You Think You Got It Bad?

October 26, 2009

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Just a little something to get your week started right!

No matter how things are, it is not how many times you fall, but how many times you get up.

“Stretching…Why Should I?”

October 23, 2009

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IMG_0491

This short article looks at some of the tips, tricks and helpful hints you can use to help prevent sports injury. It’s been put together to answer some of the more common questions we get regarding stretching and sports injury, and details a number of useful sports injury prevention techniques. I hope it proves useful to you.

Overcoming & Preventing Sports Injury
If you’re involved in the health & fitness industry, whether it be participating in your favourite sport, coaching, training or just keeping fit, you’ll know how annoying and debilitating a sports injury can be. In reality, when you have a sports injury you’re actually losing on two fronts. Firstly, you’re losing simply because your body has been hurt and now needs time and care to repair itself. And on top of this, you’re also losing the time you could have been putting into training and improving your sporting ability.

A sports injury is a bit like losing money. Not only do you lose whatever you were going to buy with that money, but you also have to work hard to make up the money you’ve lost. Take it from me, a sports injury is one of the most frustrating and debilitating occurrences that can happen to anyone who’s serious about their health, fitness, sport or exercise.

The Cold, Hard Facts
I recently read an article titled “Managing Sports Injuries” where the author estimated that over 27,000 American’s sprain their ankle every day. (and, no, that’s not a typo, EVERY DAY) On top of this, Sports Medicine Australia estimates that 1 in every 17 participants of sport and exercise are injured playing their favourite sport. This figure is even higher for contact sports like Football and Gridiron. However, the truly disturbing fact is that up to 50 percent of these injuries may have been prevented.

The Professionals Secret Weapon
While there are a number of basic preventative measures that will assist in the prevention of sports injury, there is one technique that has slowly been gaining in popularity. It’s still not used as often as it should be by the average sports participant, but with the professionals using it more and more, it’s only a matter of time before it starts to catch on. Before we dive into this little used technique for minimizing your likelihood of sports injury, lets take a quick look at some other techniques to help you prevent sports injury.

So, Where Do You Start?
Most people are coming to understand both the importance and the benefits of a good warm-up. A correct warm-up will help to raise body temperature, increase blood flow and promote oxygen supply to the muscles. It will also help to prepare the mind, body, muscles and joints for the physical activity to come. Click here for a detailed explanation of how, why and when to perform your warm up.

While warming-up is important, a good cool-down also plays a vital role in helping to prevent sports injury. How? A good cool-down will prevent blood from pooling in your limbs. It will also prevent waste products, such as lactic acid, building up in your muscles. Not only that, a good cool-down will help your muscles and tendons to relax and loosen, stopping them from becoming stiff and tight.

While preventative measures such as warming-up and cooling-down play a vital role in minimizing the likelihood of sports injury, other techniques such as obeying the rules, using protective equipment and plain common sense are all useful.

The One Technique to Cut Your Chance of Injury by More Than Half
So what is this magic technique? Why is it such a secret? And how come you haven’t heard of it before? Well chances are you have, and also, it’s not that secret and it’s definitely not magic. You’ve probably used this technique yourself at some point or at least seen others using it. But the real question is, how dedicated have you been to making this technique a consistent part of your athletic preparation?

What is it? STRETCHING. Yes, stretching. The simple technique of stretching can play an imperative role in helping you to prevent the occurrence of sports injury. Unfortunately stretching is one area of athletic preparation often neglected. Do not underestimate its benefits. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that something as simple as stretching won’t be effective. Stretching is a vital part of any exercise program and should be looked upon as being as important as any other part of your health and fitness.

In recent time the professionals have been getting more and more serious about stretching and ultimately, their flexibility. The coaches and trainers are just starting to realize how important flexible muscles are to helping prevent sports injury. Flexibility has often been neglected in the overall conditioning of modern athletes. It’s only now that its benefits are proving invaluable to all those serious about staying injury free.

How Does Stretching Prevent Injury?
One of the greatest benefits of stretching is that you’re able to increase the length of both your muscles and tendons. This leads to an increased range of movement, which means your limbs and joints can move further before an injury occurs. Lets take a look at a few examples.

If the muscles in your neck are tight and stiff this limits your ability to look behind or turn your head around. If for some reason your head is turned backwards, past its’ normal range of movement, in a football scrum or tackle for example, this could result in a muscle tear or strain. You can help to prevent this from happening by increasing the flexibility, and the range of movement, of the muscles and tendons in your neck.

