Charlie I would like to get your input on testing. I believe in the value of what I call “field testing”. That is adjusting training by monitoring an athlete’s performance during training sessions. I know if an athlete is getting stronger by watching them train in the weight room. I don’t need some absolute number to tell that they are getting stronger. I think valuable training time is missed at times due to the need to “test” to get some numbers. I am a believer in the the “test” called performance. There are a number of athletes I know who “test” outstanding but ride the pine during play. I have a friend who is a former NFL strength coach and said the year that they won the Super Bowl they did no testing. And this team is considered one of the best teams ever!
Paul, if I may share my thoughts, consider preparedness vs readiness.
Zatsiorsky explains this in Science and Practice in his Fitness-Fatigue model.
An athlete who scores/tests very well on a given day and then is unable to realize these abilities during competition has failed in the programming process.
Your level of physical preparedness exists as preparedness, however your level of readiness exists as your ability to fully express your preparedness when it counts.
Tests, however you select to realize/define them, must be done in order to evaluate progress as well as the physical state of the athlete. However, if the programming is off, you can test all you want but all the data in the world will not realize the performances that are possible unless training parameters (intensity of loading) are optimally sequenced and systematized.
In reference to your ‘field testing’ this is something that coaches must be able to integrate into the program. There is no reason to retard the training process in order to assess an athlete’s level of physical preparedness. Timing a rep on a max speed day, measuring a plyometric jump or throw, performing a max strength workout, monitoring heart rate, or simply asking an athlete how they feel is all the testing that need be done in most instances and all of these drills are just part of any workout.
Aside from this, the Omega Wave is something that provides all of the data in the galaxy and also does not retard the training process. I need to get one.
Assessment and programming are symbiotic to one another.