Today I want to give you a tip for a Youtube channel that I really enjoy. And if you’re in to weightlifting, powerlifting or strength training in general I think you will to!
The Youtube channel I’m talking about is that of Juggernaut Training Systems
Here you can find a lot of technique tips for weightlifting from Max Aita, you’ll get a lot of mobility tips and learn about biomechanics from Dr. Quinn and you will get a lot of good practical advice from Chad Wesley.
One of my favorite videos is about the squat and hip structure with Dr. Quinn. He makes some really good points and explains why everyone can’t squat in the same manner, watch it here!
It’s just a great channel for those of you who coach others, or yourself, or just want to learn more!
So my advice for you today is to go to their channel and check out the content. I’m sure you will learn something or get some new ideas.
So, last weekend I went to Iceland for the first time in my life to carry out the first part of the Snowboard coaches course that I announced earlier.
The layout of the course was three seminars and two practical training sessions divided on two and a half days. I arrived in Reykjavik on Friday afternoon and held the first seminar that evening. The course ended on Sunday with a seminar in the morning and a practical training session with focus on body awareness and acrobatics in the afternoon.
I am very happy with how the whole thing turned out and especially with the participants. They were engaged, interested and offered insightful views on the topics we discussed. I am really looking forward to going there again this spring for the on-snow seminars!
This course was tailored by me for the Icelandic ski- and snowboard association but the topics we covered are topics that I tend to cover on this blog as well. So make sure to keep up with the blog or follow me on Instagram (@rehncoaching) or on Facebook to get access to my latest thoughts about training for snowboarding, or in general.
If you have a request or any question whatsoever, please contact me on Rehn.firstname.lastname@example.org
I am looking forward to hearing from you.
As some of you may know, weightlifting is kind of my hobby after snowboarding. It’s hard though to combine snowboarding and weightlifting during the season since I want to have as much energy left for snowboarding as possible.
In this video I wanted to show you a typical workout for me when I’m also snowboarding. I try to keep the volume low but the intensity quite high so I get good quality from every workout. It’s a mix of weightlifting squatting and some monkeybusiness. Enjoy!
I have great news!
I am happy to announce that I will be working together with the Icelandic ski- and snowboard association this year. My job is to design and carry out a course for snowboard coaches on Iceland.
The Icelandic snowboarding scene is probably best known for the Helgason brothers, Eiki and Halldór. Who for the last couple of years have been some of the greatest influencers in street and contest snowboarding.
But Iceland has a simmering snowboard community with a lot of young riders coming in the wake of the Helgasons. The Icelandic ski- and snowboard association are keen on making the best of their possibilities and give these new snowboarders the best opportunities to develop their skills.
I am glad that the Icelandic ski- and snowboard association are willing to invest in the youth through investing in their snowboard coaches. I am honored for the opportunity to start this journey together with them and I think it will be great!
This year I will be going to Iceland twice. First for a three day seminar on preseason training for snowboarding and after new years for an on-snow seminar. I can’t wait to get there and start this new collaboration which hopefully will last into the future!
Let’s make Icelandic snowboarding even greater!
PS. If you have any questions or inquiries feel free to contact me on email@example.com, I look forward to hearing from you! DS.
Here’s a workout I did yesterday inspired by crossfit videos on youtube.
It’s a quickie and will get your back and glutes fired up!
5 rounds of
10 kettlebell snatches
10 walking sandbag lunges
20 meter rope pull
Try it out if you can!
We have all heard about the 10 000 hours principle (or myth, but that is a topic for a different post), that you will get really good at something by doing 10 000 hours of it. But does this mean that you only should do one thing, or can you be too specific?
One of the most fundamental facts when it comes to get better at something is the SAID-principle. SAID is short for the Specific Adaptation to Imposed Demands, i.e. your body will be better at doing the things that you do often. This principle is quite easy to understand, everyone knows that to become really good at something you have to practice – a lot. This has implications when it comes to complex sports like snowboarding where the off snow-training doesn’t resemble snowboarding at all. So is it even beneficial to enter the gym if you want to get better at a complex sport? And should you try to make your gym training more “snowboard like”? I will try to answer these questions and give you my views on sport specific training and tell you why I think some coaches has gotten this wrong.