And what about the muscles in the back of your legs? The Hamstring muscles. These muscles are put under a huge strain when doing any sort of sport which involves running and especially for sports which require kicking. Short, tight hamstring muscles can spell disaster for many sports people. By ensuring these muscles are loose and flexible, you’ll cut your chance of a hamstring injury dramatically.

How else can stretching help? While injuries can occur at any time, they are more likely to occur if the muscles are fatigued, tight and depleted of energy. Fatigued, tight muscles are also less capable of performing the skills required for your particular sport or activity. Stretching can help to prevent an injury by promoting recovery and decreasing soreness. Stretching ensures that your muscles and tendons are in good working order. The more conditioned your muscles and tendons are, the better they can handle the rigors of sport and exercise, and the less likely that they’ll become injured.

So as you can see, there’s more to stretching than most people think. Stretching is a simple and effective activity that will help you to enhance your athletic performance, decrease your likelihood of sports injury and minimise muscle soreness.

clip_image001Stretching is one of the most under-utilized techniques for improving athletic performance, preventing sports injury and properly rehabilitating sprain and strain injury. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that something as simple as stretching won’t be effective.

For an easy-to-use, quick reference guide of 135 clear photographs of every possible stretching exercise, for every major muscle group in your body, get a copy of The Stretching Handbook. You’ll also learn the benefits of flexibility; the rules for safe stretching; and how to stretch properly. Click here to learn more about The Stretching Handbook.

———————————————————–
Copyright © 2008 The Stretching Institute™
Article by Brad Walker. Brad is a leading stretching and
sports injury consultant with nearly 20 years experience
in the health and fitness industry. For more free articles
on stretching, flexibility and sports injury, subscribe to
The Stretching & Sports Injury Report by visiting
The Stretching Institute.

“Are You Blind to the Happiness Around You?”

October 23, 2009

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happy face

In psychology there is a phenomenon they call a “schetoma,” or a blind spot. Through this phenomenon it is possible that you don’t see opportunities if you don’t believe you can achieve it.

Count the “F’s” in the following text:

FINISHED FILES ARE THE RE-
SULT OF YEARS OF SCIENTIF-
IC STUDY COMBINED WITH THE
EXPERIENCE OF YEARS…

How many did you count?
You will think I’m kidding if I told you there are 6! I am not kidding you. Read it again carefully.
The reasoning behind it will really amaze you. It seems the brain cannot process “OF.” Is this incredible or what? Go back and look again! Anyone who counts three “F’s” is normal, and four is quite rare. You can try it with your friends and see how they do.

If we have a “blind spot” when we look for something we will have trouble recognizing it when we see it. Let’s say for example that you are asked to go to the kitchen, open the cabinet above the stove and get the bowl of sugar on the second shelf. So you go to the kitchen, open the cabinet above the stove and look at the second shelf so you can find the bowl of sugar. You look for it and finally after a minute you give up and say, “I looked for it and it was not there.” In the meantime someone comes along and points to the sugar bowl sitting on the second shelf right in front of your eyes. How come you did not see it? You were looking for it, it was there, you set your eyes on it and yet you could not locate it.

Now imagine for a moment that you are unhappy and you can’t see how you can be happy. Maybe the real reason for being unhappy is that you have a schetoma, or a blind spot to happiness. It is possible that you are not seeing the good reasons for you to be happy and that you have become thoroughly blind to being happy. Are we blind to happiness as a society? It may be true that being happy may require us to “see,” with the eyes of happiness. In other words, we may need to know we can see happiness, in order to really see what has been there all along.

The only way to really see yourself being happy, is to be happy and then you can see happiness for yourself and in yourself.

**************************************************

© 2009 Giber Becerra, Sports Performance Republic, LLC
Want to reprint this article? Feel free as long as you include the following:
Giber Becerra, President of Sports Performance Republic, LLC, www.sportsperformancerepublic.com, along with his team of highly sought after performance specialists, reveal the insider secrets world-class athletes and organizations pay thousands of dollars for. Specializing in performance training, Sports Performance Republic’s tools and techniques have helped athletes enhance their performance, decrease injury potential, and increase their productivity and longevity of their sport.

