2010 Workout Freaks

I had JB squat during his first few weeks as a freshman and his strength went through the roof.

He had never had a bar on his back before; the bulk of his leg resistance training coming from hill sprints and the speed work associated with track.

within a few sessions he was performing easy reps with 315. Not long after he began associating patella tendon issues with squatting so I said no big deal, we won’t squat anymore.

I don’t have him belt squat either.

he likes split squats with the rear foot elevated holding dumbbells; but we don’t go heavy on these. he’ll usually use 50-70lbs in each hand for 4-6 reps per set.

His legs are incredibly well muscled. He generates so much power from the speed and other field drills that he just doesn’t need to do much more in the weight room.

here’s a few videos of him pressing and performing sub-max 30yd sprints. On the press I kept him strict up to 335 then he asked to keep going with lifting his hips up and I said ok so he worked up to 375. Even with the hips coming way up I am continually blown away by how strong he is on the press considering his long lean arms.


Who is the guy doing belt squats, you must have a tribe of athletes jumping 40?

It is rare for any of the skill players that I train to perform belt squats. A few of Buddy’s guys belt squat, however.

Of my guys, the ones who don’t squat- perform leg press or db split squats. This is done out of preference on their behalfs

As far as how many jump +40, I haven’t measured verts in a while because there’s so many inconsistencies as far as how guys can cheat the reach.

I’ve settled on broad jump and 3fold broad jump for the jumps because there’s no cheating those.

Testing the vert will be reserved for my combine/pro day guys.

My bad, I assume you had a typo because you said your skill guy was doing belt squats.

What I probably said was that, other than barbell squats, we have guys who belt squat, leg press, and split squat. At any given time I have had one or more of my skill guys belt squat; it just seems as if those guys will opt for the leg press or split squat instead.

My two fastest American footballers, whom I referenced, are excellent testimonials to the point I’m making.

Both very fast, incredible vertical and horizontal jumping ability and neither squat. To add to the variability, one belt squats and the other performs a single leg squat with the rear foot elevated. The one who belt squats perform dumbbell floor presses and the one who single leg squats performs bench presses.

I remember now, whenever I made that post my fastest guy was performing belt squats. I think that was last year.

He has since been leg pressing.

Got his youtube site together and uploaded some bench videos


WOW! Could it be the rate of force development at play here?

In my judgment, the primary mechanisms of his impressive performance on physical preparatory tests such as the bench press and others are:

  1. motivation
  2. genetics
  3. training program

He truly is characteristic of a ‘workout freak’


Can you give any examples of athletes who lacked great genetics but made significant improvements in physical capabilities that you could attribute to your programme?

Thank you

I’ll answer your question like this:

The interesting point here is that, at this level, we all have a problem if we’re recruiting athletes who are not ‘talented’.

Now, this is not to state that all of our guys, and the athletes I’ve worked with during my tenure at the high school level, possess(ed) great genetics.

What’s important to note is that a strong work capacity, muscular development, and muscular strength are all quite easy to develop; albeit the athlete must be willing to work for it.

It is the development of speed, reactive/elastic ability, and explosive ability as they relate to SPP that are more genetically dependent.

So one argument is that it’s easy to work with ‘talented’ athletes and take credit for their development and, subsequently, it’s commendable to assist not so talented athletes in making significant physical improvements.

While I wouldn’t directly criticize that argument, I will add to it by stating that it’s much more challenging to increase a talented athletes performance once they’re already performing at a high level and, alternatively, it’s no big accomplishment, to use my friend Dave Tate’s analogy, to take a non talented athlete from shit to suck, or from suck to good.

When there’s so much room for improvement (regarding less talented individuals) it doesn’t take much to catalyze the improvement.

When there’s very little room for improvement (regarding the very talented athletes who are already operating at high levels) it takes a very well thought out and carefully implemented approach to catalyze further improvement.

this being said, it takes a very pure discipline, such as T&F, to create the context that is necessary to draw informed comparisons because physical preparation is so directly linked to the sport results.

In my current profession, physical preparation, while important, is only one piece of the puzzle due to the complexities of the technical-tactical and intellectual preparation that are so vital towards heightening player performance.

The reality is that at this level (D-1A) best case scenario is that all of us are getting athletes who are somewhere in the middle to upper ranges of talent. They all have room for improvement; yet they’re closer to the upper end of the spectrum so the light at the end of the tunnel is much more quickly attainable.

Thus, I don’t hang my hat on the guys who, for instance, I’ve taken from 4.9 to 4.5high as much as I feel good about the guys who I’ve taken from plus 4.4 to sub 4.4.

It’s very easy to look good in this profession because it’s so easy to assist in improving an athletes measurables. The measurables are a means to end, however, and as a result the team with the greatest measurables is not assured victory.

Alternatively, what I love so much about T&F is that the measurables ARE the end. Thus more time and energy is directed towards attaining the human performance limits. It’s a beautiful thing.

Great post.

I have told people the same thing for years. I told them give me an average player and I can help him become good. Give me a good player, I can help him to become great. When someone is on the highest level, it becomes more difficult because every tweak to the program can result in small gains, but even bigger losses. When I was working with 2 time Olympic sprinter, I realized I needed to get him to Charlie. I have had my share of guys who have run hand timed 4.4’s. When you start with a guy who ran 10.25, things need to be so precise. He got down to a 10.12 after Charlie worked on his start mechanics and did his usual pre-race prep. I referred him to Charlie because I am not afraid to admit when I feel a little uneasy . The options are fewer and the consequences so much greater.

James Smith

Terrific posts (again…)

Bruce clean 405 today and quinn got 405 with ease.

Incredible. Was it from the hang or floor? What about Z. Brown?

Power clean from the floor, he may post video. 215lbs RB did 375.

Still someway to go before they get into Hossein Rezazadeh’s league (580 lb’s).

Seems like Bruce & Quinn have the potential to be world class.

What has the summer looked like for UNC? Similar to what we did at BU with Big John?