Do we need to go to the gym?
Some sports require less variation in training and you can focus on sport specific training. That is if you get enough variation within the sport to train all the qualities required of the sport, in a safe way.
In some sports you can easily monitor the compiled workload over time and adjust the training intensity so that you maximize performance and minimize injuries. These are closed sports, for example weight lifting or power lifting, where you always know the conditions beforehand and you easily can adjust the load on the bar, even between sets.
Some sports doesn’t put a lot of strain on structures in the body and can be done in higher volumes without increasing the risk of injury, for example swimming, cross country skiing or cycling.
The gym is a great place to go to if you want to get stronger with minimal risk of injuries. Contrary to popular beliefs lifting heavy isn’t linked to injury proneness if it’s done right, with good technique and proper programming you can get great results without risking your career. So if the sport you’re doing demands you to be stronger (for example to stick a landing) it’s safer and more beneficial to go to the gym and get stronger legs than it is to try to stick that landing until you’re strong enough.
The gym is also a great place to go to work on stuff that you don’t get to do in your sport specific training. For example if you’re a golfer you always swing in the same direction and therefore you get different training on both sides of your body, if you swing left you get twisted a bit to the left. To compensate for the golfing it can be beneficial to even out the strength in your body to be even on both sides, since too much discrepancy could lead to pain and injuries.
So, do snowboarders need to go to the gym? -Yes and no.
If you can vary your training and workload on snow and progressively work your way up to bigger jumps and more intensity in your training both regular and goofy, in a structured way to minimize risk of injury. Sure, then you probably can do without the gym and any off snow training. But who rides like that?
So yes, you probably could do with some strength training before you hit the big jumps.
And here a lot of people point to skaters doing just skateboarding and being fine with it. And I have to claim that skateboarding is not snowboarding and that it isn’t as important for skaters to go to the gym as it is for snowboarders and here’s why: Skateboarding has a built in progression that snowboarding doesn’t because skateboarding is harder. In skateboarding you can’t go from ollieing a curb to ollieing eleven steps of stairs, hell, you probably can’t go from ollieing a curb to ollieing two steps of stairs without a lot of practice. So for each step you learn to ollie you have to do a lot of repetitions on the level you’re at, thus getting a lot of sport specific strength without overloading. And this is the key. In snowboarding, all you have to do to go from a small jump to a big jump is to get more speed, more or less. This means that you, in a matter of minutes, can expose your body to forces much higher than it ever has experienced and never gotten the time to get strong enough to handle. So yes, go to the gym snowboarder person.
What to do and what not to do, in the gym.
Getting back to the SAID-principle. If you want to get a little bit deeper into the implications of the SAID-principle it states that qualities aren’t always fluid in the way that getting better at one thing automatically makes you better at another. For example there is a correlation between leg strength and vertical jump height but just working on your squat max or leg press max doesn’t necessarily give you a better vertical jump. That’s because you haven’t been training on implementing your newly gained leg strength in the movement and speed that is a vertical jump. To get vertical jump gains you need to specifically work on the vertical jump movement and do so close to the speed that you will use when you tet your vertical jump.
With this in mind it’s easy to think that your strength training should aim to mimic the sport you’re training for as much as possible. And here is where I think some coaches takes specificity to unnecessary excess and makes strength training too complicated to get good gains.
In my mind we should, through knowing the sports demands, work on getting strong in movements necessary in the sport. We should also train our muscles in the contraction time most important to the sport. For example: Is it more important that your muscles have good endurance for repeated sprints or is it more important to be able to exert or withstand a maximal force in a minimal timeframe?
This doesn’t mean that we should get our snowboards in to the gym and start doing some circusy exercises that means you can’t put on any load due to instability. A lot of coaches uses balance balls and unstable materials to work on stability, first and foremost foot and knee stability. And they have their athletes standing on those until they are tired and learn to hold their balance. The problem is that when they really need that “stability” in their sport isn’t when you try to hold your balance on an unstable ground but in a change of direction or in a fall or in a battle with an opponent. And there you don’t have the time to find your balance and the forces are multitudes higher than those you will get on the balance ball. So maybe a better use of time would have been jumps, changes in direction, and squats with focus on speed to really strengthen the muscles instead of balancing like a circus elephant.
