If you participate in sport, adventures activity or another sport you participate in on a regular basis (such as running). Then you might already be going to the gym and exercising to increase your fitness levels, and that’s great and quite often I’d say anything is better than nothing but not always in this case. Training specifically towards your sport or activity will not only have huge performance benefits, but it will also reduce the risk of injury and improve enjoyment through better aerobic and movement ability.
For instance, if you are a kayaker (for which I have done much of in my time) then training towards the specific movement, strength and endurance requirements of kayaking will not just make you fitter and stringer, it will make you better at the sport.
A sportsperson has specific goals and planning towards them is vital if you are to avoid injury and increase performance.
Training is good, sport specific training is better
A classic example is a footballer, bench pressing and running a few miles on the treadmill might seem like a good workout but that’s not exactly the type of movement patterns a footballer will undergo during a game. Football players usually perform sudden short hard bouts of aerobic exercise through sprints with quick changes in direction. Their legs and balance are key enabling this kind of activity and training must reflect this with short hard interval training, reaction-based movement through all directions and the ability for the knee to take high and sudden loads combined with core conditioning training for excellent balance.
A training plan should include exercises with similar movement patterns required for your sport, training muscle memory while increasing performance through this exercise action. Another good example would be a kayaker, I mention this example as I am a kayaking coach and I know the movement patterns well plus they are quite unique to the sport. Kayaking users high amounts of rotation type exercise which is powered not by the arms but by the trunk and legs, arms are merely levers controlled by the much stronger torso. Wrist strength and mobility are important with paddle actions controlled through slight movements of the paddle blade.
A programme for a kayaker would focus on rotation movement to engage the transverse abdominous and oblique muscles with balance & stability training, push & pull movements for the arms & chest and upper body aerobic activity such as upper body cycling type machine & rowing.
How to get a sport-specific training plan
If you;ve read this far you are now wondering how you get a sport-specifc training plan. Well there are a couple of options, an seach on the web will get you some free plans no doubt however I’d recommend getting a personal trainer to design you one.
You can find an online trainer via Trainerize.me, a platform I’ve used extensively, checkout Trainerze.me which showcases all the personal trainers that use the platform. Alternatively, Contact Me if you’d like to hire my services to build you a custom sport-specific training plan.