In strength & conditioning or fitness, the term Bullet Proof or Bullet Proofing gets tossed around a bit. I know a few will sit there with an eyebrow raised saying, huh? I know I did when I was first starting out, so today I want to talk about what it means and what are realistic expectations for said meaning.
Bullet proofing in this context simply means, to make a joint or body part, stronger, durable and prevent injuries.
Bullet proof shoulders
Bullet proof knees
Bullet proof hamstrings
Bullet proof calves
For me, I think the expectations of outright preventing injuries is just not attainable. I truly believe that lifting weights and then focusing on the care of a few key areas of the body can and will cut down injuries, no matter the sport or gender. Unfortunately, we can not prevent injuries, no matter what the S&C coaches do, no matter what sport rules are made to help with them, they will exist and it’s a really tough fact of sports.
Does this mean we throw our hands up and say to hell with it? Not a chance
The ideas that come from “Bullet Proofing” or injury reduction (notice the change of term) are usually sound and will keep the silly little things from bothering athletes as they go through, what are usually, grueling seasons, at all levels. Strains, tweaks, sprains and the like are the stuff we really want to cut out. Not all of them are preventable, but many are avoidable and can keep athletes playing for 3-6 more weeks than they would play otherwise. In terms of a high school season that can be HUGE because they tend to be short (12-14 weeks or so depending). That’s about half to a quarter of your season back, that’s worth it to me.
So in the end, though the term may sound silly, the stuff that generally comes with concepts of “Bullet Proofing” aka making said body part stronger and less prone to injuries, it’s something to take seriously. Thanks for reading everyone and don’t forget to stop by Saturday September 16th 5:30-7:30 for the First XV Performance Clubhouse. Have yourself a day friends and catch you next week.
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Today is a bit about how to distribute the really taxing stuff throughout a training session and the training week, ready? Let's do this!
Whenever coaches write programs, they look at a few things such as order for the exercise day and exercise week, as well as things like total volume (reps) for the session. Let’s look at it from what I put into consideration with my peeps.
First the order of things, both for the day and the week. The stuff that’s the most difficult and taxing will come first in the session (apart from the warm-up). If there’s a power or plyos part of the session, that’s first, if not it’s the major compound lift (squat, deadlift, bench press, etc…) and the session progresses from there.
How a week of training is laid out is also something to consider. Early in the week of a workout plan, is probably the time to put in the movements that are most beneficial, but also may not be someone’s favorite, motivation is a bit higher, take advantage of it.
The final piece to workload management is also the number of total reps for the session or week. For me personally, I’m probably not having someone do every movement in a session for sets of 10 reps, with few exceptions. Not only is that person going to want to punch me, they’re going to be 100% smoked. I want folks to come in and work hard, but also feel like they’ve got it in them to kick ass in the rest of their day, whatever of that is left, not be ready for a nap. Instead if I'm we start with 10 reps, we'll probably dial those reps down to 5 or 6 for the rest of the movements. The opposite works with the loads getting much lighter in the latter half of the session because it's likely the early part of the session got HEAVY!
So there's a few bits and bobs about workload management in resistance training. Hope all enjoyed and of course don't forget about the First XV Clubhouse on September 16th!
Jarrod Dyke, CSCS