A performance peak is one of the most exhilarating moments in your athletic career. Having everything come together and feel like you are on top of your game is an epic feeling. Even watching it on TV or in-person at a sporting event can leave you with goosebumps.
What we often forget is the training foundation that is needed to achieve a performance peak. We want to jump straight to the peak without laying the groundwork to get there.
This leaves us with a cracked foundation and results in frustrations, letdown, and, in severe cases, pain and injury.
Building a training foundation is not the most flashy thing you can do, but it is a critical step to achieving a new level of athletic performance or sustaining athletic performance as you age.
What does building a training foundation entail?
Where should you start?
The key to fixing your foundation or improving the one you currently have is knowing where your problem areas are. Simply assessing your movement capabilities will give you more than enough data to see where your focused efforts should be.
This does not have to be complicated either. For example, in the first phase of my Foundational Fix program, I have athletes test a front plank, bodyweight squats in 1:00, push-ups, and an active hang. By the third phase of the program, the tests stay similar but advance to more "performance-oriented" goals.
build performance habits
The next step is to hardwire some strong performance habits and improve performance posture. To do this, I utilize a "Phase Prep" block to prepare the body to move. This is something that gets overlooked on the route to building a strong foundation. The warm-up or preparation phase of training and athletic performance is an integral part of your foundation. Skipping or rushing this segment of the process often happens and results in more headaches than help. A properly executed warm-up can be completed in a small amount of time.
Enhance stability and range of motion
The final step is to enhance stability and range of motion to a state that minimizes pain and maximizes performance capabilities. I tag them as "Foundational Strength" and "Controlled Range of Motion" training blocks in the first phase of Foundational Fix.
Clients report that these blocks are surprisingly challenging despite the simple look. This is due to the strategic nature of which each exercise targets a foundational weakness that could be a performance leak. It also teaches another very valuable lesson in athletic performance for life. The basics work really well when you execute the basics at a high level.
Coach Bo's blog
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