It is my least favorite time of the year. I start to get sad as our pro baseball players prepare to leave for spring training. I will miss these friends, but this time of year is also difficult because they are cranky, anxious, and just tired from a challenging off-season. Other than the occasional verbal argument, we can clearly see their fatigue and negative temperament from their force plate testing as well (see Sparta Point ). While it is easy for experienced coaches to observe, it always helps to have objective numbers to identify fatigue, and a subsequent plan on how to reduce it.
The Definition of Fatigue and How to ReduceSparta Point )
- Practice your sport, the more efficient your skills become, the less energy used
- Rest more, as motivation and desire are the chief components of endurance, not physicality
- Train explosively with less rest, density training (see Sparta Point )
Restore the Movement Pattern to Reduce FatigueThe best way to restore functioning, whether through fatigue or injury, is movement (see Sparta Point). Because the benefit of movement is not just structure, the growth of muscles and connective tissue, but more importantly it is sequencing, or your movement signatureTM. Your ability to coordinate your movements can be drastically affected due to fatigue. A 2013 January study out of the University of Lisbon examined the effects of fatigue from vertical jumping because of its universal application from reliance on the stretch shortening cycle (see Sparta Point). During fatigue, the authors found that the ankle and knee reduced their contribution, while the hip moments increased its participation. This study agrees with our observations, and those of our partners that are using the force plate technology. For example, Kansas Basketball, has found LOAD to be reduced during periods of heavy training or competition. These observations occur because the LOAD of force is predominantly achieved by the ankle and knee joints.
How to Restore FatigueAs mentioned above, restoring your the movement signatureTM is the best way to Reduce Fatigue. We suggest using the 1 leg squat and push press to help restore the movement signatureTM from fatigue, because of its primary effect on LOAD. Remember it is not the movement or exercise name, but the precision of execution. Shown below is a squat, the one on the left uses the ankles and knees which will help restore LOAD, but the squat on the right, while heavier, will do little to help LOAD because of the excessive reliance of the hips, shown by the lack of shin angle from pushing the knees forward past the toes.
So restore your the movement signatureTM to Reduce Fatigue, but also avoid aspects that make it worse such as flush runs, or any prolonged exercise.