Volleyball at SST

Volleyball Programs

Bang Harder, Stuff Block and Dig Everything!

Volleyball is a demanding sport that requires great strength and vertical jump ability. Do you want to take your game to the next level?
Experience how SST has helped many volleyball athletes dominate their opposition on the court. The SST difference lies in the individuality we take in designing your personalized strength and conditioning program. Volleyball is a demanding sport that requires great levels of specific strength, power, flexibility and endurance. With this in mind each SST performance program is meticulously designed to meet the demands and needs of the specific athlete.

A Complete strength and conditioning approach to Volleyball takes into account the athletes weaknesses and demands as well as enhances their ability to perform. Whether you play High School, Club, or National level SST will help you achieve results. Though the complete development of all aspects required for volleyball performance we can ensure that you will improve your performance.

Vertical Jump Program

SST’s Vertical jump program will give you the technique, and power needed to increase your vertical jump. Athletes often add 3-5 inches on their vertical jump in just a few weeks.

ONE-ON-ONE TRAINING

With One-on-One Training, athletes receive the complete and undivided attention of a personal Strength and Conditioning Coach (1 hour).

GROUP TRAINING

Group Training is conducted by a qualified Strength and Conditioning specialist who works with small groups (maximum eight athletes). The coach directs each athlete through his or her personalized weight training program. (1 hour).

Football Players – Who wants to take that the next step?

Here we are the Super Bowl is 1weeks away, Bowl season at U.S. colleges over, the CFL has long been done and high school football seasons’ ended over a month ago. What this means is there is many players done playing at their respective levels; and ready to take that next step. This is an exciting time for many, but it also filled with much nerves. If you played so well over the last year or two and are a sure fire # 1 pick, or if you have already committed to a school at that next level, you are coasting, you are set. However, this only is a lucky handful of extremely gifted athletes. Most are left unsure of where they are going to end up – or more importantly how they are going to get there!

This, for a great number of football players is where combine or team testing comes into play. Now is the time that you not only have to prove that you can play the game of football but teams and scouts want to see how much of an “athletic freak” you are during testing. This can help to separate two players from earning a roster spot but it can also help to improve draft stock as well, hello Oakland Raiders and two stud “athletic freaks” Jamarcus Russell and Darrius Heyward-Bey who got drafted simply on being tremendous athletes. Look what that did for Al Davis!

I came across an interesting study by McGee & Burkett breaking down the NFL Combine, and how the players faired in the tests in relation to the draft status. Common and crucial combine tests include perhaps the most important and well known football test, the 40 yd dash (as well as 10 & 20 yd split times), broad jump, vertical jump, 225 bench press test for reps, pro agility and 3 cone shuttle. It is well known that a player who tests well in the 40 yd dash should also test well in the vertical and broad jump tests. This is because power and strength dictates running speed, whereas the jump tests measure lower body power. So in short if you can run fast you can jump high – and vice versa.

It has been shown that the most accurate predictors of draft status for RB, WR & DB were the 3 cone agility, 10 yd dash and vertical jump; this is because these positions are the most reliant on speed and agility. The best predictor for OL & DL happened to be height, weight, 225lb bench press and broad jump; which also makes sense as to play these positions you have to be big and strong, clog up space and basically maul your opponent. The positions of QB and LB were much harder to predict based only on testing numbers as being excellent at these positions maybe more than any other rely on decision making and reaction skills rather than physical characteristics.

I know shocking!!! But it was shown that over all positions the players who were drafted in the 1st and 2nd rounds were collectively stronger, faster and could jump higher than those players taken in the 6th and 7th rounds.

Here at SST, we not only focus on getting our athletes stronger and faster in the weight-room, we also work to improve an aspiring athlete’s combine numbers. In fact with specific training and much hard work and dedication from many young athletes SST has had 4 players drafted in the first 2 rounds of the CFL draft over the last 2 years. Because of these players recent success and many others over the part number of years SST has been rated the #1 speed training facility in Canada, and in the top 15 overall in North America.

Not only do we train aspiring pro athletes, our main focus is helping young athletes aspiring to reach that next level. To find out how the pros train, and to undergo the exact same techniques check out two of SST’s upcoming football camps;

12 Week High-Performance Football Camp

8 Week Lightning Speed Camp

Stay tuned next week for a sample program from one of these athletes who showed so well at the CFL combine that it helped to ensure a high 1st round draft pick. If you want, it could be you too!!!

