Bringing the Juice or X’s and O’s?

I hope to see all of you at our “Even-Esh Underground Strength Coach and Mash Learn 2 Lift” Combined Certs. Here are the dates:

March 17th and 18th at the Mash Compound in Clemmons, NC find out more and get Early Bird Pricing Below:

Even-Esh and Mash Cert

June 9th and 10th will be at Zach’s place in Manaquan, New Jersy

Details coming later!

Bringing the Juice or X’s and O’s?

Saturday I was hanging out with Coach Joe Kenn, Head Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Carolina Panthers and two-time NSCA Coach of the Year. I am giving you a little of his background because I want you to know where this information is coming from. First let me give you a little more of the plot. Coach Kenn hosted a deadlift party at the Big House Power World Head Quarters. He invited an all-star cast of characters including:

• Martin Rooney, creator of Training for Warriors
• Chris Ox Mason, Pro-Powerlifter and owner of TFW Winston-Salem
• Coach Liane Blyn, Director of Strength and Conditioning at Appalachian State University and World Champion Powerlifter
• Coach Justin Blatnik, one of Coach Kenn’s assistants and a competitive strength athlete
• Derek Selles, champion powerlifter, professional videographer and editor
• Justin Lovingood, National Weightlifter and Powerlifter

The deadlift party was awesome, but it was the talk afterwards that intrigued me the most. It was awesome to hear Martin, Coach Kenn, and Coach Blyn talk about “brining the juice” on a daily basis. They were talking about bringing the energy, motivation, and buy-in to their athletes on a daily basis. They agreed that this ability trumped exercise science knowledge.

I have to agree. Now let me be the first to say that this life should be one big quest for knowledge. It just seems that lately the world is made up of so-called experts that have never really coached anyone, and all they want to talk about is energy systems and periodization. That entirely means nothing if you don’t have the ability to relay the information to your athletes in a way where they buy-in to what you are saying. That’s simply a fact!

Martin told us that there are now studies being done showing increases in performance from athletes coached by dynamic coaches versus low-key coaches. I will need to look at those studies first, but it only makes sense. As an athlete, I didn’t want to be coached by some boring dude talking about fiber types. I wanted to be coached by someone that understands fiber types and recruitment. However, when we are in the gym training, I want that coach to have the ability to shift my mindset and work harder than ever.

I have known opposite ends of the spectrum in my lifetime. I have known coaches that had all the knowledge that were never able to acquire one good athlete because they were so boring. I have also known mental clowns that thought yelling was a program. Neither extreme is worthy of advertisement. Neither extreme will ever create one good athlete.

A great strength coach spends his life acquiring knowledge. The athletes deserve that. They trust us with their careers and lives. It is up to us to do everything in our power to ensure that they are getting every tool necessary to reach their goals. Personally I don’t care if my athletes are constantly improving, getting stronger, and winning. That doesn’t mean that I have the perfect program. The quest for the perfect program never ends.

However, here’s the part that the Instagram Coach has no idea about. A great strength coach is a performer. The weight room is our stage, and each day is another episode of our show. Each day, my goal is to motivate, encourage, and entertain my athletes. Yes I want to entertain my athletes. Get over yourself already! It is ok to have fun in the weight room. Heck if you want to see you athletes improve, let them have fun and watch their numbers skyrocket.

Coach Kenn is a performer. I have watched him coach at the Carolina Panthers Stadium several times. The guys love him. His big smile and crazy lingo make it fun for these athletes to go to the gym. Guess what? Most football players don’t want to go to the gym. They want to play football. If you want them to see results in the weight room, find ways to get them to enjoy their time.

Martin Rooney is the King of Performers. I know because I have watched him give a presentation for Perform Better, and it was amazing. He owns the crowd from the minute he starts talking, and the crowd loves every second. When he is done with them, they leave that room wanting to be better athletes and coaches.

Here’s the thing that I want to leave you with. If you want to be a strength coach, you need to learn from real strength coaches. If someone that has coached less than five people in their lifetime is grooming you, you are a fool. People can talk theory all they want, but you want to find out the exact results that they have gotten with their athletes. The best program in the world is worthless if no athlete in the world will buy into it.

If you are a prospective strength coach, weightlifting coach, or powerlifting coach, I encourage you to spend 50% of your time on acquiring knowledge and the other 50% on communication skills. If you can relate to your athletes, you can impact their lives. If you can’t, you are worthless as a coach. Now that’s the bottom line, and I hope that all of you will go out and crush it this week with your athletes. They deserve your best.

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