Thursday, September 23, 2010

Knowing Capabilities?

During my undergraduate Biomechanics course, I once wrote that I thought I had a very good sense of knowing what someone was physically capable of, as it pertains to athletic performance, just by looking at them. This included taking in a picture of their anthropometrics (height, weight, body fat %, joint lengths, etc.) and also seeing how they move. While I may be able to realize how easy it would be for a person to squat, snatch, clean, etc. just by looking at how their body is built, I now know this previous statement is completely idiotic. Now that I have been working with athletes at all different levels for a few years, I have come to realize that people will always surprise you. This goes for many things in life, but especially when it comes to physical capabilities. I once worked with a very young athlete who had never done any kind of lifting. On her first day of learning the snatch and clean and jerk, she picked up the technique extremely well within the first ten minutes. This was a 10 year old who had just come in for the first time! If memory serves me right, she learned how to do both, full Olympic lifts and front squat in that session and she rocked it. I believe she ended up snatching around 25kg, C&J around 35kg, and front squatting around 40kg. This just goes to show that you can never assume anything until you see for yourself what someone is capable of doing. Train hard, train smart!

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