Exposing then Explaining
Witnessed: deconditioned, overweight and lack of body awareness client getting “trained” by personal trainer at allegedly respectable gym. Trainer is giving client a loaded tube (odd object, moderate load for this client) and instructing client to take a big-step walking lunge while taking the tube from the ground to overhead in a transverse chopping action. Client steps forward (short) causing forward flexion (sheer stress – knee) and has to re-set then correct due to inability to establish balance as a result of excessive body weight (anterior loading); meaning, they have a hard time staying in line with the lunge (yes, they also were stepping too close to general center of mass – tight roping). The trainer probably had the client go through a functional movement screen and a body fat test too – not as important as determining readiness. High probability there was no Athlete Profile process done huh?! How about this?
Assess Athletic Readiness - review and discuss the Athlete Profile followed by then coaching and educating on benefits of squatting and pressing.
Programming - a stamina program sensitive to their capacity/ability with a complimentary strength training program with appropriate load factor.
Teach Skill and Technique while you listen and learn about the client (athlete) – inspire them on the process rather than put them into a cookie-cutter “process by policy.”
Establishing repoire and gaining understanding on the totality of this client’s (physical and emotional) readiness will tell the coach more than punching the client through a battery of pre-determined protocols. These tests are secondary and support. Assessing with a good coaching eye and ear (after gaining context via the Athlete Profile) are essential starting points to help determine proper scaling of programming and purpose.