Brawlic Strength was founded by former Penn State FOGO, Greg Gurenlian, aka Greg Beast. Besides playing for the MLL, Greg also works as a full time personal trainer. He takes his health seriously and wants to help others reach their full potential. Enjoy his latest writeup about beasting myths.
We have myths in every part of life that we have to deal with. ”If I shave my face, it will grow back darker and thicker” Oh yea? Then how come balding men all over the world just don’t whip out the mach 3 on their scalp to cure their situation? ”If I make a funny face too long it will get stuck that way.” I’ve been making funny faces the majority of my life and I turned out fine. But in the strength and conditioning arena we have different kinds of ridiculous myths. These types of myths can either injure an athlete or just prevent them from ever reaching their true potential. Thus, I felt it was my duty as an athlete and a strength coach to dominate a few of these popular myths for you out there.
Myth 1: Lifting weights will make me better at lacrosse.
FALSE. The only thing that improves your skill level in your sport is playing your sport.
Strength, speed, muscular endurance and the ability to recover are important virtues for an athlete to have, but these things will not improve your cradle, elevate your passing accuracy, your field vision or your face-off technique. You need to dedicate your time equally between your strength training and your skill sets in order to truly become an elite player.
Myth 2: I need to train with a “Speed and Agility Coach” to be faster.
FALSE. This may hurt some feelings, but luckily for all of us I don’t care. If someone comes to you offering their services as a Speed and Agility Coach and that coach does not include weight training in his/her programs then there is one solution. Laugh in their face. Ask any elite strength coach at any Division 1 program in the country about true speed, explosiveness and quickness and they will all tell you the same thing. Optimally, you can not increase speed, quickness, neurological function and explosiveness without external loads. This means that you can run around cones and hop up and down all day but if you don’t introduce resistance to your body then your body will never learn to increase it’s work capacity. Let’s make this as clear as possible, if you never add resistance, then your nervous system doesn’t adapt. If your nervous system doesn’t adapt, your muscles don’t respond. If your muscles don’t respond, then you never get stronger. If you never get stronger you just threw away a whole summer filled with time and money to an idiot with a whistle who played you for a fool.
Myth 3: I need Sports Specific training.
FALSE: I LOVE this theory because so many terrible trainers have made tons of money off of selling this to people. You readers seem fairly intelligent so let me ask you a question. What does soccer, basketball, football, lacrosse, hockey and tennis have in common? (I left out baseball because we’re talking about REAL athletes). They all require you to have sprint endurance, a strong midsection, a strong lower body, comparable upper body strength, flexibility, injury resistance, and the ability to recover from game to game. NOW, ask yourself why would I train an athlete any differently for any of these sports? I wouldn’t, not on the surface anyway. Every athlete in every sport benefits from deadlift, squat, pull-ups, bench press, push press, olympic lift variations. The core type of athletic training benefits everyone. So there is no such thing as “Sports specific.” However, there IS such a thing as “Skill Specific” training. For instance if I had an entire training session set up amongst a lacrosse team, I would have the entire team go through a dynamic warm-up together, train through our core lifts for the day and finish with some muscular endurance training.
Chicks dig grip strength.
After these main components of the session I would then have my face-off men finish with a few farmer carries, and grab the hammers for supination exercises to strengthen the wrists and forearms. That’s an example of skill specific training. It’s an addition to the imperative strength training that every athlete should focus on.
Myth 4: I need to train my balance.
FALSE. FALSE. FALSE.
When an athlete asks me about balance training my simple and immediate response is, “Do you fall a lot?” If the answer is yes then you obviously have a neurological disorder and should be admitted to a hospital. If the answer is no then why…….Oh why……would we ever waste our time on squishy balls? Don’t answer that. The playing field is not a giant blue ball or a slippery board or a piece of uneven wood. The playing field is grass so why would we try to improve our balance by training on something that literally does not exist in the real world? I’m going to let all of you in on a little secret.
Balance is directly correlated to two things. Strength and experience. If you are strong from training your body with multiple joints on multiple plains then you won’t have any issues with balance as your body will be able to fight off external resistance in multiple directions and maintain it’s speed, durability and quickness. Let me give you an example of what I mean by experience. If you’re an attackman and you are dodging from X for the first time against a new defender he may have a habit of shoving your hips just as you try to use your split dodge which may surprise you and throw off your balance for a step or two. Later in the game when you try your split again and feel him jab your hip you will be ready and most likely keep your balance and roll off of it. There is no substitute for game experience or strength. So ditch the idea of “balance” training.
There is plenty to come and if you have specific questions in the future feel free to message me and I’ll be happy to answer them in my future blogs. This was just a few myths to chew on since I don’t want to overload your fragile little minds with too much info at once. After all, you’re laxers.