Frequently asked questions part 2. Frequently asked questions part 1 here.
This is frequently asked questions part 2 to answering some of the most frequent questions we get asked about training youth athletes. I will link other articles that we have written if you are interested in further reading about certain topics.
What is your experience/background in sports performance training? Successes the program has had? What kind of athletes have you worked with? (Age,sports, competitive level)
The head coach at OC Sports Performance is Sean Wells. I have been a CrossFit coach since 2010. I started coaching middle school athletes in 2010, we had 26 6th grade boys train seasonally. This started me down the path of training youth athletes and helped ignite a passion for helping youth athletes reach their full potential.
At OC Sports Performance we have trained athletes that play everything from water polo to track, football to lacrosse, cheerleading, gymnastics and lots of soccer players. A huge variety of athletes.
Why is it important for an athlete to strength train outside of their sport?
Sports don’t help the athlete get faster, stronger or jump higher. The sport is displaying the work the athletes put in with their training.
For younger athletes, middle school age for example, training builds the foundation for all sports. Speed is beneficial for all sports. Explosiveness is crucial for all sports. If the athlete changes sports, these characteristics should transfer to the new sport.
An athlete can never be too fast, too strong, or too explosive.
Do you do sports specific training? Why not? What is better?
No, we do not really do sports specific training. I will explain. Athletes need to build a huge base, or foundation. This foundation should be getting stronger, faster, jumping higher and being more explosive. Sport training teaches the athlete to fine tune these characteristics that they already possess. We are trying to build these characteristics so that a sports coach has more to work with.
A middle school athlete doesn’t need more baseball practice. They need to get stronger. A basketball player doesn’t need more sports training, they need to be able to jump higher. If an athlete builds up their base, and builds a high level of foundational characteristics, they will have more success in their sport.
Is it safe for a young athlete to lift weights?
Yes! We start training athletes in 5th and 6th grade. At this age you can really maximize the athlete’s base and give them a huge head start over those athletes that aren’t training yet.
How will I know if my athlete is getting stronger/faster?
We test athletes. We keep track of all of the metrics that matter. The 40 yard sprint, flying 10 and flying 20 yard sprints, bench press, Box squat, vertical jump, deadlift and a variety of box jumps. We have records of every athlete that has ever trained here in this program.
If the athlete comes, does there part and tries hard, they will see results.
Why don’t you run for conditioning? What do you do instead?
My best analogy, if you have been doing something for years, how will doing more of it yield better results? IT WON’T. What we do is change the question. Running is what sport coaches do to athletes for being late, or misbehaving or “to get into shape”. More running here at OC Sports Performance won’t change the athlete for the positive.
This is what will change the athlete though, getting them stronger. If the athlete’s body weight stays the same, but their jumps improve, they are more explosive and they squat more, they are stronger.
The characteristics of stronger and faster will make the athletes in better shape without running them and risking injuries.
You don’t run ever?
No, we sprint 1x a week. Most athletes will total about 80 -90 yards in total a week here. The last week of the month we ran a total of 120 yards. That is it.
We concentrate on running fast. Not getting tired. Not by how much we sweat. We record the sprints, compare them to past results and continue to improve.
But what about being in shape?
Soccer has a high demand on the conditioning system of the body. We have trained athletes that never once ran here the entire time they trained. They had great results and very little to no injuries. There are a ton of ways to get in shape without running.
What is one thing you wished parents did more to help their athlete?
Help hold your athlete accountable. If the athlete gets here they will be successful. The training and tracking of measurements leads to an environment where every athlete that trains here sees success. The most important thing is that the athletes get here consistently to train.
That is it for the Frequently asked questions part 2. Want to experience the difference? Book a Free Consultation today!
OC Sports Performance has trained thousands of athletes here in Bend, Oregon. From middle school to college athletes we help your athlete get stronger, run faster and jump higher!