Student-Athlete & Adult Performance Training

Buttkamp training footage!!!

Check-out the video to the right (or click HERE) of our Buttkampers getting it done Tuesday morning!  Low handle Prowler pushes, Medicine Ball Slams, suspension strap rows and Zercher carries…all aboard the pain train for the posterior chain!

So what is Buttkamp?

These scientifically designed classes are for women only (sorry guys), and are aimed to cure what ails your regular fitness routine!  Using the principles of functional training and athletic conditioning, these classes will boost your metabolism, decrease risk of injuries, and improve your strength!

Buttkamp is held every Tuesday and Friday at 7, 8, and 9am at our Fairfax location, and every Monday and Thursday at 6, 7, 8 and 9am at our Sterling location!

Click HERE to get more information about these classes!

The Buttkamp Cheermeister

Do the Opposite

A strategy I often give to people seeking training advice is to follow the 180 Rule. I think I may have originally heard this phrase from Charles Staley, but, wherever I heard it, it’s extremely simple and works in almost every scenario.

Basically, walk into any commercial gym. Take a look at what most people are doing, and then do the exact opposite (hence the name “180 Rule”). If you desire success in the gym, then do not follow what the majority is doing (I wrote about this a while ago HERE).

For example, most people don’t warm up at all (or, if they do, it’s usually a 5-minute walk on the treadmill). Following the 180 Rule, we will warm up to set ourselves up for success. Considering that most of us sit at a computer for 8+ hours a day, we’d be wise to “unglue” ourselves a bit. Even taking two minutes to do a Walking Spiderman with Overhead Reach to Hip Lift will give you some thoracic extension and rotation, on top of opening up your adductors, hip flexors, and hamstrings.  Sounds like a winner to me.

Instead of wasting time sitting on the adductor/abductor machine (as you’ll typically see many women doing), you can perform a split squat, single-leg RDL, or stepback lunge to engage the Glute Medius, Adductor complex, and Quadratus Lumborum (on the “non-working” side) all in one punch! Not only will this give you the physique benefits you’re seeking, but it will also noticeably improve your quality of day-to-day movement.

Most commercial gym goers perform copious amounts of single-joint lifts (think: tricep kickbacks, bicep curls, and leg extensions), which really don’t do much for you besides giving you a chance to look at yourself in the mirror as you do them. Instead, perform multi-joint movements such as pushups, squats, deadlifts, single-leg variations, horizontal pulls, etc. to accomplish much more in far less time.

Most people don't hire a coach to point them in the right direction and give them a blueprint that will guarantee results when followed. Consider hiring a coach in your area to point you in the right direction. 

I think you get the idea. It’s unfortunate that the majority of the population (despite consistent efforts in the gym) show up day-to-day and still look/move the exact same a few years later. Follow the 180 Rule.


Dynamic Effort Training to Fuel Huge Strength Gains

Dynamic Effort Training to Fuel Huge Strength Gains

I had something wonderful happen last week: the George Mason Throwers – who just came off the season – retested in the squat and everyone PR’d. I’m not talking 5lb PR’s, we had HUGE PR’s of 55lb and even 60lb (that’s a 365lb squat moving up to 425lb and a 455lb squat moving up to 510lb)! The lowest PR was 20lb. This progress occurred over about 16-weeks. By the way, I called the depth on each attempt myself, anyone who knows me personally knows I’m a stickler for proper squat depth.

I will be (and that day I was) the first to admit how shocked I was at our new numbers. You see, we were retesting so everyone could be sure they are working off the correct percentages for their summer training program. Coming off the season, I figured everyone would be down around their old max (if we’re lucky) or even below… that’s how it works, right? Maybe not…In hindsight, my approach to this team (much like the sprinters and jumpers I wrote about last week) has been extremely conservative. So what was the catalyst for all these great PR’s? Dynamic Effort Squats (or Speed Squats as they’re sometimes called) are the key to their success.

What are they? Dynamic Effort squatting is a squat that is performed using relatively low percentages and performed as fast as possible through the concentric portion.

Why did we use them?
The Throws’ coach communicated to me at some point in December or January that the group, generally speaking, needed to learn to accelerate through to the “block” portion of the throw. I suggested Speed Squats.

