Welcome to our refreshed ‘media pick’ section. This section will be updated frequently with a selected piece of media from our site, either new or old, featured alongside content of a similar genre to provide you with a wide breadth of information and insight around a specific topic area. 2013 National Coach Mentorship Program
May 2, 2013
The 2013 National Coach Mentorship program has come to a close, and this year it had an emphasis on the sprints and hurdles event group. The participants on this program stretched from across the country and were fortunate to benefit from face-to-face learning and mentoring experiences from both Coach Matt Kane (University of Alabama) and Coach Vince Anderson (Texas A&M). To gain a snippet of what the participants learned check out the interviews we have with Coach Kane and Coach Anderson.
The Long Jump
October 12, 2012
In the lead up to the 2012 Canadian National Jumps Conference we are going to dedicate one Media Pick to each of the four jumping events. These event specific media picks will examine content at varying degrees of difficulty in an effort to provide a progression for learning where you can decide whether to engage in basic or more advanced resources. The last Media Pick covered the pole vault (see below) and this edition will focus onthe long jump.
At an introductory level Dan Pfaff’s video ‘Classroomto Track: Long Jump’ is an extremely insightful video that will provide aholistic understanding of the technical aspects of the long jump. Similarly,the article ‘Simplifyingthe Long Jump’ by coach Boo Schexnayder is an excellent article that provide an overview of the basics of long jump technique.
At a more intermediate level, check out coach Schexnayder’s practical video ‘Technical Exercises and Teaching Progressions for the Long Jump’, which provides an in depth overview of specific exercises for teaching effective technique in the long jump. Additionally, for an intermediate level article relating to the long jump check out this article, ‘Speedin the Horizontal Jumps: Muscular Properties or Cognitive Treatment?’,which examines the process of athletes making modifications in their run ups in the final steps, and how those changes impact the jump length.
A great advanced level video is one from Frans Bosch that examines ‘Approach Mechanics in the Jumping Events’. This video is an insightful resource for anyone looking to expand their content knowledge, and potentially question some of their current coaching practices. In relation to planning, check out our ‘Planning Project: Long Jump’ that examines how coach Boo Schexnayder approaches planning throughout all phases of the year. There is a podcast and a document that are part of the planning project.
The Pole Vault
September 7, 2012
In the lead up to the 2012 Canadian National Jumps Conference we are going to dedicate one Media Pick to each of the four jumping events. These event specific media picks will examine content at varying degrees of difficulty in an effort to provide a progression for learning where you can decide whether to engage in basic or more advanced resources.
To get us started we will identify some key resources thatrelate to the Pole Vault.
To begin, Dan Pfaff’s ‘Classroomto Track: Pole Vault’ video is an excellent resource both for coaches looking to gain the basic technical understanding of the pole vault and alsofor those looking to expand their current technical knowledge. Additionally, at this introductory level we have a keynote address by Sergei Bubka, who broadly discusses his development as an athlete. For a well rounded discussion of physical conditioning for pole vaultcheck out this article named ‘PoleVault Conditioning’.
At an intermediate level check out Dan Pfaff’s video ‘Competition phase micro cycles for the jumping events’ for his insights on planning, or check out our interviewwith coach Pfaff to listen to him discuss his technical approach tocoaching the vertical jumps. Additionally check out this article that explains ‘polevault as “double pendulum” and “penetration”’.
At an advanced level Falk Schade’s video “Biomechanics of the Pole Vault” is a must. Similarly, listen to our interview with him here to understand how Schade approaches understanding optimal technique in the pole vault. One of the more advanced articles that we have pertaining to the pole vault can be found here, and examines the implications of run up velocities on technique in men’s and women’s vault.
August 15, 2012
The 2012 Canadian National Jumps Conference is confirmed for the 2-4 November in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada! With world-renowned jumps coaches as keynote speakers (including Dan Pfaff, Boo Schexnayder & Nelio Moura), it promises to be an extremely exciting and insightful weekend, check here for more information.
Want to do some pre conference learning about the jumps? This media pick
will outline some key pieces of content that will get you started.
