Monday, August 29, 2016

Season 2016 Over - Season 2017 Begins!

Well our season came to a pretty shitty end yesterday to the tune of 3 goals to a team we've beaten twice previously this year.

We haven't been convincing probably since we last played them and we couldn't turn it around when we needed to either.

Injuries hit our seniors at the wrong time (who got beaten by 3pts!) taking some our besties but you gotta win with who you got and we didn't.

A wrap up of my season:

- Played forward as usual alternating between high and deep forward for a probably half of the time.

- Kicked 23 goals I think which will win my teams goal kicking for the 3rd year in a row but was 15 - 17 less then last year.

- Our team scored far less then last year so their weren't as many opportunities as last year but that being said I kicked more points then I had the previous 2yrs by far.

- No excuses but my knee injury from last year actually changed my mechanics a tad as my leg doesn't sit in the same resting posture it did last year.

- I also took a while to "get back" to game fitness and more importantly game speed. Again from the knee injury from last year it seems my glute on that side has "shut down" from the brain perceiving a not string enough foundation in that leg to load it optimally - it decreases loading capacity by shitting off the muscles that would drive force through it (i.e. the glutes) to protect from injury. It wasn't until the last few games and yesterday's final that felt back, or closer to my fastest.

I'll be going around next year at 38 turning 39, and for the last couple of weeks I've already been putting together some stuff for my off-season. I'll actually be having all my programming done for me by a strength coach from the US who does a lot of the stuff I do. I liked the look of some his programs, had some emails with him and I'm all his from now til March. I haven't had anyone do my programming for me pretty much ever so it will actually be a load off making it all up. Even though I'm pretty god at doing things I don't like and are not very good at, it will force me to do even more of these things in the order to hit all time records in speed and endurance.

HOPEFULLY, by end of this week I'll be releasing my brand spanking new programming venture for local/amateur footballers. It will be far greater and bigger then the others one's I've done and is guaranteed to take you to a whole new level.

If you wanna get in on the (cheap) ground floor then you better get on my mailing list as they'll get first crack at this. You can do so by filling in the sign up box on the Facebook page.

More to come on this very, very soon.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Improve the Most You Can for Season 2017 - Make Your Off-Season Count

It's finals time for some and the season's already for the others.

Enter what I believe will make or break your season for 2017 - the off-season training period.

The off-season is crucial because you have 3 things you don't have as soon as team pre-season starts.

 - Time
 - Unlimited Energy Resources
 - Training Freedom

TIME - during the season you already have 3 major requirements that need to be met in training Tuesday and Thursday as well as games Saturday. With Sunday being a recovery day and Friday a game preparation day it gives you very little wiggle room to do anything else. With local/amateur coaches not having a huge focus on strength and conditioning of any sort, most players don't even touch the minimum requirements for footy as training isn't efficient enough from basic know how and time.

UNLIMITED ENERGY RESOURCES - piggybacking off the last point, with games being a weekly peak of sorts and having to train around it, then energy resources need to be saved for at least training and game days. Again that doesn't leave a lot of energy resources available for other training without negatively affecting training, games or both.

TRAINING FREEDOM - the big one for mine. Team training is exactly that. Everyone trains the same thing for the same volume and at the same intensity as everyone else. This results in only a small total of players actually gaining optimal benefits for training the right way for where they are right now. The rest get under trained or over trained - both negative results. This results in only part of the team being more prepared for games once they roll around and then there's a lot of catch up being played throughout the season. With the fatigue built up from games this can result in injuries and games missed and can have a huge affect on your teams performance.

Here's what you need to address during the off-season period:

 - any rehab required from previous season
 - "resetting" muscle flexibility and joint mobility ranges of motion
 - body composition (weight loss or weight gain)
 - aerobic capacity
 - alactic power (acceleration + max velocity speed)
 - max strength (gym)

From an individual stand point you might be string at some of these aspects which means you might not need to go straight into them and you can go harder at some other weak points you might have.

