The Seminar – The Practical Principles of Strength and Conditioning (7th & 8th of February)

I have to say I am really looking forward to it. I think it is going to be genuinely different from any seminar that any of the attendees have ever been to. I say that because I don’t think anyone has been to as many of these things in as many countries over as many years as I have and I’ve never been to one like this. I am going to keep everything seminar related in this single post so I’ll just update it as needs be over the weekend.

The weather has already effected attendees trying to get over for the seminar unfortunately so we’ll have to wait and see who makes it to the starting line tomorrow morning. The show however will go on even if I end up talking to myself. I will write a brief summary of what we cover on the Saturday and will do the same on Sunday after we wrap up.  We are going to try to video as much of the seminar as possible so well see how that works out.

Seminar Weekend

Well things are off to a good start. I tend not to mention scores or performances of athletes on the blog…the main reason being is when I was starting out coaching Harry Wardle who was at that stage one of the head Strength and Conditioning Coaches at the Australian Institute of Sport grabbed me by the back of the neck when I was crowing about the success of one of my athletes and said…’Don’t take the credit for the wins unless your willing to take all the blame for the losses’…which coming from a legend like Harry was close to the word of God to me at that stage. It is something that I’ve always kept in mind throughout my career. I do want to say well done to the Irish Women’s Rugby team who defeated France last night.

Fi in the blue shirt here praying for a match winning try

Fi in the blue shirt here praying for a match winning try

I thought when the girls were doing this that Fi was muttering something under her breath along the lines of…’Will you’re really some sort of prick!’… but I realise now what I heard her say was that ‘getting over the line for a winning try would do the trick!’…or words to that effect. So good work to Fi for getting the winning try and all the glory…show off…for what was a hard fought team victory and hopefully one of many to come for the girls this international season.

Saturday

I’ve got 5 minutes to write a recap of Saturday before it’s actually Sunday…I some how don’t think I am going to make it. I’ve decided not to just put up the seminar notes. I was really please to see so many people travelling from so far afield to come to the seminar. I am going to give them all the notes from the seminar. If they want to post them…so be it. If they want to write about what they got out of today…then that is fine as well. I figure I’ll leave it to them…they paid to get here and paid to listen to me talk way too much so as far as I’m concerened they own this seminar and the material presented so they can do whatever the hell they like with it. To give you an outline though…today was all about the strength side of strength and conditioning. What we covered  was basically as follows:

I did an introduction to the field of strength and conditioning and discussed the basic principles that I try to abide by in my work. We spent a good while discussing functional movement analysis and the role of critical observation in coaching. A big part of which was examining athlete evaluation and screening in a practical sense. We looked at mobility and stability issues both at a joint by joint basis and as a whole. Then we assesed and tested an athlete. This particular athlete is going to be used for the Training Project so I will fill in all the details we gathered on Monday. This was followed by the best session of the day…lunch. After which we went over testing and discussed the strengths and weaknesses of different tests and their applicability to different sports. Then we finished with the actual fun stuff…we looked at exercise selection and program design and construction which took up the best part of the afternoon. We wrapped up only 30 minutes over time and preceded straight to the bar and then off for more beverages and dinner. So esssentially it was a series of coffee breaks and a great lunch and dinner with some unfortunate rammbling in between.

Sunday


Today began with a recap of yesterday. Nothing like stalling with old material when you’ve run out of things to say…as everyone knows…I was my normal quiet self and was struggling most of today to find anything at all to talk about…being the unprofessional I am I managed to struggle on. We discussed program construction, exercise selection and technique next. Then the attendees had a group project to complete…this was the construction of a strength and conditioning program for an entire squad. Then they got to implement it…

This was the middle of the 2nd Strength Conditioning Block

Afterwards we discussed the pros and cons of the session before spending the afternoon discussing conditioning training in practice. I am going to spend my downtime this week writing up all the seminar notes. There was so much stuff I wanted to cover that I didn’t get the chance to but I am going to try and make up for it by covering it all in the notes.

 

You'd think we were at a bar...some of the lads sure smelt like it

You'd think we were at a bar...some of the lads sure smelt like it

As I said on the Sunday part of the seminar involved the group designing a workout for a team of Under 20’s rugby players. This is what they put together:

The lads were divided up into teams of 3. They had 3 conditioning blocks and 3 strength conditioning blocks to complete. There were 6 strength block variations of which the lads had to complete 3 in the session. 

