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Featured Resources
Altered Motor Control - Review of ResearchAltered Motor Control - Review of Research
Kyle Kiesel PT, PhD, ATC, CSCS
This, of course is a complex question, but we have learned that the response to movement following injury is more complex than previously thought. One approach is to look at injury risk factors to, in a sense, we work backwards to help us answer the question. By considering risk factors for injury, we gain a better understanding of what happening in the motor control system after injury. It is clear from the peer reviewed literature that previous injury is by far the most robust factor related to future injury. With this fact in mind, it should make us feel somewhat uncomfortable as rehabilitationists that those with a previous injury, even after completing rehabilitation, are at the greatest risk of subsequent injury. . . .
keep reading

Is the Present Day Athlete Prepared for the Initiation of Athletic Performance Enhancement Training?Is the Present Day Athlete Prepared for the Initiation of Athletic Performance Enhancement Training?
Robert Panariello MS, PT, ATC, CSCS
The lack of early age athletic "preparation" as well as the common occurrence of youth athletic "sports specialization" is presently an all too common theme in the United States. The dream of a college scholarship and perhaps an ensuing professional payday appears to often be the incentive for such early sport specialization. However, too early a sport specialization does have its consequences. An example of such a consequence is the 12-year-old baseball pitcher whom I recently rehabilitated after arthroscopic elbow surgery. According to his father "this young man is going to be the next Roger Clemens". Obviously the father did not realize that throughout Roger Clemens athletic career, this Hall of Fame caliber pitcher never had elbow surgery. My time and experiences with this young athlete was my incentive to write this article. . . .
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Audio Interview - Gray Cook updates the Joint by Joint ApproachAudio Interview - Gray Cook updates the Joint by Joint Approach
Anthony Renna asked Gray to update the Joint by Joint Approach a few months back on the Strength Coach Podcast. Ask Gray a question, get a 30 minute answer. Kidding Gray! It was a fantastic explanation and really takes you through his thought process so I annoyed Anthony enough he finally let me use it. Anyway, this is a must listen interview and I absolutely wanted to be able to share it with all of you. . . . keep reading

Super StiffnessSuper Stiffness
Stuart McGill, Professor of Spine Biomechanics
At a gymnastics or martial arts meet, or at a weightlifting competition, listen to the coaches advice to the athlete -- Stay tight! This means to maintain stiffness. Being stiff ensures that there will be minimal energy losses as forces are transmitted through the linkages. Optimal performance requires stability, and stability results from stiffness. Stiffness in the body results from muscular co-contraction. Used properly, it will assist in getting through "sticking points", enhance whole body strength and speed. Be stiff, and be compliant. Knowing the difference and when to be one or the other is a major way to improving performance. . . .
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A Joint-By-Joint Approach to TrainingA Joint-By-Joint Approach to Training
Mike Boyle MA, ATC
In a recent conversation about the effect of training on the body, Cook produced one of the most lucid thought processes I have ever heard. Gray and I were discussing the findings of the Functional Movement Screen (www.functionalmovement.com), the needs of the different joints of the body, and how the function of the joints relates to training. One of the beauties of the Functional Movement Screen is that the screen allows us to distinguish between issues of stability and those of mobility. Cook's thoughts were simple and led me to realize that the future of training may be a joint-by-joint approach rather than a movement-based approach. . . .
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FEATURED ARTICLES
Walking on EggshellsWalking on Eggshells
Andy Barker PT
The term 'walking on eggshells' is a well-known phrase. It usually refers to having to watch what you say or do around a certain person because anything might set him or her off. In this post I am not attempting to write about how to avoid conflict with people but write about how I would assume you or me would try and walk on eggshells, in a literal way. . . .
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Youth Athlete ProgrammingYouth Athlete Programming
Greg Schaible DPT, CSCS
Long term athletic development and youth athlete training programs are hot topics right now to discuss. During this webinar we will discuss: How youth sports ended up in this short term goal oriented mindset, the importance of skill in sport, variability of movement, creating a long term athletic development plan, and a whole lot more... . . .
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Exercise of the Week - A PRI Twist on the Dead BugExercise of the Week - A PRI Twist on the Dead Bug
Brian LeRiche CSCS
Sometimes simplicity empowers movement. An effective simplistic dead bug with a PRI twist provides the brain the ability to properly learn how to move the extremities, while maintaining stability at the hip and thorax. Two versions of a "PRI dead bug" are noted below, the first being for those who are neutral and the second for a dysfunctional thorax. . . .
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Exercise of the week - Banded DB Bench PressExercise of the week - Banded DB Bench Press
Andy Barker PT
I can't take credit for this one as I picked it up off on of the strength and conditioning coaches at the gym where I both work and train. He was using it with a client who has had previous shoulder pathology, hence, they were looking at ways to load pressing movements within his limits of pathology and subsequent limitations. . . .
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Interview with Dr. John RusinInterview with Dr. John Rusin
Today we have Dr. John Rusin on the line. John is a strength coach and physical therapist that blends both models into a high performance clinic in Madison Wisconsin. A few topics we covered were the hybrid model for strength and physical therapy, his preferred assessment and evaluation tools, hypertrophy training for injury prevention, and CrossFit. . . . keep reading

