SAQ (speed, agility and quickness) & Conditioning is in full swing down at BodyWorx with head conditioning trainer, coach and owner Tania Admans.
Training young athletes is both rewarding and essential for long-term development in sport. Sport is moving in the direction of “more is better,” in terms of training on the field or in the gym. This is where proper functional conditioning comes into play. BodyWorx is known for developing teams and individual athletes to peak their performance, maintain endurance and strength, and remain injury-free where repetitive motions are an issue.
Special focus is on youth getting into their teen years and developing the strength necessary to be competitive. Plyometric strength, along with some weighted activity, is being introduced … Gaining power on takeoff speed, whether it be on a direction change in soccer, or vertical jumps in volleyball … Increasing leg strength for stronger kicks, better grounding, and/or higher verticals … Getting the core involved for all movements. And all this without losing speed and agility!
Our athletes begin working on bodyweight, plyometric strength at around the U13 age. Once there is good coordination, and once speed has been accomplished, weighted exercise is introduced.
While there are guidelines for when to introduce weight training vs. continuing with SAQ, there are individual factors to look for. SAFETY is first! Consider …
- Athlete’s ability
- Prior training and muscular preparation
- Past and present injuries
- Phase of growth
- Type of athlete and position to train for
As an athlete, you never want to lose your speed. So, remember to always incorporate SAQ drills into each practice session. Train for speed first, endurance second, and strength as necessary.