Stronger Athletes

Becoming Mainstreamed: Coaching Videos & Books

February 3 "If the enemy opens the door you must race in." –Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Becoming Mainstreamed: Coaching Videos & Books

Often times when we meet other coaches and begin discussing strength training, we find that most, if not all, have never heard of training philosophies similar to the one we promote at These coaches either respond in one of two ways. Some develop a keen interest as we tell them that our so-called, "non-traditional," methods have been around for decades and that the likes of high schools through NFL teams use these methods. Others will disregard us as if we were the newest cult since Hale-Bop.

We do not blame these close-minded coaches for their perception. They have been brought up with a background that training must be done a certain way. Chances are these coaches train their athletes the way they were trained by their coaches. These guys, assuming they are football coaches, probably run the same offensive and defensive systems they ran as players for that is what they are comfortable with.

Many coaches turn to popular literature and coaching videos to help educate them on the current trends. A popular catalog that is distributed to coaches all over the country is published by Championship Productions. (Let us say this is not an ad for their company just an example of popular coaching products.)

The Championship Productions catalog offers a variety of books and videos on topics from "Wing-T Schemes" to "Defensive Line Play". Contributing authors of these books and videos include coaches from the nation’s top programs including Kansas State, Iowa, Iowa State, Miami, Georgia, Texas, Washington State, Virginia Tech, Penn State, Marshall, Nebraska, and Florida State. Many coaches, who receive this catalog use these resources to grow and learn from the best.

On the Strength & Fitness page of the January 2003 catalog, 11 books and videos are listed. Assuming that most coaches are unfamiliar with our training philosophy one would think that resources about that philosophy would be limited. However, I was pleased to discover that 4 of the 11 products were aimed at safe, productive and efficient training methods. Another 4 were aimed at training that would promote what we feel are unsafe movements, but would fall into the mainstream. The remaining 3 of the 11 items are most likely of little use to the traditional sport coach doubling as the strength coach such as, "Strength Ball Training" and "Buddy Lee’s Instructional Jump Rope Video & Magic Speed Rope Cross Trainer".

Our point being that 1/2 of the products aimed at strength training for football, or other traditional interscholastic sports, promote safe, productive, and efficient methods. It is our hope that more and more coaches will become aware of these and increase their working knowledge of strength training.

Listed below are the items a coach seeking sound strength training instruction might want to purchase. Again, this is not an advertisement for Championship Productions, but it should be known that the following images and descriptions come from their website.

High Intensity Strength Training for Football with Ken Mannie, Head Strength Coach and Tim Wakeham, Asst. Strength Coach, Michigan State University

Mannie had developed a weight training program designed to enhance players’ performance potential, specifically their strength and explosiveness, along with decreasing chance and severity of injury and enhancing body composition. The top exercises for each body part are demonstrated while Wakham provides key teaching points for success. Sample training programs are also included. 2000. ISBN 1-56404-463-7.
FV-1285-FB08(High Intensity Strength Training) 37 minutes…..$39.95
Manual Resistance Training with Tim Wakeham, Michigan State Strength and Conditioning Coach and Jim Kielbaso, University of Detroit Director of Strength and Conditioning

Wakeham and Kielbaso introduce an intense training methodology used by many of the top strength coaches, personal trainers and rehab specialists in the country. Manual Resistance Training is body on body, heavy-duty resistance training. A perfect mode of training when expensive equipment and/or time isn’t available! The video covers a comprehensive list of over 30 manual resistance exercises for all major muscle groups and sports needs. Each exercise is described using sport-specific training cues and demonstrations. 2000. ISBN 1-56404-491-2.
GV-1307-FB08(Manual Resistance) 32 minutes…..$29.95
> Fundamental Strength Training for All Sports with Chip Harrison, Head Strength and Conditioning Coach, Penn State University

Harrison introduces the concept of training to momentary fatigue and of the benefits of such an approach. Athletes are taken through a complete off-season workout from start to finish. Harrison provides an in-depth view of the implementation process for strength training, from proper training technique to guidelines for spotting, exercise selection, and training intensity. He also shows how to devise a year round strength training program, underscoring all the components of a safe, well-designed program. 2000. ISBN 1-56404-431-9.
GV-1208-FB08(Fundamental Strength Training for All Sports) 36 minutes…..$39.95
A Practical Approach to Strength Training (3rd Edition) by Matt Brzycki, Princeton University

Matt Brzycki examines all aspects of strength training, including: specificity, high intensity training, explosive training and plyometrics and offers advice on organizing individual and group strength training programs. Featuring Nautilus, Universal Gym, free weight and manual resistance exercises, this revised edition also includes chapters designed for those who teach strength training at the high school and college levels. 1995. ISBN 1-57028-018-5.
GB-45-FB08(Strength Training) 249 pages…..$17.95

We feel that all coaches who work with kids in the weight room should continue to grow and learn about their profession. If you are new to safe, productive, and efficient training ideas or you are already a believer we suggest you make these products a part of your curriculum.

You can contact Championship Productions online at or by phone 1(800) 873-2730.

If you know of any other products of this nature that would be useful to the strength coach please let us know and we’ll post ‘em up!

***No Liability is assumed for any information written on the website. No medical advice is given on exercise. This advice should be obtained from a licensed health-care practitioner. Before anyone begins any exercise program, always consult your doctor. The articles are written by coaches that are giving advice on a safe, productive, and efficient method of strength training.***

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