The success of an athlete’s season is largely determined through the preparation that is done during the off-season. This work done during this phase is the base for an athlete’s future success. You can’t build the second floor of a house before making sure the foundation is as strong as it can be, this is the first step towards a productive season.
The off-season doesn’t only mean working harder – more hours does not mean more success if the proper program isn’t in place. A proper off-season program should address the following:
- Assessment of fundamental movement patterns: If an athlete cannot perform basic movements due to mobility or stability issues, the athlete has a big cap on athletic potential. Good movement is the foundation for optimal athletic success.
- Addressing areas of limited mobility: The more we sit as a society the more ‘tight’ muscles we develop. These mobility limitations prevent the body from moving as it is designed to
- Addressing common strength and stability limitations: When the mobility limitations are coupled with strength limitations, an athlete’s performance will greatly suffer until these are resolved. The combination of mobility and stability limitations result in large decreases of power output, speed, and put athletes at a higher risk to be sidelined from injury.
- Proper progression: It is important that an off-season program does not progress too quickly or too slowly, as these can both limit progress made during the off-season and increase the risk of injury.
- Preparing the body for the demands of a specific sport: There is no one size fits all approach for training. Each sport has different physical requirements, so each sport should not be trained the same way.
Does your off-season training program address each of these key areas? For more information on how this would be customized for your team’s needs, contact TheraCORE about our off-season training plans run by physical therapists. Put the time in now to set yourself up for success later.
- Dave Paczkoski, PT, DPT
Inside the Five Seasons Sports Club
6901 S. Madison
Burr Ridge, IL 60527
16622 W. 159th St., Ste. 503
Lockport, IL 60441
350 E. Ogden Ave., Ste. 200
Westmont, IL 60559