“5 Reasons to Be an Optimist”

October 23, 2009

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victory & optimism in sports and business No doubt you’ve heard sayings about happiness and the power of positive thinking. For instance, “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade” and “some pursue happiness, others create it.” Turns out that optimism truly is a powerful force. And, regardless of your circumstances or personal setbacks, you can choose to approach life with a sunny outlook, transforming negative thoughts into positive ones and increasing your chances of success.

Still not convinced? Here are five findings that prove the power of positivity.

1.    Optimism can lead to longevity. Several studies have confirmed that those with a positive attitude often live longer than their gloomier counterparts. A study performed at Wagening University in the Netherlands examined nearly a thousand men and women. The predicting factor of their longevity was their agreement with the statement – “I still have goals to strive for.” When subjects were tested nine years after the original survey, the death rates of the optimistic men were 63 percent lower than those who had not agreed with the optimistic statement. Women were 35 percent lower. Scientists believe that optimists who have more to live for often make more positive lifestyle choices that may help prolong their life.

2.    Optimism can boost sales. A study of the sales personnel at Metropolitan Life Insurance were tested for optimism and success ratios. Those who scored the highest level of optimism sold a whopping 37 percent more life insurance than those who were identified as pessimists. Not too bad for your bottom line, right?

3.    Optimism may improve your ability to do business in other ways. One of the most dreaded parts of running a business is collecting from delinquent customers or clients. But a 2000 study done on debt collectors in a large, competitive agency found that the most successful collectors in the agency were shown to have much higher scores in the areas of optimism, independence, and self-actualization. All great traits that can boost your success in business and in life.

4.    Optimism nurtures healthy relationships. According to author and Harvard medical professor Dr. George E. Vaillant, our greatest source of resilience comes from our internal capacity for optimism. In his famous book The Wisdom of Ego, Vaillant writes that the healthiest, most resilient people possess “both the capacity to be bent without breaking and the capacity, once bent, to spring back.”

5.    Optimism is contagious. A physician and social scientist at Harvard Medical School studied nearly five thousand people and their connections with family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers over the course of twenty years. The outcome? According to the study, which was published in the British Medical Journal last year, our next-door neighbor’s joy increases the likelihood that we will also be happy by up to 34 percent. The study also found that our level of happiness impacts not only those in our immediate circle, but also people two and three degrees removed from us.

Optimism allows us to successfully navigate life’s greatest challenges. Remember, we have the power to be aware of our thoughts and to choose optimism every single day.

© 2009 Ali International, LLC
Self-made multimillionaire entrepreneur and Inc. 500 CEO Ali Brown is devoted to creating financial freedom for women globally through the power of entrepreneurship. To learn how to create wealth and live an extraordinary life now, register for her free weekly articles at www.AliBrown.com

Former SPR Athlete Named National Player of the Week!

October 16, 2009

Article from UC Irvine Website

Irving Garcia Named National Player of the Week by TopDrawerSoccer

Garcia earns multiple awards Monday

Oct. 12, 2009

IRVINE, Calif. – Senior Irving Garcia (San Luiz, Ariz./Yavapai College) was named the National Player of the Week by TopDrawerSoccer.com Monday.

Garcia recorded seven points on the week with three goals and an assist in UCI’s road wins at then No. 24 New Mexico and Cal State Northridge. Garcia had the game-winning goals in both matches.

In addition to the National Player of the Week honor from TopDrawerSoccer.com he was named to their National Team of the Week. He was also named to the College Soccer News National Team of the Week.

Garcia was also voted as the Big West Player of the Week.

http://www.ucirvinesports.com/sports/m-soccer/spec-rel/101209aab.html

Overtraining: Learn how to identify Overtraining Syndrome

October 14, 2009

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Overtraining Audio

Use the Quick-Reference Symptoms List below to identify overtraining and stop it before it’s too late.

Do you know the difference between being just a little tired or on a down-cycle, and being legitimately run down or over tired?

It’s important to be able to tell the difference if you want to stay injury free. Nothing will put a stop to your fitness goals more quickly than not being able to recognise when you’re legitimately run down and over tired.

One of the biggest challenges to achieving your fitness goals is consistency. If you’re repeatedly getting sick, run down and overtrained it becomes very difficult to stay injury free. So, how do you keep the consistency of regular exercise, without over doing it and becoming sick or injured?

Amateur and professional athletes alike are constantly battling with the problem of overtraining. Being able to juggle just the right amount of training, with enough sleep and rest, and the perfect nutritional diet is not an easy act to master. Throw in a career and a family and it becomes near impossible.

