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Energy conservation and energy optimization are critical aspect of performance training and overall training from a holistic point of view.  It refers to the practice of using energy efficiently while performing physical activities to avoid unnecessary strain on the body and optimize performance.  Conserving energy, individuals can improve their overall fitness levels, reduce the risk of injury, and achieve better performance outcomes. 

Despite this making logical sense it is not often applied in sports.  From head coach/position coaches to performance coach and athletic trainers they are all fighting for individual attention from athletes.  Before you know it they are doing more harm than good.  

Instead of fighting for athletes to be; practicing, training, watching film, pre-hab, rehab…etc, it would be best to optimize, eliminate unnecessary stress for the benefit of the athletes.

Let’s look at some essential tips for energy conservation before, during and after training.  

  1. Warm-up and cool down exercises

Both are important, yet I’d argue both have a bunch of fluff involved.  Find your big rock warm-up exercises, perform them and move on.  Post workout even something as small as 30 focused breaths can help speed up the recovery process for athletes.  

  1. Proper form and technique

Using proper technique while performing exercise can help conserve energy by reducing strain on the body.  Poor form can quickly lead to unnecessary fatigue and even injuries, which could ultimately hinder performance

  1. Avoid over-training

Referring back to my last blog….are people over trained or under recovered? Read Here Overtraining can cause a decline in performance.  Often you can see this in KPI’s if you are tracking (sleep, vertical jump, sprint test, VBT scores).  Synchronization between performance staff, AT and coaches can help alleviate this problem.  Adequate rest and recovery time will help recharge the body, build muscle, and reduce risk of injury.  

  1. Using proper breathing techniques

This is something I was never in tune with as a player, but recently have started to pay more attention to.  Thanks to Brian Peters and his work he is doing I have started to apply breathwork with my personal training and clients.  Controlled breathing can help to regulate heart rate, maintain focus, and reduce fatigue. Whether this is something you are interested in or not I believe everything has a time and place.  If you’d like to learn more about the importance of breath check out “The Oxygen Advantage

Wrapping it up energy is a finite resource for everyone.  There are certain things that are and others that aren’t worth your energy.   Are there things we can eliminate? Are there others we can optimize? From the list above consider which can help you conserve energy to take your performance to the next level.  

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With strength, 

Colin Masterson 

Owner – CM1 Performance