“Do No Harm.”
A quote from Martin Rooney, quoting the Hippocratic Oath. As a strength coach my constant goal is to maintain the health and wellness of my clients above all else. Like I’ve said from the very beginning, running faster, jumping higher, pushing more weight or dominating your activity of choice are all admirable pursuits of training, they are a side-effect, a happy coincidence. When I make an athlete more stable, they become more efficient. There are less energy leaks. The goal of the training is the injury prevention, but with addition by subtraction they become faster by transferring more power into the ground and getting a greater return on every step. The exercises are tiring and challenging but far from impossible. The question of every workout is: “What is the goal?” That goal shouldn’t be: “To be tired.”
For myself, I can answer that, even if it not always apparent to my clients. The ones who have been with me awhile get the process and see the results of that process. Exercise selection is about creating specific change in the body, not just fatigue. Accidents happen, we’ve had twisted ankles, a few pulled muscles, the usual aches and pains, but the majority of clients feel better when they walked out than when they walked in. If you’re getting injured from working out (and we should all know the difference between being “hurt” and “Injured”), then you’re doing too much. If working out is sending you to the doctor or physical therapist for reasons you can’t relate directly to an accident, then you need to re-evaluate your workout plan. This is especially true if your life depends on being sharp and focused on the job. You don’t have the luxury of a “recovery day”. Being sore is part of working out, getting hurt is not.
Jaime Gamache M.Ed., CSCS, is Owner and Head Strength Coach at The Way Human Performance Institute. Follow us also on Facebook and Twitter. Any questions or requests for future topics, please email firstname.lastname@example.org