Medicine Ball

Posted by & filed under Athletic, Health & Nutrition, Social, Training.

I learned the “POWER” of a medicine ball workout while I was in college.  I hated them at the time, but I have grown to love them for many, many reasons!  A medicine ball is a weighted ball that can come in different diameters and usually weighs between 4-20 pounds.

I swore coaches made us train with them to simply create soreness the next day.  I always felt wimpy tossing them around, because they would not go as far as I felt they should.  Now that I am a little more educated, I understand the reason for medicine ball workouts.

EXPLOSIVE POWER – From head to toe…every muscle is involved when you try and launch a medicine ball.  It fires the central nervous system similar to olympic lifts in the weight room.  The rapid contraction of the fast twitch muscle fibers can help develop them and make them more efficient when they are called on in a game setting.  Nearly every sport requires some sort of quick reaction.

TYPES OF MED BALL EXERCISES

  • Squat, jump and push ball like a chest pass
  • Squat, jump and underhand throw
  • Squat, jump and throw overhead backwards
  • Hammer throw right and left with bent knees and trunk rotation
  • Side shuffle catch and throw with a chest pass.
  • 1 hop forward, then squat, jump and underhand throw

 

As I stated before, most sports can benefit from these lifts.  I suggest starting with lighter weight and work your way up to a comfortable yet challenging medicine ball.  Expect some soreness but understand that your legs, core, arms, shoulders, and hands are all involved.  Every body part is working together to make this movement happen as fast as possible.  Quickness is essential.  You should make a conscious effort to be “as explosive as possible”!   Keep the repetitions low, but the effort high.

 

University

Posted by & filed under Academic, Athletic, Health & Nutrition, Social, Training.

I used to hear parents talk a lot about trying to understand the recruiting process. Many parents felt if their son received a letter from any University, then they were recruiting their son, which is not the case at all. Throughout an athletes high school life, their recruitment will take many different turns. Most Universities’ coaching staffs base their recruiting on many different criteria. As a player, you must think:

 

Does this University fit who I am as a person?

Does this University have what I want to major in? Sports will stop one day.

Do I have a good feeling about this coaching staff, and do I TRUST them?

Can I play for this head coach? Because you are not playing for the assistant that recruited you. Assistants move more often.

Have I met the players on the team who I will be living with the next four year? Very important.

Do the coaches have the administrations support in how they are running the program? How long are they under contract?

What’s a good distance for me? Weather at the school? Remember you are there for four years.

How important is it that your parents are able to see you play often? Distance will factor in.

How soon will I have the opportunity to play, and who is playing my position now?

What style has that coach been playing while coaching? Most coaches do not change systems! Do I fit their style?

Go where your heart tells you to go while having input from your parents, but you have to make the final decision, because you are the one going there to school.

 

These are many of the questions that you must ask yourself while being recruited by different universities, but not the only ones. Every athlete has a different set of criteria of choosing a particular school. Put these questions in order from which are the most important to you to the least, because most schools will not fit every situation. Then, list the schools which are recruiting you and have offered you a scholarship across the top and start checking off which school meets most of what you are looking for. Remember being recruited and offering a scholarship are two different situations. Find out if they are offering you, because this will speed up the process.

 

Remember every school has only so many scholarships each year, so knowing how many they have to give is important as well as where you are on the depth chart. You will know if they want you by how they interact with your whole family.

Preseason Training

Posted by & filed under Athletic, Health & Nutrition, Training.

With a new school year on the horizon, I would like to talk about the preseason training you will soon be immersed in. This may be the former college coach coming out in me, but you can consider this your PRESEASON PEP TALK!

 

In a nutshell, your preseason training is hard. It is hot, you are tired, and you may not see the point of this unnecessary torture. I hear you! This is definitely not the exciting part.  Let’s think of the preseason training as making deposits in your bank account. Every preseason practice completed with effort is a hefty deposit in your account.  The harder you work in the preseason, the more money you have to go shopping with.

 

Now you have got to be thinking, “shopping?” We are not exactly shopping here, we are playing sports.  Shopping is the exciting part.  Shopping is your game day! The athletes that deposited more in their accounts in preseason will have more to shop with on game day.  In the world of sports, the competition is when it matters! Practice and preseason are what get you there.  It is not a waste of your time.  It is an investment in the bigger picture.  Preseason is an investment in your success on game day!

