Offseason Training: Technique is King

Dec
5

Posted by Coach Amanda Leibovitz

I’ve recently joined the staff at 692 Beach Volleyball as a mental performance coach, and my involvement with the team has already been an eye-opening experience. Now, if you are wondering why I am talking about youth and junior volleyball players in a newsletter about triathlon… Let me start by saying that these young women are elite performers coached by professional beach volleyball players, and the program has earned 12 national titles in as many years. Talk about a commitment to excellence! Furthermore, my repeated observations of their practice hours both on and off the court have demonstrated one thing: technique is king.

Watching these athletes run drill after drill after drill for hours on end and then seeing social media posts recording strength training sessions targeting specific muscle groups necessary for peak performance has drawn attention to how much we – or, at least, ME – often neglect these factors in our own training.

If the volleyball players spend just 15% of their total practice time in scrimmage games, they probably spend a much greater percentage of their practice time working on skills, drills, and technique than most triathletes including me. So much of our training revolves around pacing, power, distance, and time that it’s easy to forget the smaller components that make up the bigger movements. The truth is, we all have ways that we can improve our form and technique in all three disciplines of triathlon.

Fortunately, the offseason is here, and that’s the best time for us to work on the basics!

Whether you choose to complete a LOW BRO (LOW cadence, Big Ring Only) session on the bike, run some hill repeats on the treadmill, or try something different altogether, it’s easy to incorporate a technique or sport-specific strength session into your week. Not only will these types of sessions help to make you faster and stronger, but they also help to break up the monotony of indoor training. Even if you aren’t quite ready to commit a whole session to the basics, you can practice being more mindful, present-focused, and intentional during the drill work at the beginning or end of your set.

Looking for more specifics on what would benefit YOU and your goals? Chat with your coach and see if you can arrange an in-person session or provide some video for analysis. Either method is a great way to get valuable feedback and further enhance your offseason training!

 


Coach Amanda is a USA Triathlon Level I Coach, USA Cycling Level III Coach and a Certified Consultant of the Association for Applied Sport Psychology (CC-AASP). She is a regular presenter as AASP conferences. Amanda currently works with Team Semper Fi, the WIRED Athletes Network, and the University of North Texas Triathlon Club. Prior to her move to Texas, she worked with Dare2Tri Paratriathlon Club and currently serves as a guide and tandem pilot with The United States Association of Blind Athletes (USABA). Amanda has coached age group athletes preparing for sprint, standard, half-Ironman, and Ironman distance events, as well as amateur and elite paratriathletes. In addition to her expertise on the physical aspects of endurance and multisport training, Amanda also offers mental performance training through Team MPI. Amanda is an IRONMAN finisher, 2015 IRONMAN 70.3 U.S. Graduate Collegiate National Champion, and 2016 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship Qualifier. She blogs at mindbodytriathlon.com. Amanda can be reached via email at amanda@teamMPI.com.

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