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Elite coaching strategy

Dear Club Member
In previous years little importance has been put on international competition and meeting BJA squad criteria. The reason for this being the expense of travelling abroad and ETD attendance when other suitable high level events have been available in the UK. 
It is now recognised that as a member of the Stroud Elite Squad with the potential to progress to a higher level in more senior age bands that it would be a good time to make a mark within the BJA rankings.  This would mean some forward planning for the coming year both from a competitive and financial aspect. 
In the immediate future this would mean attending selected ranking events interspersed with lower level events for competition specific  training.
If you are willing and able to commit to this level then you should read the SJC Elite Level training guide and rules. Please also make sure your parents have sight of these documents as they may also have to agree to any commitment . 
Please also note that all training plans should be fit for purpose and approved by your coach. 
Richard Neale.
Club Coach
SJC Elite Level Training Guide
Most people are unaware of the process which athletes undertake in their individual sports to reach the World Class or Olympic level. “You get there by sticking it out. Many will try and not succeed.”
In fact, while there are exceptions, coach it’s common for athletes to invest four to eight years top level training in a sport before making an Olympic team. For example, it may take a runner that long just to develop the aerobic base necessary to compete as a world-class athlete. That entails maximizing lung capacity, heart strength and lactate tolerance (your ability to continue performing as your muscles are flooded with lactic acid and you hit the wall).
With that in mind, many top athletes plan out their training schedules annually and up to four years in advance to make sure they reach specific performance goals. 
To make sure they hit their targets, athletes frequently meet with sports specialist and coach–to discuss their strengths and weaknesses and accordingly tweak their diets, overloading and recovery techniques.
Those who make it to the highest level have to be mentally tough too. Frequently separated from their families to train or compete in national and international events, they’ve got to juggle their demanding training schedules and personal lives. Since many athletes don’t have sponsors to help cover their daily expenses, some also have side jobs or careers.
They’ve also got to be able to beat out their best friends, the people they regularly train with year in and year out, just to get that number one spot.
That’s where the benefits of preparing and executing a training plan come in–so when the pressure mounts, athletes will feel reassured that they’ve done enough lifting and speed work. Many athletes also use visualization techniques to picture exactly how they want to win.
And, if you want to train like an Olympian, be prepared to go to bed at the same time as the kids. Athletes aiming for the games need to sleep anywhere from eight to 10 hours a night. Resting is crucial because it gives the body a chance to rebuild tissue and muscle that’s been broken down during training.
In other words, training like an Olympic athlete is more than a full-time job. 
But, of course, the benefits can be great.
Ref: main points taken from University of Notre Dame/Forbes
The athlete should acquire basic athletic skills, appropriate social behaviour and functional knowledge of the rules necessary to participate successfully in competitive events. Athletes should be encouraged to develop and maintain year round good physical fitness and nutritional habits. Training and competition plans should schedule 4-6 sessions per week for a minimum of 8 weeks. Longer plans should include recovery periods customized to the individual, a typical example of which can be seen in the following graph.
Goal Setting is a joint effort with the athlete and coach and should include the following:
1  Structured into short term, intermediate and long term
2  Stepping stones to success
3  Accepted by the athlete
4  Varying in difficulty from easy to challenging
5  Measurable
Does the goal meet the athlete’s needs
Is the goal a positive goal
Is it a goal and not a result
Is the goal important enough to the athlete
What barriers might they encounter
What do they need to learn
What risks need to be taken
All training is based on the following principles:
1. Specificity
2. Progressive increase in load, time, frequency
3. Overload to encourage adaption
3. Total commitment to task
4. The athlete will maintain a detailed training diary
Skill sets and timing is paramount in judo and must be worked on continually, however periodization should be applied to fitness and body conditioning along with alternative or additional training. Organization and planning is key to a successful programme which is best accomplished backwards. The coach and athlete work back in time until arriving at the beginning of the training year. Best plans are flexible and simple allowing for modifications depending on the athletes progress. The major objective is to ensure the athlete is fully prepared physically and mentally to perform at peak capacity. Each period of the programme will have its specific training objectives. The coach will need to assess the athletic activity to determine the suitability and proportion of its content.  
1 General Preparation Period
Fitness and conditioning is developed in this period by gradually increasing the volume training. This will allow the athlete to accomplish the demands of the specific training which follows. 
2 Specific Training Period
During specific preparation both volume and intensity is increased although not necessarily in a straight line so as to allow for recovery. Technique work should be completed prior to fitness work so that the athlete is not fatigued.
Aims of this period:
1Development of sports specific muscle strength and endurance
2 Development of appropriate aerobic and anaerobic conditioning
3 Development of muscle power
4 Development of sports specific skills
3 Competition Periods
During the competition period, volume is gradually decreased and intensity increased e.g. heavier weights are used but less often, speed workouts are faster but with longer recovery times. Competition characteristics are simulated during this period (lesser events). Training loads should be heavy enough to improve fitness levels yet light enough to maintain energy levels. “Athletic shape” should be at its highest
Aims of this period
Maintain the gains of preparation period
Improve required skill sets 
4 Transition Period
This period is to allow the athlete to recover physically, mentally and emotionally whilst maintaining a good level of fitness. Alternative or low intensity activities should be implemented.
During this period carry out the following:
Review goals and determine which were achieved
Self assessment of progress
Coach evaluation of each athlete  
Aerobic conditioning could include:
Anaerobic Conditioning could include:
Interval Sprints
Interval Rowing
Hill Sprints
As a guideline weight sessions performed in general preparation periods should be performed 2-3 times per week using mainly compound movements 3 sets at 8-12 reps This should be gradually increased through the competition period to 5 sets of 4-5 reps twice per week.
A typical competition plan would include 4-5 Ranking events interspersed with lower profile events used as competitive practice and leading up to main target goal. Example below:
Jan           Midland Age Bands (Training)
Mar         Northern Ireland (Ranking)
May        Bedminster Open (Training)
July         West Open (Ranking)
Sept        Devizes Open (training)
Dec         British Championships (Ranking, Main Target Goal)
Last Updated on Friday, 04 March 2016 13:28