Strength Performance Network

April 2016 Blog Posts (13)

The Development of a Multi-Year System of Training for Collegiate Football Players

“As to methods there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The man who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man who tries methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble.”

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

This quote hangs on my office wall as a daily reminder to the dichotomy of our profession. Truly, there are countless methods to improve athlete performance. Ask 120 Division I football “Strength and Conditioning”…


Added by Frank Wintrich on April 26, 2016 at 10:00am — No Comments

GAIN Odds and Ends

Check out the first GAIN Whitepaper on Athletic Development – Defining the Field. This is my attempt at defining the field and moving away from the restrictive nature of the name and concept of strength & conditioning. Go to and scroll down to GAIN White Paper. Download the PDF, share it, reprint it use it as you see fit. There will be more to come…


Added by Vern Gambetta on April 25, 2016 at 7:34am — No Comments

What Matters

Just coach! Be the best coach you can be – no excuses! Coaching is special treat it as such. Coach the athletes you have and work to make them better. Approach coaching with passion and instill that passion in your athletes. Show them you care about them as people and they will grow as athletes. None of them may be Olympians, National or Sate Champions but they deserve to be coached like they are. Set high expectations…


Added by Vern Gambetta on April 24, 2016 at 10:29am — No Comments

Numbers – The Search for Meaning

0-tgQcgNyu-asdg-s- In the rush toward big data and gathering numbers I see the real challenge as making the numbers meaningful. Certainly technology enables us to gather numbers on almost any parameter we want to measure. We are now able to measure and quantify parameters that I dreamed…


Added by Vern Gambetta on April 22, 2016 at 7:56am — No Comments

Intellect, Intuition, Innovation

Intellect = ability to store and recall information (the more you can store and recall, the "so-called" smarter you are)

Intuition = ability to apply stored data in similar situations (have a gut feeling how to deal with a situation based on past experience)

Innovative = ability to use…


Added by John Mikula on April 18, 2016 at 7:30am — No Comments

Nurturing the Athlete

An athlete’s development is an organic process. It takes time and timing of the appropriate stimuli for the level of the athlete’s stage of development. My father was a gardener and I remember the first time he took me to work with him, I was probably ten or eleven years old. As any youngster, I was impatient and full of questions. I wanted to know why this patch of garden had no plants. Why we had to water this area and…


Added by Vern Gambetta on April 17, 2016 at 11:50am — No Comments

Learning – Continuous Personal & Professional Development

Not long ago someone asked me what I do to for professional development and to keep learning. I thought I would share what I do, that is not to suggest that is the way to do it rather to share a process that has worked for me over the years. Even though I call it a process for someone like me who is full of questions and inherently curious it is more semi-organized chaos. Those of you that followed this blog over…


Added by Vern Gambetta on April 17, 2016 at 11:45am — No Comments

Mixing It Up

I think its necessary to mix-it up when training over the long haul.  This means that training is varied and geared towards a continuum of weaving "multi-dimensional" training sessions into the fabric of human performance or athletic development.  I stay away from highly niche-oriented sessions such as "power training" and continually try and place some elements of the big picture into the curriculum.

Incidentally, what is the…


Added by John Mikula on April 12, 2016 at 7:30am — No Comments

The Truth

Ultimately in training the truth is what works. All the theory in the world may not translate into results. It is up to the coach and athlete to figure out what works for them and then to systematize it so it will produce consistent reproducible results in the competitive arena. It may not look like what everyone else is doing and that is OK, because the proof of the pudding is in the outcome. Think what would have…


Added by Vern Gambetta on April 11, 2016 at 7:33am — No Comments

Start with a Dream

It all starts with a dream. The dream can be big or small. The dream ignites the passion. Passion is the fuel for success. After the dream and the passion comes the plan. The plan gives direction to turn the dream into reality. Remember Martin Luther King did not give an “I Have a Plan” speech on that July day in 1963, he gave an “I Have a Dream” speech and that speaks volumes. It all starts with a dream – so dare to…


Added by Vern Gambetta on April 8, 2016 at 6:44am — No Comments


This is a topic in the health and strength field that has gained much attention over the past 2 decades.  I remember when I played sports in the 80/90’s the rule of warming up was to run 1 or 2 laps, get in a circle and go through a strentching routine.  Well most never stretched because the coaches usually never emphasised this and rushed you through it.  So getting the body warmed up usually consisted of just jumping right into practice.  Even if we did the warm-up it was…


Added by Coach Brix on April 7, 2016 at 7:44am — No Comments

An Exercise in Reflection

An essential part of effective coaching is reflection. Yesterday I was speaking to one of my mentors and professional colleagues Frank Dick and he suggested a simple three-step process that he uses for self reflection. He suggests using it monthly but I think it would be very effective weekly or sometimes even daily. Ask yourself three questions:…


Added by Vern Gambetta on April 4, 2016 at 7:35am — No Comments

Singing or Screaming Muscles?

This segment NPR Weekend Edition Saturday March 26, 2016 got me thinking. The segment was titled Glitch In Your Golf Swing? Listen To It Sing “Stanford professor Jonathan Berger turns golf stroke data into sound. A nice sound means it's a good swing, a sour sound means something's not right. In this revealing piece he tells Scott Simon how that helps people learn.” The same can be said for EMG data. If…


Added by Vern Gambetta on April 2, 2016 at 10:16am — No Comments

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