What is Strength and Conditioning?

The English Institute of Sport currently define it as:

“…the physical and psychological development of athletes for elite sports performance.”

I agree with this definition except for one word, “elite”. Strength and conditioningĀ in theĀ past has been regarded as an elitist pursuit, something for only those who are fortunate enough to compete at the very top level of their sport. A well structured strength and conditioning programme can be of benefit to anybody, even people who don’t even play a sport at any level. Your goal may be to get a bit fitter so you’re able to play with your kids for a bit longer without getting out of breath, or not twinging your back lifting shopping out of the car. S & C can help with all of these things alongside burning fat and giving you a better quality of health in general.

It is more than just lifting weights, it is a tool used to develop a complete athlete not just for short term gains but also looks at long term development too. S & C will not necessarily make you better at your sport, what it will do however is put you in a better position physically to compete.

The role of a strength and conditioning coach is to work alongside a sports coach or manager to design a programme that will address the needs of an individual, team or sport. This programme should compliment the sports specific skill work during the team training sessions, never undermining one or prioritizing one over another. A well periodized programme will improve an athletes strengths as well as attack any weaknesses. Any good coach will tell you: “You’re only as strong as your weakest link”.

Give the workout below a try, you don’t need any equipment and if you record your scores for each exercise you could re-do this routine in a couple of weeks and see if you could beat your score. I have also previously used the below routine as a warm up for a heavy lifting session, or another use for it could be as a finisher to your workout. Your choice but give it a go and see how you get on:

1A) Press Ups x 30 seconds
1B) Air Squats x 30 seconds
X 3 Sets (Rest 30 seconds between sets)

2A) Full Burpees x 30 seconds
2B) Plank x 30 seconds
X 3 Sets (Rest 30 seconds between sets)

3A) Lunge Jumps x 30 seconds
3B) Handstands Holds x 30 seconds
X 3 Sets (Rest 30 seconds between sets)


Unit G5