Saturday, May 24, 2014

How to Improve Muscle Activation and Sports Power

Sports power training teaches you how to activate the right muscles (prime movers and synergists) at the right time. Sports power training also provides you with optimal neuromuscular efficiency.


There are five purposes for sports power training:

1. Improve the excitability, sensitivity and reactivity of the neuromuscular system.

2. Improve the rate-of-force production.

3. Increase motor-unit recruitment.

4. Increase motor-unit firing frequency.

5. Increase motor-unit synchronization.

Speed strength is a combination of starting speed, explosive speed (maximum velocity in the shortest time) and reactive speed.

Speed strength is also known as power. Proper training methods will produce the strength, power and speed you will need to succeed in your sport.

The three building blocks of integrated training for the athlete are:

STABILIZATION (2 Phases) – Primary goals are to correct muscle imbalances, joint dysfunctions, postural distortion patterns, improve kinetic chain (human movement system), integrity and recondition/rehabilitate.

STRENGTH (3 Phases) – Primary goals are to improve stabilization strength/endurance and increase muscle hypertrophy (growth) and strength.

POWER (2 Phases) – Primary goals are to enhance neuromuscular efficiency, increase power production, increase speed strength and create neuromuscular adaptations throughout the entire range of motion.

All seven phases of training may not be necessary for all athletes. For example, some sports do not require optimum levels of muscle hypertrophy.

The training program is Multi-Planar (sagittal, frontal, transverse), Multi-Joint (exercises such as bench press, squats, lunges), Multi-Dimensional (stabilization, strength, power) , Proprioceptively Enriched (high neural demand) and Sport-Specific.

You should follow a systematic approach with the following goals in mind: injury prevention, body fat reduction and increased lean muscle mass, strength, endurance, flexibility and performance.

Rate-of-Force Production (muscles producing force in the shortest period of time) is one of the best physical indicators of the level of an athlete’s performance and future success.

After an adequate strength foundation has been built, you can work on increasing speed strength. This is best done by using a combination of:

1) Plyometrics
2) High speed medicine ball exercises
3) High speed weight training exercises
4) Multidimensional speed training exercises

Download your FREE 10-Minute Strength and Power Workouts now!

Mark Dilworth, BA, PES
Sports Fitness Hut


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