Young or old, no matter the age; we all strive to keep playing.
In reality, we all need to play a little more and have more fun. Certainly we would all every like to play a little better.
In the athlete development world there is a lot of discussion about Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD) and for specific sports more directly, Long Term Player Development (LTPD) but the truth is what we all really need to think more about is long term HUMAN development.
What can each of us do as individuals to get better, to move better, and perform better, in our sport, in our activities and in our lives every day?
As the calendar turns to mark each New Year, we get to go in with a fresh start, a blank slate, a new opportunity. It is the perfect time to hit the reset on all of the lifestyle habits that can affect your physical and mental health and performance. Nutrition, sleep, exercise, sport practices and competitions, school and work-life balance all must be managed effectively. Now is the perfect time to focus on getting a little better every day, moving a little better every day and playing a little better every day.
At TWIST, we believe everyone is an athlete.
Whether you are a competitive athlete, weekend warrior or simply an active person who is not ready to give in or give up on your health and fitness, this philosophy can guide whatever kind of training you decide to do and give you the foundation to train like an athlete as well.
Athletes of every age and skill level can benefit from the same kind of planning, prescription and progression that guides high performance athlete programs. The objective with every “athlete” is the same.
To choose purposeful drills that fit their needs, to teach them how to do things properly, coach them to get better doing them, and to motivate them to challenge themselves to achieve more in every training session so that they can perform at a high level in their sport and in their life.
To be truly successful in business, athletics, relationships and life, you need goals, proper planning and some expert coaching and guidance to help you succeed. Just showing up is never enough. A long term HUMAN development plan is built around a strategy and focused around individual goals. This is the way high performance athletes need to train and this how everyone should organize their own training programs. The questions you need to ask are simple:
• Where am I right now?
• Where do I want to be in the next few months?
• Where do I want to be in the Next year?
• How do I get there?
We need to lead a paradigm shift of focus away from the idea of how hard we are working and consider instead how smart we are working. We need to be efficient with our time, with our energy and with our planning. Working hard is easy, doing the things we need to do to get results take knowledge and planning.
I’ll let you in on a little secret. Adults need to have fun and play just as much as kids, sometimes even more.
Inactivity, long days at a desk and injuries will slowly devolve your mobility, your energy and your athleticism and take away a lot of the things that made you love to move. Eventually you may feel like you simply cannot do it anymore. Despite all of the research and knowledge on the importance of physical activity, many people of all ages are still sedentary or not nearly as active as they need to be every day. Some would quickly assume they are just lazy or apathetic but the truth is, they may be intimidated, or simply lack the confidence to get moving in the first place.
Life is long term and all of us want to continue to perform at as high a level as possible for as long as possible. No matter what your sport or activity, if something motivates you to get moving, stay moving and keep moving better, it is worth doing, and it is worth doing well.
Once you begin to move, you will move better. Once you begin to embrace being more active It will get easier. Once you engage your mind, muscles and body in athletic movement, you will love it and realize you are capable of much more than you realized.
Whether you are an elite athlete, a teenager who is not interested in sports, a mom trying to manage her job, family, and her own fitness, or a grandfather who plays men’s league hockey a couple of times a week, everyone can benefit from moving better, getting a little stronger, understanding how your body works, and enjoying the process along the way.
Movement is simply about taking muscles through a full, functional range of motion and expanding that range of motion. It is about stabilizing the joints to handle deceleration (stopping) and direction changes without injury. It is about developing explosive muscle firing patterns to accelerate quickly and change gears efficiently.
Movement challenges your body to be able to stop and go and challenges your heart and lungs to adapt to a variety of conditioning intervals and intensities.
It is exciting to see strength training make resurgence over the past few years and to see adults joining the strength revolution.
They are excited about getting stronger, challenging themselves more within their fitness programs and training more like athletes. One thing that people must realize when it comes to training intensity, is that moving any load is a movement skill and there are many elements that must come together to execute strength training technique besides moving weight up and down. First, learn to move properly, then load, lift and challenge the complexity and intensity of the movement. In reality, the most important piece of strength training equipment to be able to move is YOU!
The question that everyone must consider when performing any exercise or drill is simple.
Why, am I choosing this particular exercise?
Why, am I doing a specific number of sets and repetitions?
What is the true purpose of this drill?
Is it going to make me better or just make me tired?
As we embark on the journey of 2019, it is a perfect time to open your mind to a training program that allows you to focus on your needs, allows you to move better, and allows you to perform better, in your sport and in your life.
Make a commitment to yourself to get a little better every day in 2019 and get out and play as much as possible. That way, when you do, you won’t just play, you’ll play better!
"Make a commitment to yourself to get a little better every day in 2019 and get out and play as much as possible. That way, when you do, you won’t just play, you’ll play better"