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Written on August 23, 2012 at 7:13 pm, by Eric Cressey
I’m psyched to announce that on Sunday, October 28th, we’ll be hosting our first annual fall seminar at Cressey Performance. This event will showcase both the brand new Cressey Performance, as well as the great staff I’m fortunate to have as part of my team, and our outstanding sponsor, New Balance. We want to make this an affordable event for everyone and create a great forum for industry professionals and fitness enthusiasts alike to interact, exchange ideas, and learn.
Here are the presentation topics:
Understanding and Managing Congenital Laxity – Presented by Eric Cressey
In this era of semi-private training, boot camps, and group exercise, it’s not uncommon for coaches and trainers to try to train all athletes and clients the same. This can quickly lead to injury in a population with significant congenital laxity. In this presentation, Eric will teach you how to assess for laxity and safely train with it to improve how people feel and move.
The Food Freakshow: What Will You Be Eating in the 21st Century? – Presented by Brian St. Pierre
Burgers grown from dinosaur DNA? Tomatoes carrying a delicious basil lemon gene? Red meat with the fatty acid profile of an avocado? Science is starting to change the way we look at food. And in the coming years our food will be very, very different. Want to know what you’ll be eating? What your kids will be eating? What your grandkids will be eating? Let Brian untangle the mystery. In this talk he’ll discuss what’s on the horizon for those of us who like to eat, and like to eat healthy. Join him for a fascinating exploration of the future of food – and for useable, practical strategies you can put into action immediately.
Deep Squats: Are They Worth It? – Presented by Tony Gentilcore
In this presentation, Tony will highlight research on the squat under various conditions and discuss population-specific considerations one must take into account when programming squat variations. He’ll discuss improving the squat pattern, as well as exercise recommendations for those who should avoid squatting altogether in their programs.
“Out with the Old:” A new model for preventing injury and improving performance in the throwing athlete – Presented by Eric Schoenberg
The system is broken! Injury rates at all levels of baseball are alarming. Despite improvements in research, technology, and sports medicine principles, the numbers continue to rise. Each year, teams work tirelessly and spend millions to recruit, draft, and sign the best talent from all over the world. However, only a small percentage of that money is invested to keep these athletes healthy and allow them to showcase their talent on the field. This presentation will help to debunk some common myths, identify disturbing problems, and provide solutions to help keep athletes on the field and out of the training room.
How “Strong” Does An Athlete Need To Be? – Presented by Greg Robins
In this presentation, Greg will discuss how various strength qualities contribute to an athlete’s power potential. Each sport requires a slightly different blend of these strength qualities to provide for high-level performance. Learn which qualities athletes need to improve and how to get the job done.
Current Trends in Manual and Manipulative Therapy – Presented by Nathaniel Tiplady
Nate will present a review of Active Release Technique, Graston Technique, Fascial Manipulation, and joint manipulation. He’ll cover what we know, what we don’t know, and present his thoughts and experiences on the best methods to get people pain-free.
Program Design Considerations for the Young Athlete – Presented by Chris Howard
In this presentation, Chris will discuss important considerations one must take into account when designing and implementing programs for young athletes. Topics to be covered are exercise selection and progression, creation of a fun training environment, and the role of the strength coach in educating young athletes. He will stress the fact that young athletes can be trained similarly to adults, but that there are distinctions that need to be made.
Sunday, October 28, 2012
NSCA CEU pending (seven contact hours)
We’re really excited about this event, and would love to have you join us! However, space is limited and each seminar we’ve hosted in the past has sold out in less than two weeks, so don’t delay on signing up!
If you have additional questions, please direct them to email@example.com. Looking forward to seeing you there!
Written on January 20, 2012 at 8:04 am, by Eric Cressey
I just wanted to use today’s blog post to let you know about some upcoming strength and conditioning speaking engagements I’ll be doing. If you’re like me, you always want to get these planned well in advance.
I hope to meet some of you there!
Written on September 8, 2011 at 9:17 am, by Eric Cressey
Just wanted to quickly let you all know about a few upcoming seminar appearances I’ll be making.
Elite Training Workshop – Canton, Connecticut – September 24, 2011
Topic: Medicine Ball Training for Performance and Health (Lecture and Hands-on)
For more information, click here.
Fitness Business Weekend – Louisville, KY – October 14-16, 2011
Topic: How to Develop Your Fitness Niche
For more information, click here.
