Where the VALUE Is

Man, what a wild week it has been.  At the last minute instead of me flying to Colorado for a quick turn around trip, we loaded up the camper with dirtbikes, dogs, and a Dangerbaby and set out for another adventure.  We went down to Moab, UT where it monsooned for 24 hrs and forced us to go and create even cooler memories together as a family than I could have thought.  We got to enjoy some of the most amazing natural creations in the world that are just mind blowing.  We realized that we wanted to make it an annual trip with Dangerbaby as she is growing up.  It couldn’t have been any more awesome.

Over the last few months we have been really trying to figure out what it is that we want to make sure everyone knows about SISU STRONG.  What is it that people think of when they hear our name.  Ultimately for me I want people to think of us as a company that is built around Passion to help others realize what they can do with their lives.  James and I have always been about going after our dreams.  They are very different and have taken us down different paths but we are both going after what we want to accomplish.

Just Last week someone told me it was funny how reserved James Tatum was compared to me.  I laughed and told them they couldn’t be more wrong. Very often I forget that I am 8 years older than James because I am always looking to him for coaching advice.  But James massively influenced my desire to follow my passion.  A few years ago James began Olympic Lifting and decided he was getting pretty good at it and that he wanted to go to the Olympics.  So many people look at us both and just think we got here by clicking our heels.  Couldn’t be further from the truth.  James moved his family to Charlotte, NC for the chance to train with some of the best lifters and coaches in the country and pursue his dreams.  To make this happen he bagged groceries for awhile to build up his name and support his weightlifting habit.  It wasn’t an easy road, but James had a dream and wasn’t going to let anything get in the way of that.

So how does this A.D.D. post have anything to do with where the value is?  Well, it’s because the value in what we do lies in the coaches we have involved with Sisu Strong.  You can get tons of free epic programs for any sport you want on the internet.  BUT…what doesn’t come with those programs is the coaching quality that we offer at Sisu Strong.  James’ is one of the best mechanical improvement coaches you will ever come across in weightlifting.  That is what you are paying for when you are working with our programs.  All of our programs are as good as they get.  But it is our coaching that sets us apart.  These are the exact reasons we have paired up with the incredible Athletes we have as well.

We have some of the most incredible Motocross racers, mountain bikers, BMX racers, wakeboarders and snowboarders involved with us at Sisu Strong.  We work hard with them to provide the most technical coaching and analysis in and out of the gym.  We completely know and believe that we have the best coaches in their specialties and we work together to bring a product unlike any other business out there.

So where is the value?  The value is in who we are as coaches and what we do.  You aren’t buying a training program.  You are buying coaching from some of the best coaches in strength training, weightlifting, and action sports.  Get in touch with us to see how we can help you.

“Your will to persevere through adversity, will determine the level of greatness you achieve.”

Strength Training in Action Sports

The main role of strength coaches in this industry has mainly been either A) Rehab or B) Make the athletes really tired so they feel like they have accomplished something.  It’s time for a change.

These athletes spend countless hours trying to take their sport to the next level every day, which basically means putting their bodies on the line every day. You can watch snowboarders going 20 feet out of a 20 foot half pipe, motocross guys are attempting triple back flips on a 200+ lb bike. BMX guys are building 60ft drop in ramps to get as much air as they can for 1080s. We are training downhill mountain bikers who are going 30 mph over rocks and trees. Our moto endurocross athletes Nick Thompson and Rich Larsen put their bodies through absolutely brutal training. I mean it is nuts. I remember 15 years ago watching Cary Hart huck himself over and over trying to land a back flip off the step up kicker and now guys are hitting double back flips and 360s over 90ft gaps. With the endless need to be pushing for the next level, injuries are bound to happen. This is where having a good strength foundation that is relative to your sport performance needs can massively help improve injury prevention but also longevity of a career.

So what is it that strength training really brings to the table that just going out and riding doesn’t do for you?

1. High levels of Eccentric Strength are needed in these demanding sports to help control landings. Strength training is the best way to develop this type of strength. The stronger your legs are the better you can absorb a landing from 30 ft in the air and the less likely that landing will end in disaster.

