The Effects of Squat Depth on Knees by Darius Marsh

Do you ever have any knee pain when you squat or have to use accessories, such as wraps for relief during squats? For many athletes and the general population this is a normal occurrence. Many individuals say that knee pain can be due to technique for different squat variations, such as the back squat, front squat, and overhead squat. Although knee pain can be caused by technique, studies have used athletes’ and the general population’s squatting depth to evaluate knee pain. Different squatting depths have effects on the knee, such as pain, force, and stability.

In today’s fitness world, many individuals are told to squat to parallel to avoid injuries to the lower extremities. Unfortunately, this is a false statement because parallel squats can actually cause more of a risk to your ACL and PCL. The squatting depth of the general population varies based on a person’s knee pain. Squatting depths vary from different angles, such as “ regular squats between 60°-70°, a half-squat between 80°-100°, a quarter squat between 110°-140°, and a deep squat between 40°-45°” . Prior research suggests that “the deep squat presents an effective training exercise for protection against injuries and strengthening lower extremities” .

In addition to knee pain, the squatting depth can affect the amount force put on the knee. The amount of force put on the knee can cause an individual to not squat as low as they desire due to discomfort. Individuals have various squatting depths to produce more or less force on the knee. One study suggests that peak ACL forces occur between 15°-30° of flexion, decreases significantly at 60° and levels off after higher flexion […]

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 24th, 2015|Training Info|0 Comments

Athletic Lab to launch Soccer Tryout Prep Sessions

Athletic Lab is pleased to announce an 8 session soccer specific training package designed to assist youth players in developing the soccer specific fitness necessary to maximize their chances at team tryouts. The sessions will be offered at 5pm on Monday and Friday beginning on Friday March 27th. Athletes should select one of the two weekly sessions however schedule changes may be made if required by the athlete. Classes are specifically catered to U-11 through U-14 players.

Classes will be lead by Athletic Lab’s expert team of soccer-fitness specialists. Athletic Lab staff has 5 years of on-staff experience with professional soccer clubs and regularly consults with professional players, clubs and national teams. Most recently, Athletic Lab hosted Korean club Seoul E-Land FC for 2 weeks of pre-season training.

Each session will last approximately one hour and will follow a planned progression over the course of the 8 weeks to ensure maximum development and safety. We will develop soccer specific speed, agility and conditioning while including special work for ACL and hamstring tear prevention. Get ready today!

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 23rd, 2015|News|0 Comments

Coach Nick Newman qualifies for USA Taekwondo Championships

Athletic Lab coach and Director of Scholastic Training, Nick Newman, recently qualified for the USA Taekwondo National Championships by virtue of a Top 3 finish at the North Carolina state Taekwondo championships. Nick will compete in the Men’s Black Belt Sparring Welterweight division (-80kg). The event will be held in Austin, Texas on July 4th-11th.

Coach Newman is no stranger to elite level sport. A former elite long jumper who competed for Mike Young’s elite track & field club (HPC Elite), Nick competed in the UK National Championships and still holds the outdoor long jump record for the club.

If you are interested in supporting Nick’s trip to the National Championships please contact info@athleticlab.com.

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 21st, 2015|News|0 Comments

Athletic Lab Endurance Team Runs Tobacco Road Marathon & Half Marathon

The Athletic Lab Endurance Team took to the Tobacco Road Marathon & Half Marathon this past weekend. Athletic Lab was represented by 11 members of the team. For some, this was their first Half Marathon. For others, it was just another race to add to the books. Jeff Ludwig and Athletic Lab coach Stephanie Shaw posted top 25 performances in their respective age groups. A huge congratulations to all of our athletes that competed in the Half Marathon.