When developing your own off-season program take the following steps:

- sit down and do an honest assessment of your strengths and weaknesses and if possible get your coach on board to help you with this for an extremely non-biased approach here.
- from the list determine what qualities are trained during team training and if they need to be taking up precious time and energy in this all important time period. For example if you normally do a lot of repeat running at footy training under your coach then you don't really need to be doing that in your own time.
- work backwards from team pre-season session number 1 to the start of your off-season training

IMPORTANT! As food as winning all the pre-season runs might be, it's not about what you do in November rather than what you can do in April and then how good can you hold it until September so don't try and do the same stuff in the off-season as you'll do in the pre-season as it means you'll have neglected a lot of other stuff and you'll essentially be the same player were last year. No worse but also no better.

From right now until the start of November you only have 10 - 11 weeks and you probably need a solid 8 week block to make big strides in your on-field performance.

In the next week or so I'll be releasing the Aussie Rules Training Untouchable Training Program which will simply do all of this stuff without you have to worry about a single thing. Just read the program and do what it says. Simple!

If you're not on the mailing and you want first access at this and save some casholla then email me at so you get first notice of when it gets released.

Friday, August 19, 2016

What Your Footy Coach Doesn't Know (But It's Not Their Fault)

Back in the day there was the coach, and he was everyone.



Strength and Conditioning Coach.

Maybe even head trainer in some cases!

These days you have a separate coach, a separate captain, and separate trainers.

But why is the coach still slugged with strength an conditioning duties? I mean they're highly qualified to teach the skills and tactics of footy as to coach you require a minimum level 1 coaching qualification (which I have).

At the highest levels of footy (AFL, VFL, SANFL, WAAFL etc), all coaching staff will have at least a staff member (2 - 4 in some cases) who possess a strength and conditioning qualification through the various peak bodies in Australia - mine is through the ACSA.

The very local and amateur teams that you and I play for have more money then ever (well not mine as we're known for some of the worse facilities in the land) and should be thinking strongly about the preparation of it's players.

With the points cap coming into local/amateur footy in the coming years, it's essential to retain players which means your club will be in charge of them for successive seasons so you have the best chance you've ever had to really develop your players from within.

I have had numerous coaches in my 50 years of footy and only 1 of them had any idea about strength and fitness and he actually set up a gym at our club over the summer for us to train in. I put on 7kgs in about 3 months that summer because of that.

Getting back to team coaches, they are hired to put a team together via the current playing list and any recruits they can bring in, put together a game plan that will hopefully win a grand final or improve your ladder position from year to year.

With footy becoming more professional across all grades, coaching time has gone through the roof even for local/amateur footy, which you can read about at this link:

So 30hrs of coaching a week plus work plus family - that's hardcore!

So unfortunately that leaves less then zero time to dedicate to catching up on the ins and outs of strength and conditioning.

So as the title says, it's not their fault.

Far from it.

Clubs need to look at finding something, or someone to assist with the conditioning of their players for 12 months of the year.

With player payments being as high as they are these days, it's essential that the club gets their money worth.

On the other hand, a player likes to earn his cash through his performance and a club with some form of existing strength and conditioning program would be a positive point of joining a club for a free agent football player.

Knowing that player and club needs can be met by each party means success can be the only result.

Here's a list of strength and fitness qualities that all need to be addressed for a football player of any grade:

Acceleration Speed
Max Velocity Speed
Aerobic Conditioning
Anaerobic Conditioning
Lactic Conditioning
Mobility / Flexibility
Competing Demands of Training
Player Readiness
Consolidation of Stress
Training Residuals

If you're simply training for football via team training means then you're leaving plenty of your own potential in the sheds.

Enter the Aussie Rules Untouchable Training Program.

A program where all of thes qualites are trained and planned around.

A program that will take you to a level you never knew you had.

A program that will make you UNTOUCHABLE!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Measuring Vertical Leap with VStopwatch APP

Here's probably the easiest way to measure your vertical leap, on your own using just your phone.

