Are we creating fragile athletes?


We are spending so much time measuring various training loads, planning recovery and putting restrictions on the athletes based on those measurements that we are creating fragile athletes instead of more resilient robust athletes? What are we doing? In the search for protecting the athlete are we creating athletes who are unprepared for training load of any significance, much less a competition load because they have never been under duress in training? Everywhere I turn I see this. Just because you can measure something does not mean it is meaningful and certainly we can measure everything. Lets focus on what the athlete can do and needs to do to prepare for the rigors of competition. I would ever want to go back to the way it was fifty years ago when I was playing college football where we had three-hour practices with no water that was not the way to do it. We do need to push them and they need to learn their bodies and it’s capabilities by pushing the envelope and getting uncomfortable. It always goes back to basics of coaching, sound pedagogy, knowing the demands of the sport, knowing the athletes and having a system with a plan to implement the system. Some common sense would go along way to protecting and still creating a highly adaptable athlete that can handle a training load and thrive 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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