An athlete’s regular season has high demands both physically and mentally. During the season an athlete’s physical and mental capacity is pushed to the max. Physically an athlete experiences a lot of stress on the body, this can lead to overuse injuries of the muscles, ligaments, tendons, and connective tissues. Mentally an athlete may start to experience burnout, lack of drive, and less desire to compete. We want to consider both of these factors in the postseason. Let’s talk about what an athlete’s postseason should look like.
The first priority of the postseason should be rest. We recommend 2-6 weeks, this may vary depending on the athlete and their role during the season, level of training, or transitioning to another sport. The rest phase allows the athlete to start the healing process of overuse injuries and mentally decompress. Think of this as returning to a homeostasis point and allowing the parasympathetic nervous system to kick in. Honoring this phase will bring back excitement and rejuvenate an athlete to train and prep for the upcoming season.
The rest phase allows the athlete to start the healing process of overuse injuries and mentally decompress.
Following the rest phase an athlete should return to training in a restorative phase. The restorative phase should last 4-6 weeks. This phase will consist of a range of motion and movement assessments. A specific program will be implemented to help strengthen the ligaments, tendons, and connective tissues. The restorative phase will also focus on building a solid foundation and work capacity baseline to transition into the next phase.
The restorative phase should last 4-6 weeks.
In the build phase an athlete builds off of the previous off-season, the goal in this phase is to increase strength and power, build a solid foundation for plyometrics, and maintain base conditioning. The build phase may last from 10-12 weeks depending on the obligations of sport. Athletes will establish a baseline in major lifts such as squat and hinge movements, presses and pulls, cleans, snatches, and jerks and use various training principles to increase development and load tolerance. Through this phase athletes should also continue any specific mobility or corrective work. In this phase we want to build a stronger, more powerful, and more resilient athlete; with the potential to be faster and more explosive.
In this phase we want to build a stronger, more powerful, and more resilient athlete; with the potential to be faster and more explosive.
The application phase is where an athlete takes increased strength and power and learns to apply it to movement and skills more specific to sport. This is where an athlete is transitioned into preseason training and works on refining the use of more power and speed. The yielding result being speed, acceleration, vertical and horizontal force production and absorption, and linear and lateral change of direction quickness.
The yielding result being speed, acceleration, vertical and horizontal force production and absorption, and linear and lateral change of direction quickness.