• Thomas Wheeler

In-Season Training - Part 2

In-season training is sometimes a tricky battle to undertake - you need to balance training as best you can during the week, play a match on the weekend and back that all up once again come weeks beginning. But how often are you so tired from that week (gym, work, study, school) you just cant seem to recover enough for the weekends game?

Here we will delve into the method and application of Velocity Based Training (VBT) to decrease fatigue and keep you fighting fit!

Firstly, what is fatigue?

In S&C, there are two main mechanisms of fatigue we concentrate on - central and peripheral.

Central fatigue (central nervous system) is the fatigue of the brain, spinal cord etc. This is the main "power house" that drives muscle contractions which leads to optimal functioning. As you lift something heavy, your brain sends impulses to your muscles causing them "switch on" and create a large contraction. Lets liken this to a heavy lift - you get psyched up ready for a heavy lift, so your brain sends greater impulses to overcome the weights inertia (resistance to move) and lift the weight. This is also caused by long endurance exercise - grinding out long km's in any discipline will increase inflammatory markers in your body, which sends signals to your brain causing your body to slow down to prevent over-exertion (this is the sick feeling you get when you have done too much!).

Peripheral fatigue (neuromuscular, motor neurons, muscle fibres) is the dead, lactic filled heavy feeling you get after a sessions in the gym or on the track. Peripheral fatigue is a direct product of work:rest - the more rest you have, the less fatigue you accumulate. Both types of fatigue are related - you can't have one without the other, BUT you can limit the amount of peripheral fatigue you have by manipulating training variables and methods!

This is where VBT training will come in handy... Using VBT will help monitor your power output which in turn measures your fatigue levels - the less/slower your power output/bar speed - the more tired you are. Let me explain this further...

Using this table above, there is a direct relationship between how fast you move whilst training and the desired adaptation/training outcome. During the season, it is highly recommended that you focus on using a velocity range between .75m/s - 1.3m/s. These ranges will keep weight low, intensity high and volume low - three ingredients needed to keep you from over training.

So how then can you measure the velocity of your movement without using technology?

Above you can see those same velocity ranges - only there are also % 1RM zones. For those who don't know what this is - its the estimation of the maximum amount of weight you can lift ONCE. From there, you can match up the % 1RM used and approx. velocity associated. The main thing to remember.. LIFT WITH INTENT and rest big.. 1:7 for speed and strength- that's 1 part of work (~10secs) for 7 parts rest (~70+secs).

Want to know your estimated 1RM?


In the next instalment, we will go over how to program reps/sets and how to implement it into your weekly routine.

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