Do you want to improve your sporting performance?
There is clear evidence that strength (resistance) training can be a beneficial activity for children and adolescents. Strength training will help develop:
- improved strength and power
- improved speed
- improved change of direction speed and agility
- improved sporting performance
- reduction in injury rates
- many other health benefits such as stronger bones, improved body composition and psychosocial wellbeing.
Despite these benefits many parents still wonder what age is safe for children to start resistance training and what precautions should be taken so that training is safe for their growing bodies?
The strength and conditioning governing body in Australia, the Australian Strength and Conditioning Association (ASCA), indicates that strength and conditioning training can be started for children as young as 6 years old, provided they are able to follow clear instructions. However it is of the utmost importance that the resistance exercises are attuned to the correct level for the individual and supervised by an adequately qualified professional trained in strength and conditioning training.
Our team of physiotherapists has completed additional training in strength and conditioning and both Pia and Tyne are ASCA accredited Strength and Conditioning Coaches.
A common misconception about strength training in children is that exposure to loads that generate strength gains can cause damage to their bones and muscles. There is no evidence to support this.
The risk of injury resulting from correctly prescribed and performed resistance training (including weight lifting) and plyometrics is not any greater than the risks associated with other sports and activities.
The risk of harm to a child undertaking resistance training is related to the level and quality of supervision rather than the training per se. Inadequate professional supervision leads to poor exercise technique and inappropriate management of training loads.
Our strength and conditioning programs and classes are designed and supervised by qualified physiotherapists who have an understanding of youth resistance training guidelines as well as the physical and psychosocial attributes of children and adolescents. They offer an effective strategy for reducing sports-related injuries in young athletes and can offer healthy lifestyle choices to young people.
Strength Training and Athletic Performance
The improvement of athletic performance in youth athletes is a complex task, and to achieve high-levels of athleticism requires a robust long-term plan. Sports participation alone, in many cases, does not offer the sufficient stimulus to achieve this. Resistance training in all forms (e.g. strength, power or speed training) can help to attenuate these issues by protecting against injuries and positively affecting youth athlete’s physical literacy.
Stronger young athletes will be better prepared to learn complex movements, master sport tactics, and sustain the demands of training and competition. Increased strength contributes to enhancing performance ability in young athletes. Moreover, it is also important to build a good base of fundamental movements during childhood and adolescence, as this will help the youths develop more efficient motor skills whilst simultaneously reducing their risk of injury due to improved body control and/or technique.
Our process and strength and conditioning classes
Step 1: Comprehensive baseline strength and skill assessment
A thorough assessment to determine the baseline strength (utilising our state of the art AxIT system to gain objective insight in your strength) and movement literacy is the first step in joining our strength and conditioning classes. This assessment will give us the insight to design and closely supervise an exercise program tailored to your specific needs.
Step 2: Join Strength and Conditioning classes
Our strength and conditioning classes are circuit based classes, whereby all exercises are attuned to the needs of each individual. Our groups are small (maximum 6) to ensure close supervision of technique and performance. The classes will be run in 8-week blocks.
Step 3: Re-assessment (optional)
Upon completion of the 8 week program we recommend a re-assessment of your strength and performance utilising our AxIT system. This assessment will provide an objective insight in the strength and power gained, as well as potentially identify areas for further improvement.
Are you ready to optimise your athletic performance? Get in contact to find out how to join our classes!
Book your next appointment today