17. August 2015 · Comments Off on Building Athletes: Training And Awareness · Categories: Kid Sports

If you've done any type of athletic training program for any length of time, you probably know that core strength and body awareness are two things that are often overlooked. If you want to know how important these two things are to athletes and their training programs, read on. 

Body Awareness and Building Athleticism


Balance, core strength and body awareness are the most overlooked areas when building a solid training program.

It's alarming how many throwers never learn how to train properly. Many think just picking up an implement and taking throw after throw is the answer to increasing distance.

The problem is that repetitively doing the same thing won't get you too far, especially if you don't have the right technique. 

As track and field coaches know, the act of just throwing does not adequately challenge the physical requirements necessary to elevate them to a higher level.

Not learning proper techniques will only lead to injury, boredom, burnout and possibly an end to a promising athletic future.

All of these spell bad news for athletes of any age. If you are young, it's important to challenge yourself and avoid burnout and injury. If you're an older athlete your focus on preventing injuries might be a little higher

How do we expect throwers to pick up implements, some heavy I might add, and throw them as far as they can when they do not even know how they should be feeling?

Athletes involved in a well planned conditioning program are at a distinct advantage in reaching their full athletic potential.

So by establishing a strong foundation of sound training principles it will give athletes a better chance of obtaining higher levels of athletic performance.

It will also improve their self-esteem and confidence and decrease the potential for injuries.

  • We need to make training fun and have a purpose.
  • We need to teach our athletes proper techniques and let them know its ok to make mistakes as long as they learn from them.
  • We need to build core strength and start teaching them what it takes to become athletic.

The focus of any program should be to educate the athlete while building athleticism.

The program has to be about the person training. They need to feel invested in it, feel like the program is the right one for them. This is important if you are a young athlete, and if you're a slightly older one. 

There is a story I always use with my kids. When we are born we first sit up and crawl, then we eventually establish some type of balance so we stand up and walk and finally when our bodies are perfectly in tune and we have great confidence we run.

This sums up perfectly the proper procedure in training for success.

You have to take a training program step-by-step. If you try to do everything at once you will become overwhelmed and have a higher chance of injuring yourself. 

Body Awareness and Building AthleticismTraining for Success by Joe Napoli

If you need a few tips to help the high school track athlete in your life, or if you are a high school track athlete, we can help! Here are 7 ways to help athletes train for track meets, without getting too stressed out or overwhelmed.  

7 Tips & Tricks for the High School Track Athlete


1) For morning races, always eat something on race day.

Some toast or a bagel with some peanut butter is an excellent race day breakfast. Be sure to drink 8-10oz of water with breakfast 2-3 hours before race time.

2) Try to avoid soda or sugary drinks on days when you have races

They will NOT help your performance. Water works best.

3) Runners have worries.

Don't worry – when you out-sprint another runner to the finish, somehow, that all seems to go away.

Teenage athletes preparing to start running on the track on the stadium, side view

4) Before your races try to relax.

Repeat to yourself, “I'm strong, I'm fast, I'm well trained” – repeat this in your head again and again.

The things you tell yourself are the things you will believe about yourself. Make sure you think positive and affirming thoughts.

5) The 1st half of a race, most run poorly.

Understand – the success of your race isn't determined by how you start, but how you finish.

6) After your performance, assess what you did well.

Under-achieving athletes ALWAYS focus on what they did wrong. High-achieving athletes often focus on what went right and can't wait to repeat it.

7) If you choose to focus on what went wrong, here is what you can do:

Make 2 lists. The 1st list is of the things that you can control while the 2nd list is of the things you can't control.

Throw the 2nd list out. Now take a look at what you're left with. That's where your work lies!

As with everything else in life, it does no good to focus on the things you cannot change. This will only lead to useless worry and excess stress.

7 Tips & Tricks for the High School Track Athlete

How do you train for track meets? Do you find positive thoughts and focusing on the things you did well to be helpful to your training?

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