Training Programs


by Kevin Boss on May 4, 2019 2 comments

As an athlete it’s important to remember exactly who and what you are. Being an athlete training for sport means you are not the following: a power lifter, body builder, CrossFitter, or Olympic lifter. Trying to train as more than one of these disciplines creates a situation in which you have competing demands and will leave you average at all of them. Before I go on, let me preface this entire article by saying that I have nothing against the different training disciplines listed above. In fact now that I am no longer training for football, I have dabbled in just about all of them. I am simply stating my case below on how I believe athlete’s of more traditional sports should be training.

Don’t get me wrong, we do borrow concepts and principles of all these different disciplines depending on the phase of training we are in or the certain adaptations we are chasing for certain athletes. For example, regardless of the sport, we want all of our athletes to be powerful. Therefore, we use powerlifting training strategies. We also want to add lean muscle to all of our athletes. This is done during the hypertrophy phase of training where we are trying to add what we like to call “body armour” to our athletes. To do this we use body building concepts with the main difference being that we are trying to build “go” muscles not “show” muscles.

Olympic lifting has some carry over as well IF it is done correctly. Because Olympic lifting is such a technical skill that requires incredible amounts of practice and repetition, it isn’t something that we use very often. If Olympic lifting it not taught/performed correctly or used out of context, like it sometimes is in CrossFit, it becomes very dangerous. We feel the risk:reward ratio is simply not worth it. We believe our athletes can achieve the same results with safer and more sport like dynamic movements such as sprinting, jumping, and throwing. As I mentioned above, Olympic lifting is it’s own sport. If training athletes is what we do through the vehicle of strength and conditioning it doesn’t make sense to train for a sport with another sport.

Training movement consists of multi-joint compound movements where multiple muscle groups are being used at the same time. Training muscle consists of isolating a single muscle group at one time. Let’s compare the Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat (one of my all time favorite exercises) to the Seated Leg Extension (one of my least favorite exercises). The split squat requires joint action (from the ankle, knee, & hip) as well a ton of muscle action from several different large muscle groups (glutes, hamstrings, quad, & more) all working together to perform the exercise. Not only are multiple large muscle groups working together to successfully execute this movement, but there are also smaller stabilizing/proprioceptive muscles of the ankle, knee, and hip working to do their job of maintaining balance, posture and proper positioning. Most large compound movements like the squat also require a certain amount of mobility in certain joints in order to be executed correctly. That means the RFE Split Squat is giving you strength, stability, & mobility all in one movement! The seated leg extension can’t even come close to giving you the same amount bang for your buck! First off, you are sitting down to perform the exercise. In sport, the only time you are sitting down is if you are sitting on the bench. The simple fact that you are in a seated position should be your first clue that this exercise will not translate to the field or court. Sports are played on your feet, therefore our training should replicate that.

The importance of training this way can be better emphasized by taking a closer look at sprinting. Sprinting is a movement that is required in nearly every sport and is an absolute game changing skill if you can do it well. It demands nearly all the major muscle groups of your lower body to synergistically work together in order to be performed safely and effectively. Sounds pretty similar to the Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat right? On the contrary, a body builder typically trains in isolation. This typically means if a body builder is training legs, they usually isolate hamstrings one day with leg seated or prone machine leg curls. Then on a separate training day, they isolate their quads with the dreaded seated leg extension. Training this way, where muscle groups rarely are asked work together makes it extremely difficult to perform necessary sport skills such as sprinting and jumping. To safely perform such movements the body needs to move together as one integrated unit and not a series of isolated parts. Training isolated parts, then asking your body to perform such movements that requires multiple muscle groups to work together leaves you very susceptible to injury. It also leaves you looking like a fish out of water. Go to YouTube and search “body builder sprinting” and you will see what i’m talking about.

The human body was designed to function freely and fluidly in all planes of movement with multiple joint actions occurring simultaneously. In sport, the importance of fluid and efficient movement is even more important in order to avoid injury and to increase performance. Therefore, instead of training muscle groups we focus on training the following 6 primary movement patterns.

  • TRAINING MOVEMENTS: Bilateral (2 arms or legs) or Unilateral (single arm or leg)
  • Lower Pull / Hip Dominant (Examples: Deadlift, RDLs, etc.)
  • Lower Push / Knee Dominant (Examples: Squat Variations)
  • Upper Horizontal Push (Examples: Push Ups, Bench Press etc.)
  • Upper Horizontal Pull (Examples: Inverted Rows, 1 Arm DB Row etc.)
  • Vertical Push (Examples: Landmine Press, 1 Arm DB Press, etc.)
  • Vertical Pull (Examples: Pull Ups, Band Pull Downs etc.)
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by Kevin Boss on July 18, 2018 No comments

When it comes to training for sport performance, it’s important to remember that we want our work in the weight room to closely resemble the movements that are required from us in our sport. Therefore, the old school approach of only training bilaterally (on two legs) with traditional back squats, deadlifts, leg extensions, and leg curls is not going to have nearly the same transfer to the field of play as unilateral (single leg) training will. When is the last time you saw a football player hop down the field on both legs?  Have you ever seen a baseball player jump down to first base on two feet? Or what about a soccer player kick the ball with both legs at the same time? The place that you are going to spend the most time with two feet flat on the ground is when you are sitting on the bench. So, if you continue to take the old school approach to training with poor programming of only doing two-legged lower body exercises, the bench is where you are going to stay!

