Here’s How to Find Your Military and Special Ops Fitness Weaknesses

U.S. Marines and U.S. Navy Sailors with the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) and USS Bataan (LHD 5) participate in a 5K run for a Navy and Marine Corps Relief Society autism awareness fundraiser aboard the Bataan. (Austin Hazard/Marine Corps)

Written by Stew Smith –

If you’re getting ready for the future challenges of military training and testing, it’s smart to be honest with yourself and assess weaknesses you may have to face while becoming a tactical athlete. Creating a training program that will help you not only maintain certain strengths but build and eliminate weaknesses of any of the elements of fitness.

If you are unsure what the difference is between your previous athletics and tactical athletics and tactical fitness remember this simple phrase: A tactical athlete must be good at ALL the elements of fitness depending upon the rigors of the job within the military, special ops, police, and fire departments. An athlete in sports must be great at a few of the elements of fitness depending upon the sports or activity.

The Elements of Fitness So what elements do you need to consider while training for your future as a tactical athlete? Here are the elements of fitness: Strength; power and speed, agility; cardiovascular endurance (run, swim and ruck); muscle stamina; grip; and mobility and flexibility. Read More>>

Data in Sports Performance: Why Your Measurements Matter

Written by Matthew Hauck – Simplyfaster

Data collection has been a part of the daily routine of strength and conditioning coaches since well before the invention of software-based spreadsheets. There has long been a focus on quantifying heights, times, distances, weights, and much more within a strength and conditioning program. Regardless of the programming paradigm, the ability to objectively define improvements in performance is a central need of strength and conditioning coaches.

While handwritten records have largely progressed to a digital format, the process and procedures involved in testing and recording data have not experienced the same evolution. The logistics of data collection and recording in a large team environment where supervision and coaching take precedence creates many issues for strength coaches. The result of these actions creates an issue: How sure are we that the data we are recording in strength and conditioning, practice, competition, nutrition, rehabilitation, wellness, and recovery is accurate and reliable?

The quality of information we have available limits our ability as coaches to make truly informed decisions. To better understand this issue, it is worth diving into the field of measurement in research, statistics, and analytics to gain a mastery of foundational elements affecting the quality of the information you collect on athlete performance. Read More>>

MLS Player Landon Donovan: VAR Has Been Fantastic for Soccer

Landon Donovan

Written by Jen Booton, SportTechie

Our Athletes Voice series gives athletes a forum to talk about how technology has impacted their careers and their lives away from sports. This week, USMNT and MLS star Landon Donovan talks about how VAR has improved soccer, and how he is using technology now that he has retired from playing.

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Landon Donovan had one of the most successful careers in U.S. soccer history. He is the all-time U.S. Men’s National Team leader in assists (58) and is tied with Clint Dempsey for the most goals (57). He’s the only American men’s player to have broken both the 50 goals and 50 assists marks, is a four-time winner of the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year award, and helped Team USA win four CONCACAF Gold Cups.

During his club career, Donovan played 11 years with the Los Angeles Galaxy, but also spent four years with Northern Californian rivals the San Jose Earthquakes and short spells at Bayern Munich and Everton. He is the only player to have won the MLS Cup six times, twice with the Earthquakes and four times with the Galaxy.

Donovan, 37, retired after the 2014 MLS season, but rejoined the Galaxy for the second-half of 2016 after the team suffered a number of player injuries. He came out of retirement again to play a half-dozen games for Club León of Mexico’s Liga MX in 2018, and played for the San Diego Sockers of the Major Arena Soccer League in 2019. Read More >>