What is overtraining?
Overtraining is the result of giving your body more work or stress than it can handle. Overtraining occurs when a person experiences stress and physical trauma from exercise faster than their body can repair the damage.

Now this doesn’t happen overnight, or as a result of one or two work-outs. In fact, regular exercise is extremely beneficial to your general health and fitness, but you must remember that it’s exercise that breaks your body down, while it’s the rest and recovery that makes you stronger and healthier. Improvements only occur during the times of rest.

Remember stress can come from a multitude of sources. It’s not just physical stress that causes overtraining. Sure, excessive exercise may lead to overtraining, but don’t forget to consider other stresses, such as family or work commitments. Remember, stress is stress, whether it’s a physical, mental or emotional stress, it still has the same effect on your health and well-being.

Reading The Signs
At this point in time there are no tests which can be performed to determine whether you are over trained or not. You can’t go to your local doctor or even a sports medicine laboratory and ask for a test for overtraining. However, while there are no tests for overtraining, there are a number of signs and symptoms that you should be on the lookout for. These signs and symptoms should act as a warning bell, which will give you advanced notice of possible dangers to come.

There are quite a number of signs and symptoms to be on the lookout for. To make it easier for you to recognise them I’ve grouped them into either physical or psychological signs and symptoms.

Now, suffering from any one or two of the following signs or symptoms doesn’t automatically mean you are suffering from overtraining. However, if you recognise a number, say 5 or 6 of the following signs and symptoms, then it may be time to take a close look at the volume and intensity of your work load.

Physical Signs & Symptoms

  • Elevated resting pulse / heart rate
  • Frequent minor infections
  • Increased susceptibility to colds and flu’s
  • Increases in minor injuries
  • Chronic muscle soreness or joint pain
  • Exhaustion
  • Lethargy
  • Weight loss
  • Appetite loss
  • Insatiable thirst or dehydration
  • Intolerance to exercise
  • Decreased performance
  • Delayed recovery from exercise

Psychological Signs & Symptoms

  • Fatigued, tired, drained, lack of energy
  • Reduced ability to concentrate
  • Apathy or no motivation
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Inability to relax
  • Twitchy, fidgety or jittery

As you can see by the number of signs and symptoms there are a lot of things to look out for. Generally the most common signs and symptoms to look for are a total loss of motivation in all areas of your life (work or career, health and fitness etc.), plus a feeling of exhaustion. If these two warning signs are present, plus a couple of the other listed signs and symptoms, then it may be time to take a short rest before things get out of hand.

The Answer To The Problem
Okay, you feel run down and totally exhausted. You’ve got no motivation to do anything. You can’t get rid of that niggling knee injury. You’re irritable, depressed and have totally lost your appetite. Sounds like you’re over trained. What do you do now?

As with most things, prevention is by far better than cure, so lets start by having a quick look at a few things you can do to prevent overtraining.

Only making small and gradual increases to your exercise program over a period of time. Eating a well balanced, nutritious diet. Ensuring adequate relaxation and sleep. Being prepared to modify your training to suit environmental conditions. For example, on a very hot day, going to the pool instead of out in the sun. Being able to monitor other stresses on your life and make adjustments to suit. Avoiding monotonous training, by varying your exercise as much as possible. Not exercising during an illness, and most of all be flexible and have some fun with what you do.

While prevention should always be your aim, there will be times when overtraining will occur and you’ll need to know what to do to get back on track.

Your first priority is to put your feet up and take a rest. Anywhere from 3 to 5 days should do the trick, depending on how severe the overtraining is. During this time forget about exercise, your body needs a rest so give it one. A physical rest, as well as a mental rest. There’s no point in beating yourself up mentally over losing a few days exercise.

Try to get as much sleep and relaxation as possible. Go to bed early and catch a nap whenever you can. Make sure you increase your intake of highly nutritious foods and take an extra dose of vitamins and minerals.

After the initial 3 to 5 days rest you can gradually get back into your normal exercise routine, but start off slowly. Most research states that it’s okay to start off with the same intensity and time of exercise but cut back on the frequency. So if you would normally exercise 3 or 4 times a week, cut that back to only twice a week for the next week or two. After that you should be right to resume your normal exercise regime.

