Jun 06

The Blind Spots of Athletic Training

An Athletes Entourage and the need for collaboration in Injury Prevention Rehabilitation & Elite Athletic Training

“No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent.”
John Donne

 David Oliver Beijing Olympics

I spent the day today in an Elite Athlete Training Gym.  I was watching, in this case, high school athletes training hard, and the personal trainers working to improve the functional movement, speed, and agility of these athletes.  As I was watching, I kept seeing the details that were being missed by the trainers, and the lack of knowledge from the young athletes that they were doing anything that might be a cause for future injury.  One of the athletes had her left hip turned slightly outward.  Another athlete was compensating for a lack in torso rotation.  This minutia is what makes the difference in many cases between world record and bronze or even injury.

It came to me at that moment that everyone has blind spots.  Everyone has areas of expertise and areas where they just don’t see.  Especially in group settings, it is difficult to see all the details and minutia that are happening in your athlete’s bodies.  Where are they compensating, where are they strong or weak or unbalanced etc.?  I remember doing a group stretching for my stepson’s soccer team and, as my wife was watching, she caught the details that I couldn’t see because I was at that moment looking at the bigger picture instead of scrutinizing the details. 

This is why it is so important to collaborate.  To join forces with others in our field who know more than we do in some areas and are learning from us in other areas.  Any athlete that is looking for status as one of the Elite, as a Tier 1 Sponsored or paid Professional Athlete, needs an entourage of trainers who collaborate to weed out every minute weakness, compensation, or limitation.  The goal of any athlete is to perform at and beyond peak performance while maintaining a healthy body free from injury so that he/she can continually perform well into the future constantly improving and exceeding his/her own expectations.  This should also be the goal of that athlete’s entourage.  A trainer or sports therapist’s ego can be the death of that athlete’s career.  I have seen so many trainers dismiss other modalities and other trainers who had a different take on training than they did themselves.  I have seen those athletes with constant injuries and setbacks regardless of how hard they work and train. 

If we want our athletes to perform at the highest level they possibly can and beyond, we must leave room for the expertise and talents of others.

I have a very extensive background and utilize a multitude of training techniques.  I have been trained by some of the top schools and trainers in the world, and have worked with some of the most amazing athletes.  My expertise, the area in which I have absolutely mastered, is in injury prevention and rehabilitation with a special emphasis in returning an athlete to not only 100%, but to a level never imagined in power, flexibility, and core strength.  What I have not mastered are the aspects of training that involve sport specific techniques or the daily activity of sport training.  I am the guy that you bring in to look at the tapes who will find the minutia of weakness and compensation.  I need good trainers, top athletes who work hard, and coaches who know the sport inside and out.  I need a team to work with, and so does every athlete and every trainer and every therapist.  We all need to have someone else that can see our blind spots and point those areas out.  Time for ego to be set aside so that the purpose we seek is met with humility and collaboration.  This is the next evolution for the Elite Athlete of the Future.  An Athlete’s Entourage!!!

“Individual commitment to a group effort – that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.”
Vince Lombardi

 Ari Gronich is highly trained and certified in many disciplines within the fields of bodywork, emotional release, energy work, nutrition, sports hypnotherapy, health, and kinesiology and sports therapy. For the last 17 years, he has helped transform his client’s bodies and lives through increased performance, enhancing physical, mental and emotional health.

To work with Ari, or for a Consultation Appointment you can email performancetherapist@gmail.com or call

310-363-0FIT (0348) or visit him at:  http://www.performancetherapist.com


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