In our approach to training young athletes, particularly when parents inquire about our Sports Performance Sessions – we often encounter questions about our primary focus – whether it’s on Power, Speed, Size, or if we follow a more traditional “old school” method or a “functional” one.
While it might sound like a cliché, our answer is rooted in the individualized needs of each athlete, and here’s what we mean by that.
Our Approach at AOS Training Systems
While it’s true that every athlete is unique, there are also fundamental principles that apply universally. Hence, in a general sense, athletes, regardless of their sport – be it on the field, mat, court, arena, or platform – will engage in similar foundational exercises, movement patterns, and energy conditioning drills.
These foundational elements are designed to make every athlete better-rounded from the outset, and in the strength and conditioning community, we refer to this as General Physical Preparedness (GPP). Roughly 90% of an athlete’s training will be devoted to honing these essential qualities.
However, where the magic truly happens is when we veer away from the one-size-fits-all approach. An individualized approach enables us to delve deeper into each athlete’s unique characteristics, including their body type, sport, and specific role within that sport.
Let’s take the example of two of our athletes:
1. Cole Deery – Texas Christian University Football:
- Cole aspires to make an impact on the offensive line at TCU. While the foundation of his training involves common elements, his program is tailored to reflect the specific demands of football, emphasizing attributes like strength, power, and agility, which are crucial for a lineman.
- His program includes not only big lifts but also auxiliary exercises designed to address his individual strengths and weaknesses as they manifest in those key lifts.
2. Lauren Franco – University Of Scranton Field Hockey:
- Lauren, on the other hand, plays field hockey and holds the position of Fullback. Her training program prioritizes the sport-specific skills required for field hockey, such as agility, quick bursts of speed, and precise ball-handling.
- While she, too, engages in foundational exercises, the emphasis shifts to suit the unique demands of her sport and position.
In essence, while our athletes may seem diametrically opposite in terms of body type and sporting discipline, the underlying principle is a common foundation followed by targeted specialization. By adhering to this approach, we ensure that each athlete not only becomes a better overall athlete but also hones the specific attributes and skills vital for success in their chosen sport and role