APRIL 2018


Updates of the month...

Almost 2 months after the launch of our new website and we're having increasing amounts of interest in our new services and online store products! There is still so much to come in addition to what we already have so watch this space...


Throughout March 2018 we have been:

-Running L4 strength and conditioning coach qualifications and youth strength and conditioning coach courses with strength and conditioning education.

-Preparing rowers for continuing heads in London, the South East and South West.

-Wrapping up many successful in-season football programs for league and cup teams.

-Coming to the end of many positive in-season rugby 7's national and youth olympic programs.

-Ending pre-season and beginning in-season cricket strength and conditioning programs ready for the warm up matches ahead this month.

-Transitioning from pre-season to in-season tennis strength and conditioning programs ready for the warm up matches ahead this month.

-Finalising plans for pre-sason track and field camp to Portugal with the beginning of the outdoor season just around the corner

-Working with some new sports such as cross country & judo.

Now available online...   



Online coach | Consultation 

Online coach | Packages

Training programs | Development specific strength

Nutrition Plans | General sport science guidelines

Interactive Training Systems | Ithlete


Podcast of the month...

"Mar 18 | Chatting long term athletic development with Ben Haining"

For iOS listen here! | For Android listen here!


Blogs from the past month...

Managing Challenge

Managing Challenge

Strength | Development | Clean | From hip with hit | Bar speed + weighted bar

Pesto gnocchi with grilled chicken & mediterranean vegetables

Chasing Shadows - The Sherlocks

Read more!

Cold Power

Cold Power

Strength | Development | Clean | From hip | Bar speed + weighted bar

Harissa cod & vegetable cous cous

Anything Is Possible (UNOMAS Remix) - Bobby Puma, Zach Zorgen, UNOMAS

Read more!

Relax Regularly

Relax Regularly

Strength | Development | Clean | Turnover | Bar speed + weighted bar

Grilled white fish with mixed herbs, black pepper, lemon & red chilli served on a bed of garden peas, balsamic red onion & garlic samphire

Higher - Hilltop Hoods, James Chatburn

Read more!

Play Games

Play Games

Strength | Development | Rotate | Progressions | Level 1

Jerk chicken pieces with roasted carrots, beets & cauliflower

Feels So Good - Mike Mago

Read more!


Research of the month...

Our top 3 strength and conditioning research studies this month...


How do conditioning hops increase drop jump height? 

Aim: Assessing whether hops produce a post-activation potentiation (PAP) effect by altering stretch-shortening cycle (SSC) function during drop jumps when used as a conditioning contraction 

Methods: In both studies, subjects did 3 drop jumps (DJs) both with and without 10 conditioning hops performed beforehand, from a 46cm box. A 1-minute rest was taken between DJs. | Study 1 = 18 physically active subjects (5 females & 13 males) aged 25 ± 3 years | Study 2 = 14 physically active subjects in study 2 (2 females, 12 males) aged 26 ± 4 years | Both groups did 3 drop jumps (DJs), both with and without 10 conditioning hops performed beforehand from a 46cm box, a 1-minute rest was taken between each.

Findings: After the conditioning hops DJ height and concentric power were higher in both study 1 by 12% and 8% as well as in study 2 by 19% and 13% | Joints angles of the knee increased slightly | There was no change with ground contact times and forces. 

Practical Application: Using conditioning hops before jumps creates a post-activation potentiation (PAP) effect increases drop jump height | Altered stretch-shortening cycle (SSC) function contributes to this effect (increased muscle force, decreased muscle length and decreased tendon length) | In the eccentric phase this causes energy absorption and in the concentric phase this causes increased energy released




Do coordination patterns change with increasing running speed?

Aim: Comparison of joint angle motions, moments, and powers of the hip, knee and ankle joints in recreational runners at 85%, 100%, 115% and 130% of self-selected running speed

Methods: Firstly self selected running speed was determined on a treadmill by 12 subjects (6 females and 6 males aged 36.6 ± 12.4 years, currently running be- tween 16.1 – 48.3 km per week ) first ran on a treadmill in order to determine their self-selected running speed | Multiple 20m bouts of overground running 20m were done afterwards at four variables of self selected running speed (130 ± 5%, 115 ± 5%, 100 ± 5%, and 85 ± 5%)

Findings:  Stride length increased with increasing running speed | Peak hip flexion and extension increased | Peak knee flexion | Ankle dorsiflexion increased at ground contact | Peak ankle plantarflexion increased |Net joint movements and net joint powers of the hip knee and ankle are increase with increased running speed but  were not proportional to each other | It was indicated that a shift in the contribution of the various lower body muscles occurred with running speed | The timing of the peak NJMs and NJPs in the gait cycle was not affected by running speed | A proximal to distal sequencing pattern of the hip, knee, and ankle ex- tensor moments occurred

 Practical Application: running speed alters the relative contributions of the lower body net joint moments and powers In experienced, recreational endurance runners so much so that a different contribution of the various muscle groups to the movement, and consequently a differing coordination pattern occurs | Across all running speeds the same proximal-to-distal sequencing pattern is observed 




 Can single-limb training preserve muscle of the other, immobilised limb?

