I had a recent conversation with a parent asking me about his son who is wrestling.
They have 3 weeks until Districts.
Is it bad to start training NOW? Will the kids lose flexibility, is it too hard, too much work, etc.
I replied, Here’s the worst thing that can happen: The Kids will Get Stronger, Faster & Tougher.
Why pass an opportunity to get better? An opportunity to gain more confidence and beat guys that beat you before?
Our recent success stories are posted on our Instagram, there are LOTS of athletes achieving more than ever before because their parents invested in helping their child get better.
This can be wrestling or ANY sport.
ALL athletes need an advantage, both physical and mental. That is what we do at The Underground, working mind AND body to rapidly increase performance both in sports and life. They go hand in hand.
The idea behind NOT getting better is a LOSING attitude.
You should constantly seek out ways to gain an advantage over your competition.
And, for our in season athletes, we perform shorter training sessions.
While the majority of athletes STOP in season performance training, THAT is when you have the fastest advantage because while the competition is getting weaker, you are getting stronger, faster and tougher.
These in season workouts make the athlete feel more energized.
We also educate our athletes on nutrition which can be a dramatic performance advantage within 2 or 3 days of eating better.
YES, you can boost performance in a short time.
Opportunity is Knocking.
Will you take it!
Want to Get The Unfair Advantage Over The Competition?
Parents – Sign Your Child Up for a Free Trial HERE
Mark Schleiffer of East Brunswick (Princeton Commit) texted me yesterday after getting his 100th win!
Mark has been an all state wrestler throughout high school and has committed to wrestle at Princeton with his brother, Jon who was a 4 x All State Wrestler and a state champion his Senior Year.
I always tell parents and athletes, SUCCESS LEAVES CLUES.
What can we learn from Mark?
Here’s a List of common practices and traits I picked up on as soon as he sent me a text message.
– Mark trains year round with us. He never pulls the “I’m too busy” line during the in season.
– His grades are EXCELLENT. He has been accepted to Princeton University. He achieves Excellence in ALL areas of his life, NOT just wrestling.
– Mark does NOT live close to any of our locations and he STILL trains with us 2 x week In Season! I know kids who live IN town who don’t show up in season. Mark drives 45-60 minutes each way to train.
– Mark improves his skill training year round by training at CJA Wrestling Club w/ Gene Lezark. He has been going to CJA for MANY years, since middle school. He doesn’t bounce around to 5 different coaches. There is MUCH to be said about sticking to 1 system and LOYALTY.
– Mark is TOUGH. He is Disciplined. I never feel that the Coaches are more motivated than Mark is. This is MORE than motivation. This is called DISCIPLINE. Motivation fades, Discipline is the Strength to do what you must do, not just what you feel like doing.
Above: Ray Jaz / NYU Wrestling, Bryan McLaughin / Woodbridge Wrestling (Drexel Commit) / John Poznaski / Colonia Wrestling
The Importance of Strength Training for In-Season Athletes
Many athletes and their parents are quite often worried about too much stress on the body during their sports season. They are right to be concerned, but they are mistaken to completely ditch their strength and conditioning program.
When an athlete is trained properly, he / she CAN handle in season strength training. In fact, this athlete will THRIVE and make progress while the competition begins to regress as the season continues.
But, an athlete who eats poorly, is inconsistent with strength & conditioning and has a “good enough” attitude towards training will never succeed at the highest levels.
And who wants to be good enough, right?
Being Stronger, Faster, More Confident & Less Susceptible to Injury is always a BIG advantage for athletes!
A properly designed and implemented strength and conditioning program during the IN Season is key for an athlete’s performance and health throughout the year, ESPECIALLY during the times they are in season.
Here are 4 Crucial Reasons Athletes Should Continue Strength & Conditioning In Season If They Want to Win More:
1) GET STRONGER WHILE THE COMPETITION GETS WEAKER
The Strength base is the foundation for an athletes sports performance: Speed, Explosive Power, Confidence……
Who wants to be weaker than the competition? NO Strength Work in season = Getting Weaker.
When you do not strength train for 2 – 3 weeks, the athlete will begin the process of losing strength, losing flexibility, endurance, confidence and sometimes athleticism & coordination is lost as well (depending on their sport).
Using proper in season strength training with short workouts, 1-2 times a week (some of our highly motivated athletes train more) during the season, depending on the sport being played, will help build upon the athlete’s off season Improvements and can even increase them farther.
An athlete should always be looking to increase their performance in season.
After all, The Season is what you’ve trained so hard for all through your off season.
In College, ALL athletes train year round. College athletes & coaches KNOW that this is crucial for having the physical and mental edge over the competition. But, for high school athletes, too often their parents pull them from in season training and tell us later, this was a big mistake they wish they never made.
Some of our athletes only train once a week for 25 minutes on average.
More is not better. Better is better when it comes to training athletes.
2) MINIMIZE / REDUCE INJURIES
Reducing your chances of injury is something all athletes are paying attention to.
Parents as well. The injury rate of athletes has increased dramatically through the years due to too much sports skill practice and not enough joint / muscular strength.