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Written on January 28, 2010 at 5:38 am, by Eric Cressey
On Sunday, we hosted Neil Rampe of the Arizona Diamondbacks for a Myokinematic Dysfunction seminar at Cressey Performance. It was a great experience, and Neil did a very thorough job of highlighting the different schools of thought with respect to addressing movement impairments. In particular, Neil spent a lot of time on two schools of thought: Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization (discussed in this post) and the Postural Restoration Institute.
There was some advanced stuff being discussed, and we had a wide variety of professions and ability levels represented in the audience. There were athletic trainers, strength and conditioning coaches, personal trainers, physical therapists, and chiropractors in attendance. And, they ranged in age from 20 all the way up to 55 (or so). After the seminar, I got to talking with Neil about how it’s interesting to think what each person takes away from a seminar based on their age, occupation, and experience level. It led to me coming up with the six kinds of seminar attendees:
1. The Experienced, Open-minded Attendee - This individual may have similar experience in similar fields as the presenter. If he gets just 2-3 good tips over the course of the seminar, he’s thrilled. The more experienced you get, the more you appreciate the little things you can add (or subtract) to refine your approach.
Example: Last year, I spent about 95% of Greg Rose’s presentation at Perform Better in Long Beach nodding in agreement, as he and I both deal with a ton of rotational sport athletes (him with golf, and me with baseball). He did, however, introduce one new thoracic spine mobility test that I absolutely love and use to this day. I might have only picked up one thing, but it was a hugely valuable for me.
2.The Experienced, Close-minded Attendee – This individual may be very experienced in a similar realm as the presenter, but isn’t openminded enough to realize that a professional on his level still might have things to offer to improve his approach. These are usually the people who claim to be “old school” – which essentially applies that they only have experience doing the same thing for 25 years. This is one kind of “there’s nothing new here” person.
3. The Experienced Attendee from a Different Field – This individual might be excellent at what he does in a semi-related field, but completely new to the material presented at a seminar. The challenge here is to learn what can be applied in that other realm. Think of a pitching or track coach attending a strength and conditioning seminar – or a S&C coach attending a pitching or physical therapy conference.
4. The Intimidated, Lazy Beginner Attendee – There are times when a beginner attends a seminar and has little to no clue what’s going on during the event and is completely intimidated by what he doesn’t know. And, as a result, the attendee claims that he will never need the information anyway. These folks should either change their attitudes or pick a different industry, as they are the second kind of “there’s nothing new here” person.
5. The Motivated Beginner Attendee – This attendee is identical to the intimidated beginner, but rather than getting insecure about his lack of knowledge on the subject, he uses it as motivation to study further and find a way to get to where he wants to be. This may be an understanding of how to apply bits and pieces of what the presenter taught, or a desire to become an expert in the same topic the presenter covered. You see this quite a bit in the fitness industry, as exercise enthusiasts who aren’t in the industry will actually attend seminars just to learn about better training practices – just like I might tend a talk by an economist, for instance.
6. The Middle of the Road Attendee – This individual is somewhere between a beginner and an expert in the material being covered. My experience has been that the “middle of the road” folks only attend seminars (at least the ones at which I’ve presented) if they genuinely care about getting better, not just for CEUs (the intimidated/lazy beginners do that). I find that this is probably the biggest group of the six.
Groups 5 and 6 are the ones who have loved our Building the Efficient Athlete seminar the most, as it either complemented their college anatomy and kinesiology curriculum nicely, or helped to take the place of it altogether (for those who didn’t attend school).
Think about this for yourself and start to consider where you fall in the context of these six categories. And, more importantly, how does your “placement” in this scheme dictate the next 2-3 seminars you’re going to attend? Do you want to completely get outside your realm of expertise and see something entirely new, or do you want to hone in on your specialty and see if you can come up with a few new tricks to take you to the next level? There isn’t a correct answer on this, other than that you need to keep getting out to see others in action to get better!
On a related note, I’ve got a busy spring of seminars booked, so if you haven’t already, check out my schedule page for details.
Written on October 21, 2009 at 6:08 am, by Eric Cressey
In my strength and conditioning writing, I throw the term “efficient” around quite a bit; in fact, it’s even in the title of our Building the Efficient Athlete DVD set. I’m sure that some people have taken this to mean that we’re always looking for efficiency in our movement. And, certainly, when it comes to getting from point A to point B in the context of sporting challenges, the most efficient way is generally the best.
