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Panther Post: Getting ahead of the competition with extra training in the off-season

Off-season training is critical to the competitive athlete. During this time athletes can develop a strong cardiovascular system and build lean muscle mass that is functional to being a multi-sport athlete.

Many different types of training modes are utilized to develop all three energy systems that are needed for athletic performance. There is a strong emphasis on technique and having the luxury to spend more time on a lift when an athlete struggles to perform it. Likewise, there is an emphasis on proper running technique, agility and speed work development to make patterns more efficient. The athlete should feel and even verbalize that they are conditioned to enter their fall sport after training on a consistent basis in the summer.

In-season training is different from off-season training. It is imperative that weight training continues to maintain what has been gained in the off-season and to decrease injuries. There are many ways to accomplish this task and coaches have varied philosophies to obtain this goal.

It is very difficult to teach a new lifter all of the lifts that have been performed in the off-season due to time constraints in the in-season. So I encourage all athletes to take advantage of the summer strength and conditioning program provided by St. Joseph's Area Health Services. Look for it in the Community Education flyer that will be coming out in May 2012. I encourage you to sign up early as these classes will fill fast.

This is the first year St. Joseph's Area Health Services will be offering strength and conditioning classes for fifth and sixth graders which will provide a huge opportunity to our athletic programs.