Jef Souza wins 3 National Championships

Athletic Lab Masters Track & Field athlete won three national championships at the USA Track & Field Masters Indoor National Championships held in Winston-Salem, NC on March 20th-22nd. Souza won national championships in the long jump, 60m hurdles and pentathlon less than a month after winning a national championship in the heptathlon in Kenosha, WI. Jef also took second place in the shot put.

Souza competes in the 40-44 year old age bracket and is a world champion, multi-time national champion and national record holder. Jef Souza resides in Miami but has been coached by Athletic Lab’s Dr. Mike Young for the past 5 years as part of Athletic Lab’s correspondence training team and is a regular visitor to Athletic Lab.

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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 30th, 2015|News|0 Comments

Athletic Lab’s Mike Young assists at Chula Vista Olympic Training Center

Athletic Lab’s Mike Young was a guest at the Chula Vista Olympic Training center to provide sports science services to the elite throwers and multi-event athletes. Over the past 13 years, Young has been a regular guest in varying roles (coach, sport scientist, and athlete) at each of the three  US Olympic Training Centers in Lake Placid, Chula Vista, Colorado Springs.

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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 30th, 2015|News|0 Comments

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