How to Program Workouts that Contain Both Olympic Lifting and Gymnastics – New Programming!

Olympic lifting and gymnastics are both complex movements, arguably the most complex movements in our fitness program.  They take time and effort to develop adequately.  Technique during these movement...
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Olympic lifting and gymnastics are both complex movements, arguably the most complex movements in our fitness program.  They take time and effort to develop adequately.  Technique during these movement also tends to fall apart as fatigue sets in.   Because of this I feel these movements have a bit more inherent risk of injury when performed for most people.  Obviously we want to keep our athletes safe but a lot of our workouts will have olympic lifting and gymnastics together being performed in a fatigued state.  This presents great challenge for the coach looking to maximize performance and reduce injury risk.  Luckily for us, I think we can approach this from a smarter angle.

We’ll need to ensure several things:

  1. Adequate technique (Think good technique with 1-3 rep work approaching maximal weight)
  2. Adequate technique under fatigue (Think good technique on the 8th, 9th and 10th set of every minute on the minute work)
  3. Adequate technique under fatigue in a mixed modal environment (Think good technique when performing olympic lifting in an AMRAP environment containing kipping handstand pushups and double unders)
  4. Slow progression over the course of the year with careful attention to avoid volume spikes in programming (and any change in

Now, in order to accomplish this I think we’ll need to periodize appropriately over the course of the training year.  Here’s how I approach it:

  1. Immediate Off-season – Deload olympic lifting and gymnastic – We perform very little olympic lifting and gymnastics work to allow time for the body to recover from the rigors of the in-season
  2. Early Off-season – We slowly start introducing strict barbell (squats, deadlifts, presses) and gymnastics movements (pull-ups, muscle-ups, handstand pushups)
  3. Off-season Phase 1 – Olympic lifting is introduced and dynamic gymnastics skills are introduced (Kipping Pull-ups, muscle-ups, handstand pushups)
  4. Off-season Phase 2 – Olympic lifting and dynamic gymnastics skill under fatigue is introduced (Every Minute on the Minute Work)
  5. Off-season Phase 3 – Olympic lifting and dynamic gymnastics are combined together in a fatigued environment
  6. Early Pre-season – Olympic Lifting, dynamic gymnastics and all other specific movements are combined
  7. Mid-Late Pre-season – All movements are combined in a manner most specific to competition

With this approach we have adequate time to improve technique and build strength in a non-fatigued environment.  Then we progressively introduce variables one at a time until we’re including these movements in a mixed modal environment (How competitions will test us).  This will minimize any spikes in training as well as any extreme changes in our training from session to session.  With this system we can continue progressing and reduce risk of injury.

With the FPF Performance Training Program we’re currently in off-season phase 3.  We’re starting to combine olympic lifting and complex dynamic gymnastics together in a fatigued state.  We’ve set the foundation over the course of the year and we’ve earned the right to get more specific.   Some other things we’re introducing this month:

  • Decreased aerobic base work – We’ve set the foundation early in the year and now we’ll be shifting focus toward more specific accessory work
  • Maxing out on dynamic gymnastics movements – We’ll be establishing your rep maxes for dynamic gymnastics like kipping handstand pushups and kipping pull-ups
  • Skill work for kipping muscle-ups – We’ll be spending the majority of this month fine tuning kipping muscle-ups
  • Increasing repetitions during met-con – The open will undoubtedly test our ability to perform high rep movements like wall-balls, toes to bar and thrusters.  We’re starting to incorporate more chippers and high rep sets into our programming

If you’re interested, here is a Brief Snapshot of the Programming:

  • 6-days per week done for you program for yourself or for your box (Perfect for affiliate owners)
  • Progressive daily olympic lifting, strength, gymnastics, and met-con that fits into a 1 hour block (I know how important it is to fit the entire class into a 1 hour block)
  • Two tracks: One for the average Joe looking to stay safe and get fit and another for the competitive athlete looking for success in the open and at competition.  Both tracks fit together well so your average Joe and competitive athletes can continue to train together side by side.
  • General warm-ups with mobility specific to the day’s lifting, gymnastics and met-con (All with video explanations)
  • Fun and varied daily met-con that fluctuates across the course of the year to prepare you for the open
  • Testers throughout the course of the year to ensure you’re making progress in the right direction
  • Fun partner workouts on saturdays
  • Joint health, mobility, foam rolling and injury prevention exercises built right into the programming (I take out all of the guesswork)

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All yours for less then $1 per day.  Let me take out the guesswork for you.

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Be Smart as We Prepare for the Season,

Dan Pope DPT, OCS, CSCS, CF-L1

Categories
gymnasticsInjury PreventionOlympic LiftingProgramming
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