Almost all sports will cause muscular imbalances that can lead to injuries. Through receiving proper coaching, an athlete can improve their imbalances which improves sports performance. By improving your muscular imbalances you will reduce the risk of injury. 3) IMPROVE RECOVERY
Training in season will improve the recovery of the athlete.
Athletes are bound to get sore and beat up during their seasons. The best medicine for an achy body and muscles is movement to bring blood flow and range of motion. A proper workout will help ease this soreness, and keep the athlete ready to perform.
The goal of our in season strength program at The Underground Strength Gym is to improve your sport workouts / practices, NOT to take away from your sports performance.
Our motto is you’re done before you’re done.
Training optimally in season, NOT maximally. This type of smarter training improves your recovery and improves your performance.
4) BOOST CONFIDENCE
One of the biggest benefits of strength training is not the physical, but the mental strength you will develop and build upon.
In Season Strength Training creates a sense of confidence and mental toughness within the athlete that is above and beyond the competition who is not strength training in season. Training in-season will keep this mental edge and a dramatic leg up on the competition.
As you can see, in season strength training has powerful benefits when properly implemented.
Here is something to remember while wondering if you should come in and train…
“Doing a short 25 – 45 minute in season workout is 100% more than doing nothing to get better.”
If you want to be GREAT….
If you want to Win More…..
If you want the opportunity to achieve your best, then there truly is NO option.
Find the time to train in season while the competition finds excuses.
Parents – Sign Your Child Up for A FREE Trial & Athlete Assessment HERE
In the Fall of 2007 when we opened The Underground Strength Gym we began training adults after our athletes trained in the afternoon and evenings.
These 8 PM training sessions were short and intense.
The workouts were very similar to what our athletes did minus some specifics that just weren’t safe for most adults.
– We lessened and / or removed jump training.
– Mobility issues were addressed and complex movements such as Olympic Lifting were replaced with dumbbells, kettlebells and sandballs.
These modifications allowed us to safely perform full body exercises with a faster learning curve and in turn, faster results.
A BIG Goal When we train adults is this: We want to ensure that the training doesn’t take away from your life or daily activities.
The training should make your life BETTER.
I recall a friend of mine who had kids would go to a gym in the mornings and every workout was all about getting crushed.
This woman was already in great shape but her back began hurting on a regular basis, her shoulder was throbbing and she had LESS energy, not more.
She felt like the overly intense training was interfering with her family life so she had to stop.
I took that lesson to heart and as an adult / parent myself, I know how much energy it takes!
Training harder and crushing you every workout isn’t better. Better is BETTER.
Proper training makes you feel better. It’s not about exhausting you.
We also limited the timed workouts such as get as many rounds of this or that. I found technique would get thrown out the window as time or getting more rounds became the priority.
There are other ways to compete with yourself in others and with yourself during each training session but Technique Is ALWAYS # 1.
When you train in our adult strength classes, you’ll go through a warm up to get the mind and body ready.
As a beginner or advanced lifter, you can train side by side with other adults regardless of their or your experience because we use a model with progressions and regressions.
If someone is performing squats or deadlifts with a barbell, you might use Kettlebells or a bodyweight variation to build you UP to that level of strength & fitness.
To say EVERYONE has to deadlift isn’t safe, smart or effective.
Even our athletes train like this.
You train in a group yet sometimes you’re doing a different variation of that exercise that is best suited for you! To force everyone into the same exercise variation is not safest or most effective.
To help our adults improve on each training cycle, we perform full body workouts 3 – 4 x week. How often you train is up to you. I tell adults that 2 x week is 200% more than ZERO training sessions each week.
These workouts are similar in nature for 2 – 3 weeks to help the body adapt with improvements in technique, strength, stamina and overall fitness. After 2 weeks, we switch up the workout to keep the body from adapting but each week helps build you into the next week.
If we constantly vary the exercises every single training session & every week you actually NEVER get good at those exercises.
In turn, you hinder your results because you spend excess time on technique vs training at an adequate intensity with movements and exercises that you are learning to master.
Or, On the flip side, if you skip the learning of technique and push the intensity too soon, you end up injured and / or discouraged.
We don’t do what isn’t right for you.
Men and Women CAN be Strong, Fit and Athletic. The key is, a proven training system that Builds you UP instead of breaks you down.
We’re psyched for you to begin Training with us at The Scotch Plains Underground Strength Gym and we will transform you NOT just physically, but also emotionally and mentally.
It’s ALL about The STRONG Life: Mind, Body & LIFE!
What You Do Outside the Gym Matters Just As Much As What You Do IN The Gym
Coach Andy Wary
Many athletes and their parents alike think that getting to the gym is the end-all and only way they can get better.
When in reality, the gym is only a small fraction of your overall training. There are MANY opportunities for our athletes in Scotch Plains, Manasquan & Middlesex.
Here are 6 key tips that can and SHOULD be done outside of the gym to become a More Successful Athlete in Sports AND Life:
1. The first and foremost area that should be taken care of to increase an athlete’s performance is eating correctly and getting enough rest.
