If you clicked on this article because you are a former collegiate athlete or professional athlete. You are in for a treat!!
Post competitive sports training(PCSP): This is personally my favorite type of training. Being that I was an athlete myself, I pride myself on making sure competitive club sports, NCAA, ex-professional, etc athletes do not just stop playing their sport and turn to any style of training or hammer themselves with a bunch of HIIT workouts or extreme intensity, and put more stress on their body following their careers. I love the PCSP style of training because (1) it opens the athletes minds to a whole new approach to training, (2) it teaches athletes slow and steady (which most athletes are used to sprints, agility workouts, low rest periods and drilling their body into the ground (3) it makes athletes LOVE training again.
Taking a better look at how athletes train to give one an idea on why my PCSP training is perfect for them. Let’s take a look at during season training/the season over view.
During the season for MOST athletes for this instance let’s take a look at football players, basketball players and hockey players. Typically these sports run from September to February or March. That is six months. That is ½ the calendar year. Now, let’s say an individual does that from 18/19-22/23 years old, so let’s say five years. That is 30 months of the 72 months in a year, an individual is dedicated to training and competition. That is 42% of those five years one has dedicated to the gym and competition. MY point here is that the athlete clearly dedicates a lot of time to competitive season training and games at the same time, correct?
Well, looking at the three sports, (A) football in college you typically play August to December. Around 15+ games a year. (B) College basketball goes from about November to late March and play about 36+ games a year. (C) College hockey starts in October to about Mid-March and play about 50+ games a year.
Now, I am going to have to assume, these athletes play 1-2 games a week (besides football) and workout 4-5 times a week, practice about 4 or 5 times a week. OH and don’t forget have to go to class and study as well. Do you think these young men and women are stressed out, their joints and ligaments are severely pressed to their capacity and are mentally exhausted by the end of the season? I’d have to assume 50% of college athletes walk away from the season with some sort of stress fracture*** or injury.
After looking at a study from 2014 “The Epidemiology of Stress Fractures in Collegiate Student-Athletes, 2004-2005 Through 2013-2014 Academic Years.” This group who conducted the research pulled their results from the NCAA injury surveillance program from the academic years of 2003 to 2014. In that time frame the results showed
“A total of 671 stress fractures were reported over 11 778 145 athlete-exposures (AEs) for an overall injury rate of 5.70 per 100 000 AEs. The sports with the highest rates of stress fractures were women's cross-country women's gymnastics, and women's outdoor track. Among sex-comparable sports (baseball/softball, basketball, cross-country, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer, swimming and diving, tennis, indoor track, and outdoor track), stress fracture rates were higher in women than in men.”
The article will be linked at the bottom but this goes to show that athletes typically find themselves dealing with stress fractures more than you think. And the most common area was the lumbar spine/lower back/pelvis area. As the article stated “Overall, 21.5% of stress fractures were recurrent injuries, and 20.7% were season-ending injuries. Shockingly enough, stress fractures were more common during pre-season than regular season. Which is alarming to think about because we as trainers are supposed to be preparing our athletes not breaking them down in the off-season, but at the same time this make senses injuries happen in the off season more likely. Because athletes continuously over load their body with training, games, practice, school work, etc over their athletic season. The season ends they take a month or two off then typically go right back to where they left from their competitive season training, in which the body is not used to, it breaks down, causes a ton of stress/hormonal issues and in the long run leads to stress fractures or injuries.
Long story short. ATHLETES DO NOT JUST GIVE UP ON TRAINING AFTER COLLEGE OR WHEN YOUR CAREER ENDS. DO NOT resort to cross-fit or HIIT intensity/group training style workouts. Your body has been through enough stress. Ease your body into a strength phase, get your central nervous system firing again, get your hormone receptors back on track, repair the damage you have done, slowly gain strength and full body function and be in the best shape of your life EVEN after being a college athlete! Trust me I was there, I even trained like a bodybuilder playing hockey at one point in my college career. And guess what, my body broke down, I received an injury to my lower back and was completely lost for words on what to do next in my training. Until I started focusing on full-body, functionally, athletic based movements and workouts did I start re-gaining strength back, putting on muscle, feeling stronger, feeling fuller in my muscles and overall just feeling more healthy in day to day activities.
My PCSP program is perfect for you if you were a collegiate or professional athlete who has turned the page on their playing career but still wants to stay in shape, be healthy, enjoy life and enjoy your workouts. I guarantee you will love this style of training. For more information, just email me (email@example.com) and we can talk about how I can align this program for you!
***Definition of a stress fracture. Stress fractures are injuries caused by cumulative, repetitive stress that leads to abnormal bone remodeling. Specific populations, including female athletes and endurance athletes.***
Link to article: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28937802