To paraphrase the old country western song if you work your fingers to the bone all get is boney fingers. Doing hard work is not really that hard to do. Doing work that matters is much harder and it is how you get results. Don’t get me wrong I believe in working hard, but I believe more in working smart. At young training ages any work will pay dividends up to a point. As the athlete accrues training experience they cannot get away with just hard work, it must become specific to their needs and the sport they are preparing for. Instill and teach a work smart ethic so they know their bodies, how to eat, and how to get proper rest. Teach them good technique and help them understand why and how they should train. Learning how to train smart from the initial stages of training will allow them to optimize their training throughout their career. The genesis of many injures that occur later in athletes career are do to improper training early in their career. At younger training ages, especially in the male athlete the anabolic advantage from growth and development covers up many training errors. They can get away with mindless hard work. Use this anabolic advantage positively. As coaches we need to recognize that training must have a purpose beyond getting them tired and sore. Training must be directed work in pursuit of a specific objective. We must know the individual and have a plan to develop their abilities over the long term. Progressing in a stepwise manner, building upon each previous step. Train smart to get better.