Should Athletes Train Individual Muscles or Only Sports Movements?
As a trainer, I have to know how to train people from all walks of life. I’ve seen bodybuilders, strength athletes, middle aged men, obese housewives, trained athletes, newbies, weekend warriors, and about 100 other types of people and athletes. No one routine can be designed for everyone.
Even in niches like baseball athletes, strongmen, and Olympic lifters, there is no one-size-fits-all training routine. You can’t take a baseball pitcher and train the pitching motion for 5 hours a day, 7 days a week. It just won’t work. So how do you train athletes that only need a small variety of movements to be successful at their sport?
A long standing myth about training for sports, is that you should only train the common movements for your sport, so that you can get better at those movements. If you know nothing about physiology, kinesiology, or basic physics, then logically that makes sense.
However if you think about how the body really works, you will realize that the body will always find a way to perform any intended movement. Have you ever bench pressed and altered your shoulder, elbow, hip, knee, or foot position in order to eek out that last rep?