And, just think about strength training programs where lifters simply squat, bench press, and deadlift to improve powerlifting performance. The goal is to get as efficient in those three movements as possible.
And, you can look at NFL combine preparation programs as another example. Guys will spend months practicing picture-perfect technique for the 40-yard dash. They might not even get faster in the context of applicable game speed, but they get super efficient at the test.
However, the most “efficient” way is not always the right way.
In everyday life, efficiency for someone with poor posture means picking up a heavy box with a rounded back, as it’s the pattern to which they’re accustomed, and therefore less “energy expensive.” This would simply prove to be an efficient way to get injured! I’d rather lift things safely and inefficiently.
And, take those who run long distances in hopes of losing fat as another example. The research has actually shown that runners burn fewer calories for the same given distance after years of running improves their efficiency. While this improvement is relatively small, it absolutely stands to reason that folks would be smart to get as inefficient as possible in their training to achieve faster fat loss. In other words, change modalities, intensities, durations, and other acute programming variables.
Training exclusively for efficiency on a few lifts might make you better at those lifts, but it’s also going to markedly increase your risk of overuse injuries. I can say without wavering that we’d see a lot fewer knee and lower back injuries in powerlifters if more of them would just mix in some inefficient single-leg training into their strength training programs. And, shoulders would get a lot healthier if these specialists would include more inefficient rowing variations and rotator cuff strength exercises.
In the world of training for athletic performance, it’s important to remember that many (but not all) athletes perform in unpredictable environments – so simply training them to be efficient on a few lifts fails to fully prepare them for what they’re actually face in competition. A strength and conditioning program complete with exercise variety and different ranges-of-motion, speeds of motion, and magnitudes of loading provides athletes with a richer proprioceptive environment.
In other words, inefficiency in strength and conditioning programs can actually facilitate better performance and a reduced risk of injury.
Taken all together, it’s safe to say that we want inefficiency in our training, but efficiency in our performance – provided that this efficiency doesn’t involve potentially injurous movement patterns.
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Written on October 12, 2009 at 6:32 pm, by Eric Cressey
Just a quick blog tonight before the meat and potatoes come along the rest of the week:
1. A huge congratulations goes out to Cressey Performance athlete Dede Griesbauer, who finished in the top 10 (9th) at the Ford Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii for the third consecutive year. Great job, Dede!
2. If you are interested in a pretty sweet live event entirely geared toward physique transformation, keep January 16-18 free, as you’ll definitely want to check out the event in Tampa, FL that Joel Marion is organizing. In all, 14 speakers (myself included) have been confirmed for the event, and it should be an awesome group that brings a wide variety of perspectives to the table.
Tickets go on sale next week, but I just wanted to give you a heads-up so that those of you who are interested can mark it on the calendar. Keep an eye on my blog for more information.
Written on October 11, 2009 at 8:20 pm, by Eric Cressey
Mike Reinold and I will be joining forces for a seminar on November 15. It will be a one-day, limited enrollment seminar on “Testing, Treating, and Training the Shoulder: From Assessment to High Performance.” The format will be 50/50 split between lecture and lab from Mike and I. This is going to be an amazing experience for all rehabilitation and fitness specialists! Full information below along with a special discount coupon code for my readers for $30 off registration:
Testing, Treating, and Training the Shoulder: From Assessment to High Performance
Special Offer For My Readers
Enrollment for this seminar is going to limited to assure that lab time is productive. Readers. Normal registration fee is $199 for the seminar but my readers can use the coupon code “cressey” for $30 off. This coupon is valid this week only and will expire after Friday, October 16th.
Be sure to reserve your spot soon, as spots are limited and will fill up quickly! You can REGISTER HERE.
Written on October 9, 2009 at 8:10 am, by Eric Cressey
1. Okay, first and foremost, keep an eye out for Monday’s blog, where Mike Reinold and I will officially open registration for our one-day, limited enrollment seminar. I’ll have a special discount code in place for my readers to get $30 off the cost of registration for the first week only – but to be very honest, with the small size of the event, I can’t imagine that it’ll be a full week before it fills up. Keep an eye on this blog EARLY on Monday morning if you want to reserve your spot.
