The Strength & Conditioning Network


The Strength & Conditioning / Physical Performance network around the world is a small but awesome community. Social media has provided an unparalleled platform for industry graduates, leaders and everyone in between, to make contact and network with each other and create professional dialogue to assist the development of all concerned or interested. In my opinion, gone are the days of true intellectual property where people are guarding programmes, cycles and rep schemes from the next person, with the thought that they are trying to steal their job. As I have heard the great Dan Pfaff say before; ‘there are no secrets´ (or something to that effect). Cookie cutters should be left in the kitchen. It’s all in the recipe and expertise of the chef, or in this case, the performance coach.

In the past few weeks I have met with, spoken to and learnt from people far and wide, who are all too happy to ‘talk shop’ and just bounce ideas of each other; see below.

Ben Brugman (@benbrug) / Western Force Rugby Union / Weightroom.  

We talked about monitoring processes, the recent Boomers games, how Aussies are taking over performance roles in the NBA and his new job with the Western Force in Perth.

Ian McKeown (@IanMackers) / Port Adelaide Football Club / Local coffee shop.

We discussed the use of Ian’s Athletic Ability Assessment (AAA) which they use at Port. The influence Kelvin Giles had on him, Long Term Athlete Development and the use of drills he picked up at the World Aths Centre in Arizona, for the rehab of players.

Tim Mosey (timmosey) / Brisbane Boys Grammar & QLD Reds Rugby / Twitter

Tim and I mainly spoke about Long Term Athlete Development programmes in a school context. The who, how, why, when to setup a programme like this and the benefits to the College sport programmes.

Mladen Jovanovic (@Physical_Prep) / Previously Aspire Academy / Skype

Mladen and I were discussing the benefits of all the sodium in Vegemite haha… No, we were chatting about the intracies of VBT and using velocity and ‘reps in the tank’ to plan strength sessions. We also discussed warmup protocols in sports and how they have, rightly or wrongly, become so standardised around the world.

Nick Poulos (@PoulosNick) / Adelaide Crows Football Club / ASCA Workshop

I went along and heard Nick present on ‘Periodisation of the Pre-Season in an AFL Club’. Even though I don’t work in the AFL environment, it was very insightful to hear about the level of detail which goes into the planning of these crucial 14 weeks to prepare the players. Nick also spoke about the ongoing and extreme use of GPS in the sport, plus the monitoring mediums they use to try to keep all players on deck.

Dan Baker / President of ASCA / Facebook

I contacted Dan on facebook regarding some metrics for Velocity Based Training with the Push Band. Essentially just discussing peak/mean velocity and power and some of the results I was having with my athletes. It wasn’t much at all; but for the President of the association to jump on to social media and shoot back a few key points; it was really helpful. And even when I’ve messaged him previously, it is great he is happy to assist the ‘little people’ even though he’s at the top of the tree.

Nathan Parnham (@NathanParnham) / North Sydney Bears Rugby League / Phone

I have never met Nathan in person, but gave him a buzz to chat about all things LTAD in schools, in much the same vain as Tim. Although we have never met, I could hear the passion for the industry in Nathan’s voice, and we ended up swapping a few stories of our backgrounds in S&C etc. Stay tuned for a coaching interview with him!

Everyone knows the power of social media, and I was only just reading Nathan Parnhams blog here, last night when I had almost finished writing this, to read how he has found value in the power of this medium in another way. The S&C community is like a fraternity, where everyone is generally very happy to give feedback, create dialogue and challenge conventional wisdom, in the hope the discussion generated will create ‘food for thought’ and ultimately influence some aspect of our training in a positive manner – see Mladen’s facebook for some interesting discussions 🙂

So keep contributing to social media, you never know, the person you are sending your next 140 characters to could eventually be your colleague or perhaps your next in charge!