Priority Training


It is so easy when designing a training program to include too much “stuff.” I know over the year I have been guilty of this. I want to make sure that I touch all the bases so I end adding an exercise here, a drill there and pretty soon I have so much “stuff” I can’t see the forest for the trees. This shotgun approach aims to hit a little bit of everything but mixed training yields mixed results. The result is that improvement is marginal and you don’t really know what training stimulus caused the improvement that did occur.

The opposite is what I call priority training. Here the training is very targeted; specific objectives are determined based on sport, position or event demands and the needs of the individual athlete. The objectives are always squarely in the target. The focus is on need to do methods that fit with the target. Eliminate the nice do activities, the busy work that makes you tired but does not contribute significantly to getting better. Another way to set the training priorities is to divide the training methods and means into a major emphasis and a minor emphasis. Major emphasis areas are the priority. These will show up two to three times as often as minor emphasis areas. At the end of the process the result should be as complete an athlete as possible, specifically fit, fast and strong for the demands of the competitive arena. Set the priorities in training and stick to them and reap the rewards in competition.

Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta


Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
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Vern Gambetta

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