2. Correcting Imbalances – which muscle groups are lagging in strength and which muscle groups are overdeveloped? Imbalances can seriously hinder overall peak performance and greatly increase injury risk in action sports. Where is the greatest risk for injury, or the weakest link?  We use a full movement and performance assessment for every athlete to figure it out.

Where is the greatest risk for injury, or the weakest link?

3. Increased flexibility and mobility – ensuring functional, pain-free movement through a functional range of motion for the athlete’s sport.  A good strength training program supports this by developing stabilizer muscles and dialing in good movement patterns (push, pull, squat, hip hinge, bracing, etc…) that carry over to the sport itself.

4. Improving Sport-Specific Strength – Strictly speaking, a snowboarder may not need a whole lot of upper body strength, but he or she absolutely must be strong enough to withstand the impacts that their upper body absorbs on hard crashes.  Increased rotator cuff strength is extremely beneficial in preventing shoulder dislocations, for example. This is different from a BMX or Motocross rider, who needs a much higher level of upper body strength, as their shoulders and wrists are actively involved in the sport and are a pivotal part of the success of the rider.

Strictly speaking, a snowboarder may not need a whole lot of upper body strength, but he or she absolutely must be strong enough to withstand the impacts that their upper body absorbs on hard crashes.

5. Improving Aerobic Capacity and Work Capacity is also essential for action sports athletes because it allows them to perform at a higher level, for longer, more frequently.  That means more practice runs before exhaustion and greater peak performance endurance on competition day.

The benefits of adding a well-planned strength program that doesn’t take away from sport-specific training simply cannot be overstated.

We want to make sure our athletes are at optimal levels of strength, conditioning, and overall health to be able to maximize their time actually practicing/competing in their sport.

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Or, sign up for a Free Intro Consultation with us to get started down the path to feeling better and performing better in your sport.

Giants Among Men and Women

As we have settled into our new home we have had the chance to get to know the area and what it all has to offer.  By far one of the most unique parts of Park City is the Olympic Training Center.  In the last 2 weeks I have met and gotten to train alongside Olympic Athletes from the United States, Australia, Austria, and other countries. I have also gotten to meet and train alongside some of the biggest names in Big Mountain Skiing.  As far as gym time goes for these athletes you very quickly find it easy to figure out which athletes in the gym are on an Olympic Team and who is training themselves for action sports from a professional or recreational enjoyment. Travis gets approached almost daily while training and is asked if she is an olympic athlete but no other moms are getting the same questions.  Here’s the reason why and the differences Ive seen among the training of these awesome athletes.

Training Norms of Olympic Athletes in Park City

1. Mobility and activation drills of some kind

2. Dynamic work in the form of plyometrics or olympic lifting

3. HEAVY Back Squats, Front Squats, Deadlifts, and Push/Pull variations

4. Heavy unilateral and supplementary work

5. REST PERIODS (by far this is the most standout difference. These lean strong badass athletes are taking 2-5minutes between their sets)

Training Norms for the Pro Training Themselves or the Recreational Mtn Athlete

1. Warmup – usually involving a fast row or talking about what they are doing that day, while still trying to figure it out

2. Stacking a stability ball on top of a box and jumping up onto it to balance

3. Some very light barbell complex that actually varies each time

4. Some sort of fast paced metcon

Now I am not saying anything to the extent that one is right and one is wrong. I have my opinions on how I prep athletes for their sports and it works for us. I am simply pointing out what I see on a daily basis in a training facility that caters to world class athletes from around the world. And the only difference is that there are some athletes training with a coach and programming and others doing it on their own.  For some reason the athletes that we see that aren’t working with a coach feel that it is totally unnecessary to lift heavy and follow a structured plan.  We are going to have the chance to sit down and talk with some of these Olympic Athletes over the next few weeks and I couldn’t be more stoked to hear about it from their point of view.  There is a large gap and misconception of the importance of strength training around the action sports community and we hope to do our part to bridge that gap.

Check out our Tech Tip of The Week to fix the bottom position of your squat.

A Better Bottom Position in the Squat

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Have a great week