I just got another call from a mother interested in getting her son some training. It was a referral.
Those calls always are.
I have made a lot of noise getting young athletes stronger around these parts the last few years. It is a natural fit. I know how to coach the big movements and I know how to motivate individuals to want to succeed. It isn’t really all that hard to get them stronger in the early stages of a novice progression.
Who isn’t excited to double their strength in a few short months?
I have had a lot of talented kids over the years and a lot of slightly less-talented, hard working kids as well. Just about everyone of them has gone on to get really strong. They always end up stronger than everyone else in their school.
But that isn’t really saying much because most young athletes are weak. Barbell training isn’t really understood. The world of You Tube and other social media isn’t really doing any of these kids any favors, and unfortunately most coaches do not understand the weight room. To make things even worse, everyone is being sold on function, balance, quickness, speed, and god-help-us…agility. So perfectly talented young athletes are spending their time doing endless burpees, push ups, ballerina acts, and things that resemble what they see their heroes doing on the internet, but never getting any stronger.
There is no progression, there is no plan, it is just getting hot, sweaty, and out of breath by doing as much foolishness as we can fit into this next half an hour.
It is crazy.
However, all these distractions make for a perfect climate for young kids who want to set themselves apart. They just need to get strong.
No program in the world is going to make a genetic freak and even a horrible one will barely slow one down. The genetic freaks always win. It helps if they learn sound training habits, but they keep winning either way.
But the average kids and slightly above average kids. They are the ones that have the most to gain. Because a bad program will just about ruin any chance most of these kids have. Unfortunately, most kids are exposed to programs that are not all that great, so there is a lot of room to jump ahead for the kid who decides to start lifting.
All of the kids that I have worked with in my gym for any length of time the last few years has gone on to have an above average performance in their sport and in every case it can be directly attributed to their increased strength.
The point of all this is that if you want to set yourself apart from the competition in sports then spend your time getting strong. Don’t waste your time on anything else. Just learn to lift weights correctly and play your sport. Trust me, that is all you need.