  1. SPORTS ARE PLAYED ON ONE LEG!! – How many sports do you know of that are played with two feet fixed on the ground and your weight evenly distributed through each leg the entire time? Not many, right? I believe rowing/crew is the only one. Running, walking, skipping, cutting, backpedaling, shuffling, crossover running, and jumping are all sport related movements that are performed with one foot on the ground at a time. Therefore, we should be training accordingly (unilaterally) to give us the best transfer from weight room to playing field.
  2. WE ARE NOT POWERLIFTERS!! – We need to remember that we are training to be ATHLETES and to improve performance in our respective sport. Powerlifters squat, deadlift, and bench press because THAT IS THEIR SPORT! As sports performance coaches, we do borrow some concepts of powerlifting for our athletes, but we need to remember that we are not lifting weights just to get good at lifting weights!
  3. DON’T LET YOUR WEAK LEG HIDE!! – We all have one leg that is stronger than the other. When we have both feet fixed on the ground, like in a traditional back squat, naturally your stronger leg is going to try and do most of the work while your weak leg hides behind that stronger leg and stays weak! When you move to a single leg exercise, such as the Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat, that weak leg can no longer hide because it is now on its own and forced to do all the work and therefore gets stronger.
  4. CHALLENGES MORE MUSCLES – When going back to the traditional back squat, we have both feet fixed on the ground, a good base of support, and our balance is not being challenged which makes our big strong prime movers (glutes, hamstrings, quads) the only muscles that are working. When we move to one leg and lose that solid base of support, the lateral side to side stability suddenly becomes an issue and some of our smaller very important stabilizing muscles (adductors & abductors) are forced to kick on and do their job.
  5. THE BILATERAL DEFICIT – The bilateral deficit is a phenomenon where the sum of the strength you can produce on each leg individually is greater than what you can produce with both legs working together. In other words, if you were doing a rear foot elevated split squat on just your right leg and then just your left leg and you added those two weights together it would be greater than what you could do in a double legged back squat.
  6. 50% LESS SPINAL LOADING – Most people know the risks associated with excessively loading your spine. Regularly placing a barbell on your back compresses your spine and sets you up for a host of back problems now and in the future. I’ve never met a powerlifter that hasn’t had a back injury of some kind. With single leg exercises, you can basically cut the load in half. Even better, you might not need to load the exercise at all if you are doing something as challenging as a non-supported pistol squat.
  7. INJURY PREVENTION – One of the main reasons you should be training is to prevent injuries from occurring while playing your sport. So, to put yourself in a compromised position where you are leaving yourself susceptible to injury while training for your sport is completely counterproductive and inexcusable at any level. Therefore, if we can choose a safer and more effective exercise like a split squat, lunge variation, single leg squat, etc.  instead of a less effective and more dangerous exercise like that back squat, isn’t that a no brainer? There is also plenty of research supporting the use of single leg exercises to combat against ankle and knee injuries because of the proprioceptors that are turned on to balance and stabilize those particular joints.
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Winter Group Training-High School

by Kevin Boss on November 8, 2016 No comments

We are very excited to announce the opening of Boss Sports Performance! A state of the art training facility that caters to athletes of all ages and ability level! Starting November 15th we will be offering our Off-Season Winter Training Program and we would love to work with your son or daughter! More information is below as well as a signup link! Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns and we would love to have you stop by anytime to take a look and get a tour. Our new address is 1305 SE Armour Rd. Suite 110.

13-Week Strength & Conditioning Program specifically for High School Athletes who are gearing up for their upcoming spring seasons! Open to male & female athletes. (If there are enough female athletes that sign up we will create a “girls only group”)
November 15 – February 25th
Tuesday’s, Thursday’s : 3:30 – 5:00pm
Saturday’s : 11:00am – 12:30pm
Each 90 minute sessions includes 45 minutes of Speed & Agility/Change of Direction work followed by a 45 minute lift.
Access to our BSP Athlete YOGA classes
Access anytime to our Athlete Recovery Lounge
Functional Movement Screen of each athlete
Pre-Post performance tests (including force plate testing)
Access to BSP Nutrition Workshop w/ ongoing nutritional support
Hard Work
Linear speed acceleration sprint mechanics
Agility & change of direction
Sport specific energy system training (conditioning)
Soft tissue care / recovery protocols
Injury prevention prehab corrective exercises
Core strength & stability
Mobility, flexibility, & stretching
Posterior chain activation & strengthening
Heavy emphasis on coaching of form & technique of all basic weight training lifts and movements



Sign Up Now

(If you are having any trouble signing up or paying online please feel free to stop in and we will take care of everything right here!)

Winter Training Program Calendar


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Kevin BossWinter Group Training-High School