Sometimes it’s a good idea to have a rest, like the one outlined above, whether you’re feeling run down or not. It will give both your mind and body a chance to fully recover from any problems that may be building up without you even knowing it. It will also freshen you up, give you a renewed motivation and help you to look forward to your exercise again. Don’t underestimate the benefits of a good rest.

To Stretch or not to Stretch
Stretching is a great recovery tool, and you should be using stretching exercises during your normal exercise routine both to assist in recovery and to prevent injury. Stretching Handbook

Stretching is one of the most under-utilized techniques for improving athletic performance and getting rid of those annoying sports injuries. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that something as simple as stretching won’t be effective.

And to help you improve your flexibility quickly and safely, you can’t go past The Stretching Handbook & DVD. Together they include over 130 clear photographs and 40 videos of every possible stretching exercise, for every major muscle group in your body.

The Stretching Handbook & DVD will show you, step-by-step, how to perform each stretch EXACTLY! Plus, you’ll learn the benefits of flexibility; the 7 critical rules for safe stretching; and how to stretch properly. Discover more about The Stretching Handbook & DVD here.

If you enjoyed this issue of The Stretching & Sports Injury Report, please feel free to forward it to others, make it available for download from your site or post it on forums for others to read. Please make sure the following paragraph and URL are included.

———————————————————–
Article by Brad Walker. Brad is a leading stretching and
sports injury consultant with nearly 20 years experience
in the health and fitness industry. For more articles on
stretching, flexibility and sports injury, please visit
The Stretching Institute.

Top 10 Things Soccer Coaches Think Parents Should Do

September 29, 2009

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While browsing around the internet, I came across this interesting article. It gives a list of the top 10 things coaches would like the parents to do. It is extremely important for the coaches to establish open lines of communication with the parents. However, in many occasions, this is not the case. For those parents who don’t have great communication with the coach of your kid, this is a great article to understand some of the things a coach might want you to say, but he/she is not saying.

Top Ten Things Soccer Parents Should Do

As the spring season approaches, I figured this would be a timely article. As both a soccer parent and coach, it has always been interesting watching the interactions (or lack thereof) of parents and coaches. winners in soccer kids and parentsUsually the interaction is good, but at times it can be strained, to the detriment of the team. We all have our pet peeves, so I figured I’d come up with a couple of lists that highlight what we all can do to make the beautiful game more enjoyable for our kids AND the adults.

Top Ten Things Soccer Coaches Wish Soccer Parents Would Do

  1. Get the players to practice on time, fully equipped, and ready to go. While we understand some kids have back to back activities and account for that, there’s no reason for a player without a previous activity to arrive at the field the minute practice starts, in Croqs. Players should arrive 5-10 minutes early, ready to play, with cleats/shinguards on, with a properly inflated ball and a water bottle. Leave the toys at home – no balloons, skateboards, GameBoys, etc.
  2. Let us know more than 6 hours in advance if your child won’t be able to make practice or a match. Based on the number of players who can’t make a given event, it can affect how we plan to run things. You don’t need to ask permission – just let us know a couple days in advance if you can.
  3. Pay attention at practices. If you have a child that can be, er, a handful – stick around at practice at least once a week and watch. If your child starts to become a distraction to the team during practice, ask the coach if they want you to step in and take care of it. Some may, some may not. But don’t just drop your child off and run away, knowing they may be disruptive. It’s not fair to the rest of the team. And don’t ignore the obvious because it’s your child. We coaches want EVERY child to have a chance to play and enjoy the game, but disruptive children sometimes become too much for a coach to handle and a parent really needs to step in and handle things.
  4. Refrain from coaching from the sidelines. I say this as someone who is as guilty as any. Being a coach AND a parent, it can often be impossible to keep my mouth shut. But coaches want the players to focus on the game and any instruction they may shout out from the team touchline. So stick to cheering and encouragement. If you find the urge to coach overbearing – ask the coach if they need an assistant!
  5. Put your folding chairs at LEAST 2 yards away from the touchline. Many fields do not include ‘parent boundary lines’, so often parents are so close to the touchline that players can’t even take a step to throw the ball in. Plus it’s a danger to players trying to make sliding saves or who collide/trip/lose control near the parents.
  6. Respect our decisions as coaches and if you have a problem, approach us about it. Don’t bottle it up inside, let it stew, and share it among the rest of the parents. We’re not perfect, but perhaps given some additional explanation you might understand what we did. If not, at least you know why we did what we did.
  7. Try to have your paperwork, fees, and any other administrative stuff taken care of well in advance. Even teams with adept team managers can be affected by parents dragging their feet with paperwork. If you’re having financial trouble and need help, ask! Yes, it can be awkward, but many leagues have financial aid programs in place. We coaches just want the kids to play, have fun, and learn. The less that paperwork intrudes on that, the better.
  8. Don’t scream at your kids on or off the field if they make mistakes. That’s how they learn. As a coach, I tell my players ALL the time that I’d rather see them take a risk by trying out a soccer move and losing the ball, than taking the safe route using the inside of their foot all the time or passing the ball as soon as they get it. Too many players are afraid of making mistakes at a young age on the field. Risk taking and creativity should be encouraged.
  9. Volunteer to help your league. Every single one of you. While a few top coaches do get paid, most do not and most of the league volunteers do not. They donate tons of time ensuring the league operates smoothly. So when they ask for help doing concessions, paperwork, field maintenance, fund raising, etc., offer to help. While top level competitive soccer can be expensive, most recreational programs are dirt cheap, primarily because they are run by volunteers. Where else can you get 2-3 hours a week of healthy activity for your child for $25-$100 a season? Too many leagues rely on a core group of committed but overworked volunteers to run things because parents aren’t willing to donate an hour or two during the season. They aren’t asking you to commit to multiple hours every week for the entire season (though they’d love it if you could!). Just an hour or two a month.
  10. Have fun. Youth soccer should be fun for kids AND adults alike. By keeping a level head and a positive attitude, you can have about as much fun as your child does. So keep things in perspective and have fun!

