Changing the way I run my weight room

This is my first “mobile” post… Hoping this app works alright which will allow me to do some blogging from school.

We began our off season program when we got back from the holidays… I’ve run a weight program every year I’ve coached but felt it was an area I needed to improve on. The lifts and progression were fine it was just the overall way I did things I needed to improve on.

In the past I was too loose, almost begging kids to lift, letting things slide like showing up late, wearing jeans or slippers, sitting down etc. I decided that if I was essentially going to donate 2 hours of my life 3 days a week from now through June then I was going to do things on my terms.

We had some success this past season, but we are still in what I would consider to be a rebuilding phase, I don’t want to settle for making the playoffs once, I want to turn this place into a REAL PROGRAM.

So now if a kid isn’t there when we start our warm up at 3:30 they get sent home. The first few days if a kid sat down I ripped them as loud as I could in front of the whole team… No one has sat down the entire week.

I remember something I heard 1000x in my teacher credential program… “Students will rise to the standards you set”

I have raised the level of expectations and accountability and they have responded well. I am especially happy with our freshman class , we have 20+ freshman per day which for our school is a HUGE deal.

I have adopted a MWF lifting split, total body each day. I looked ahead and saw we have a ton of holidays… So to maximize our workout days I made a calendar of every day from now through the end of school… I put our workout phases on the calendar and adjust the length of each phase to try to get our testing/Deload weeks on the weeks with a Monday off. If we are going to have to lose a day I want it to be when we are testing. I can still get all of our testing done in the other 2 days of that week.

I believe the biggest difference maker is now I time everything we do.
In the past I would list the lifts, and say go ahead… I was too trusting the kids would actually get everything done. I did this because it was all I knew, my HS coaches did it with me… And I always did all my lifts. However most kids are different, many try to hide or skip out on doing things, or they lift without going as heavy as they should.

Now I put the students I to groups of 3 or 4. We have 6 lifts per day. In our weight room I am able to get two locations to do each lift.

So we can easily handle 6 lifts x 2 groups x 4 kids per group = 48 lifters. We’ve never had more than 40… If/when we get over 48 I’ll have to adjust somewhat but this system works well now.

I assign groups and starting positions. Up to 2 groups go to each lifting station to begin.

I give each group 10-11 minutes to finish that lift… No time for BS… They lift, rack it, switch weights, and next lifter in order to finish on time. I walk around weight room coaching technique and giving time shout outs so they know if they need to pick up their pace at all. Once time is up we all rotate to the next lift and the process begins again.

We can get 6 lifts done in about an hour this way and I’m still able to get the kids out by about 4:45 if we aren’t doing any speed work prior to lifting.


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