Perform Better 1 Day: 12/3/2011
As a member/follower of this website, you probably know that the Perform Better educational calendar actually starts in December with the first 1 Day event. For the last several years this event has been held at the flagship Parisi location in Fair Lawn, NJ and this year it was also held there with a sold out event of some 300+ attendees.
For those of you familiar with the format there are 4 presentations in the morning followed by "hands on/training sessions" with the same presenters in the afternoon. This years All Star cast consisted of Martin Rooney, Mike Boyle, Gray Cook and Todd Durkin and they did not disappoint.
Chris Porier, of Perform Better, and his crew put on a great event and this was no exception. Personally, I believe they are the educational events out there that aren't specialty type events geared toward a more narrow subject/audience.
Presenter 1: Martin Rooney-Warrior Cardio: Secrets of Metabolic Training
Martin Rooney was the first presenter and his topic was: "Warrior Cardio: Secrets of Metabolic Training." Don't let the topic title fool you as the subject was geared towards all who do some sort of metabolic training. It seems he must have been channeling Joel Jamieson/Dave Tenney as the essence of his message was that metabolic training should have a design in mind and it shouldn't be an all out blitz meant to put people on the ground in near death condition. As many have said before, any idiot can do that and though that may have some effect on mental toughness it really has little to do with good training and program design. Many people, general public and trainers alike, think that harder is better without regard to technique, safety or progressions.
Rooney's 7 rules for Metabolic Training:
• Don't do Something for Nothing: there has to be a sound rationale behind what you're doing
• Don't sacrifice technique for intensity
• Don't confuse fatigue/soreness with productivity or a "good workout"
• Choose the appropriate exercises for people with the right dosages.
One size does not fit all in these scenarios.
• There has to be ample recovery in and out of the session. That means recovery intra-session as well as between training sessions.
• Monitor something (Heart rate, RPE, some fitness baseline, etc.) and follow a progression
• Horrible technique is never good.
Rooney's presentation was given with his usual verve and passion esp. given the early Saturday morning hour. In his afternoon session, Rooney put together a 5 movement exercise circuit, that though challenging, left you feeling energized and ready for more. With two rounds the entire session took about 15 minutes which spoke to Rooney's concept of Minimal Effective Dosage (MED). Many people don't get the fact that that concept is integral to long term training, progression and ultimately success.
Presenter 2: Mike Boyle-Program Design for Trainers and Coaches
I have heard Mike speak numerous times and always come away with at least several ideas that I can implement tomorrow as well as some longer term concepts of a more strategic nature.
Here are some of the gems from Mike's presentation, most of which are not specific to training but to one's approach to life, in general:
Are you really teachable?
a. Are you open to others' ideas?
b. Do you listen more than you talk? Remember you have one mouth and two ears. Use them accordingly.
c. Are you open to change based on new info?
d. Do you readily admit being wrong?
e. Do you ask questions?
f. Are you willing to ask questions that expose your possible ignorance?
g. Are you defensive when criticized?
Two words re: training-unilateral and anti
• "Computer man/woman": sits too much, too much flexion, poor posture, doesn't move enough, etc.
• Last things "computer man/woman" needs: benching, curling, biking
• 3 Stages of Truth:
b. Violent opposition: where we are now, Mike believes. These opponents come frequently come from the powerlifting, Olympic lifting, bodybuilding and machine makers world as they all, obviously, have a vested interest in their own agenda as it relates to "functional training"
c. Acceptance as being self-evident
• Everyone wants to belong to a group so instead of developing a philosophy they adopt one. Thus we have the rise of the Metabolic guy, the kettlebell guy, the "scientist," the Bootcamp guy, etc.
• 3 Goals of a Coach/Trainer
a. Prevent injuries in the training process. If they happen they are your fault, no excuses
b. Reduce chance of injury in workplace or in sports performance
c. Improve how people perform in their sport or in life
• John Wooden's approach to teaching/coaching: show the right way, show the wrong way, show the right way again.
