One of the common misconceptions we hear from parents and kids is that they are getting in shape and working out because they are in-season, or going to practice, or participating in some type of sport related activity. In reality, you shouldn’t substitute performance training (read: strength, power, and speed development) and replace it with practice. Those are two separate things.
In simplest form, performance training is trying to increase your physical output. This means pushing more weight, jumping higher, being more explosive, etc., trying to increase your maximal output. This is your capacity.
Playing your sport is about learning skills, applying your physical abilities to a sport, utilizing your capacity in highly specific ways. In both games and practices you will test your capacity, your skills, as well as your conditioning as well. However, playing your sport does not increase your capacity. Your ability to apply your capacity to specific activities is your efficiency.
In short, capacity is what your total capabilities are, efficiency is how well you apply those abilities to specific skills. This means that performance training and sport activities, while closely related, are not good substitutes for one another. Just because you went to practice doesn’t mean you got your workout in. Ultimately, you’ll need to be able to improve both your capacity and your efficiency if you want to reach your potential.
-Coach Alex Drayson