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Turn Your Weakness to Strength

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Turn Your Weakness to Strength

Why we assess


All athletes should strive to improve no matter how good they currently are. There is always something that they can work on. The best athletes in the world are always looking for any little weakness that they can turn into a strength.


“My philosophy seems like a pretty simple one, but just live your life to get better every single day.”

-        Kobe Bryant


If Kobe Bryant still had room to get better every single day, just think of how much room you have to get better. Yes, Kobe is one of the greatest handful of basketball players to ever live. But if you strive to be the best, coming up to a fraction Kobe’s level will get you further in your career than most athletes.


What a strength and power assessment does is tell you exactly what your weaknesses are physically. This information then helps you make training decisions that can improve your athleticism and ultimately your performance on the field.


What the numbers are and what they tell us


As a strength coach, I want to train athletes to improve their physical abilities for sport performance. If I teach them to be good weightlifters, then that’s all they will be and it may or may not translate to sport. The top qualities needed for baseball and softball are strength, power, and speed.


We measure strength with a static jump, chest pass, and sit-up and throw. These tests measure lower body, upper body, and core strength, respectively. Through research done at the Titleist Performance Institute and On Base U facility, we know that these three numbers should all be similar. Whichever one is lowest is your weakness. This is what is attacked in the weight room.


Power is measured with a countermovement jump (CMJ) and shotput throws from both the strong and weak side. We want to see your strength numbers at 85% of your CMJ. If they are lower than 85%, you are force deficient and will benefit from a maximal strength training program. If the numbers are higher than 85%, you are power deficient and will benefit from an explosive strength program.


With the shot throws we want to see them 1.5x your strength numbers. Anything less indicates that you are leaking energy somewhere up the kinetic chain. This is typically caused by core, movement, or mechanical deficiencies, all of which can be addressed with proper training.


For speed, we look exit velocity for hitters, and pitching velocity for pitchers. This is the end goal of a proper baseball or softball performance program. Sport-specific speed is what leads to better performance. The strength and power numbers give us an objective number to why an athlete may have a mechanical flaw on the mound or in their swing.


The brain will use whatever is the most efficient—in this case, typically the strongest—part of the body is to create movement. Upper body dominant athletes tend to have poor rotation and all arms. Lower body dominant athletes tend to use their legs extremely well, but leak energy as it transfers through the upper body and eventually into the baseball. Both situations lead to poor velocity outcomes


What to do next


To learn more about your weaknesses and what you can do to turn them into strengths, please reach out to me via email: mike@wiredmail.com or twitter: @michaelhammond_ to get your assessment scheduled.

Take Your Game to the Next Level

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