Find the Video Stopwatch APP by looking for this logo:

I made a quick video to guide you through the steps on how to do it:

The chart for the vertical leap flight time calculation can be found at at this link if you scroll down a little bit:

This is very easy and quick so you can measure in the rest period between jumps and circuits.

NOTE - If someone finds an Android APP that can be used like then please let me know.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Are You Ready for Finals Footy?

Finals is 2 weeks away for us and after a disappointing loss yesterday with the last chance to make a statement in the home and away season I've challenged our guys to go further then they ever have in regards to their recovery and preparation with adding training out of the question at this time of the year.

So a good idea for a weekend post I suppose.

To go further then you are situated right now, you've got to go to lengths you're not going to right now.

An Olympic term is "marginal gains" which refers improving 5 - 10 aspects of your performance by just 1 - 2% each to register a 5 - 10% improvement on overall performance.

As mentioned above, now isn't the time to ramp up training so we're looking at going hard on recovery and preparation from game to game.

 - plenty of water from Thursday to game time
 - plenty of water immediately post game
 -  if you want you can weight in pre-game and post game to see what you're re-hydration requirements are
 - you don't want to hear it but maybe lay off the grog for a few weeks
 - get rid of all sugary drinks

 - ramp up your protein, veggie and fruit intake on a daily basis
 - ramp up protein intake immediately post game
 - ramp up your carb intake in the 2 days pre-game
 - get rid of the shit you don't need like pastries, biscuits, take away etc - you know what these are

  - get to bed at a time that allows for 7 - 8hrs of sleep per night
  - make yourself up a pre-bed routine that gets your body ready to rest/sleep and stick to it (do some stretching, read a book etc)
  - go to bed and get up as close to the same time every day (the body loves consistency)
 - you regenerate from the previous day when you sleep
 - you also improve performance when you sleep as whatever you learnt today, you wire into the brain during sleep that night where the brain actually rehearses the skills you practiced. If you;re not sleeping you're not improving - simple as that.

Daily Readiness
  - get yourself the HRV4Training app and track your readiness immediately upon waking
  - fill in the daily questionnaire that comes with it
 - keep a little diary of your day's events
 - look at your high and low days and try to find correlations with your daily events so you can see what you should avoid in the days leading into game day

Game Recovery
 - perform so very low intensity, blood flow work straight after the game or the following day as to play at your optimal peak you must train at your optimal peak. Don't expect to train at 60% and then play at 100% because it will NEVER happen.
 - do some extra mobility/flexibility work coupled with breathing exercises that actually reverses stress with pre-bedtime being the best time.

A Quick Word on Stress

Everything we do induces stress and it's fine to induce stress - it's how we improve. What isn't fine is when we add more stress then we can handle so that we get tired and all things performance can drop away fast.

It doesn't take much either especially if we look at the typical week of a local/amateur footballer:

Friday - after working 40+hrs you might have a few cheeky pots after work which isn't a huge deal (Wayne Carey went alright doing it). You're tired but still stay up to watch the footy anyway.

Saturday - feeling a bit flat but it's a game day which turned out a bit harder than normal from a few bumps and lots of high speed sprinting. The team had a good win so there's cans in the rooms after the game so you indulge, and don't eat until you get home. After a quick dinner you're back at the club for a function and you have a total blow out forgetting what time you even arrived at the last place you were at, let alone hat time you left.

Sunday - feeling pretty crap after footy and a night out so you head to KFC and watch 3 games of footy in a row on Foxtel in a sore and sorry state.

Monday - after 5 snoozes you're up for your typical 9hr work day plus travel time.

Tuesday - another work day capped off by a good 90min session on the track.

Wednesday - been a tough week so far because of last Saturday night so it's work and straight home except I better give the missus some attention this week so we head out for dinner and a few cheeky drinks and a late-ish one in the end.

