Random Tips and Tricks for Training

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This weekend was one full of information and subsequently getting my mind blown.

Myself, and 2 other coaches from Evolution, went to Providence for a weekend seminar by Perform Better.


This was the second event from them I have gone to this year and both times I have left trying to collect my thoughts.

The presenters are not coming up with ground breaking, unbelievable topics. Most of the time, they just have a really good understanding of complex topics.

People like me rely on them to learn these ideas and become a better coach from doing them.

Oh, and all of the presenters are really insanely smart. There is no question or example that trips them up.

I learned a lot on various topics throughout the whole weekend.

Everything from back pain, shoulder dysfunction, NFL combine training, total body stiffness, and post rehab training.

I also learned that a 60 year old spine biomechanist with one good hip could probably knock me out with one, effortless punch.

That is neither here nor there. The point of this post is to share with you a few of the simpler, but mind blowing tips that I learned.

1. Golf Ball

Bill Knowles was presenting about reconditioning after an injury. In order to get the glutes firing he told us to pretend we were squeezing a golf ball with our butt.

This is something that is helpful to me because I always need athletes and adults to finish movements with their glutes.

Bridges, squats, deadlifts, KB swings, etc. are all exercises that need full hip extension at the top. The exercises are finished with “Golf Ball.”

What the cue stands for is not magical by any means. Everyone is told to push their hips, squeeze their butt, and more.

The magic is that it is one relatable word. Once people learn what “golf ball” is, they will not forget.
In order to finish off all of your movements you must “golf ball” at the finished standing position.

2. Lobster Claw

Stuart McGill had a topic of total body stiffness and elite training. His first demo was to create a strong grip by activating the whole body.

This started with “lobster claw.” Another cue that people will remember to use, but it also shows how to make a dominating grip.

First, grab your wrist as hard as you can. Remember the pressure and how strong the grip felt.

Next make a lobster claw on your arm by pinching your thumb with the base of your index finger.


Once you have your arm pinched, wrap each finger around your wrist until they are all tight.

Your grip is now much stronger in your forearm.

Starting with the lobster claw will make your grip a lot better and exercises easier.

3. Training smart is always going to trump puke-bucket training

I call puke bucket training a program with the sole purpose of making your tired/exhausted/ ready to vomit.

It does not work in the long term. There is a time when conditioning is necessary but that is part of the bigger picture.

Training so hard that you cannot sit on the toilet or finish a workout seeing stars might be cool for a short time period.

Fact of the matter is that those programs do not last. People become unhappy, stressed out, and eventually they just get over it.

Simply put, workouts that are an ass kicking with no rhyme or reason do not work long term.
The most successful trainers and coaches are not out there to make you tired, they want to make you

At EXOS, the training site of most NFL combine prospects, nutrition and recovery are more important than the training itself.

Dan John spoke about how he wants to live a long time and poor training is not going to do that. To maximize efforts you have to train smart in order to have success down the road.

There was not one presenter that got up there and said the best way to train is to absolutely smash on people. These guys are all well accomplished themselves, as well as with the athletes they train.

There is always a purpose and a process to good training. There is no longevity to training by picking stuff out of a hat.

Overall the presenters showed that they are able to understand very complex topics and throw them back for us to implement with our people.

Everyone who went to the summit got smarter and it was all for the benefit of their clients.

If you train at a gym where the staff is going to conferences and constantly looking to get better, you are in a good spot. Trouble brews for those that are not.

I will continue to share the other things I have learned once I wrap my head around them. For now try to implement the above tips for training success.