Sensory Awareness: Rotator Cuff ActivationSensory Awareness: Rotator Cuff Activation
Brian LeRiche CSCS
Most of the general public understands the importance of "rotator cuff strength." Similarly, many people are aware of what the rotator cuff is and the important role it has on the glenohumeral joint. Most are familiar with the concepts of it being an external/internal rotator (ER/IR) and dynamic stabilizer of the shoulder. However, training can sometimes stray from the desired outcome and lead to improper learned mechanics & behaviors. Listed below are my top four coaching methods for a side lying manually resisted ER/IR to promote dynamic stability through development and comprehension of overall sensory awareness with optimal neuromuscular patterns. . . .
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Exercise of the Week - 
Reverse Plank for Posterior Knee Stability
Exercise of the Week - Reverse Plank for Posterior Knee Stability
Andy Barker PT
I have always been a big fan of the reverse plank as an abdominal exercise. More recently I have modified the exercise to incorporate lower limb movement to both increase the difficulty of the exercise but mainly to incorporate posterior knee stability. When the contralateral leg is lifted from the floor the leg in contact has to work extremely hard to stabilise the knee. . . .
keep reading

Modification to the Assisted PullupModification to the Assisted Pullup
Greg Schaible, DPT, CSCS The assisted pullup is often utilized for clients or athletes that do not have the strength to perform enough body weight pullups to include in their programming. I like to perform this exercise with a slight twist then what you may have commonly seen before in the weight room. . . . keep reading

Self-Treatment: Spinal Decompression CircuitSelf-Treatment: Spinal Decompression Circuit
Andy Barker PT
More recently I have been adding spinal decompression work both within and post lifting with some of the athletes I work with. Whilst I have used similar exercises in the past during injury rehabilitation I have found using such exercise with asymptomatic individuals around gym lifting particular to be very advantageous. For some athletes that might occasionally develop lower back pain following a heavy lower limb lifting session, such exercises as shown in the video, have ensured that such symptoms never arise. . . .
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Athlete Autonomy and Self-Discovery: Are We Coaching Our Athletes Too Much?Athlete Autonomy and Self-Discovery: Are We Coaching Our Athletes Too Much?
The sights and sounds of organized group training fascinate us. Whether from military drills or choreographed Broadway shows, we attach value to seeing lots of athletes moving at once, doing the same activities and making noise. Many coaches believe that team training, especially if organized in an overly regimented fashion, will lead to more profound training adaptations. Watching and counting every repetition, yelling cues and instructions whenever possible, is considered exceptional, energetic coaching. However, are athletes actually benefitting from such overt instruction and monitoring? . . . keep reading

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