What would you add to this list? And parents, rest assured I have a post listing the Top Ten Things Coaches Should Do in the eyes of the parents!

http://onthepitch.org/2008/01/19/top-ten-things-soccer-parents-should-do/

7 Speed Secrets for Soccer Players

September 29, 2009

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I found this article and I thought you might find it very interesting. It simplifies several different elements of a training program. Hope you enjoy this article by Gary Christopher where he reveals the 7 speed secrets to become a faster, more agile soccer player. I couldn’t agree more on these 7 secrets.

Learn These 7 Speed Secrets to Become a Faster, More Agile Soccer Player
By Gary Christopher

There are seven soccer secrets that any player can do that will increase their speed and agility and help them get stronger too. These Secrets should be learned by all soccer coaches. Speed kills on the soccer field and these seven secrets will help you race past your opponent.

The first secret is linear speed. In order to put fear into a defense a player and a team needs to be fast. In order to be fast, there are two factors that can help increase speed for any player. The first factor is stride frequency. The faster a player moves his arms the faster his feet will move. The second factor is stride length. When running, a player should have her knee lift almost to belly button height.

Athlete training for soccer speed, agility, and quickness The second secret is lateral speed. Here a player is working on changing direction quickly. A player should be able to move in any direction and be able to do that at any speed…slow or fast. Important lateral movements include shuffles and side runs.

The third secret is stopping quickly and then exploding in a new direction Many soccer players stop too upright putting a lot of stress on the knee plus when they do this they are not in a good position to explode into a new direction. Stopping quickly and safely requires players to drop their hips, bend their knees and take smaller steps as they attempt to stop.

The fourth secret is lower body strength Getting stronger in their lower body will help all soccer players get faster and increase their speed through strength training. Lower body strength training should include strengthening a soccer players lower back, glutes, hamstrings and calf muscles.

The fifth secret is anaerobic fitness Training soccer players to be anaerobically fit will enhance many aspects of your teams soccer speed and skill performance. To train anaerobically, soccer players should work on many explosive 15-25 yards burst. In addition, these movements should include both linear (north/south) movements and lateral (east/west) movements.

The sixth secret is flexibility The more flexible a soccer player is the less likely that they could get injured plus flexibility enhances speed and agility.

The seventh secret is nutrition For soccer players to run fast and be explosive, they need to be properly fueled and hydrated. Helping your players with their nutrition will pay excellent dividends for you players.

I have found that these seven secrets of soccer speed and agility help make all soccer players more athletic and thus more dangerous on the soccer field.

Have a great day!

Gary Christopher
http://www.soccerandspeedcoach.com

To get free weekly insider coaching tips delivered right to your inbox, go to my website http://www.soccerandspeedcoach.com and register. Every week I’ll send you players and coaches reports and insights on developing soccer skills and speed skills along with some great audio interviews you can download for free.

