Over the weekend I had the opportunity to stop by the National Strength and Conditioning Association’s (NSCA) Maryland State Clinic at the University of Maryland in College Park. The event was a first rate workshop headlined by John Philbin, Head Strength and Coach for the Washington Nationals and the Maryland state representative for the NSCA. Coach Philbin spoke about the some of the unique exercises and techniques that comprise the Nationals strength & conditioning program during the off -season, spring training, and in-season. Look for some of these exercises to be discussed in future posts. Later on Kyle Tarp, the Director of Basketball Strength and Conditioning at the University of Maryland took the stand to discuss lateral speed development in the sport of basketball. Throughout the talk, Coach Tarp constantly hammered on the importance of an athlete’s ability to get a solid athletic position. This position is marked by a flexed hip, knee, and ankle and allows the athlete to rapidly perform a variety of basketball related maneuvers to control their area of the court.
One key point of this position is to note that the ankles must be wider than the knees, which must be wider than the hips. This places your center of mass (your torso) within your base of support (your feet) for added stability. Additional stability can be provided by dropping your center of mass and getting in a lower position. When this stability is not found you ankles get broken in a manner similar to the video below.
This clinic turned out to be an excellent event and I think any trainer or coach in the DC area could learn something next year as the event looks to grow.