Don’t get me wrong, balance balls and their likes do have their place in sports, but then in rehab and not in sport preparatory strength training.
Specificity tips and tricks
The first thing to do is to analyze your sport. What forces do you face? Do you have to have endurance, stamina or maximal strength? What movements are key to the sport?
The second thing to do is to find your strengths and weaknesses within the sport. Do you have to be stronger, more agile, faster or have better stamina?
Once you have done this you can start to choose exercises to strengthen those specific qualities you want to work on.Off snow it’s a matter of good periodization and priority. Favor the training that trains the qualities you want to be better at and put the rest of your training on maintenance. If you want to get stronger legs, put an emphasis on a squat program and do less cardio. Remember the SAID principle, your body adapts to the demands it is presented with. You have to focus your effort where it matters.
When you have the opportunity to snowboard I of course think that you should snowboard as much as physically possible. This is the most sport specific training you could do and you have to train the qualities you want to better so…Furthermore if you try to stuff a lot of strength and endurance training in to the season when you snowboard the most, you probably will end upp either injured or exhausted due to overloading and lack of time for recovery. The training you do during the season should be aimed at either variety, recovery or light technique work.
Remember that you train to snowboard, not the other way around!
Here’s a short clip of a warmup for snatching or squatting. You can also use it as a dynamic stretching exercise, especially if you aim for a better range of motion in your squat or snatch.
The warmup consists of:
3 sets of:
5 tall snatches, or muscle snatches whatever you prefer calling it.
5 overhead squats
5 snatch grip sots presses
If you don’t know what this means you can check it out in the video!
Try it out and tell me what you think.
Today I would like to take the time to talk about one of the qualities that I believe is fundamental to snowboarders, acrobatics. This will be the second part of a series of posts where I discuss different trainable qualities that you might want to develop to be a better snowboarder. If you haven’t read part 1 of this series you can do that, or if you just want some training tips for acrobatics just keep reading.
“Can you do a backflip?” Yeah, you might have gotten this question if you’re hanging out in the park a lot. Flips and spins are cool and a big part of snowboarding, maybe the most relatable part to people outside of the sport. But before you do a backflip or a double cork in the park you might want to have had a bit of practice so you know that you will, at least, land on your feet. But how can you train these skills? I will try to give you a few tips below that you can try out during the summer and hopefully come well prepared to next season.
Can you practice snowboard tricks off snow? Well here we touch upon the specificity area, a topic all on it’s own which I plan on writing a text on soon. But to keep it short, you kind of can, but It’s unclear if there is a direct transfer to your sport. For example: people might be really good at snowboarding but really lousy at off snow-acrobatics, and there are gymnasts who are really great at their sport but can’t do a 360 on a snowboard. This ability to transfer tricks from a trampoline to a big jump is probably something that some people are better at than others. So it’s more of a “feeling”-type of thing. If you can feel the snowboard trick on a trampoline it probably can help you, some.
What’s the use of training off snow then? As I mentioned in the previous post training your acrobatic and air awareness skills could be a good way to stay injury free. If you, like cats, land on your feet when things go out of hand you should minimize the risks of trying out new tricks. This type of injury preventing training could be really basic acrobatic movements like different types of somersaults and other tumbling exercises. If you’ve been training Judo or Jujitsu you know the importance of training proper falling technique. Falling is inevitable so try to learn to fall as smoothly as possible.
I recorded a short video with some exercise tips that you could try out. Basically it’s just a lot of somersaults and some sort of agility course. Play around and have fun with it! I don’t mention this in the video but you should always do a proper warm up before these types of exercises, especially the neck and back so you don’t sprain yourself. Other than that you can do some of these movements before or after some other workout since it’s not that strenuous and if you’re looking to improve your acrobatic skills or your agility you should practice often.
I want to learn tricks, not learn how to fall! Alright cool man. I’ve already said that the transfer of skills between sports is somewhat hazy, but i do believe that you can benefit from practicing tricks off snow. If you feel like you can mimic the snowboard trick on a trampoline or off a diving tower, good for you. Otherwise I recommend you first analyzing the basic movements of the snowboard tricks you want to do and then try to mimic the same movement patterns. If you learn them well enough to automate them it should be easier to transfer them into your snowboarding. Here, filming yourself and analyzing your movements can be of huge help for you to break down what you’re actually up to when you’re spinning through the air.