Performance Nutrition Tv: Cooking With Giber & Lulu

September 24, 2009

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Hello everyone!

Hosts of Performance Nutrition: Gigi & Lulu

Hosts of Performance Nutrition: Gigi & Lulu

We are adding this important and essential component of nutrition to our SPR Performance Tv videos.  I always receive requests from people like you about nutritional recipes.  So Lulu, my fiance, and I decided to do something different and do a cooking show for you guys.

Since we are fans of the food network, we thought it would be fun to do our own cooking show and practice what we’ve learned by watching the shows. We’re putting our own little twist to our show by preparing foods geared towards performance nutrition foods.  We will do our best at providing simple, yet effective recipes to keep your body going, even with a busy schedule like ours.

Although the video is not of the highest quality, the content included in this episode is fantastic.   Also, the hosts of this show are phenomenal.  Hahaha! Not bad for two people who’ve never taking acting classes.

Enjoy this episode of performance nutrition!

Part 1:


Part 2:



Work + Rest = Success

September 18, 2009

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Work + Rest = Success! Just like many of you, I sometimes get caught up on the day to day work activities. We even feel that we need an extra day or more hours to the day so we can keep working on what we are doing. I once in a while get my ears pulled by my fiancé in order to stop working.

Even though we can hypothetically produce more work in relation to the hours that we put in, we can accomplish higher quality of work if we sleep 6-8 hours. What good is it to keep working on something in a fatigued state? Are you producing quality work? We tend to become far more productive and creative if we schedule some time to relax and recharge. Taking days off (recovery days or vacations) increases our energy, boosts our immune system, and it is a great return in your investment when it comes down to your performance output in everyday life. So what is your regeneration plan? What do you do on your days off, holidays, vacations? Are you taking a proactive approach on this vital element of training?

Although taking time off will help your mind and body recover, I recommend you help your body recover faster by taking advantage of any recovery tools, such as the foam roll and massage stick for self massaging, or a stretch rope, to enhance your regeneration experience. These tools will help you expedite your recovery process and regenerate your body for optimal performance in everyday life.

For your convenience, I’ve included some pictures and instructions of some recovery exercise ideas. When should you implement some of these exercises into your routine? Great question! Whenever you get an opportunity. For optimal results, I recommend you apply these strategies after your workout or training sessions.

FOAM ROLL EXERCISES:

foam roll exercise1 foam roll exercise2

foam roll exercise3 foam roll exercise4

MOVEMENT EXECUTION KEYS:

You will let the foam roll “roll” under the different structures in your body as shown in these illustrations. As your tissues roll on the foam piece, you will identify tender areas in your muscle tissues. At times, when you have identified the tender spots, stop the foam rolling and hold it at that particular area for about one minute or when the tenderness has subsided.

YOU WILL FEEL:

Pressure and at times discomfort in certain areas being massaged. Ironically enough, the more discomfort that you feel, the more you need to be doing these type of exercises.

REPS OR TIME:

Perform each exercise for 1-2 minutes. Feel free to go longer if you need it.

MASSAGE STICK EXERCISES:

massage stick exercise1 massage stick exercise2

massage stick4 massage stick exercise3

MOVEMENT EXECUTION KEYS:

Grab the massage stick as shown in these illustrations and apply pressure to the muscle tissues in a rolling motion. As you apply the massage stick, you will identify tender areas in your muscle tissues. At times, when you have identified the tender spots, stop and hold it at that particular area for about one minute or when the tenderness has subsided.

YOU WILL FEEL:

Pressure and at times discomfort in certain areas being massaged. Ironically enough, the more discomfort that you feel, the more you need to be doing these type of exercises.

REPS OR TIME:

Perform each exercise for 1-2 minutes. Feel free to go longer if you need it.

STRETCH ROPE EXERCISES:

stretch rope exercise1 stretch rope exercise2

stretch rope exercise 3 stretch rope exercise4

MOVEMENT EXECUTION KEYS:

Grab a stretch rope and apply the exercises as the illustration shown above. Each exercise is performed not by holding the stretch, but by going through a dynamic and continuous movement through the exercise. Going from the starting position and going towards the end range of the stretch. (Please note that the stretch should not be uncomfortable).

YOU WILL FEEL:

A stretch without feeling discomfort in the areas being stretched.

REPS OR TIME:

Perform each exercise for 1 minute or for 10 repetitions. Feel free to go longer if you need it.