If you’ve found this article, chances are you are a parent of an athlete and you have ambitions of them making the team, increasing their playing time, becoming a star athlete, getting a college scholarship, or possibly going pro someday.
But, as a parent, you know when they aren’t living up to their full potential or playing their best or maybe their missing that “missing” component to get them over the hump. That’s where sports performance training comes into play.
Sports performance training is needed for athletes to reach their maximum potential in sports.
A sports performance trainer specializes in bringing out the best in young athletes and helps them become the best they can be in their chosen sport by improving their speed, power, agility, strength, stamina, and flexibility.
I’m Dr. Scott Gray, a Doctor of Physical Therapy. I am also the founder of Back In Motion Fitness and Performance in Fort Myers, FL. In this article, I will show you why having your child work with a sports performance trainer is the only way to reach their athletic potential.
What is Youth Sports Performance Training?
Sports performance training for youths prepares athletes both physically and mentally for the challenges of a specific sport.
Training goes beyond general fitness and traditional sports drills and zeros in on movements, skills, and muscle groups that a player needs to excel in his or her sport.
For instance, does your athlete lack flexibility? It could limit their athletic potential. Our training programs will focus on this and correct it.
Sometimes an athlete is naturally strong but not yet powerful. We have programs specifically designed to make their muscles contract faster and harder to increase their explosive power.
Another area we see problems is lack of agility and speed. Our sports trainers know how to help your athlete unlock speed and make them more agile.
For example, exercises for a swimmer will concentrate on strengthening their shoulder’s muscular endurance.
For football or soccer players, training will focus on lower-body exercises that increase flexibility and agility or whatever the athlete’s weaknesses may be.
Our sports performance coaches at Back In Motion Fitness and Sports Performance helped a high school pitcher, Alex. After working with our trainer, Alex could throw the ball 3 miles per hour faster and deadlift an extra fifty pounds! With his enhanced skills, he continued to play baseball at the college level.
The Difference Between Sports Performance Training and Regular Coaching
Kids who work with a sports trainer have fewer sports injuries, learn the proper ways to perform exercises, improve coordination, speed and agility, and are stronger. A trainer also guides your child towards a healthier lifestyle and builds their self-esteem.
A school coach can’t do that because they just don’t have the time nor the training. Being a traditional sport coach like a soccer coach is a challenging and demanding job.
The coach must deal with schedules, equipment, faculty members, and assertive parents. On top of that, they need to switch gears to accommodate different sports for different seasons.
They only have time to teach the fundamentals of a sport to the entire team.
If you want your young athlete to play rather than watching others, a sports performance trainer is the answer.
A sports trainer’s primary responsibility is to train your athlete. They will work to improve your athlete’s stamina and overall ability. Then the trainer will focus on enhancing their performance for a specific sport and position on a team.
When I was a high school athlete, my goal was to play in college.
I was a good athlete, but not great… yet.
Fortunately, my parents hired a sports performance trainer for me.
After working with him, I became an All-Conference and All-State athlete, eventually earning a college scholarship in sports and playing on a Division 1 team.
Think of an athlete as a race car engine. Straight from the factory, it will run and do a good job. It’s not until the engineers fine-tune it that the same engine produces 25% or more horsepower.
A sports performance trainer increases the “horsepower” of your athlete’s car and it is up to the sport coaches to “fine-tune” this car.
The 7 Benefits of Sports Performance Training
Effective sports performance training is essential if you want your athlete to reach their maximum potential. Here are 7 key benefits of sports training.
Benefit #1 – A Stronger Body
Every sport requires strength. However, to be successful, an athlete must train certain muscles more than others to perform at the highest levels in their sport or position. Activities include general exercises like squats and deadlifts, plus specific strength exercises geared toward one particular athletic ability.
Benefit #2 – Injury Prevention and Reduction
Resistance training and other physical fitness exercises prepare young muscles and joints for the rigors of sports. Better conditioning reduces the incidences of injury on the field. Athletes practice skills that improve their game-specific performance and also prevent injuries.
Benefit #3 – Increased Speed & Power
Some of the techniques used to train young athletes to create more explosive power are used for professional NFL athletes. Deceleration training focuses on proper body alignment, landing, and stopping mechanics. It teaches athletes how to control the forces of jumping, running, and gravity. Another technique is Reactive Plyometrics which trains your body’s tendons and muscles to contract harder. Exercises include hurdle hops, a wide variety of jumping, and medicine ball drills.
Benefit #4 – Provides Better Flexibility
Flexibility is critical to sports performance and joint safety. However, each sport or position played requires different amounts. Three components affect flexibility: muscle elasticity and length, nervous system, and joint structure. Regular training increases joint mobility, improves posture, decreases back pain, and lowers the risk of injury.
Benefit #5 – Training Enhances Stamina
To keep your athlete from running out of gas in the 4th quarter, a certified sports performance coach will create a comprehensive plan to ensure your athlete plays at their best from start to finish!
Benefit #6 – A No-Quitting Mindset
From my observations, one of the best reasons to have your young athlete work with our sports performance trainers is the positive change in their mental attitude. The trainer knows how vital the mind is to overcome the “quitting mindset.” To achieve an individual’s goals, the trainer will help the athlete dig in and persevere a little longer.
A sports trainer will make them accountable and use positive reinforcement to help reach their goal. The positive mental attitude that your budding athlete gains will prepare them for life’s challenges.
Benefit #7 – Long-Term Life Success
The positive impact of the training goes beyond just playing sports. Our students gain confidence from becoming fit and having greater endurance. They have more discipline and focus than those without performance training. These are essential traits that will have a positive influence on the rest of their lives.
Trainers do more than help achieve peak performance. Your young athlete gains more knowledge of their sport, acquires mental resilience, and has a better understanding of their mind and body. Regular exercise habits can safeguard against depression and help reduce stress.
When Should Young Athletes Start Sports Performance Training?
Most youth athletes should start structured sports performance training as early as the age of 10 years old.
However, everyone develops differently.
Sports performance training can help children of any age.
At Back In Motion, we never start a young athlete with anything strenuous if they are not ready and safety is always our top priority.
What You Can Expect from Our Sports Training Sessions
Although we customize the training depending on the athlete’s strengths and weaknesses, a typical session includes:
- A thorough, dynamic warm-up
- A set of speed and explosiveness drills
- An age-appropriate strength training workout
- Sport-specific conditioning work
- A complete flexibility interval
- A cool-down period after each session to avoid injury
These sessions are one hour in length and cover everything we need to accomplish.
Are You Ready to Start Sports Performance Training at Back In Motion Fitness & Performance?
Improving your athlete’s speed, power, and agility are all learnable skills!
Don’t rely on the myth that some athletes have it and others don’t.
Like me and the hundreds of athletes we’ve helped, your athlete, too, can improve their sports performance and athletic ability.
So, whether you want to help your athlete make the team, reduce their chances for a severe injury, or you want them to get a college scholarship, we can help.
A customized BIM Sports Performance Program helps your athlete achieve their sports-related goals and develop a lifetime of discipline and good habits.
If you need to take your student’s game to the next level, I urge you to call or visit our team of experienced NSCA certified sports performance trainers at our Fort Myers, FL location.
I guarantee that my team and I can improve your athlete’s performance, or you can have your money back.
Get a free sports performance consultation by calling us at 239-610-4960 or filling out this simple form.
Don’t leave your child’s future in sports up to chance.