You want your strength and conditioning program to give you results. However, there’s a tendency for athletes to focus too much on the exercises they perform and not the goal of their overall program, which can lead to lackluster results.
This has long been the case with the Bench Press, and with the YouTube generation we are seeing more and more athletes gravitate toward exercises that look cool but often don’t actually improve performance.
That’s why I recommend that athletes develop a workout system that will enhance performance. Once this system is laid out, you can simply fill in exercises based on the goal you defined for that portion of the workout. Developing a system or template for a workout allows you to have consistent training sessions and adjust exercises to add variation or account for the equipment you have available to you without affecting the overall benefits of the program.
For simplicity of this article we will look at a two-day-per-week systems-based training program. The goal is to increase acceleration qualities, increase muscular power and strength, and focus specifically on eccentric hamstring strength.
Day 1: Linear Acceleration & Total-Body Strength
Soft Tissue: Foam Roll-Quads/Hamstrings Trigger Point- Calf
Mobility: Hip Flexor, Hamstring and Thoracic Spine
Movement Prep: Marches, Skips and Bounds
Speed: Heavy Sled Runs (50% of bodyweight) – 5-7 repetitions
Plyometrics: Half Kneel Double Jump With Double-Leg Landing – 4×3 each
Power: Hang Power Clean – 5×2 @80%
Lower-Body Strength: Barbell Deadlift – 4×6 @70%
Upper-Body Strength: Weighted Pull-Ups – 4xMax
Corrective Exercise: Straight-Leg Band Stretch With Lowering – 3×12 each
Posterior Chain Strength: RDL – 3×10 & Face Pulls – 3×12
Conditioning: Shuttles – 3×150 yard
Day 2: Lateral Acceleration and Total-Body Push
Soft Tissue: Foam Roll-Glute, Lats and Foot
Mobility: Groin, Glute and Thoracic Spine
Movement Prep: Shuffle, Crossover and Bounds
Speed: Partner Bungee Push & Replace (35% of bodyweight) 3×5-10 yards each direction
Plyometrics: Lateral Double Box Jump With Single-Leg Landing – 4×3 each
Power: Single-Arm Dumbbell Push-Press – 4×4 @85%
Lower-Body Strength: Barbell Back Squat 4×4 @85-90%
Upper-Body Strength: Barbell Bench Press – 4×4 @85-95%
Corrective Exercise: Deadbugs 3×12 each
Posterior Chain: Eccentrc Hamstring Curls – 3×10 & Band Pullaparts – 3×12
Conditioning: Interval Circuit-Ropes and Med Ball Slams – 10×30 sec. each with 30 sec. rest
A systems-based training program has different exercises within it but stays within its own written principles. This allows you to first create a program that has defined goals and then plug in exercises that will help you achieve those goals.