Some Thoughts on Summer Training

What should we emphasize the most in the summer time training?

In our program, we would emphasize the area of training that we cannot do much during the school year.

The air awareness development is one of the areas we greatly emphasize during the summer time. The trampoline, mini-tramp and tumble track are the major pieces of equipment used to develop air awareness. Therefore, we do lots of tramp, mini and tumble track during the summer.

However, the only way for all the team members to take advantage of using this equipment is to spread the workout time throughout the day. Therefore, the gym is practically used for the whole day, from 8am in the morning to 8pm in the evening.

The summer time is always a good time to learn a new skill that will take a longer process to develop.

Some skills are very complex and it will require a breakdown of the skill to many progressive stages. Also, some of the stages must have a special station set up for safety reasons and/or for the big number of repetitions.

Some stations, such as the shoot over the low bar or the vault timer station can be left set up for daily use. That way we can eliminate the set up & take down time for daily. The landing area is built up to the bar height or table height and left there for the various groups for their use.

We also emphasize the different type of strength and conditioning exercises. We normally add more plyometric exercises so that the speed and power can be developed. Hard plyometric exercises are limited to an every other day interval or more for recovery from fatigue, but we try to emphasize the exercises that develop more speed or power for this time of the year.

The parking area out side of the building could become a running track in the summer time particularly when the outside temperature is cool in the morning. Developing the leg power and the running speed are the main focus on the outside activities.

Around this time of the year, we will use more variety of exercises for conditioning just to break the monotony of exercises that are used through the year.

The coach who works on the area of dance and flexibility loves the summer time training because she can take extra time to work on the basic drills and the much needing flexibility work. This is also the best time to do some basic ballet work if we don’t have the time to work during the year.

The beam event is no different from the other events. There are so many skill break downs and progressions we can do to improve the learned skills or learning the new skills.

The summer training should be lots of fun and full of excitement simply because of the above mentioned factors. When gymnasts are excited and interested in learning, they become more productive.

Therefore, our roll is to provide a well planned training program and take full advantage of this summer time.

Have fun coaching!

Edited by Dan Connelly

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