Shane Lance B.S, MEd

One Size Does Not Fit All!

Years ago a football coach came to me and asked me to look at a weight training program he was looking at buying for his team.  He wanted to know what I thought of it and whether or not it was worth the money.

The program was a good one.  But, there was something I saw as a problem.  Although it would be great for many athletes to build a strength base, it was not a “one size fits all” program.  There is no such thing.  Now, on a football team you have varying body types, skill levels, and commitment levels.  Take your 300 pound lineman for example.  He consumes large amounts of food, is naturally strong, and is usually the guy the whole team is cheering on as he struggles to finish bear crawls across the field.  Obviously, we would want to focus on building on the natural strength and also getting the poor kid in better cardio shape.  Contrast that player with your average receiver.  This player also consumes large amounts of food but his metabolism is so high that it burns off almost as fast as he eats it.  He is usually lean and has enough energy to run circles around the lineman. Receivers are also much quicker than linemen.  The training for this athlete should build on quickness, explosiveness, and lots of jumping because those are necessary skills for running routes and jumping in the air to catch the football.  If I were to give the same program to both athletes, they should see some benefits of course.  However, a more specialized program would lead to much better rewards.

There are many great programs out there that you can buy or there are even great free programs.  Some things you need to consider are: what are my fitness goals?  What type of exercise do I enjoy doing?  What are my abilities?  What are my limitations?  What is my body type?

Most importantly, listen to your body.  Learn to recognize when something is or is not working.  You may want to consider using a personal trainer if he/she is willing to create a program specifically for you and your goals and not just print off a “one size fits all” program.