If you, like me, have trouble doing doubles on a trampoline you can try to divide the trick into two separate tricks. For example: a backside double cork on a snowboard is kind of a backside 540 to a cab underflip. If you can do those two tricks after each other, without hesitation, you could get a feel for the whole rotation and then try it out on the trampoline or on your snowboard.
I don’t have a trampoline. There are plenty of other ways to train your acrobatic skills. The best way for snowboarding is of course to do it when you snowboard, but this post is about off snow training so we’ll keep to that. Gainers or other flips off a cliff or a diving tower is a great way to, quite safely, practice your acrobatic skills and impress your friends.
You can play around, parkour style. I know that it looks pretty geeky but find some friends you can try it out with and watch a bunch of youtube tutorials and get at it! As long as you’re having fun, what’s the problem?
These are summer activities you can do if you’re not lucky enough to go snowboarding this summer. Try it out and plan for next season and come back with a deeper trick bag!
Have a great summer!
I would like to take the time and talk about my views on training, how you become a well rounded snowboarder (or human) and what I think might be beneficial to focus on.
I want to start off by saying that, although I base my views on training and fitness on a foundation of science proven facts, these are my personal views and how I feel is the best way to implement what i know. I always strive to be better than I am and to gain new knowledge in this field so I am up for discussion and would very much like to hear any other aspects of the subjects I will bring up here.Since I work in snowboarding, this text will focus on training to snowboard and snowboard well, but if you’re just after some good workout tips you can keep reading anyways. Let’s begin.
In this part we’ll start off by establishing what the sport demands of us and what physical qualities we need to develop. And then look at what we should focus on when we’re not snowboarding to be better at snowboarding and to get to snowboard more.
Freestyle snowboarding has become a sport where the top athletes are highly dependent on their acrobatic skills. Nowadays they need to be able to perform not only double corks but triples, and in some cases quads. Wether you’re a top level snowboarder or just a happy weekend warrior, acrobatic skills will benefit you in more ways than one. You’ll be able to land more tricks, making your everyday riding more diverse. You will have more fun, feeling that you can take your riding to the next level and doing tricks and spins every way possible. You will feel safer trying tricks you’ve already done off snow. You will be safer, being able to save unsuccessful tries and do as cats do and land on your feet. From my experience riders with great acrobatic skills but poor strength can be less prone to injuries than really fit riders.
Squat ’til you drop. No doubt about it, you need strong legs to be able to withstand the forces of impact when you overshoot a jump or drop that parking garage to get the ender for your video part. Other than brute leg strength you will need a solid core, mainly to keep you on your feet for a whole day and to keep everything together but also to minimize the risks when you fall. Other than those two key muscle groups you need to be overall fit just to minimize the risk of minor (but sucky) injuries like shoulder dislocations and broken wrists.
How bad do you want the shot? In some cases you will be forced to keep going even though your body tells you to stop. It can be when you’re hiking to that sick line you’ve been eyeing for weeks, waiting for snow. It could be when you’re out battling a rail in the middle of the night, trying to get that last shot. Or it could just be trying to land a new trick and being fit enough to try one last time to get it. Either way, it’s always nice if you can ride all day without your legs giving out and you can hike that line and be fit enough at the top to make the run count.
Some people have it and some people don’t. Sometimes you see someone ripping so effortlessly and you just want to steal their board control and feel what they feel. Maybe some people are born with it but most people have to work really hard (consciously or not) to get there. Just like any other skill this is one that is highly trainable, but there are a few things to keep in mind when you practice it.
I believe these are the key elements to snowboarding. If you break it down into trainable qualities that is. And I know a lot of people don’t want to think about these things and just snowboard, and that is great! I love just riding with my friends and not thinking about anything else than what’s in front of me. But I also know that there are people who do think about these things and like to get nerdy about stuff they like. So I guess this post is for the latter type of people.
This was the first post in a series. I don’t know how long it will be but I do like to discuss these types of things (it’s my job, duh). So if you like something or don’t, let me know. Or just enjoy the read.