Youth sport and athletic development has exploded in recent years. The introduction of sport performance training programs has led to greater increases in strength, power and speed while reducing injury rates. The sport performance community continues to learn better ways to make the complete athlete. This sounds promising for every up and coming athlete out there. The question is how do athletes, coaches and parents know when one sport performance training program is better than another. I am going to list three tips that should help you find the perfect coach.
First, what are their credentials? Did they attend a four year college or take a weekend seminar? Do they hold the most recognized and respected certifications in the field or did they get one off the internet? Is this there first go around or have they been in the trenches for years? Feel free to ask all these questions. It is your right and responsibility to know who is going to be coaching your athlete.
Second, ask about the sport performance program. Is there a physical assessment done before the athlete starts the program? Is it a one size fits all cookie cutter approach where large groups are poorly supervised or is it a small group with individualized programming specific to each athlete. A well written sport performance program should include the following:
1. Self Myofasical Release
2. Static Stretching
3. Mobility & Activation
4. Dynamic Warm Up
5. Speed & Agility
6. Power & Strength
7. Sport Conditioning
Third, does the facility have the proper equipment and tools necessary to execute the sport performance training program? Are there the basic necessities such as a squat rack, bench, barbell, Olympic plates and dumbbells? Additional tools that help are medicine balls, drive sleds, slide boards, kettlebells and plyo boxes. These are the important pieces of equipment for running a sound sport performance training program. Below is The University of Connecticut's football strength and conditioning facility.
These tips should help you decide where to bring your athlete for their sport performance training program.