Dan Pfaff’s Classroom to track video series is an excellent resource for both novice and advanced coaches. In the videos coach Pfaff explains his technical approach to coaching each of the jumping events in a logical and methodical way. Click on the event to go to the video: ‘long jump’ ‘triple jump’ ‘high jump’ ‘pole vault’
For a more advanced discussion with regard to the approach in the jumping events, check out Frans Bosch’s video: ‘Approach mechanics in the jumping events’
Aside from videos we also have a number of articles that clearly outline the basics of the jumping events. Here are some examples:
· ‘Simplifying the Long Jump’
· ‘Triple jump technique’
· ‘Biomechanical studies in the high jump and the implications to coaching’
· ‘Model technique analysis: pole vault’
Planning and Psychological Preparations in Final Phase
July 15, 2012
We are that time of year where as a coach we have either just experienced the peak of the competitive outdoor season, or we are just heading into the peak of competition. Either way, the content discussed in this media pick will hopefully provide you with some useful learning resources with regard to planning for the final phase of competition.
Firstly, Anatoliy Bondarchuk’s ‘The development of sports form’
video is a must watch to increase understanding around how to interpret individual adaptation and development, that can then be tailored into an understanding of planning in the final phase.
Similarly, Dan Pfaff’s ‘Competition phase micro-cycles for the jumping events’
and Wynn Gmitroski’s ‘Planning and periodization for the endurance athletes II’
provide extensive information with regard to planning in the competitive phase.
Many top coaches will attest that alongside the physiological preparation of an athlete moving into the peak of the competitive season, the psychological preparation is also of the utmost importance. Take a look at Dr. Darren Treasure’s video ‘Psychological preparation for major competition’
, to get some insight into Treasure’s approaches at the Nike Oregon Project.For further understanding on mental preparation for peak performance in the competitive season check out this article called ‘Competition plans and routines’ or this article that examines key components of mental focus that assist in effective technical performance.
Integrating Training Elements
May 18, 2012
As a coach it is sometimes difficult to consider new and innovative ways to approach certain coaching decisions. For example when talking about periodization we really only consider the organization of the physical training elements and rarely think about how other elements such as psychology, nutrition, communication or emotional behavior can be integrated into a longitudinal training plan. Therefore this media pick aims to highlight some pieces of content that will help you consider how to integrate different elements of training into your planning.
Firstly our newly released video ‘Margo Jennings – Integrating Physical and Emotional Training Elements
’ is an excellent video that highlights how a coach can integrate the physical elements of an athletes training with the necessary emotional developments that occur throughout a career.
Besides the emotional components of training, a coach can also consider the communicative strategies they are employing as well as the motivational climate they are creating in order to elicit performance developments. We have three outstanding videos from Dr. Darren Treasure
on this topic. Any of these could help understand better how to create a performance-oriented climate for your athletes. Coach-Athlete Communication
, Psychological Preparation
, Creating Optimal Motivation
Additionally, nutrition is something that could be fully integrated with a training program so that the nutritional approach an athlete is taking is appropriate to the level and type of training that they are doing at that time of the season. Check out this article
that looks at appropriate nutrient intakes on a day-to-day basis. Or for a more encompassing view of different nutritional schemes, and how they can be integrated within a training plan check out Dr. Trent Stellingwerff’s video series on “Nutrition for Success”
(more videos coming soon!).
May 4, 2012
Have you ever
had an athlete strain their hamstring? Or pull their groin? Or had recurring shin splints? A betting man would probably think that yes, if you are a coach of track and field athletes, at some point you have had an athlete be injured in this way. As coaches we often talk about injuries in a way that is wholly accepting of them as part of the training process. However, if we can reframe how we view the human body and how we understand training, then maybe injury does not have to be an inherent part of an athlete’s life!
