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Category: Strength Training

Optimizing Your Strength Training: Understanding the Importance of Deload Weeks At Smith Performance Center

In the realm of physical fitness, the drive to push our limits often overshadows the significance of rest and recovery.  Enter the concept of “Deloading” — a strategic and essential practice that can be a game-changer in your strength training regimen.  As we engage in rigorous workouts and demanding physical activities, our bodies undergo stress, breaking down muscles and tissues.  Yet, it’s during periods of rest that our bodies repair, adapt, and ultimately grow stronger in response to these stresses. The Deload week, a planned phase of reduced training volume, intensity, or frequency, serves as a pivotal component of a well-structured training program. Its purpose is simple yet profound: to allow the body the necessary time and space to recover, prevent overtraining, and boost overall performance. Understanding when, why, and how to implement a Deload week can significantly impact your training outcomes, ensuring sustained progress, and minimizing the risk of

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Optimizing Your Strength Training: The Role of Open Clinics at Smith Performance Center

At Smith Performance Center (SPC), our primary aim is to facilitate a healthy and active lifestyle for all our members. One of the tools we employ to overcome potential barriers to consistent exercise is the utilization of open clinics, which play a crucial role in addressing pain and injuries. An open clinic session lasts for 15 minutes and serves four primary purposes: The genesis of the open clinic concept dates back to January 2018 at Smith Performance Center. Initially conceived as a space for members to report new injuries, discomfort, or movement issues, these sessions soon became integral to our strength training approach. On the first weekend, our physical therapist triaged six people.  Now after five thousand sessions, we recognize their significance in supporting a healthy lifestyle. Why do open clinics matter? Injury prevention, often a cornerstone in healthcare and fitness, presents challenges.  Being active inherently involves a degree of

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The 4 Primary Goals In Strength Training When Struggling With An Injury or Pain

Goal setting is one of the most important, yet tricky aspects of training. Our team believes that goals are secondary to developing habits and systems that you can do day in and day out. We call this an exercise habit and it is a critical aspect of becoming an exerciser. However, goals can help to shape your training, increase motivation, and improve decision-making during the course of workouts.  When you are returning from an injury or dealing with a particularly irritating pain, we believe your goal is very specific. You need to exercise without your body feeling terrible. While this sounds obvious, one of the most common training mistakes our coaches see clients make is too much focus on performance while ignoring a recurring injury or pain.  If you have pain during your running, biking, lifting, etc., you will not achieve performance goals. We strongly believe there are 4 goals

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The Injury Types That Are Mismanaged During Activity Progression

The rehab standard is simple; the limit to your exercise is not how hard you can work out, but rather working as hard as possible without going past your tissue capacity.  Our team sees violation of the rehab standard as the most frequent cause of failure during activity progression. A client will feel great and start to progress their workouts. There is no symptoms during the exercise and often no symptoms the same day, but the next day they feel horrible.  We know that in activity progression, you need to understand the type of tissue that is healing, the specific exercise, and volume. We also need to consider the type of injury: chronic, recurrent, and acute.  Chronic Injury For chronic, we mean is has been present for a long time. When you have a chronic injury or chronic pain, there are two issues: your exercise capacity is lower because it

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The 6 Functional Exercises Tested During a Movement Assessment

A mistake in exercise programming that our team encounters is a heavy emphasis on variety in exercise, instead of movement pattern mastery. Our team does not focus on an endless array of exercises. The focus is on building depth in foundational movement patterns. These patterns make up every movement you perform when lifting. If these foundational movements are missing, advanced exercises will be wasted on poor form. You need to own the basic movements first. During the movement assessment, the 6 foundational movement patterns are assessed with 6 functional exercises from each movement pattern category. The movement assessment is where our strength coaches determine what may cause issues in your program: accountability, rehab standard, location/time, coaching need, and comfort level. The 6 functional exercises help our coaches determine your coaching need, if you have a tissue capacity issue (rehab standard), your comfort level with free weights, and what is the

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The 8 Reasons All HHP Clients Go Through a Movement Assessment

The Smith Performance Center team wants to be the best in the world at helping clients who want to maintain an active lifestyle. If you search the internet, this seems like a simple problem to solve. Just do this exercise or make sure to have protein after a workout. Problem solved.  This has not been our experience.  There is an entire area of research devoted to what behaviors keep people moving and what makes them stop. Keeping people active is not simple and there are numerous reasons why a person will stop. The purpose of the movement assessment is to figure out issues that will stop you from moving. There are clues in your history, how you move, how you hurt, and how you think that will help guide us. Here are the 8 reasons we do the movement assessment: Figure out what may lead to failure Determine the right

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Injury screening process explained

The Dynamic Recursive Model of Long Term Development: A key principle in our strength training and physical therapy methodology

Why Do We Focus on Long-Term Development in Strength Training? Activity brings benefits and risks. Every step, competition, or practice is an exposure that impacts the body. The questions – how do I get better and how do I stay healthy – are part of a dynamic and constantly changing system (Figure 1). We can model that system to show how the activity, like running or playing football, impacts your next exposure. The Basics If you are a runner, you need to run. If you want to get stronger, you need to lift. If you want to be a great triathlete, you need to swim, bike, and run. If you want to shoot well during a basketball game, you have to shoot over and over. ​ You get the picture (maybe).  There are no prodigies (Ericsson 2004). Reaching your potential requires effort and time. However the very activity you participate

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Linear Periodization

The Principle of Progression in Strength Training

Milo of Croton, a wrestling, bull-carrying, 20 pounds of meat-eating, 10 liters of wine-drinking man from Greece, is the definition of progression. Most people know the story of Milo, even if they don’t know his name. Milo carried a bull around on his shoulders. Chuze and LA Fitness were not around in ancient Greece so the Greeks created their own strength training methods. Milo intuited the importance of planned, progressive training. As a boy, he picked up a young calf and carried it around on his shoulders (because, why not?). The next day, he carried the calf again, and again the next day, and the next, and continued for FOUR years. The calf grew into a massive bull; Milo grew as well (#gainz). The daily training allowed Milo to pick up a full-grown bull, a mythical feat of strength. Our point? Progressive training regimens produce benefits that are hard to

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