Thurdsay - wish it was Friday but alas we battle on for another 9hrs of work plus another 60mins on the track but even though you;re pretty rooted now, you have just under 48hrs to get yourself to 100% for Saturday.

I didn't even mention the deadlines you have work, the blow up you had with your missus, the Telstra charging you something you never bought and the 50 calls and call waiting that goes with that.

There's a lot of stress but not a lot of recovery going on is there?

At 38 I don't really roll like this anymore but I gave it a crack in my 20's and my performance suffered because of it.

So have a look at your week and see where you can make at least 10 improvements and post them over at the Facebook page.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Patrick Dangerfield and Charlotte Caslick (Rugby 7's) in a Sprint Race - Who Ya Got?

I am full Olympio right now - I usually get on board when the athletics start but this year with the timing of the games coinciding with my couch time during the day, I;m all over it.

Earlier this week the women's rugby 7's team won gold for Australia which included this absolutely ridiculous effort from captain Charlotte Caslick:

I have this nifty little app that lets me time specific area's of a video so I was able to time her run and this is what I finished with:

Total Distance - 59m in a time of about 8.28secs at 7.12 meters per second (m/s) average speed

I timed the full run in smaller distances:

10m - 1.48secs or 6.76 m/s
10m - 1.41secs or 7.1m/s
22m - 2.56secs or 8.6m/s
17m - 2.83secs or 6m/s

NOTE - these distances are based on straight line running and she was running on an angle that looks something like 20 degrees which would make her times and m/s numbers even better! I'm sure a math wiz could work out the correct distance based on the angle or whatever.

Let's have a look at Danger and this goal from 2011 with a most impressive run:

Danger ran about 50m in a total time of about 8.1m or 6.17m/s but note that he started from an almost deadstart.

His breakdown looks like this:

0 - 10m - 1.52 secs or 6.5m/s
10 - 20m - 1.11secs or 9.1m/s
20 - 30m - 1.31secs or 7.63m/s

Compare this to Australian 100m record holder Josh Ross 10.08 or 9.92m/s and Usain Bolt's 100m world record of 9.58secs or 10.44m/s. He also holds the 150m world record of 14.35secs or 14.45m/s which is even faster and his 200m world record of 19.19 is a terrible 10.42m/s!

So obviously Danger wins this time but holy shit if that wasn't the best run I've seen by a female I'll go he and with the women's league hitting our shores next year, expect to see this type of stuff in the coming years.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Is Your Training Backwards?

Earlier today I came across this video from Rugby Strength Coach Keir Wenham Flatt, who's influenced my training methods for a few years now about an a-ha moment he had when interviewing US Strength Coach Jay Demayo that I hope to listen to real soon (click on "Jay" to be taken directly to the page).

You can view the 3min video from Keir here.

The focus on this short but valuable video is something Jay touches on in the podcast above, where he talks about how most strength and conditioning coaches and athletes actually have developing optimal work capacity for your sport back to front.

My takeaways were:
  • the best way to increase conditioning is through improving movement, tactical and specific skill technique
  • the less efficient you are the more energy you use for supposed sub-maximal efforts, that can quickly turn into maximal efforts 
  • aim to waste as little energy as possible
  • conditioning is improved without training volume and the wear and tear that comes with it
  • by increasing maximum outputs relative to your footy such as speed, strength and power, during a game your sub-maximal outputs are higher so you're working st a slower % of your maximum so it's a more sustainable effort
  • once all of the above are maximised then you'll need to spend only a fraction of the time on specific footy conditioning
  • training maximum outputs is far more efficient then general conditioning as you can train multiple qualities and gain improvements in all of them. For example increasing sprinting speed over 20 - 30m will automatically improve maximum speed, repeat speed and aerobic power speed (20 - 40secs) where as doing fartlek of 20secs on and 10secs off will simply improve your ability to do that exact workout and even then, results will tail off after 3 - 4 weeks.
Have a few listen to this, take some notes and have a go at seeing how this fits into your footy training plan and let me know how you get on or any questions you have on this.