Whether working with youth, college, and/or elite athletes, the subject of weight room time management for the strength coach or performance enhancement specialist can always be a sensitive topic. In a world where we are in a constant time crunch, the average athlete is no different. With a laundry list of items pulling at the attention of the athlete it takes strategy and planning to get the most out of each and every training experience to allow the athlete to chase the regions of the next level.
As an independent performance enhancement specialist, the task of programming effective and efficient training sessions can at times seem daunting. The youth athlete will have practices, games, school, school events, and of course family time. So how can you optimize the training experience and allow them to do quality work in a time efficient manner?
3 Factors for Successful Time Management
Here are a few key items you need to keep an eye on that will allow you to optimize your time and create a more productive training environment.
Your spacing will ultimately determine how you manage time with teams and large groups. Obviously, the more space you have the more athletes you can accommodate in a weight room setting. If you have the facility footprint of a large university, your concern will be much different than if you are small independent studio owner looking to bring in athletes for a strength session.
2. Team/Group size
The sport will play a major part in management of time for athlete strength sessions as well. For instance, your programming and implementation will have to be much different for a football team than for a basketball team. In one instance you could be managing 50+ athletes, while in another you could be managing less than 20. In both cases it will take care a creativity to create an efficient and effective training environment.
Access to equipment and the type of equipment can play a major part in your programming in regard to effectively managing time. If you have the access to a large facility with 8-10 plus half/power racks, the job of accommodating an extremely large team will be much easier. Coaches at smaller facilities will have to use split session groupings for teams. Circuit programming can also be extremely effective for weight room time management.
Quick Steps to Get Started
Here are a couple things you can do to be more time effective in your team or group sessions.
- Segment – When dealing with teams, a great time management technique is to spilt workout sessions into teams. For example, a baseball team split could be: Group A = Pitchers and Catchers, 9am – 10:30am and Group B = Position Players, 10:30 – 12pm.
- Circuits – Circuits can be very effective in both small and large groups. With a half-rack system, you can have an athlete performing an exercise, a teammate spotting and others performing other exercises in a consistent rotation. Allowing for an effective and efficient amount of volume and work output.
Finding ways to be creative and utilize different formats can lead to effective weight room time management and performance improvement for any athlete group
Michael Piercy, MS, CSCS is the owner of The LAB in Fairfield, New Jersey. He is the recipient of the 2017 IDEA Personal Trainer of the Year award and has also been awarded the 2013 TRX FACEUP award for Overall Instructor of the Year. He represents brands such as Under Armour, TRX® and Matrix fitness as a Master Trainer. A former professional baseball player with the Pittsburgh Pirates, New York Mets and Montreal Expos, he brings his unique perspective to his work with athletes and active adults. He holds a master’s degree in exercise science with a concentration in performance enhancement and also holds multiple advanced level Certifications from organizations such as ACE, ACSM, NASM and NSCA.