Diaries of a Football Player

Hi readers. Jordan Symonds here, coming to you this week, not as a strength coach or an SST employee for that matter but as a football player and a former SST Athlete.

I played football for 7 years and will still watch any game that comes on TV. In grade ten I played football for the first time, for my high school. Having no idea what the positions were, what all the rules were or what impact I was going to have on the team, I bought my first pair of cleats before any cuts were made in tryouts because after a few practices I knew that no matter what, I loved football.Having no experience and being one of the bigger guys on the team (6’3 180lb. pole), the coaches put me on the offensive line. My thoughts: ‘’I think the coach is confused… linemen don’t get the ball… do they?’’ Linemen do not get the ball. Getting over my initial disappointment, like anything, I tackled this football thing as best I could (pun intended). I met with the coach on my own time to go over blocking assignments, run block techniques, pass block techniques, and general knowledge of the game. Being very eager to learn and to succeed, I picked up many skills very quickly. I did so well that halfway through the season the coaches decided to use me on the defensive line as well. Going into playoffs, I was on the offensive line, the defensive line, kickoff, kickoff return, punt team and punt return; I did not leave the field. My teammates would run on and off the field depending on who had possession of the ball, who was kicking, or who was returning. I remained. Standing tall, standing strong, and standing proud. As a football player who had only been playing for about 8 weeks, I was fortunate to be able to contribute everything I had in me to the team, my team. From this I learned something very important: work for the team, and the team will work for you. My intelligence, athleticism and dedication gave me the tools I needed to be successful; it was my passion as a developing athlete, and my passion as an integral member of cohesive team that set me apart. My team was a group of developing athletes just like me, athletes whom I likely would have done just about anything for, on or off the field.

My team went on to win the regional championship in grades 10, 12 and OAC, and we were fortunate to win the provincial championship in grade 11.

Consequently, my high school football career was successful enough to have university coaches wanting me to play for their teams; football teams who were very different from my high school team. I learned many valuable lessons playing high school football, but some lessons were not available. There was one thing that stood out like a sore thumb: I could no longer stand out in university football based on natural ability and athleticism. My god-given skill set was no longer enough to set me apart from other players; my love for the game was still very much present, but it was not enough. I needed to compete, and not just with other teams. I needed to compete within my own team. I was now part of a group of guys who had just as much natural ability and love for the game as I, if not more.

I needed to be bigger, I needed to be faster, and I needed to be stronger.

Stay tuned for part two next week…

QB Canada Training and Development – Part 1

I know I’m going to restart the old debate with this question: “Why aren’t there any Canadian Quarterbacks in the CFL?” I’m sure you’ve heard a multitude of opinions on this issue; some you probably agree with, others just don’t ring true. I firmly believe there is more than one answer to the Canadian QB Question.

One thing I do know for sure is that we coaches need to do a better job of instructing our young Canadian Quarterbacks. I’m not just referring to high school athletes. I think good serious training can start as young as 8 to 13 years old. This is a great age, when kids are prime for both physical and mental development.

What can we do? Over the upcoming weeks this five-part series on Quarterback development will cover:

  1. Qualities of a good Quarterback, Part 1
  2. Qualities of a good Quarterback, Part 2
  3. Drops, drills and technique
  4. Throwing mechanics, Part 1
  5. Throwing mechanics, Part 2

Many people believe a good Quarterback is the player who can throw the furthest. Don’t laugh…I was at an all-star camp and was asked by the head coach to have the Quarterbacks just drop and throw as far as they could. They chose their starting Quarterback from this one drill!

What are some things I look for when choosing a Quarterback?

Mental and Physical Toughness

QBs often get all the glory when things are going well, but they also take most of the grief when a team is not performing up to par. I want to see a QB’s reaction after he throws an interception or after he throws a few bad balls. How does he react and how does he try to overcome this bad bout? The great Quarterbacks are able to come right back to lead their team down the field, letting go of what just happened.