In Mike's hands-on in the afternoon, he showed how he constructed a strength training session ensuring that he trained the major movement patterns. The session consisted of two tri-sets: 1st- RFESS (quad dominant lower body), pushup (horizontal push appropriate for your level of fitness), Swissball rollout (core-anti lumbar extension); 2nd tri-set: Val-Slide reverse lunge(hip dominant lower body), TRX inverted row(horizontal row), side plank band row (anti side flexion core).
Simple, easy to coach, but it was surprising how many found these mini-circuits challenging. Good stuff as usual from Boyle.
Presenter #3: Gray Cook-Mobility,Motor Control and Movement
It seems one of Gray's primary tasks these days is trying to explain/defend the FMS as a viable tool in the coaches'/trainers arsenal. But as he said to me in aside before he spoke, many of the FMS opponents have never actually used the screen and thus don't have a firm grasp of it's design and purpose.
So he spoke about clarifying some terms, themes and thoughts on the FMS.
• Dysfunction=limitations with movement competency which could be driven by mobility issues, motor control issues or problems with fundamental movement patterns.
• Deficiency=limitations with physical capacity i.e. you aren't fit enough, strong enough, quick enough, etc.
• As an industry, he believes we have to establish SOPs (standard operating procedures) and minimum standards. Currently, there really are none in the movement realm. In other words, there is no system for analyzing movement.
• He made it clear that if someone came up with a better movement screen then the FMS he had no problem supporting and endorsing that system.
• Dysfunction is really movement competency below a standard accepted level which is based on risk of injury and poor adaptive capability. This is distinct and separate from physical capacity.
• The FMS helps rate and rank movement competency i.e. pain with movement regardless of quality ( a "0" on the FMS), dysfunctional movement ( a "1 "on the FMS), imperfect movement quality ( a "2" on the FMS) and near perfect movement quality ( a "3 "on the FMS).
In summary, the whole FMS/Movement philosophy revolves around these 5 key points:
1. Establish a SOP for identifying dysfunction within basic movement patterns. So that requires defining dysfunction and agreeing on what those fundamental patterns should be.
2. Separate painful movement patterns form dysfunctional movement patterns whenever possible.
3. Generally, don't treat painful movement patterns with exercise. Refer out to the appopriate medical professional i.e. physical therapist or physician.
4. Within dysfunctional movement patterns identify impairments be they mobility limitations or motor control issues.
5. First, establish minimal levels of mobility then minimum levels of motor control and then re-test dysfunctional movement patterns when possible.
In Cook's afternoon hands on session we did a lot of carries to demonstrate different types of stability as well as some screening and correctives. The point was to see if a particular corrective modality would improve mobility /stability capability in movements like bear crawls.
Presenter #4: Todd Durkin-Core and Cuff
Much like Martin Rooney, Todd Durkin does not lack for contagious enthusiasm. And so this was how he approached his topic, "Core and Cuff" which showed lots of video of his implementing these ideas with real world clients, both professional athletes and everyday folks. Sometimes they even trained alongside one another.
These are the 5 W's of Durkin's "Core and Cuff" program:
• Who is the program for? Virtually everyone form fitness enthusiasts and regular Joe's and Jane's to elite athletes
• What the program is and is not? The program is intended to teach you how to prevent pain and injury and maximize performance. It is not a 1 dimensional, cookie cutter nor dependent on a lot of equipment/machines.
• When do you use the program? In season, 2-3 days per week; off season, 3-5 days per weekly and 2-3 times weekly for the fitness enthusiast
• Where can you do the perform the program? Virtually anywhere because there is no dependence on equipment.
• Why perform it? Because it will help you optimize your potential!
In the afternoon session, Durkin ran us through many of his programming protocols using kettlebells, slide boards, Superbands, bodyweight exercises, Swissball, med balls, the Bosu and the TRX Rip Trainer amongst others.
The take away point was the integral link between with the core and cuff/shoulder health and performance. This is no break-through revelation for folks on this site but Durkin has some creative approaches to some standard movements by manipulating things like hand position on all upper body positions, for example.
Conclusion: If this opening 1 Day clinic is a preview of what is to come in 2012 from Perform Better on their educational tour then we will all be better informed practitioners with advice that can be implemented the next day into our practice/business.