For instance, considering athlete health from a proactive viewpoint instead of a typical reactive viewpoint we could maybe prevent many injuries from happening in the first place. Our newly released video by Joe Mills
, which examines posture from an in depth perspective as to how it relates to athletics, is a video that can help us understand the training of the athletes in this proactive way. Similarly Dr. Andrew Robb’s video that looks at functional movement strategies
provides us with a potential alternate way to understand how the body moves. In addition, we have a dedicated section to posture within our strength and conditioning category. Here, we currently have four different interviews
with experts in the area of posture (Dr. Larry Bell
, Boo Schexnayder
, Marilou Lamy
, Joe Mills
Of course, none of these ideas about posture or effective training are a quick fix, nor are they going to keep an athlete healthy 100% of the time. Therefore unexpected injuries may continue to occur, and so our general injury prevention podcast
, and our post injury recovery procedures
document will hopefully help shed some more light on the nature of injuries.
Recovery & Regeneration
March 22, 2012
As coaches in track and field, we are constantly attempting to control many aspects of the training environment. We do this to try and create the most productive training environment for the athletes that we work with. (We do however need to carefully consider the way we plan and control training, so that we hopefully do not create ‘docile athletes’; to read more on this take a look at this article by Dr. Denison, Director of the CACC)
No matter how well we construct the training, optimal adaptation may not occur if the athletes’ recovery and regeneration is not effective. The way that athletes manage themselves away from the track can have a huge impact on this.
For instance, Nutrition can significantly impact recovery and regeneration. We have a wide range of material from Dr. Trent Stellingwerff that examines effective nutrition, with more to be released in the coming months. Why not check out newly released ‘Body composition for peak performance’ and ‘general diet’ videos from the Nutrition for Success series.
In a similar way, quality and length of sleep can have a significant impact on an athlete’s recovery. Check out our ‘understanding sleep’ podcast to learn more. Additionally athletes can also follow hydrotherapy protocols to assist with the recovery and regeneration process, the podcast ‘Icing, heating and contrast baths’ provides an in depth understanding of this.
"The Perfect Runner"
March 9, 2012
The Perfect Runner is an upcoming documentary, being shown at 8pm on 15th March on CBC. This exciting film by Niobe Thompson weaves cutting-edge science with gripping adventure, takes the viewer from the highlands of Ethiopia, to the most remote place in Arctic Siberia, to the world's toughest ultramarathon in the Canadian Rockies, and leaves the them with a new and inspiring understanding of our common evolutionary inheritance as the running ape. (Watch the trailer here)
Heavily featured in The Perfect Runner is Dr. Larry Bell one of Canada’s foremost sports chiropractors. Dr. Bell works closely with the group of athletes here at the Coaching Centre, and we have some excellent pieces of content from him here on our website: a “Biomechanics of Sprinting” video, the “Incorporation of Therapy” podcast, and the “Important Elements of Posture” podcast.
Some other content we have that could be of interest those excited about The Perfect Runner includes our interview with Ethiopian multiple gold medal winner and record breaker Haile Gebrselassie (find the interview here). And our interview with Professor Timothy Noakes who discusses his ideas with regard to ‘Central Governor Theory’ in relation to elite endurance performance (find the interview here).
Managing Technical Development
February 20, 2012
In our sport, we are expected as coaches’ to provide a process of effective technical development for our athletes. An important part of this is having an in depth technical understanding of the event we are coaching and thereafter having a dynamic working model of how we wish to coach this event that includes the factors that we deem most important for performance. (For event specific technical discussions of individual events see Dan Pfaff’s excellent ‘classroom to track’ series).
However, this technical understanding alone is not enough to help athletes to improve, we also need an understanding of effective problem solving and communication strategies. For instance we can learn a lot from Boo Schexnayder on effective problem solving in his interview, and when also reading Denison & Avner’s article on ‘Positive Coaching’ we can begin to see alternate ways of understanding how to coach. Combining this with theoretical understandings of providing feedback (augmented feedback coach cast) and optimal ways of preparing an athlete psychologically, by Dr. Darren Treasure (Nike Oregon Project) we can begin to uncover more tools for our ‘how to’ coaching toolbox!
Strength Training Methods
January 13, 2012
This past weekend at the Centre in partnership with Athletics Canada we hosted the beginning of the 2012 Canadian National Coach Mentoring program. This year the event group is the throws and world-renowned coach Don Babbitt was in town to kick-start the program by presenting on a wide range of topics related to the throws. As you would expect strength training was an item hot on the agenda, and general discussion in this area does not only pertain to the throws, but is relevant for all events in athletics. As such, this Media Pick will highlight some key resources related to strength training.