 

6 different strength conditioning blocks

6 different strength conditioning blocks

The conditioning blocks were done like this…all the group had do 8mins on the bike, 8 mins on the treadmill and 8 mins on the rower in their session. The way these blocks worked is that they had to do the 8mins as a team in a relay style. I like making training as competitive as possible and besides its so much more fun watching athletes screaming at each other about how lazy and pathetic they are than me having to do it constantly….it really takes a lot of pressure off me. Points were awarded to teams according to how far they got in 8mins…the team that got the furthest got a point…and last place got 5 points. I really like conditioning work that makes guys uses the brain as well as their brawn. Different teams took different approaches….some teams had each member set a pace and as soon as they drop another team member jumped in. Some teams went 30 second each and some a minute…and some teams were so chockablock full of morons I have no idea what the hell they were doing and I guarantee they didn’t either. 

 

The results of the conditioning work

The results of the conditioning work

A big win by Team 3…they got the prize…3 muffins. Team Tom and the Fantastic 5 were the biggest losers and there was a sudden death showdown on the last block to decide who really sucked the worst.

 

Strength Block Results

Strength Block Results

So unfortunately Team Tom and the Fantastic 5 beat each others respective scores in their respective strength block showdown at the end. In fairness to both these teams…the reason they were at the losing end is because for the majority of the session they were both down a member due to the copious amounts of vomiting that their team members were doing in the toilet after the first conditioning block. There was a fair bit of puking going on…different people employed different tactics…some raced out puked, came back and trained before racing out again…interval style puking. Some though went more steady state spewing…in that they went and were gone for a fair bit of the session. Because Team Tom and The Fantastic 5 were all tied up at the end it was decided that they should have a Pull Off…it was the only fair way to decide the real losers.

I think in the end though I couldn’t really decide who was the worst.

It was a tough session and the lads did really well…even the pukers who tried to get back in the action as soon as they could.

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35 thoughts on “The Seminar – The Practical Principles of Strength and Conditioning (7th & 8th of February)

  1. Here’s how it will be different: at most seminars, the presenters don’t spend 8 hours screaming at you without being able to actually stick to a single topic for more than about 25 seconds before the next thought enters their mind and they decide to talk about that instead.

    I’d suggest anyone attending Will’s take ear plugs and headache medicine.

    Lyle

  2. Alright Will im coming over in mid april, 17-20 of april is booked! Though of picking next weekend at first but changed my mind after thinking about it for a while, I don’t trust the weather 😛 Well, you better be home that weekend!

  3. Lyle said
    Here’s how it will be different: at most seminars, the presenters don’t spend 8 hours screaming at you without being able to actually stick to a single topic for more than about 25 seconds before the next thought enters their mind and they decide to talk about that instead.
    In my defence…I’ve never not been drunk any time we’ve spoken.

    I’d suggest anyone attending Will’s take ear plugs and headache medicine.
    I think every…I’m going to my normal cool, calm and quiet self.

    Joel said
    Alright Will im coming over in mid april, 17-20 of april is booked! Though of picking next weekend at first but changed my mind after thinking about it for a while, I don’t trust the weather Well, you better be home that weekend!
    You picked the best weekend possible. You won’t learn much but you are going to have a great time…and you might as well get yourself on the medical register because you are going to need a new liver and kidneys when you go home….Terenure vs St Mary’s…the best and biggest game of the season on that Saturday. See you then mate.

  4. Just home from the seminar…which went really well…I learned alot that I didnt know…and we were shown in great detail….today was more enjoyable as it consisted of the under 20s doing a group session competing against each other..they where paired in groups and had no idea what they where in for…so naturally being Irish..came to training…some still drunk..some hungover and some without sleep…they were getting sick literally running in and out of the tiolets..and am sure were cursing Will down to the ground..though nothing new there…It would of been class to have footage of the whole thing…you would not believe they state of some of the guys unless you saw it for yourself.

  5. Well everyone, after years of not wanting to know whats coming next now I do. All of the secrets were revealed. A seminar does not have to be about deep theoretical explanation of topics – for me the bottom line is athletic performace.

    The relaxed method used in the seminar allowed for great discussion and ideas to cross over. I will think about so good “constructive” comments over the next few days and give my 5 Euro worth !!

  6. Aside from the fact that my brain is full, I thought it was great. I’m looking forward to a bit of discussion and the notes to get some of the ideas clear in my head.

    In unrelated news
    Damian, Tuesday strength and Thursday cond. Might do Friday if the schedule allows.

