This article is authored by Eric McKay. Opinions expressed may not be that of SMARTER Team Training, STT sponsors or constituents. In 2009, Erik opened No Bull! Strength and Performance, a personal training facility with an emphasis on individual attention and educating his clients on proper strength and conditioning technique. He is also an adjunct professor of physical fitness and wellness at Lansing Community College, and the strength and conditioning coach for the Lansing Community College softball team, a perennial powerhouse program in the National Junior College Athletic Association. Before starting his own business he was a football coach for 11 years at various levels and has worked strength training and conditioning family, friends, and athletes from numerous sports for over 20 years.

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As a strength and conditioning coach, we have the responsibility to ensure that our athletes, and non-athletes, are safe. This is true not only while they are training with me, but also when they move on to train by themselves. It is our responsibility to teach the athlete or client the major muscles that are being worked. This knowledge will allow for better communication when issues of injury, pain, or weakness occur. It is important to not only think about trainees at the present time, but take time to ensure that what we are doing isn’t going to have negative consequences five, ten or twenty years down the road. Not enough personal trainers and strength coaches think about their clients or patients later in life. It is our job to provide those training with us the best workout in the shortest amount of time so that they can get on with other important things in their lives. For athletes, training efficiently allows you to have more time to practice a specific skill.

So, this is how I see it:
1 – Don’t waste your time using gimmicks or fads when training. STICK TO THE BASICS.
2 – Train the entire body; don’t skip the grip, head, neck, and feet. They are critical parts of the ENTIRE BODY!
3 – Value the REPETITION. The importance of a quality repetition is crucial when training to develop strength and speed.
4 – Pay attention to exercise INTENSITY. Simply put, the harder you train on each set the shorter the entire workout needs to be. Raise the intensity on EACH set during your workout to get stronger and faster.

Erick McKayErik McKay BS, MA, CSCS, Kinetics Coach earned his B.S. and M.A. in physical education at Central Michigan University. While at CMU he worked with the Center for the Enhancement of Physical Education Programming and gained additional experience developing K-12 physical education curriculum with a focus on proficiency in the knowledge of proper form and execution of motor skills, and taught strength and conditioning courses as a graduate assistant. Erik went on to earn the Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach designation from the National Strength and Condition Association, the premier certification in the fitness field. Coach McKay can be reached via email by clicking here.