How do you use them? Don’t mess with success: There is a pretty tried and true method to speed squat success and you can work off of these parameters for YEARS. If you are new to speed squatting try this wave over a three-week period: Week 1 10x2@50% - Week 2 10x2@55% - Week 3 8x2@60% - stay strict with a maximum of 60 seconds rest between sets.

Can Olympic lifts take the place of Dynamic Effort Squats? Theoretically, yes. In practice, absolutely not! The problem with the Olympic lifts and their variations is the complexity of the movement – it is, after all, its own sport. You are better off taking a simple movement that an athlete is familiar with and squeezing out every drop of progress (which will last through 4-5 years of a college career, I promise).

It blows my mind how relatively unknown Dynamic Effort lifting remains to many coaches. But, then again, the only reason I know the ins and outs of the method is via my colleagues over the years.Okay, I NEVER do this, so since you’re probably already sitting down – stay there! I don’t want anyone injured… Below are a full 4 waves of lower body lifting I wrote for the throwers this past semester. You’ll see that we did a lot of speed squatting and very little heavy accessory work. Really take a close look at the last few weeks. Oh, and a note about Wave 3, the team’s CNS was trashed so I took the DE squats out to let the team recoup. Finally, in addition to this mandatory team session lower body training day, we had an additional Saturday lift that was to be completed on their own. It consisted of very basic movements to “clean up” what we couldn’t get to during the two days they see me.

Wave 1: Weeks 1-3

A1 High Pull 6x3@65% 5x2@75% 4x1@85%+
A2 Rocking Ankle Mob 2x10 2x10 2x10
Banded DE Box Squat 10x2@40-50% 9x2@45-55% 8x2@50-60%
B1 Band Pistol Sq 2x5 3x5 3x6
B2 Pallof Press 2x6 2x7 2x8
C1 DB Swing 2x12 3x10 3x12
C2 Plate Pinch 2x:15 2x:20 3x:15

 Wave 2: Weeks 4-6

DE Box Squat 10x2@50% 9x2@55% 8x2@60%
A1 Oblique Deadlift 6x3 6x2 4x1
A2 Body Saw 3x10 3x10 3x10
B1 Bulgarian Split Sq 2x5 3x5 3x6
B2 St. Arm Walkout 2x6 2x7 2x8
C1 OH Plate Squat 3x6 3x8 4x6
C2 Plate Pinch Driver 2x10 3x8 3x10

 Week 7: Deload Week – light DB and bodyweight work… step away from the barbell!Wave 3: Weeks 8-10 – Taper Begins

“Low” Bar Squat (1/4 Squat depth) 4x3@75% 3x2@80% 3x1@85%+
A1 Oblique Deadlift 4x3 3x2 skip
A2 Partner Plank 4x:15 3x:20 2x:10
B1 SL DB RDL 3x6 2x8 2x5
B2 MB Side Throw 3x6 3x7 2x5
C1 OH Plate Squat 2x10 3x8 3x6
C2 Hex Hold 2xFAIL! 2xFAIL! 2xFAIL!

 Wave 4: Weeks 11-13 – Taper Continues to Conference

DE Box Squat 5x2@50% 4x2@55% n/a
 “Low” Bar Squat 3x1 3x1 n/a
A1 SL ¼ Squat 2x5 2x5 2x5
A2 MB OH Throw 2x5 2x5 2x5
DB OH Squat 2x6 2x5 3x6

Here are my final thoughts: if you're an athlete or the parent of an athlete looking to get these same kind of gains, then contact us here! We've been offering exceptional programs privately for 4 years and now we're also offering our same crucial coaching and programming for distance clients! It doesn't get any better than SAPT.

- Sarah

Fuel Your Body with this Smoothie

I love smoothies. Easy peezy to make, and you can shove countless vital nutrients into the blender to knock out multiple birds with one stone. It also gives me something to take with me to work, so I can ensure - once the hunger cravings strike - that I fuel my body with QUALITY foods as opposed to reaching for snacks that will only leave me feeling more lethargic and depleted (read: processed snacks, muffins, etc.).

I'm the first to admit I don't have very much self-control; so if I have my trusty smoothie alongside, then I can be sure that I can reach for a nutrient-rich shake as opposed to a belly-enlarging sugary snack.

