Getting sucked into the online vortex of people selling the next big thing that will change your life is an easy slide. Snake oil, miracle cures and guaranteed diets abound – often for a lofty price. The strength and conditioning field is no different – there are countless ‘systems’ available for sale that claim to revolutionize the way athletes train and perform.
The Canadian Sport Institute Calgary (CSI Calgary) however, offers a distinctive approach to education. Now offering its Strength and Power Performance course for the fourth time in three years, the CSI Calgary aims to cut through the fads and get to the heart of strength and conditioning edification.
The course is led by Dr. Matt Jordan, CSI Calgary Director, Strength and Conditioning. He says it’s is different because it’s all about sharing knowledge and creating a powerful learning environment where participants can apply new skills in a real-world training setting.
“We’re not interested in a cookie cutter approach that tends to be pervasive in the strength and conditioning business where everyone is trying to sell something,” says Jordan, who works with high performance athletes in Alpine, Cross Country skiing and Speed Skating. “This course is about sharing knowledge – we have nothing to sell. We simply want people to walk away a better coach.”
This year the course is being offered in two streams, based on feedback received from previous courses. The first stream is designed to drive education in sport and power performance. This is for coaches looking to expand their knowledge and learn about the CSI Calgary strength and conditioning system.
The focus is on providing a powerful learning experience through shadowing opportunities, experiential learning and application of new knowledge. For example, participants will go through an exercise with an athlete to learn movement assessment skills. Other knowledge and skill development includes exercise selection, programming and loading parameters.
The second stream is for a high-level group of strength and power coaches who come together to share knowledge. This stream emerged as coaches began to recognize the advanced nature of the CSI Calgary system and consists of hot topic discussions, serving as a ‘think tank’ to further advance the strength and conditioning.
Jordan says the second stream is a collaborative approach where participants can make new contacts in their network. Participants will also be offering presentations in their own areas of expertise to the first stream group, which broadens the scope of the course and achieves the goal of knowledge sharing.
“With this course we’ve been able to attract some very bright people who not only attend to learn, but also share their work with us so we all benefit,” adds Jordan. This year we have coaches from a professional NBA team and a group from the NACL Return to Sport Clinic in Minnesota will attend the second stream and present to the first stream.
It’s a refreshing take on education in the field of strength and conditioning, and a role that Jordan and his group at CSI Calgary take very seriously. “We’re not selling smoke and mirrors,” says Jordan. “We’re here to share knowledge.”
Canadian Sport Institute Calgary: @csicalgary
Written by Kristina Groves: @kngrover
Photo by: Dave Holland @csicalgaryphoto