Jeff Ludwig – 1:40:49 (23rd in age group)
Stephanie Shaw – 1:47:00 (20th in age group)
Anne Strickland – 1:37:57
Heather Scott – 1:52:54
Erica Jones – 1:52:54
Nina Fricker – 2:02:34
Hope Weant – 2:22:20
Amy Rowland – 2:01:51
Amy Lindley – 2:40:49
Andrea Stamm – 2:07:51
Stacey Hamilton – 2:24:21

Here are some photos from the event:

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 20th, 2015|News|0 Comments

Stability Precedes Power by Pierrie Miller

As the spring approaches, team sports increase in popularity, rather you’re an athlete who is in the beginning of their season or coming toward the end of a season, injury prevention is always important. As trainers it is our job to ensure that our athletes are prepared for the rigors of a long season. Training requiring a strong mix of strength, power, flexibility and stability is often used to prepare athletes for performance. Often times we hear athletes express the want to be more “powerful”, but less often do we here athletes express the need to be more stable. The idea of training to be more stable might seem silly at first, but it is difficult to perform powerful movements dynamically without a certain amount a stability. This is why we must look at some of the benefits of dynamic stability training. Popular magazines and television often show people conducting stabilization exercises on balance beams, stability balls, and other various forms of unstable surfaces. The truth is, although this looks interesting, it does not necessarily carry over to sports performance. Dynamic stability can be defined as, the process of the hip, knee, and ankle complexes to perform functional movement patterns at high levels without the feeling of slipping or giving away (wilkstorm et al. 2006). The muscles that surround the joints of the human body require a certain amount of stiffness in order for our bodies to maintain an upright posture. Without a certain joint stiffness individual joints may become hyper flexible, which my leave us at risk for injury, preventing this injury is top importance for all trainers. Injuries to lower extremities can happen at […]

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 20th, 2015|Training Info|0 Comments

Metabolic Conditioning: How it works and why it’s effective by Aaron Porter

Metabolic Conditioning (MetCon) is a term that has been loosely used for some time now. Produced in the age of High Intensity Interval Training and CrossFit style workouts, it is easy to see why some athletes and exercise enthusiasts would be confused as to the difference between the three styles. The secret to understanding true Metabolic Conditioning and its benefits is found in the formatting of the workout itself. The format of each consists of little details in types of movements, rest intervals, and targeted energy systems that sets each apart from the rest.

For the purpose of this article we will focus solely on MetCon. MetCon is a set of conditioning exercises designed for the purpose of enhancing energy storage and delivery for any activity. Consider that MetCon brings circuit training to a higher level. The beauty of this style of training is that it is designed to provide a faster more efficient way to produce desired results without sacrificing any of the quality. The object of MetCon is to alter and manipulate specific variables that affect the body’s adaptation to exercise stimulus. These variables include intensity, exercise selection, sets, reps, rest intervals and time under tension. By simply changing one or two of the variables, one can target different metabolic pathways in order to prevent adaption and increase metabolic capacity.(2) Simply decreasing the rest intervals would increase the intensity of the movement. The fact of the matter is that Metabolic Conditioning is just that. It is targeting a specific metabolic pathway and increasing metabolic demand in order to quickly and efficiently increase energy expenditure and overall metabolic efficacy.

There are many benefits to MetCon training as with […]

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 19th, 2015|Training Info|0 Comments

The Effect of Squats on Distance Running Performance by Darius Marsh

Distance runners have all heard the myths or opinions that back squats are bad for distance running. Many people and coaches believe in order to become good or increase performance in distance running. You need to stay away from back squatting and just increase your mileage for the week. Unfortunately, this is a mistaken concept by many people today.  In reality, the back squat can be beneficial and effective for distance running. When you think about it, most of the muscles being used for the back squat and distance running are the same such as gluteus maximus, hamstrings, and quadriceps. The beneficial effects that the back squat has on distance running are reduced risk of injury, increase in performance, and running posture.

People are always concerned with pain and injury when they start distance running. An easy way to alleviate this problem is to implement back squatting into your training at least once or twice a week. “Back squatting will also help in making your muscles stronger surrounding a particular joint and creating more stability for that joint” . These joints, such as the knee, can become more stable and have less pain during long runs. Back squatting can also help with recovery time for your legs after long runs throughout the week. If you’re running at least four times a week this will help to lessen the fatigue after runs.

As well as reducing the risk of injury, back squatting can help with increasing your performance in distance running. Back squatting a moderate or light amount of weight can help a runner in developing a faster tempo and being able to go for […]

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 18th, 2015|Training Info|1 Comment

Three Reasons Why You Should Squat by Tim Ippolito

Back Squats…you either love them or hate them. Although back squats may not be everyone’s favorite exercise, they may be the most beneficial. Back squats improve lower body strength. The primary muscle being used in the back squat is the quadriceps. The secondary muscles being used are the hamstrings, calves, glutes, lower back and core. This is known by even some of the most novice weightlifters. However, the back squat does much more than just improve lower body strength. This blog will touch on three of the biggest benefits that the back squat improves.

