doing very long (greater than 30-40 minutes) at a low pace. This is done so that as they
get further along in their training, the cardiac output of the heart (and the heart itself)
doesnt become a limiting factor to their endurance. The heart will stay stretched out, so
then as they get older, you want to do more strength work to increase the muscles
capacity to use all of the greater cardiac output the heart is producing.

Clinic Outside the Clinic

Tom Myslinski (Former Asst. Strength Coach-Cleveland Browns, played OL in the NFL
for 10 years)
-No overhead pressing, they have 38 variations of the lateral raise to use instead. Also,
get your triceps strong (isolated tricep exercises). If youre triceps are strong, all your
pressing movements will be strong-this is the key to being strong in all the pressing
-All shoulder work is trained from back to front-rear, lateral, front.
-No cleans or variations. This is because of the number of wrist (inability to catch) and
shoulder injuries they face and the limited ROM in the wrist/elbow/shoulder for the
catch. Also players tend to extend backwards (hyperextend) too much instead of
extending upwards. Instead of using olympic lift variations, they use a wide variety of
heavy med ball throws with 40-50 lb. balls.
-No lower body training (i.e. max effort squatting) over 85% 1RM because of their
intense on-field training demands (QB school and practice). On field
training/practice/competition has to be the number one priority and demands the most
expenditure of energy and CNS stress. You cant make strength training a priority over
these demands. He recommends that at the collegiate level not to train the lower body
over 90% of 1RM.
-No max effort work in season (lower body for sure-not sure about how they feel about
max effort for the upper body) this is because, every time you collision with someone on
the field, it is essentially a max effort exercise.
-In order to rotate lower body squatting exercises, they just change the bars they use.
Instead of always using a power bar, they will use safety bar, cambered bars, etc. It is
still a lower body squatting movement, but the mechanics will change so it is like
performing a new exercise.
-Skill guys dont box squat at all (unless they need extra technique work) they perform 1
leg squats or other single leg work instead just to get more single leg work.
-They will use bent-leg reverse hypers b/c some of their guys have such a hard time
activating the glutes that they can barely do a regular reverse hyper.
-They use the OmegaWave system, and put the Westside Barbell guys on it. Their
readouts on it were very poor, probably due to their poor work capacity (compared to
football players). Ex. they put Dave Tate through some hurdle mobility drills and some
of the other Westside guys through a dynamic warmup and they were shot afterwards.
-Big on floor press-forces you to press the bar up in a straight line.

-All dumbbell pressing work is done with the palms in, but elbows out more toward 45o.
Elbows in places too much stress on the anterior capsule of the shoulder.
-Speed-strength (dynamic effort) must be expressed/trained before age 22 (Cant
remember if this was the age he said-it was fairly young) otherwise it is much harder to
develop. Has his 10 year old son doing boxing drills to teach him hand and arm speed.
Offensive lineman punching is purely a dynamic effort movement with no resistance
(until their hand hits).
-Most football players at the NFL level are very speed dominant-they want to retain this
quality through training (and improve strength).
Buddy Morris (Former Head Strength Coach-Cleveland Browns, and Pitt Panthers)
-Have to remember that all fatigue is cumulative and has a cumulative effect on the body.
-Human body is a conductor and a super-compensator.
-Good strength coach has to have good resources-other good strength coaches, sports
physical therapists, orthopedists, athletic trainers, etc.
-In the NFL they have many different guys from many different backgrounds-HIT,
Olympic lifting, combo of everything. Might only have the guy for one week. Main goal
is to get them so theyre able to handle footballs demand on the body and stay healthy.
Theyre already good athletes/football players. Players only have a limited amount of
time to make money in the NFL, you want them to be able to make the most of that
-No overhead pressing. The shoulder joints main function is mobility, and it has little
stability. There is no extra room in the shoulder joint in a normal man, especially in the
sub-acromial space. They went to a cadaver lab and got to look at a shoulder. In the subacr. space, there was barely enough room to even stick the tip of a pinky finger in it. In
strength trained athletes, due to their muscular development, this space is probably going
to be smaller and can lead to impingement problems. Overhead pressing does strengthen
the rotator cuff (and enlarges it). This may enhance stability (I believe this is what he
said) but it does this at the expense of the shoulder joints function-mobility.
-3 week wave with the bands and chains. 3 weeks with the chains, 3 weeks with the
bands, but they never do a max effort bench or test after the band wave.
-Do a 4 week GPP circuit training phase to start their off-season program. A version of
this is found in Supertraining. They do this because most of the players have taken over a
month off. You dont know who did what and chances are that a lot of them did nothing.
You need to prepare them for the more intense training and get their work capacity back
up. It is two, 2-week cycles. Done mainly to address and strengthen imbalances. Weight

and exercises stay constant for two weeks. The exercises all change for the second cycle.
They manipulate intensity by adding reps to each set on the second week.
Week 1 to Week 2-weight is the same, add reps
Week 3-exercises change
Week 3 to Week 4-weight is the same, add reps
-Spoke briefly about flat-loading (I need to look this up)
-Remember-the only specific football training is what occurs on the practice/game field,
everything else that is done from a training standpoint is GPP for football.
-They have a Tendo unit on every bar
-If a player is performing a set over 90%, either he or Tom must watch it, even if the
player has to wait 5 minutes to do it.
-Their program is a concurrent system, not a conjugate system.
-Recommended the book: Clinical Guide of Sports Injuries
-Spoke briefly about the importance of technique on lifting and said that Louie Simmons
preaches hard on technique when coaching. A powerlifter there who trains at Westside a
few times a year said that even the guys that have been training there for 15 years and
squat 900 get coached hard on every rep.

Mark McLaughlin (Owner of Performance Training Center, Milwaukie, Oregon)

QB Work:
-No overhead work
-No straight bar bench, this will tighten their pec and anterior capsule of the shoulder
-All pressing is done with dumbbells-incline, decline, and floor press
-DB bench with minibands wrapped around the elbows to provide accommodating
-Many push-up variations-hand on a med ball, stability ball push-ups, etc.
-No straight bar squat, he uses the safety bar only for their squatting. Holding onto the
safety bar forces the shoulder into too much external rotation, stretching the internal
-A drill he got from Alan Degennaro:
External rotation with tubing. There probably isnt much tension on the tube at this point.
Towel between arm and torso-externally rotate arm, hold in the ext. rotated position and
take two steps out to the side to increase tension, hold for 10 seconds, repeat this
sequence. I did not hear him say how many reps they did.

Ryan Cidzik (Asst. Strength Coach, Louisiana Tech)

QB/Pitcher Work:
-No overhead work
-A lot of pre-hab work for the elbow, shoulder, and scapula
-Tricep extensions in various positions with the other hand supporting the elbow. Use the
mini-bands for this to decrease the amount of torque on the elbow in the flexed position
and increase the amount of torque on the elbow in the extended position.
-Would do a single leg squat called a Pistol Squat-perform the eccentric with dumbbells
in your hands, drop the dbs at the bottom and come up fast with just your bodyweight.
-Performed iso-hold work-push-ups with each hand on a box, iso-lunges with the feet
elevated on weight plates. Work up to 60 seconds on the lunge, every 10 seconds
instructing the athletes to drop an inch to get more depth. Using the elevation for this,
they have their feet closer together. If you use no elevation, he recommended spreading
the feet a little further front to back.

A powerlifter that was there recommended a different brand on strength bands than the
jump-stretch bands. You can get them at He said they are tougher
bands, have a 1 year warranty and are cheaper than buying the jump-stretch bands from
elite fitness.