Aim: Assessing the effects of contraction type on the muscle-sparing effects of wrist flexor strength training of one arm, while the other arm was immobilised over a 4 week period 

Methods: 16 untrained subjects were either in a control group (8 subjects, aged 20 ± 2 years) or training group (8 subjects, aged 23 ± 5 years) | The training group was fitted with a cast on their left, non-dominant, forearm for 4 weeks, which immobilised the wrist, hand, thumb, and the fingers | The right wrist flexors were trained 3 times per week for 4 weeks in the training group and no training was done by the control group | The training group consisted of 2–6 sets of 8 maximal eccentric isokinetic wrist flexor contractions from 40 degrees of of wrist flexion to 40 degrees of wrist extension, with 1 minute rest between sets with the immobilised arm was being relaxed and placed in a mirrored position for all workouts. 

Findings: When averaged across contraction types, wrist flexion strength increased by 31% on the trained side, and decreased by 2.4% on the immobilised side in the training group | Wrist flexion strength decreased by 7.4% on the right side and 22% on the left in the control group | Even though there were significant differences between groups in terms of wrist flexion strength there were no significant differences between the groups in respect of wrist extension strength | In the training group wrist flexor muscle thickness increased by 2.8% on the immobilised side | In the control group wrist flexor muscle thickness decreased by 3.2% on the same side making the differences were significant | No significant differences for wrist extensor muscle thickness were reported | Minimal active mechanical loading of the immobilised arm occurred during training as shown via EMG amplitude 

Practical Application: Eccentric strength training of the right (trained) wrist flexors caused maintenance of wrist flexion strength and wrist flexor muscle size on the left (immobilised) wrist but wrist extension strength or wrist extensor muscle size was not maintained on this side | No specific changes in eccentric wrist flexor strength in either arms resulted form the eccentric training program



(All information referenced from Strength & Conditioning Research)


Sports calendar of the month...

Our favourite events coming up in April 2018...

3-4: Football - Champions League quarter-final first legs

4-15: Commonwealth Games, Gold Coast, Australia

5-8: Golf - The Masters, Augusta National

5: Football - Europa League quarter-finals first legs

6-8: Tennis - Davis Cup quarter-finals

6-8: Formula 1 - Bahrain Grand Prix, Sakhir

8: Football - Checkatrade Trophy final, Wembley

8: Cycling - Paris - Roubaix 

8: Motoracing - MotoGP Argentina Grand Prix, Termas de Rio Hondo

9-14: Tennis - ATP Marrakech 

10-11: Football - Champions League quarter-final second legs

12: Football - Europa League quarter-finals second legs

13: Cricket - County Championship season starts

14: Horse racing - Grand National, Aintree

14-15: Football - Scottish Cup semi-finals

15: Formula 1 - Chinese Grand Prix, Shanghai

20: Sailing - Round the World Yacht Race, Itajai, Brazil

21-22: Football - FA Cup semi-finals, Wembley2

21-22: Rugby union - European Champions Cup semi-finals

21-22: Rugby league - Challenge Cup fifth round

21: Boxing - Amir Kahn v TBC, Liverpool

21: Horse racing - Scottish Grand National, Ayr

21-22: Motoracing - Superbikes round four, Netherlands

22: Athletics - London Marathon

24-25: Football - Champions League semi-finals first legs

24-29: Cycling - Tour de Romandie

26: Football - Europa League semi-finals first legs

27-29: Formula 1 - Azerbaijan Grand Prix, Baku

26-29: Judo - European Championships, Tel Aviv

28:-29: Triathlon - ITU World Series, Bermuda

29 Apr-6 May: Table tennis - World Championships, Halmstad, Sweden


Please share with anyone else who you think may be interested in signing up too...

icons_0003_Layer 1 icons_0002_Layer 2 icons_0001_Layer 3 icons_0000_Layer 4