Why Athletes Benefit From Group Training

benefits of group training

 

Why should your athlete participate in group training sessions?

Sports are about who can fail the least, and to get good at failing the least we must fail a lot at first. In a group setting you can fail, and are encouraged to fail as you receive corrections from a coach. Athletes in these types of settings get the added benefit of learning from other athletes and their failures. By learning from other athletes mistakes you avoid making the same errors, and with the extra failure the learning curve increases for each individual.

Training with a group also teaches teamwork and accountability. Most sports are team based sports, and the ability of a team to win isn’t based on one athlete’s abilities. As athletes, we need to be the best we can be, but we need to bring the rest of the team with us. Working within a group setting encourages young athletes to inspire others, and teaches them about leadership. Leadership values are hard to teach in a one-on-one setting because there are no other athletes there to fail with you.

The importance of competing is also emphasized in a group session because the athletes are constantly pushing each other both physically and mentally. Learning to compete is a crucial part of athletics. An athlete needs to have the knowledge of competing in order to compete with an opponent. These athletes first learn how to have healthy competition with their teammates, and then they learn to compete with themselves.

There are many benefits for athletes to participate in group training, and by subjecting your athlete to group sessions you are only benefiting them. Remember to keep the groups at a maximum of about 15 to 1 to make sure your athlete is receiving a good amount of attention. After learning how to work with a group your athlete will then be ready for any small group situations as well!

2 Words For Athletes To Avoid At All Costs

By using negative words like HAVE TO and CAN’T we vocalize our fear of failure. Teaching athletes to keep a positive and growth mindset is important because being an athlete means you will fail multiple times a day, and that’s okay! However, you must learn to fail, and not be afraid of that failure. Here are two words that athletes should avoid using to stay in the right mindset.

HAVE TO– Instead of saying have to, say you WANT TO. When we say, we HAVE TO do something we create a belief that someone is forcing us to do something. For example, when a coach gives an athlete a specific workout, and the athlete asks “do I HAVE TO?” This athlete is creating doubt, and does not have the desire to accomplish the workout or their goals. To have a productive training session change your word choice to WANT TO, and the overall atmosphere and morale of you and your teammates will increase. Have a drive and a WANT to work towards your goals, and not do something because someone is making you do it.

CAN’T-Instead of saying can’t, say not yet! This is the most used, and most hurtful, word to our goals and mindset. When we say, I CAN’T, we are telling our brain that our body will not be able to perform the action. We have put up a mental road block on our path towards success. By changing the outlook, and saying NOT YET to something, we are keeping our path clear to continue towards our goals. Coaches may even respond to you when you say can’t with “not with an attitude like that!” If something seems hard try it anyways because you never know what you are capable of until you try.

Are you having a hard time finishing your training sessions strong? Do you/or your athlete feel defeated before even attempting your session? Watch what you say, and try changing a few words in your training vocabulary. Teaching athletes to keep a positive and growth mindset is important for their mental health, and goals.

Failing is part of life and all sports. When we learn to fail, and learn to overcome that failure we learn to have resilience. When we get knocked down we learn to get back up!

Why Athletes Should Train Every Day

You don’t have to train physically every day, but if you have certain goals you need to be disciplined enough to continually “train” your mind as well. Professional athletes never have an off day because they are consistently working towards their goals both physically and mentally. Training daily can have many benefits for your body, and your mentality. If you want to be a successful athlete, you must be willing to put in the work every single day.

When you take a day off from training you are basically saying that “I’m not working on my goals or me as an athlete today.” You are telling yourself that your goals are not important, and they are ideas or things that would be cool if you accomplished them. If you have a goal you want to reach you must work for it every day not just physically, but mentally and emotionally. When you choose to not train you’re pushing your goals further away, and you develop excuses later that turn into habits.

Not every athlete can train every day due to different circumstances, and that is understandable. However, when taking a “rest” day you need to take the proper steps to continually grow as an athlete. Don’t’ be afraid to work towards your goals every day.

3 Ways to Break Out of a Slump

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We all go through times when things just don’t go our way. We try to break out of it, but no matter what we try we can’t seem to shake it. This could be in sports, in school, at work, or in the gym. It happens to even the best of us.

Here are three ways to help break you out of a slump:

  1. Acknowledge the Slump

Accept it, don’t fight against it. Like getting stuck in a strong current, fighting the waves only tires you and worsens your chances of making it to shore. Fighting it can make a slump last longer and feel much worse. Ask yourself, what are my body and mind telling me? Acknowledge that maybe this is its way to tell you to slow down. The best athletes learn how to take advantage of the adversity that they face and come out stronger as a result.

  1. Write It Out

Try a free-writing exercise where you spend 10 minutes writing whatever you want. The only rule is that you have to keep writing. More often than not, writing exercises like these can help you get to the bottom of any problem you might be having. It takes time to master, but having a daily journal like this can help you understand your habits over time. It is also quite valuable to look back and see if you have had this problem before, and how you dealt with it.

  1. Positive Mental Attitude (PMA)

Don’t throw yourself a pity party. The only people that want to attend are the ones that want to tear you down. When you’re in a slump don’t give into it. Have a positive mental attitude and surround yourself with other like-minded individuals.

Remember everyone gets in a slump. Acknowledging that it happens is the first step to breaking out of it. Try free-writing exercises to discover your habits. This will help guide you in making the right adjustments to break those bad behaviors. Attack your slump head-on with a positive mental attitude and surround yourself with others that exude that same positivity and you’re sure to be a success.

4 Signs of Dehydration to Take Seriously

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No matter the season, it is important for athletes to stay hydrated in order to perform at their highest level. However, during the warmer months, dehydration is a very serious topic for not only athlete performance, but general safety and well-being. As the temperature goes up, so too does athlete perspiration.

When an athlete sweats, they lose electrolytes such as sodium and potassium. When an athlete depletes their body of fluids and electrolytes without replenishing them, they put themselves in grave danger.

Here are four dehydration warning signs athletes should take seriously:

Dark Colored Urine With Strong Odor

This is one of the easiest ways to catch dehydration at an early stage. If an athlete’s urine is dark yellow it is a good time to start drinking some water and stop the problem before it even starts.

Prolonged Weight Loss During Exercise

Weight loss of 2% or more during a training session is a good indicator of dehydration.  That would be approximately 2.5-pounds of weight lost for an athlete weighing 125 pounds. Weight loss during exercise is not fat loss — so stay hydrated before, during and after training and bring plenty of fluids to games and practices. 

Muscle Cramps

Muscle cramps can be another sign of dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. Consuming a sports drink like Gatorade during exercise bouts longer than four hours or when under extreme heat conditions can help prevent muscle cramps.  This does not mean an athlete needs a sports drink for one hour of exercise — water would be much more beneficial to them than Gatorade.

Dizziness, Nausea and Fatigue

If an athlete is experiencing dizziness, nausea and fatigue, it is important to immediately begin consuming water or a sports drink and rest.  Also, it is important to avoid caffeine, as caffeine will increase urine output.

When you recognize any of these four dehydration warning signs, tell a coach or parent and begin hydrating immediately. Have fun and be safe this summer during your training sessions.