By James Goodwin, PTA, CSCS
By far the most common problem with young athletes trying to prepare for pre-season sports is trying the cram workouts in just before the start of the season. This almost always results in unnecessary trauma to the body which in some instances causes injury before the season even begins and for most results in mid to end of the season injuries. My recommendation would be to start earlier in the off-season (8-12 weeks before the start of pre-season) and gradually increase intensity of workouts as pre-season nears. The week just before pre-season should actually be a relatively light week where the body can actively rest before the rigors of pre-season. Now that does not mean take the entire week completely off just decrease the volume of workouts (i.e.: decrease sets/reps and decrease duration of workouts while maintaining high intensity). This will better prepare the body for the season without taxing it too much. Remember, you’re goal is not to peak during pre-season but to reach maximal performance levels when it matters most – playoffs!