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Pre and Post Season
Training Evaluation

       Motivation of any individual requires an understanding of their history where the individual preseently is at, and where they wish to achieve to obtain thier wishes or goals.

       An athlete continues to make gains only by increasing the level of expectations in progressive stages. Each level of training involves increasing the intensity, focus, quality and quantity. 

       Research has shown that a minimum of six weeks of steady training is required to achieve measurable improvements in speed and strength.

       Individual attention from coaches occurs as private lessons that rarely includes daily supervision unless the skater is an elite skater selected to represent the USA on a international, world or Olympic Team.

       Generally most athletes can analyze their technical skills through a process known as Self-Correction. This can be accomplished  in three ways:
  • Real-time visual - training in front of a mirror
  • Auditory - through the coach's cues
  • Video replay - through video motion analysis
       When a training program builds a complete, well balanced athlete, there is an additional benefit from the perspective of preventing injuries.

       A complete and well balanced athlete would master the following basic, fundamental and non-specific physical qualities:
  • Range Of Motion (Flexibility)
  • Coordination
  • Balance (muscular + proprioceptive)
  • Mobility (Especially in the Ankles + Hips)
  • Stability (Especially in the Knees, Lower Back + Scapulae)
  • Muscular Strength
  • Explosive Power
  • Speed (Reaction, Acceleration + Pure Speed)
  • Agility (Game Speed)
  • Endurance (Anaerobic + Aerobic)
       A Self-Correction or Direct Supervised Training program can only be objectively measured though a standardize program that uses Pre and Post Testing.

Structured Off-ice Training

Pre-Test: The athlete is pre-tested to establish a baseline evaluation of performance, strength and flexibility.  The following equipment is frequently used:

  • Treadmill: Athletes run short bouts on the running treadmill, which can reach speeds of 28 miles an hour and an incline grade of 40 degrees. Athletes are taught proper stride mechanics at high speeds
  • Skating Treadmill: The athlete wears his or her own skates to train on a synthetic ice treadmill that can incline up to 32 degrees and reach a maximum speed of 16 mph. Much like the running treadmill, it works to improve speed, biomechanics and strength.
  • Plyometrics: Athletes train once a week doing a variety of footwork drills to improve balance, agility and vertical jump. Plyometrics builds body awareness and the ability to move quickly and explosively.

  • Strength Training: Gyms in colleges and those used by professional trainers to strength train athletes use state-of-the-art, approved equipment designed to increase strength in muscles, joints and connective tissues that are common to all sports and focus on areas that are specific to - speed, hockey, and the individual disciples of figure skating (Free Skating, Pairs, Dance, Synchro, Showcase, and Theater On Ice).

  • Resistance Cord Training:  Cords are attached to arms or legs to increase resistance during skating, leg extensions, jumping, and spinning. How the cords are used varies according on the specific task that is targeted. The cords enable athletes to strengthen at velocities used in actual athletic competition.

Post-Test: After an athlete completes the training program or competitive season, he or she is retested to measure improvements. These results are extremely valuable in showing the athlete how his or her performance has improved. The coach can establish an online database to allow athletes to compare their results with other athletes.

References:

Organization and Planning organization and Planning
Season Evaluation. The feeling your athletes take away with them at the end of the season is the major factor determining whether they will return to for another season.

Strength and fitness evaluations
Dec 4, 2008 ... For elite athletes, a VO2 max was significantly lower at the end than the beginning of the season assessment also reveal lower mean VO2 max

Goldey-Beacom College Athletics - Student Athlete Pre-Participation Physical Examination 
Mar 10, 2008 ... Student Athlete Pre-Participation Physical Examination Policy ... Isokinetic Evaluation. · Other diagnostic test(s) as prescribed by the team ... to fill out an exit physical form at the end of their competitive season.

Reviving Ethics in Sports through Physician Leadership
As news of Roger Bannister's record-breaking athletic achievement circled the globe, ... sports performances assumed to be the result of drive and determination. No one asked, "I wonder what he was taking?"

Resources:

The following internet links have been gleaned from personal communications
combined with information from public institutions and athletic organization/
associations that have a web presence with information concerning team and
individual sports programs:

Modifying Skater Behaviors

All materials are copy protected. 
The limited use of the materials for education purposes is allowed providing
credit is given for the source of the materials.


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