2.Here’s another little teaser for you on the shoulder . I remember hearing in a seminar last year with Kevin Wilk that scapular retraction increases subacromial space by up to 200%. Those of you familiar with this stuff should know that the size of the subacromial space is a darn good predictor of shoulder pathology (check out my impingement series, part 1 and part 2 for details). It’s not a large space in the first place, but if you have factors – including bone spurring, a type 3 acromion, or just terrible scapular positioning – you’ll run into problems pretty quickly, particularly with overhead movements.
Now, think about the cornerstone of most traditional shoulder rehabilitation programs: rotator cuff strengthening. Now, while cuff strengthening is obviously super important, it really is only half (at most) of the equation. The cuff will help to preserve the subacromial space reasonably well because it (when healthy and strong) stabilizes the humeral head (shoulder “ball”) in the glenoid fossa (shoulder “socket”). However, if the scapula is excessively protracted, that glenoid fossa won’t be in the right place.
What puts the scapula in a good position? Loads of work for the lower trapezius and serratus anterior – and, further down the chain, improving thoracic spine mobility, core stability, and hip mobility. The cuff is just the tip of what is a very big iceberg…and that’s why we’re doing an entire seminar!
3. I’m writing about three blogs early this week because Cressey Performance’s Brian St. Pierre is getting married on Saturday. Those of you who may be in attendance will be able to easily recognize Tony Gentilcore and I thanks to our keen fashion sense:
Kidding aside, Brian is a huge asset to our business, as he brings a unique skill-set to our methodology and is a big hit with all our clients. We’re all really happy for him and his fiancee. Head on over to his blog and give him some love.
4. On Thursday, I put in some work to update the Baseball Content section of the website. It basically just compiles all the baseball-related writing I’ve done in one place. Check it out!
5. It’s playoff time, so you know what that means: time for the wheels to come off for the Yankees (the commentary on this is great).
Have a great weekend!
Written on October 7, 2009 at 6:38 pm, by Eric Cressey
Sorry for the lack of content this week; I’ve been pretty swamped with everything from family stuff to all the regular goings-on at Cressey Performance. And, most specific to this blog, I’ve got a few sweet announcements on events that were just getting finalized…
First, registration is now open for the 2009 Ultimate Pitching Coaches Bootcamp on December 4-6 in Houston, TX at Ron Wolforth’s Baseball Ranch – and I’m (again) really excited to be among those presenting. You can sign up HERE.
Second, Mike Reinold and I have confirmed a date for our one-day shoulder seminar here at my facility just west of Boston. We’ll be officially announcing the details on Monday of next week – and I’ll have more information in a few days (including a special early-bird registration discount code for only my readers). Here’s a little teaser:
Testing, Treating, and Training the Shoulder: From Assessment to High Performance
This will be a 50/50 lecture/lab split, and we’ll be limiting enrollment to optimize the interaction we have with attendees. Keep an eye out!
Written on January 12, 2009 at 1:47 pm, by Eric Cressey
I got to talking with an athletic trainer at a recent seminar, and we were discussing how people really don’t understand how the rhomboids work.
You see, the rhomboids typically get lumped right in with the trapezius complex as scapular retractors – and that’s correct, but not exhaustive enough to illustrate my point. What you want to observe is the line of pull of the rhomboids:
What you’ll see if that this line of pull is quite similar to that of the upper trapezius and levator scapulae muscles, both of which “hike” the scapula up. In reality, the goal with any rowing exercise should be to get the lower trapezius firing as much as possible, as its line of pull depresses the scapula as it retracts – and the muscle is involved upward rotation, which is essential for safe overhead movements.
Note how the line of pull of the trapezius changes as you go superior (top) to inferior (bottom).
As such, you want to make sure that you get your shoulder blades back and down as you do your rowing movements. Here’s an example of what a bad seated cable row, where the scapulae are retracted, but ride up, leading to upper trap, levator scapulae, and rhomboid recruitment.
Much of this comes because of the backward lean, but it’s also possible to have it when in the right torso position.
If you are someone with shoulder issues, you’ll be surprised at what some general massage work on the rhomboids will do to alleviate your discomfort. We know that working on pectoralis minor and levator scapulae will quickly yield results, but rhomboids falls into the same category, as (like these two muscles) they’re involved in downwardly rotating the scapulae.
Click here to purchase the most comprehensive shoulder resource available today: Optimal Shoulder Performance – From Rehabilitation to High Performance.
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