The Occasional Training

What do you do when an athlete only trains with you once in a while?

The reasons athletes infrequently train with you could be legitimate, but for whatever the reasons, how do you handle it when they only training 2-3 times per month?

A few of the athletes I train live over an hour from me. Living so far away, plus having extremely busy schedules makes it truly difficult for them to schedule with me on a regular basis. Here are some thoughts on how to handle this situation:

1. If you know the athlete will not be able to train with you very often, then be prepared to teach them how to properly perform a few very important exercises. Teaching only a few exercises will help when performing the workout on their own. Give exercises that are going to make a big impact on their performance and when the athlete schedules with you teach the heck out of it these exercises . In other words, your training sessions are more like teaching sessions when you are preparing an athlete to be on their own for the next 8-12 days.

2. Make every session an assessment. See how the athlete is performing the workout you designed for them the last visit. Assess their movement and improvement.

3. If you see improvement and believe they are ready for a variation of the current exercises, then implement something new. Just DO NOT change the entire program. Simply add a few changes that positively add to the goals you and your athlete have set. The building blocks method is better than doing something completely new every time.

4. Always give important cues that will help the athlete remember when performing exercises. Don’t overwhelm with lots of details simply give cues that remind the athlete.

5. Give the athlete a routine that is easy to follow and ask them to be consistent with the routine. Explain how to warm up and the order of the exercises. It is important to do the same for speed training, strength training and conditioning. If you do not, athletes will take too much freedom and begin to stray from the workout and eventually it won’t produce the results you were after. Ask the athlete to follow the routine step-by-step. This will not only help gain confidence in doing the workout, but also knowing they are doing the workout correctly.

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