Follow our Nutrition guidelines from your welcome packet. We’re always amazed how many athletes eat processed foods or skip breakfast altogether.
Dedication takes NO vacation.
Proper nutrition pays dividends to size, strength, and performance. Rest is needed when the body is put under stress to recover and become stronger.
As my friend Joe DeSena says from Spartan Race, “Nothing good happens after 9 o’clock at night”.
If you’re spending endless hours on video games and your cell phone, you’re “grinding” has NOTHING to do with getting better. Get rid of technology in your room and get to bed by 10 PM.
Stress is not only from the gym, but also from practice and even life in general. The stress of technology hinders your overall performance. Discipline yourself to NOT be a slave to your phone.
2. Doing things correctly.
You may ask what things?…. Everything! From something simple as seeing the trash is full and taking it out, to doing homework to the best of your ability etc. Doing the simple things right will carry over to the rest of your life.
“How You Do Anything is How You Do Everything”
3. Doing the extras.
This can be doing extra credit at school for a better grade, bodyweight exercises at home, watching YouTube videos to practice technique… any extra work that will make you better!
When your body is run down and beaten up, will you go the will you make the decision to sit at home and play video game or perform a short workout at home to make your body feel better?
5. Choosing who you associate with.
Your friends will either elevate you or destroy you, choose wisely.
6. Learn and read every day.
Take every opportunity to make yourself better through learning and creating the right mental mind set.
Doing these 6 things throughout your week will bring about a dramatic amount of benefits to your overall life, not only athletics. After all, the gym is only a very small percentage of your week, why not make the best of the rest of your time?
I wrote this book to inspire, educate and empower our youth, from middle school & up, The Encyclopedia
of Underground Strength has been endorsed by Navy SEALs, Coaches & Athletes around the world
3 Training Mistakes NJ Football Players MUST Avoid
By Coach Andrew Wary
The weight room and football players tend to go hand in hand, like two peas in a pod. Quite often football players can either be guided to or have the wrong ideas about training.
Football players are subject to 3 main training mistakes: bad bulking, performing only stationary exercises, and focusing on only heavy lifting.
Almost every football player, unless they are genetically gifted or overweight, will be told to gain weight at some point of their career. The most common steps after this are a ‘bulking’ diet and/or a hypertrophy lifting program.
If these two things are executed properly they can bring about fantastic results, but the majority of the time they are not. Unless someone with nutritional experience is involved, frequently football players will go on an eating spree to gain size, ignoring the quality of food, leading to poor performance and the gaining of fat or bad weight.
Hypertrophy programming is a must for the increase of size in any athlete, but when not implemented correctly it can lead to an all-show and no-go athlete. By this I mean, you may see a player that looks like Tarzan, but plays like Jane. This is not the only training mistake that must be avoided.
Training programs for football are for the most part contained to running and large compound and stationary lifting such as benching, cleaning or squatting.
This can leave a giant gap for stability and balance. After all, how often during a play is a football player not moving their feet and uninhibited by another player? Exercises where the athlete is moving with weight must be included in order to increase their athleticism.
These exercises can include anything from walking lunges to any kind of loaded carry. Not only do these exercises increase a football players overall stability and athleticism, but they are also great for packing on muscle and even conditioning. The final mistake is a not so obvious one to most people.
Focusing on only heavy lifting, is a huge downfall of a large percentage of football training programs.
Don’t get me wrong heavy lifting is necessary and great for football players, but when it is the sole area of focus it can be detrimental.
Heavy lifting works on absolute strength which is obviously needed in a collision sport such as football, but it does not create as much speed strength. Speed strength can be described as explosiveness or the ability to produce strength in a fast matter.
This is the kind of strength most important to almost all athletes. When speed strength is ignored in training programs, it is absolutely detrimental to the athlete. There are many ways to correctly increase speed strength including: plyometrics, dynamic effort movements, and contrast exercises.
When these type of modalities are included in a football player’s training program, they create obvious and very fast results. These results will be a more explosive and overall more athletic player.
No training program for any athlete will ever be perfect, but the mistakes spelled out above can and should be avoided. These mistakes can be easily overlooked by the untrained eye, but by implementing correct nutritional guidelines and well-rounded exercise selection/programming it is possible to make these blunders a thing of the past.
The Underground Strength Gym
Manasquan | Scotch Plains | Middlesex
Parents – Sign Up Your Child for a FREE Athlete Assessment HERE
Van Miller discusses that he’s been training year round since 7th grade, all year, every year.
You can train JUST in the off season, but even with ZERO knowledge of sports performance, Understand this simple concept:
– When you STOP training for Strength, Speed, Power & Confidence, you can NOT Gain, let alone maintain these physical and emotional traits
– The longer you go without proper training, the more you lose strength, speed, power & confidence.
– Often times, the Most important time of the season is the end when you have the Biggest competitions. Why work hard all off season and stop the Very thing that gives you the edge when you need it the most?
Take a look around at what “normal” athletes are doing…..