  7. Denise said
    Just home from the seminar…which went really well…I learned alot that I didnt know
    Technically speaking you didn’t know much in the first place.

    and we were shown in great detail.
    How would you know…you were either snoring or breaking stuff.

    today was more enjoyable
    Says a lot about what you thought of yesterday.

    as it consisted of the under 20s doing a group session competing against each other
    There really were no winners and losers…well except for those guys that lost and those that one.

    they where paired in groups and had no idea what they where in for
    They were ‘paired’ in groups of three. Except for the Fantastic 5…who were…well…they were a group of 3 as well.

    so naturally being Irish…came to training…some still drunk..some hungover and some without sleep.
    You are just making gross generalisations and playing into stereotypes.

    they were getting sick literally running in and out of the toilets.
    They could have been racing to the toilets for any reason…maybe they were just checking their hair?

    and am sure were cursing Will down to the ground…though nothing new there.
    What are you saying? Did someone say something about me? You know how sensitive I am about the feelings others and about how people feel about me?

    It would of been class to have footage of the whole thing…you would not believe they state of some of the guys unless you saw it for yourself.
    This could be a problem…I’m not sure it would really be OK for me to be following guys into the toilet with a camera and videoing them?

    Garrett said
    Sounds great , unfortunately I had my own little projectile vomiter to deal with
    You shouldn’t have your new born doing intervals…they should be doing more steady state type training…60-70% of VO2 Max is what I recommend for newborns.

    Denise said
    As much as I insult everyone…It was by far the most educational seminar or fitness related talk I have ever been to.
    You don’t get out that much though do you?

    Damian said
    Well everyone, after years of not wanting to know whats coming next now I do.
    We’ll see if I can throw in a few surprises.

    All of the secrets were revealed.
    All 4 of them.

    A seminar does not have to be about deep theoretical explanation of topics
    Does anyone else think that sounds like he’s saying that I’m an idiot.

    – for me the bottom line is athletic performace.
    You can’t even spell performance and you’ve got the gall to call me an idiotic simpleton of a presenter.

    The relaxed method used in the seminar allowed for great discussion and ideas to cross over.
    I suppose you are taking another shot at me here…’relaxed’? You’re trying to say lazy and ill prepared.

    I will think about so good “constructive” comments over the next few days and give my 5 Euro worth!!
    I’m sure you’ll give us every pennies worth.

    Barry said
    Aside from the fact that my brain is full, I thought it was great.
    Finally…someone with something good to say…not great but better than nothing…which is what I’ve got so far.

    I’m looking forward to a bit of discussion and the notes to get some of the ideas clear in my head.
    I can’t wait to see the notes either…I hope they’re excellent.

    In unrelated news
    Damian, Tuesday strength and Thursday cond. Might do Friday if the schedule allows.
    I think I’m going to have to separate you too.

    Denise said
    And we all know you have a pee brain Barry so your brain must be ready to explode
    That’s unfair…Barry has been punched in the head a lot…he can’t help the way he is.

  8. 4 secrets to strength coaching huh

    1. Lift weight
    2. Lower weight
    3. Do this several times (where several = 1-8)
    4. Repeat at an individually appropriate frequency with slightly more weight.

    Those are also the 4 secrets to powerlifting and bodybuilding and Olympic lifting, just for the record.

    Lyle

  9. Crap, I can’t edit on this stupid interface (Will, go get the wordpress plugin that will let people edit their own posts). Slight change

    1. Lift weight quickly
    2. Lower weight slowly

    3/4 no change.

  10. Damian said
    Mate – good work !
    Too late to start sucking up now…I’m already in the whambulance.

    Lyle said
    4 secrets to strength coaching huh

    1. Lift weight
    2. Lower weight
    3. Do this several times (where several = 1-
    4. Repeat at an individually appropriate frequency with slightly more weight.

    Those are also the 4 secrets to powerlifting and bodybuilding and Olympic lifting, just for the record.

    Lyle said
    Crap, I can’t edit on this stupid interface (Will, go get the wordpress plugin that will let people edit their own posts). Slight change

    1. Lift weight quickly
    2. Lower weight slowly

    3/4 no change.
    I’m so happy I was here to see this… can’t believe I was here to see you make your first ever error on the internet…you are so dumb.

    Lyle said
    f- me, that should be where several = 1-8, not 1 to smiley face with sunglasses.
    This comment of yours was a disaster from start to finish…that’s what you get for trying to pretend to people that you are as smart as me.

  11. Will Heffedoodle wrote

    “There really were know winners and losers…well except for those guys that lost and those that one.”

    You wanna try that one again, ace?

  12. Will said
    I’m so happy I was here to see this… can’t believe I was here to see you make your first ever error on the internet…you are so dumb.

    Not only that, but he’s plagiarizing Deepsquatter.

  13. And Will is a fraud, must be. I think Lyle is right on that account. I calculated the plates ín the gym, they total something like 352,5 kilos. No way Will can coach an entire gym full of people with that amount of plates. And conveniently the the squad we gave the session were kids. Who can be paid with candybars. The cheapest actors ever.

  14. Lyle said
    Will Heffedoodle wrote

    “There really were know winners and losers…well except for those guys that lost and those that one.”