1. Create An Anabolic Environment. No other exercises creates more of an anabolic environment than squats do. So what does that mean? By incorporating squats into your workouts, you will promote overall muscle growth across your entire body. Squats place your muscles under an immense amount of pressure. When your muscles are under pressure, they release a hormone called testosterone. When testosterone is released, it circulates throughout your entire body, which promotes muscles growth.

2. Maintain Mobility. Researchers have determined that leg strength is key in maintaining mobility. As discussed earlier, squats do a tremendous job of increasing leg strength. By increasing leg strength, you can maintain mobility as you age. Some of the first research of its kind, done by Auburn University in 1989, determined that squatting regularly improved knee stability, strengthen connective tissues, and made these connective tighter and stronger. Squats also have a large range of motion compared to other leg strengthening exercises. By doing a proper, below parallel squat, you can increase mobility.

3. Sport Performance. The first two benefits include general population, but if you play any kind […]

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 16th, 2015|Training Info|0 Comments

Seoul E-Land FC Complete 2 week Pre-Season Training at Athletic Lab

For the past 2 weeks, Athletic Lab has been the off-season Sport Performance Training Center for Seoul E-Land FC. Seoul E-Land FC is a South Korean professional football (soccer) club based in Seoul that will compete in the K League Challenge in the upcoming 2015 season. 2015 will mark the inaugural season for Seoul E-Land FC. They were recently announced as the league’s second football club based in Seoul and feature several of the top players from soccer-rich Korea as well as National Team players from Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago. While in the Triangle, E-Land FC played several pre-season test matches against local college and professional teams including Duke, UNC and the Carolina Railhawks.
Athletic Lab is proud to have hosted E-Land FC and assisted in their pre-season preparation. We are very grateful that the club chose Athletic Lab for their sport performance training as they prepare for their inaugural campaign. Coaches Martin Rennie and Dan Harris have assembled a great team of hard working athletes and it was a pleasure to work with the team. The respect and work ethic of the players and the commitment to sport science and physical development from the coaching staff are hallmarks of a successful team.  We wish them the best in their upcoming season.

– Mike Young, PhD
Athletic Lab Owner & Director of Performance
Athletic Lab has a long history of assisting top-flight soccer players including players from multiple professional clubs, championship professional clubs and national team members. We offer both general and soccer-specific training as part of our Sport Performance Training program.

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 11th, 2015|News|0 Comments

Strength Class returns March 30th

On Monday March 30th, Athletic Lab will be restarting our hugely successful Strength program. On average, members who participate in the Athletic Lab Strength program improve their strength by over 15% in just 8 weeks which leads to big improvements in Weightlifting and CrossFit.

The Athletic Lab Strength program is a specialized 8 week training block with periodized progressions designed to enhance basic barbell strength. Periodization refers to a planned training progression designed to elicit the greatest possible gains in a defined physical capacity or skill. Barbell strength is foundational to performance in many strength sports like Olympic Weightlifting and CrossFit. In fact, many CrossFitters will find that they are able to significantly improve their CrossFit performances JUST by getting stronger. The program will take place during our 7am and 7pm Monday, Wednesday, and Friday classes.

The class will take place DURING our normally scheduled CrossFit classes at those time slots. As a result, our Performance Fitness members who attend during those time slots will do the Strength workout of the day rather than the workout seen in our other daily time slots. Those who sign up specifically for the Strength block will be required to pre and post test, will receive a plan with customized prescribed weights for each session, and will be expected to attend ONLY Strength sessions. If you meet these requirements please speak to an Athletic Lab staff member about switching your membership to the slightly lower priced Strength Membership option.  Once completed, you may return to your prior Performance Fitness membership. If you’d like to continue to have access to all of our Performance Fitness classes you can keep your existing membership exactly as it is. The Strength program will start on March 30th, 2015.

STRENGTH PROGRAM DETAILS

Meeting at 7am and […]

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Athletic Lab is the premier Sport Performance and Fitness Training center in North Carolina. Located in Cary, in the heart of the Triangle, we offer a variety of services including Sport Performance training for developmental to elite athletes, and Performance Fitness training including Cary CrossFit.

By |March 11th, 2015|News|Comments Off