 

Pick your head up when you hot and tired and think about it…

Signed

Posted by & filed under Athletic, Profiles, Social.

You graduated, you signed a National Letter of Intent, you are headed to the school the fits all your needs and wants! Now What? You may be soaking in the sun at a pool, and the excitement of being done with High School has turned into a little fear.  Every student athlete has felt the same nervous excitement that you are now feeling. Everything is about to change…

Try and look at it head on! You are setting your life in motion. You worked hard to open as many doors as possible and here you are, walking through a big one!  College is a wonderful time in your life, but as a student athlete, it comes with added demands that the general students don’t have.  You have a full time job…Training, competing, and representing yourself and your school are your extra demands to bear.

Lets look at 3 things to help keep you moving forward in this new life of a student athlete.  STAYING ORGANIZED – Have set times to study, train, relax, eat, and sleep.  Put it on a calendar (even relaxing) so you are reminded to make these things priority.  The coaches will give you plenty of “must do’s!”  Classes will have plenty “must do’s” as well.  The rest is left for you to organize.

STAYING POSITIVE – You may be tired, homesick, struggling with a class, or even injured.  If you wallow in these negative feelings, nothing will change for you.  It is not all going to be easy and you can start preparing yourself for that fact!

Lastly STAYING AGGRESSIVE – That may sound funny, but think of it this way.  You wanted to play a sport in college and get a good education.  You are in the door…be aggressive at achieving those 2 goals.  Goal 1 – Play your sport and dedicate as much of yourself physically and mentally as you can.  Goal 2 – Pick your major and dive in full steam.  Learn as much as you can to prepare for life after college.

The big picture isn’t so scary anymore…you are simply setting your life in motion.  Congratulations!

Supplements

Posted by & filed under Academic, Athletic, Health & Nutrition, Training.

The world of supplements and its use to sports has been and will be debated for years and years. It is a never ending cycle of new supplements being created, old supplements being revamped, and the debate over the legality of using supplements for sports purposes. In the end, regardless of the pros and cons, the decision is up to YOU. No one (not even your coach) can force you to take or not take a certain supplement. Our goal is to inform you on the benefits and side effects of a few popular supplements, so you can make the most informed decision you can.

 

Creatine

  • Pros
    • Increased muscle and strength gains
    • NCAA Legal
    • Safe
    • Can train longer
  • Cons
    • Dehydration can be an issue that causes muscle cramps, thirst, dry mouth, and/or dizziness
      • Can be avoided entirely with increased daily water intake
    • Water retention can make your muscles look less defined as they grow

Kre-Alkalyn

  • Pros
    • NCAA Legal
    • Completely legal, safe
    • Less water retention than creatine (excluding monohydrate)
    • Increased muscle and strength gains
    • Can train longer
  • Cons
    • Expensive

Multi-Vitamins

  • Pros
    • NCAA Legal
    • Gives your body exact right amounts of daily nutrients
    • Easy to take
  • Cons
    • Not as good as nutrients from real food
    • Too much can cause overloads that can create minor problems like iron

Beta-Alanine

  • Pros
    • NCAA Legal
    • Increased output from muscles
    • Decreased strain on muscles
  • Cons
    • Heavy dosing can result in Paresthesia
      • Tingling of the body/redness of face
      • Minor annoyance but completely safe

Pre-Workouts (In general, not focusing on one specific brand)

  • Pros
    • Greatly increased energy
    • Increased mental focus
    • Indirectly increases weight-lifting confidence
  • Cons
    • Possible upset stomach if taken on an empty stomach
    • “Crash” as the effects wear off
    • Increased cortisol levels
    • Possible addiction
    • Adrenal gland fatigue
    • Any pre-workout with 1,3 D in it is BANNED by the NCAA

Fish Oil

  • Pros
    • NCAA Legal
    • Lowers triglycerides
    • Reduces risk of heart attack and stroke
  • Cons
    • Avoid 3+ grams/day, and the only side effects will be
      • Unpleasant after taste
      • Fish-smelling burps
    • Above 3+ grams/day can result in more serious side effects

 

To help clear up any confusion, you can click the link to view the NCAA’s Banned Drug List

 

Look for another article soon about the benefits and dangers of Pro-Hormones, HGH, Steroids.