Can the Quarterback stand back there waiting to throw the perfect ball knowing, that because he has to hold on to the last second, he’s going to get hit hard? Over the years I have played with some great Quarterbacks and have had the opportunity to watch numerous others. One strong characteristic that is common to all the great ones is that they will take the hit for the team. There is no better way to gain the respect of teammates than this. Let’s be honest, football is a physical game but most Quarterbacks are untouchable during practice, while everyone else is suffering full contact! Not only is this a good way to gain the respect of your team but, at the same time, you let the opponent know that whatever they do, they cannot rattle this Quarterback.

Football Training for Linebackers

The Linebacker position requires Strength to be able to take on and shed blocks from Offensive Linemen; Agility to tackle running backs in the open field and Speed to be able to drop back into coverage. In today’s SST Blog we will look at three exercises that will help you improve in these areas.

Log – Hang Clean and Press

One of SST favorite exercise for improved hand strength SST we like to use a Log with thick grips because it improves hand strength. This is important for taking on blocks, as well as tackling. The important part of this exercise is generating power through triple extension. That is using your hips, knees & ankles to generate force through your body and accelerate the bar up to your shoulders. Once there you re-bend your knees and again use triple extension to help lift the weight above your head.

This is a great exercise for not only taking on blocks, but also explosively driving through tackles.

  • blog965_1_1
  • blog965_1_2
  • blog965_1_3
 

Sled Shuffle

For this exercise you load weight on the sled and attach it to your waist with a belt. In a strong athletic position with knees bent and chest up the athlete drives off the leg closest to the sled. You can perform this exercise with higher weights and slower movement earlier in the off-season. As you get closer you want to use lighter weights and move more quickly. This is a great exercise to help shuffling and cutting. It is difficult to find an exercise that helps functionally strengthen those muscles, but this is our favorite.

blog965_2_1

 
 
 
 
 
 

Prowler Sprint

The prowler is one of the most polarizing pieces of equipment at our gym. Most people have a strong love-hate relationship with it. We have a term called the “Prowler Flu”, as several athletes have been forced to sign the bucket when they are done with it. You can use it in several ways – as an energy system workout when you push it for longer distances. But in this case we are going to focus on 10 yard acceleration runs. This is great for filling the hole during running plays, or having to change direction and accelerate after a quarterback throws the ball.

blog965_3_1

 
 

Throwing the Heat – Part 1

Decelerating For Harder and Faster Throws

One of the most frequently asked questions we get at S.S.T. from Baseball players is, “What exercises will make me throw ‘The Heat?’”. Often the short answer to this is “Do the opposite of whatever you are doing right now.” We’ll explain this answer later in this article, but first, to completely and properly answer this question we start with gathering some info from the athlete:

  • What are exercises are you doing to improve throwing now?
  • How many sets are you doing?
  • How many reps?
  • What is your tempo? (How fast you are moving the weight)
  • How long have you been doing this program for?

The most common answers we get at S.S.T. are a couple sets of bench press, a few sets of dumbbell chest press, some triceps stuff, and the odd med ball throws. The athletes complain that they have reached a plateau and can’t for the life of them throw any faster, or worse are starting to throw slower and have shoulder pain. This scenario is all too common amongst baseball players and often detrimental to any shoulder and guaranteed to lead to an injury. (Note: injured players don’t get to play.)

OK, so what should baseball players be doing to throw harder? The first thing we have our athletes do at S.S.T. is to go through an athletic assessment. One of the things we have them do is different strength tests to find out how strong the athlete is relative to their opposite lifts. For example, we may get a 160 pound athlete who might be able to close grip bench press 200lbs but then can’t do two medium grip chin ups properly. This is a relative strength imbalance which will limit their throwing velocity.

Another strength assessment we do is called the Paretials Test which is a test of the upper back and posterior part of the shoulder. Most baseball players and other throwing athletes fail this test miserably using just their bodyweight, let alone any sort of external resistance (For more information on S.S.T. assessments click here). This is because they have worked the muscles they use for throwing to a point where they are short and tight leaving the opposing muscle long and weak. Whenever this imbalance happens, your body automatically decreases the neural signal to your short tight throwing muscles as a defence mechanism to try and prevent you from throwing your arm out of its socket (If you keep it up, your shoulder can pop out). (For more on preventing shoulder injuries click here)

Solution #1: Stop training the muscles on the front of your body.

Most of our baseball players and throwing athletes at S.S.T. who have done this have had a significant increase in performance. Pitchers are throwing faster – some more than 10mph in 4 months – and our fielders and other athletes are throwing further, without pain!