See the video on the right (or, you can view it HERE) for a quick tutorial on how to make it! It tastes great and is super easy to pack for the road/workday. You won't be disappointed. 

As Summer (swimsuit season!) quickly approaches, this shake would be a perfect addition to SAPT's fat-loss program that we have available. Even though we can provide you with the best fat-loss training in the region, we can't (unfortunately) be there in your home to force you to hold up your end of the bargain. So be sure to watch the video and get started!

Yeah, my cat decided to make noise for a good portion of the instruction. Don't worry, I rewarded you with a glimpse of her at the end if you can make it through the video- Steve

Your ADD Fix for the Day

Unfortunately, I've spent the last few days absent from SAPT due to an injury + fever. I'm still a bit foggyheaded (not sure if that's a word, but it's how I feel), so rather than attempt to write something training/nutrition related that may quickly turn disastrous, I've decided to provide a bunch of videos that I'm sure many of you will enjoy in one way or another. 

To those of you at work who often spend more time on YouTube than doing actual business: You're welcome.

THIS is the most outrageous hiking trail I have ever seen (it's in Spain). I think you'd have to be some form of crazy to complete it. I love hiking, but my fear of heights would probably prevent me from going anywhere near this. If anything, fast forward to the 1:30 and 4:45 mark to get an idea. 

HERE is a great (and short) video on some fantastic mobilization drills you can do RIGHT THERE IN YOUR OFFICE!. If you have three minutes to watch a youtube video, then you certainly have a couple minutes to mobilize your stiff joints right there at your desk. You'll thank me later.

Click here to see Nia Shanks easily pull 275lbs with some change (chains to add some additional resistance). I believe her bodyweight is around 130lbs. Very cool to see the women representing. 

HERE is a woman named Neghar doing a Turkish Get-Up to Windmill with a 28kg kettlebell (that's over 60lbs) with great form. She makes it look easy (trust me, it's not). For those of you - after watching the previous two videos - still believe that a woman will miraculously become a hulking she-man if she picks up anything over 10lbs in the gym, then I'm really not sure how to help you. 

Ben Bruno does 11 pullups (mixed grip) with 100lbs added weight. He does them with GREAT form, too. This is a great example to those of you in SAPT who loovveee to add weight to your pullups when you can barely get your elbows above 90degrees of flexion without jerking around like a fish out of water. I love watching Ben train because 1. He refuses to add weight to an exercise until he can do it with perfect form and 2. He's just freakishly strong for his size.

This is an awesome inspirational video put together by EliteFTS. You know you're in a good place if watching this video makes you want to drop everything you're doing and go train. 

For the nerds in the crowd: Here is a 10-minute video of Peter Jackson discussing the making of The Hobbit! Apparently he's going to be keeping a video blog updates as they film the movie(s). I have no shame in letting everyone know that I'll most certainly be buying tickets for the opening show as soon as I possibly can.  

Very cool (new) motivational video from Michael Jordan. No words needed here. 

If you watched all of these videos and didn't take a second to perform a couple stretches (shown in the second video) to help yourself feel/move better, then shame on you. -Steve

Slightly on the outside part of the foot, toe-up, he says…

Yesterday, in the midst of coaching one of our Sterling volleyball players on how to perform a proper step-down, the girls’ father interjected with, “what’s with all the, slightly on the outside part of the foot, toe-up stuff?”We use this coaching cue all the time at SAPT when teaching single-leg and bilateral movement patterns.

The reason we give this cue is to ensure proper knee tracking.If we don’t give this cue, you’ll typically see the athletes’ foot fall immediately into pronation (arch collapses, and body weight falls towards the inside of the foot).Subsequently, you’ll then notice the knee become valgus (tracking towards, and out over the big toe rather than the middle of the foot) as the glute medius is prohibited from performing its most important function…aiding in proper knee tracking.And for those who don’t know, valgus knee is something we never want to see whether it be in the controlled environment of the training facility, or on the court/field of play…ACL go buh-bye…

The accumulation of “toe-up” repetitions will also begin to condition the foot to become more comfortable in, and improve, dorsiflexion.Improving dorsiflexion is significant as it allows for proper force absorption and propulsion during landing, take-off, or any single-leg foot contact (i.e. sprinting).

Ya I said valgus,