Are you building confidence or creating an EGO?

Are you building confidence or creating an EGO? By Rick Daman

Confidence leads to success while an EGO will lead to injury. As a strength coach or personal trainer the last thing you want to happen is to get one of your athletes injured. Good buzz travels fast and bad buzz travels even faster. There are a ton of videos on the internet of athletes training. Everyone wants to have the strongest athletes and see the best results. What happens when you train high school and college athletes? You must have a set philosophy and believe 100% in what you preach. You cannot let any athlete dictate how you run your gym. Stick to your guns (I know that sounds corny) because they hired you. Yes, do communicate with your athletes, show that you truly care and results will only increase.

Teaching and coaching basic movements will give athletes great results. Here is a great example. One of my athletes has been training with me since I opened my doors last November 2009. When Preston started training he was in 7th grade and weighed 160lbs. He had a weak upper body, weak core and not yet mentally tough. We started out with various pull-ups, push-ups, BW squats, jumping rope, kettle bells and a lot of Sand Bag work. Through all of that I coached and stressed technique. Over the next 4 months he began to get stronger and started to understand what training was all about. We eventually moved onto Trap Bar and more DB work such as DB Snatch and DB Snatch into Push Press. After Trap Bar we moved to Box Squat and then onto Free Squat. The weight we worked with was sub max weight and stressed proper technique. I would cycle the lifts each time continuing to coach technique and every time he cycled back to a movement he improved. Currently he is in 8th grade weights 205 lbs he has the best technique in our gym, attacks every single workout with a desire to get better and continues to get stronger. For an athlete so young to be so dedicated is a testament to Preston’s character. To see a video of Preston training please visit my Facebook Fan Page The end result, more strength, more muscle and a ton of confidence.

Here are a few pictures of Preston… Preston: 205 lbs

Here is another example of how I approach coaching my younger athletes. Parents will tell you that their kid is superman and can lift the world on their back. Listen to them, but stick with what you know and what the athlete needs and not what the parents want. After the younger athletes conquer Phase 1-2 workouts I will move them onto Trap Bar. Once the athletes get through a cycle of Trap Bar I will move onto the Box Squat. After the Box Squat the next progression is Free Squat. They will usually have anywhere from 2-3 weeks on one of these lifts. During the deloading week I will teach the next big movement. I would teach the Box Squat with only the bar. I try and stay away from any and all spinal loading during the deload weeks. But, when you teach a new movement during the deload week you will have the athlete ready to attack the next 3-4 week cycle. Basically you are not wasting week 1 on teaching the movement but rather coaching the athlete. Always think ahead. Yes I do use sand bags and kettle bells. If I have an athlete that isn’t quite ready then they will continue to work on body weight movements, sand bags variations, sled drags and kettle bell goblet squats to name a few. No specialty bars, no chains just teaching proper technique and coaching your athletes. The athletes that I have at my gym are not ready for specialty bars, chains and or bands. I’m definitely not knocking them; we just don’t use them at this time. We do want to get better and work towards more complex training. Our main goal with young athletes is to build confidence and not Ego’s.

My 3-4 week cycles will look like this, 1st Cycle Trap Bar, 2nd Cycle Box Squat and 3rd Cycle Free Squat. I will break up a cycle and throw in Double KB Front Squats, Sand Bag Shouldering or Sand Bag Zercher Squats. We want to continue to improve at these movements. Constant coaching, encouragement and discipline will build huge confidence in your young athletes. I truly believe you must master movements before you apply them to your athletes. Master movements, constant coaching, build character, hold your athletes accountable, instill the value of hard work and watch your athlete’s results sky rocket! Don’t build Ego’s.

As strength coaches you should want the best from all of your athletes. When they believe in you as a coach they will now understand that strength is built through confidence and not a huge EGO!

Rick Daman is a strength coach from Pittsburgh, Pa

Rick owns and operates Daman’s Strength Training

www.damanstrength.com

Connect with Rick over email: damanstrength@gmail.com

Become a fan of Daman’s Strength Training on Facebook <—— Click here

Daman’s Strength Training

398 6th Street

Monaca, Pa 15061

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