Here is a sample beginner program to train the decelerators of a throw. To be done 2x/week on both arms.

  • A1 Paretials sets: 3-4 Reps: 4-6 Tempo: 2018
  • A2 External Rotators on knee sets 3-4 Reps: 10-12 Tempo: 2020

  • B1 Scapular Retractions High Pulley Sets: 3-4 Reps: 4-6 Tempo: 3013
  • B2 Pulley External Rotations Sets: 3-4 Reps: 10-12 Tempo: 2020

This routine is just a sample and should only be used for about 6 workouts because a routine is only as good as the time it takes for your body to adapt. (For information on why click here) Once your body adapts, you need to progress. This routine addresses only two shoulder imbalances and is not a cure for all imbalances of the shoulder muscles. There are several other assessments that we do at S.S.T. to determine shoulder health and all need to be addressed to really be able to “Throw the Heat”.

Mary Orr

Just a big Thanks for working with Mary .. Since we have been coming to see you at SST  she has become a  two -time junior national medalist and has just been named to the Junior International pair figure skating team and has just  accepted a international assignment representing Canada in Latvia in August.. Here is a great picture  from 2013 Skate Canada Nationals.

Flash Back Football Blog: Who wants to take that next step???

Here we are the Super Bowl is 1 week away, Bowl season at U.S. colleges over, the CFL has long been done and high school football seasons’ ended over a month ago. What this means is there is many players done playing at their respective levels; and ready to take that next step. This is an exciting time for many, but it also filled with much nerves. If you played so well over the last year or two and are a sure fire # 1 pick, or if you have already committed to a school at that next level, you are coasting, you are set. However, this only is a lucky handful of extremely gifted athletes. Most are left unsure of where they are going to end up – or more importantly how they are going to get there!

This, for a great number of football players is where combine or team testing comes into play. Now is the time that you not only have to prove that you can play the game of football but teams and scouts want to see how much of an “athletic freak” you are during testing. This can help to separate two players from earning a roster spot but it can also help to improve draft stock as well, hello Oakland Raiders and two stud “athletic freaks” Jamarcus Russell and Darrius Heyward-Bey who got drafted simply on being tremendous athletes. Look what that did for Al Davis!

I came across an interesting study by McGee & Burkett breaking down the NFL Combine, and how the players faired in the tests in relation to the draft status. Common and crucial combine tests include perhaps the most important and well known football test, the 40 yd dash (as well as 10 & 20 yd split times), broad jump, vertical jump, 225 bench press test for reps, pro agility and 3 cone shuttle. It is well known that a player who tests well in the 40 yd dash should also test well in the vertical and broad jump tests. This is because power and strength dictates running speed, whereas the jump tests measure lower body power. So in short if you can run fast you can jump high – and vice versa.

It has been shown that the most accurate predictors of draft status for RB, WR & DB were the 3 cone agility, 10 yd dash and vertical jump; this is because these positions are the most reliant on speed and agility. The best predictor for OL & DL happened to be height, weight, 225lb bench press and broad jump; which also makes sense as to play these positions you have to be big and strong, clog up space and basically maul your opponent. The positions of QB and LB were much harder to predict based only on testing numbers as being excellent at these positions maybe more than any other rely on decision making and reaction skills rather than physical characteristics.

I know shocking!!! But it was shown that over all positions the players who were drafted in the 1st and 2nd rounds were collectively stronger, faster and could jump higher than those players taken in the 6th and 7th rounds.

Here at SST, we not only focus on getting our athletes stronger and faster in the weight-room, we also work to improve an aspiring athlete’s combine numbers. In fact with specific training and much hard work and dedication from many young athletes SST has had 4 players drafted in the first 2 rounds of the CFL draft over the last 2 years. Because of these players recent success and many others over the part number of years SST has been rated the #1 speed training facility in Canada, and in the top 15 overall in North America.

Not only do we train aspiring pro athletes, our main focus is helping young athletes aspiring to reach that next level. To find out how the pros train, and to undergo the exact same techniques check out two of SST’s upcoming football camps;

8 Week High Performance Football Camp CLICK HERE

Stay tuned next week for a sample program from one of these athletes who showed so well at the CFL combine that it helped to ensure a high 1st round draft pick. If you want, it could be you too!!!