abdominal training question for CF

Charlie, I am wondering why you have your athletes do so many abdominal and core repititions on tempo days? I know James uses this as well. I believe I have heard you say that it is to try and balance all the erector spinae work that is done, but it seems like it is more fitness related. Do you do any “westside” ab movements with very heavy weight for sprints or team sport athletes such as football? Here is what Yessis had to say about the topic.

Dr. Yessis,

Over the years I have combed through various information were I have read that sprinters would preform 1000 sit ups a day. Now, I can do 1000 sit ups but I don’t feel any stronger and on top of it all I feel that its a waste of time. I prefer to do weighted spread eagle sit ups and other various weighted ab workouts. I’m curious, what are your thoughts on this.

Remus, I don’t put too much faith into what I read about what particular sprinters or athletes do. I look more for their serious core training – training that allows them to increase speed and not just fitness.

Not only do I not recommend a thousand situps, but I do not recommend spread eagle situps. If you want to do them fine, but I believe the reverse situp is of much greater benefit as it will assist in running. Thus my athletes do this exercise and supplement it with situps if they desire.

I’m a strong advocate of specialized strength training. The exercises must duplicate what occurs in the joint actions. General exercises
are great in GPP. But for the most part these exercises do not improve running speed. They are prerequisites to specialized strength work.

whats the point of heavy ab work, ur core lifts bp,sq,pc,press take care of that.

The strength exercises cover power needs of the core already. We’ve already covered the stupidity of looking for even more ways to fry the CNS with the unnecessary!
Another reason to stay with high rep/low intensity abs? Because Yessis thinks it’s a waste of time!

Hey now Al love Yessis.

for low intensity i just do around 300 reps shuold i actually aim for 1000 reps in progression for ab workouts during tempo days? I have only done that much on like 2 sessions.

so does schroeder

haha, enough said…

the intention would be for a football player looking to improve his strength reserve in a special max strength block. The rest of the year he does 1000 abdominal reps a week. This makes sense kind of but is it too westside? What about static and abs and explosive abs with medballs are those too high?

what are you asking?

Yes! Additional ab work is not needed.

The question was tacked on to my original question. So what I am saying is high rep ab training is the way to go for most of the year, but what about in a specific max strength block doing some intense heavy weighted abs. I feel that doing those for football players (big skill and lineman) would be able to increase the absolute strength to a greater degree. The higher peak gives them more amplitude which means more strength reserve and endurance.

Some of my guys love weighted decline situps. Never appeared to hurt them.

Its just personal perference i guess, i perfer not to do heavy abs work never really had to bc my college SC belived that the heavy core lifts hit the core and the circuits we did everyday did the job.

When it’s high intensity- you ask: Why?
When it’s low intensity, you ask: Why not?
When you do the max strength block, the abs get the effect of any actual max str involvement. You’re already covered!

Another overanalyzer…

How do you know it didn’t hurt? What else could they have done with the CNS energy? Maybe faster sprint reps? Higher standard lifts? higher safety margin to prevent injuries?
Impossible to know for sure but everything has a cost with high CNS work.

LOL, i was thinking the samething.

Doing some decline situps for sets of 10 with manageable weight probably lies somewhere in the realm between “hi” and “lo” similar to certain med ball ab exercises. I think we have to define shades of gray here. I’m talking decline situps with ~25lb plate at the chest. Maybe he foresaw the Asafa vs Ashahara psoas comparisons on that Japanese documentary:)

Questioning whether or not something is actually having the intended effect is in my opinion the right thing to do. I need to increase acceleration in an athlete who is slightly over 100kg and would like to remain there. I want to ensure that all HI elements are supporting sport results and not wasting reserves that could be used for something else. I have noticed that DeFranco’s and Davis Training Systems have had great success varying the intensity of their abdominal movements. I am not aware of many high school ball players that had the type of size strength power and speed that there big skill athletes posses.

Im getting sick of you trying to combine all these different training methods, you seem to like Joe stuff so stick to that. You are always asking for advice but always try and compare what Joe and other like do with there athletes. CF told you what you should do, now go from there…