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Welcome to the Excelsior blog. It is a mix of current research and thoughts on Athlete and Coach Development, Strength and Conditioning and personal reflections.
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“Why wait for a disaster to have a really open and frank conversation?” Wade Gilbert asked this at the GAIN conference in his presentation on reflection and debriefs for coaches. (This was two days after the Grenfell tower disaster where many people were asking the same thing). Wade said that systematic reflection could be the […]0 Comments | Read More | GAIN, GAIN2017, reflective practice
“We should warm up with skills not drills” Said Jim Radcliffe in his joint presentation with Vern Gambetta at GAIN. Combined they have been on an 89 year journey and “We can do better” said Vern in trying to create the perfect workout. This was an interesting dual presentation with a lot of back and […]0 Comments | Read More | GAIN, GAIN2017, planning
“Some people can negotiate the speed bumps of life, some end up in a ditch.” Jim Radcliffe talking about the Robust Athlete in his excellent presentation at GAIN this year. Jim has coached at The University of Oregon since 1989 and has been a major influence on my coaching since 2011 when I first saw […]0 Comments | Read More | GAIN, GAIN2017, plyometrics, structural Integrity
“If I want to get better, I need to know what better is.” Wade Gilbert gave an excellent overview of the coaching process at his GAIN seminar. This also served as an overview of his excellent book of the same name. His talk was split into 4 parts: Envision: Pre-season Enact: In-Season Examine: End of […]0 Comments | Read More | GAIN, GAIN2017, reflective practice, Transformational Coaching
Systematic Planning for Your Athletes Developing a plan for your athletes can be problematic, time consuming and potentially useless. Martin Bingisser gave some very useful tips in his GAIN presentation which will help coaches looking to develop a system. Martin is an advocate of the Bondarchuk system of training which uses a limited sequence of […]0 Comments | Read More | GAIN, GAIN2017, periodisation
“Youth sports is a business plan that fluffs egos and packs pocket books” Said Randy Ballard of Illinois University at the GAIN conference in Houston last month. He was talking about how parents try to get their children to specialise in sport too early, without realising the dangers of this. “75% of kids quit sports […]2 Comments | Read More | GAIN, GAIN2017, LTAD
“Devon has everything to offer that I want in life” Says Mike Sangster in his book “Cannonball tennis”. Mike took up tennis when he was 13 (yes 13) and went on to become the British #1 player, played in many Davis Cup matches and got to the semi-finals of Wimbledon. Growing up in Torquay, he […]0 Comments | Read More | book review, tennis
“An exercise is something you do a movement is something you feel.” Was the title of Bill Knowles’ seminar on rehabilitating (reconditioning in his terms) athletes from sports injuries. The question he asks himself is “what’s in the best interest of the athlete?” This often means pulling the athlete out of the injured body and […]0 Comments | Read More | GAIN, GAIN2017, sports injury
“Don’t get distracted by the latest and greatest” Said Dr Mike Joyner at the head of his 2nd seminar at GAIN. His talk covered four key questions we need to ask before implementing a new scientific find in our training, as well as interesting insights that he has found useful. In a discussion the evening […]0 Comments | Read More | GAIN, GAIN2017, sports science
“How many miles should I run”? Is the question that endurance coach Steve Magness gets asked the most when presenting at workshops. His seminar at this year’s GAIN covered volume and other training parameters which apply to many different sports. “There is no difference between 99 miles and 100 miles, but people want to get […]0 Comments | Read More | endurance, GAIN, GAIN2017
The access to expert advice on training and coaching in the STS has been extremely beneficial when guiding Helen (15) through different stages of her physical development. Time is very precious and especially as busy parents of even busier teenagers, we need all the help we can get. As well as following the programme, it has been really useful to dip into certain topics as and when situations occur. Advice on how to prevent and counteract knee problems was certainly helpful when Helen started complaining that ‘her knees were hurting’ directly after competitions.
19 Aug 2017
Level 1 Strength and Conditioning Course – Kensington, London. 19-20 August 2017. Venue: Westway Sport & Fitness Centre, 1 Crowthorne Rd, London W10 6RP Asessment Day – Sunday 1 October 2017. Cost: £280 including materials and access to online resources. To book send a deposit of £100 here. The deposit is non refundable. Once the full balance has been paid and […]