Within our sport, especially in the speed-power events it is widely viewed that a combination of absolute strength training and special strength training (among other strength training methods) is a recipe for physical development that will lead to performance increases. This is examined here in Don Babbitt’s presentation as well as in these special strength and maximal strength podcasts. Interestingly, there are alternate views on the way in which these strength-training concepts should be balanced within the training program and Dr. Bondarchuk’s video on ‘Concepts in Strength Training for the Throws’ provides us with an excellent overview of this.
To gain a really in depth understanding of special strength training, the work of Yuri Verkhoshansky is a must read. His article ‘The Development of special strength in power/speed events’ is a taster for what you will get from reading his outstanding book, ‘Special Strength Training Manual for Coaches’. For more information on strength training related to the individual events within our sport keep an eye out for our up coming interview series with internationally renowned coach Vern Gambetta.
National Endurance Conference
November 24, 2011
With the 2011Canadian National Endurance Conference just around the corner, this media pick is going to highlight some key pieces of media that we already have in our library from some of the presenters at the conference.
Firstly, checkout our interview with Margo Jennings that looks at her approach to planning and her work with Maria Mutola, 800m Olympic Champion in 2000.
Further, the whole host of media we have from Wynn Gmitroski is also extremely insightful with regard to planning and practice theory, especially his video entitled ‘Endurance Physiology’. The newly released videos from Darren Treasure provide aninteresting insight into the psychological aspect of training for the endurance events, namely ‘Psychological Preparation for Major Competitions’ and ‘Creating OptimalAthlete Motivation’.
Additionally have a look at our videos on the marathon by Dave Scott-Thomas (Marathon1 & Marathon2), or listen to his interview to get a feel for how he approaches planning, program building, and speedtraining.
We also have Jay Johnson presenting at the conference who discusses in this piece of media 10,000m planning. In addition, Dr. Trent Stellingwerf will be presenting, to get a feel for his work check out our interviews with him and keep an eye out for a performance nutrition video series that we have coming out in the next few months.
In the coming months look out for new material from these presenters plus first time material from Alberto Salazar and James Li!
If you still haven’t signed up for the National Endurance Conference on December 9th– 11th click here for more information on how to register.
Concepts in Planning
November 10, 2011
Featured Media: Periodization models podcast
It's that time of year again, where if we haven’t already done so we are finalizing certain aspects of our yearly training plan. This is never a simple process, and it is always very easy to get lost, tangled in and confused with the concepts and language of planning. Therefore the current media pick is our podcast entitled ‘periodization models’. This has been chosen because it is a resource that outlines four classic models of periodization and how each model can be applied in practice. Revisiting these basic concepts in planning will undoubtedly begin to help answer those questions of ‘when do I change exercises in my program?’ or ‘how long should my SPP be?’.
If you visit the ‘periodization models’ podcast and feel that it is a little too difficult, or you feel you would benefit from some greater background understanding on the subject then take a look at ‘basic concepts in periodization’; this is a podcast that sets the scene for the featured podcast by highlighting more basic concepts involved in planning.
Alternatively, if you would like to gain more knowledge in the area of planning from Dr. Anatoliy Bondarchuk’s perspective then checking out his video presentation entitled ‘the development of sports form’ is a must. Similarly, our ‘Dane Miller interview’ and accompanying document ‘reflections of a master: an interview with Dr. Anatoliy Bondarchuk’ provides insider knowledge of the concepts and ideas that Dr. Bondarchuk bases his training of throwers on. Interestingly, if we think critically about his ideas, some of the concepts could even be applied to aspects of planning for other event groups (See Scott’s blog)!
(to check out Dr. Bondarchuk’s books head to Vol. 1 & Vol. 2 )
Finally, having a read of Scott Saunders’ blog on ‘short to long/long to short periodizations’ or watching Dan Pfaff’s videos on training theory in the power/speed events could assist with your thoughts around the planning of your athletes’ training or maybe help you to think differently about the way you currently plan!