    You wanna try that one again, ace?
    D’oh!

    Sami said
    Will said
    I’m so happy I was here to see this…can’t believe I was here to see you make your first ever error on the internet…you are so dumb.

    Not only that, but he’s plagiarizing Deepsquatter.
    I am so out of the loop that I don’t even know what Deepsquatter is…but whatever it is…it sounds suspect.

    Sami said
    And Will is a fraud, must be. I think Lyle is right on that account.
    Don’t put words in Lyle’s mouth. If he want to call me a fraud let him do it himself.

    I calculated the plates ín the gym, they total something like 352,5 kilos. No way Will can coach an entire gym full of people with that amount of plates.
    There is way more than that…there’s at least 370kg.

    And conveniently the the squad we gave the session were kids. Who can be paid with candybars. The cheapest actors ever.
    I pay them in beer tokens…wasn’t that obvious.

  15. Joel said
    Ok, so enough spamming. Where the hell are the videos?
    Sorry to say there is no video. There were last minute technical issues…so no footage exists of this seminar at all. I’ve taken the morning off so I can start writing up all the seminar notes…you’ll have to talk to someone that was on the seminar and see if they’ll give you the secret password to the ‘Seminar Notes’ section on the blog so you can see what you missed.

  16. Will said
    Don’t put words in Lyle’s mouth. If he want to call me a fraud let him do it himself.

    Oh, sorry ’bout that. You’re real, your athletes are fake.

  17. Yeah they were some strong, fake 19 year olds yesterday. One kid about half my size got through about 140 of his team’s 260 odd 50kg bench presses. Strong kid.

  18. The list is secret, you’ll find it behind the protected seminar notes 🙂

    Will hasn’t given out the passwd yet. I’d imagine he’s desperately trying to remember what he (and the rest of us) babbled about.

  19. Denise said
    Ok so I’ll take a bit of the blame over the no video…I was suppose to have the camera but the battery of the camera was no where to be seen “Oops”
    My fault really. Didn’t try to get it organised early enough….so you’re off the hook. If it wasn’t for all your help the seminar wouldn’t have sun as smoothly as it did.

    Sami said
    Will said
    Don’t put words in Lyle’s mouth. If he want to call me a fraud let him do it himself.

    Oh, sorry ’bout that. You’re real, your athletes are fake.
    That’s better.

    Barry said
    Yeah they were some strong, fake 19 year olds yesterday. One kid about half my size got through about 140 of his team’s 260 odd 50kg bench presses. Strong kid.
    That’s impossible…half your size = hobbit.

    Joel said
    Okay, so who WAS on the seminar? Gimme the list and ill start the spamming! Barry, how do I get you to tell me the secret password?
    It was a full house of attendees. Like I said I put a cap on attendance and only invite a replacement for you when I found out you weren’t coming.

    Sami said
    The list is secret, you’ll find it behind the protected seminar notes.
    Secrets a good…I can’t wait to see how long the attendees can keep it secret.

    Will hasn’t given out the passwd yet. I’d imagine he’s desperately trying to remember what he (and the rest of us) babbled about.
    The seminar material and notes is quite easy to remember because as I hope you realised from the seminar…90% of what I do is really quite simple and the template is very, very basic. I’m enjoying writing up the notes. Heading to the gym soon for the afternoon/evening but when I get home tonight I’ll post the first section up.

  20. Sami

    I think deep stole that from me, I wrote it up on misc.fitness.weights years and years ago. I could be wrong and I got it from him, too old to remember now.

    Lyle

  21. Lyle said
    Sami

    I think deep stole that from me, I wrote it up on misc.fitness.weights years and years ago. I could be wrong and I got it from him, too old to remember now.
    Don’t worry Lyle…Sami is just recovering from having his mind blown and his whole world rocked to it’s foundations this weekend.

  22. Sami

    That is entirely possible as to what happened.

    But I made it way more sciency, I added a repetition range to lift in along with clarifying HOW you should lift.

    Ha ha!

    Lyle

  23. Lyle said
    Sami

    That is entirely possible as to what happened.

    But I made it way more sciency, I added a repetition range to lift in along with clarifying HOW you should lift.

    Ha ha!

    Lyle
    I have to admit…no one plagerises as well as you do Lyle…I did give you props at the seminar for being the most plagerised plageriser on the whole of the internets.

  24. Will Heffernan said
    February 8, 2009 at 10:19 PM

    Denise said
    Just home from the seminar…which went really well…I learned alot that I didnt know
    Technically speaking you didn’t know much in the first place.

    Will you actually paid me to say that but no amount of money is worh your insults…I would insult you back but Im too polite

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