Archive for March, 2014

Starting a High School Strength Program

Posted in MBSC News, Media, Strength Coach Podcast, Updates, Training, Training Females, Youth Training with tags on March 31, 2014 by mboyle1959

I wrote this article years ago for the NSCA Journal and now have it in the Free Articles section on

“Frequently at clinics I speak with high school coaches who are interested in starting or improving a strength and conditioning program at their school. Most often they are looking for guidance in setting up the program and, always want to talk sets and reps . Coaches ask should I do BFS, use the Husker Program etc. etc. Much to their dismay, I generally want to discuss organization and administrative concepts because, in my experience, these are the real keys. Setup and execution make the program run not sets and reps.
If you get one thing out of this article remember this quote (author unknown).
” A bad program done well is better than a good program done poorly”.
Keep it simple, and adhere strictly to the following guidelines: ….”

Starting a High School Strength Program  click here to read the remainder


1.5 Million Views?

Posted in Uncategorized on March 28, 2014 by mboyle1959

Tomorrow will be a big day. I’ll presenting at the first Irish Sport Coaches Institute event in Dublin and, my blog will hit 1.5 million views. I have to admit the numbers astound me a bit. We’ll be filming an eight hour seminar that will become Functional Strength Coach 5. I’m really looking forward to the event. Can’t wait for tomorrow. Tonight we’ll do a short one hour business seminar for twenty and then tomorrow we’ll start at 10 AM.

How Strong is Strong

Posted in Uncategorized on March 25, 2014 by mboyle1959

My Strength Question post a few days ago was one of the most viewed in quite a while so I figured I’d post a follow up piece.

I original wrote this for T-Nation in 2007 or 2008 and reposted it on my site a few months later.

It’s interesting, ask a strength coach what a good bench press is for a 200 lb male and chances are you’ll get a good answer. Maybe everyone won’t be in agreement but, everyone will have an opinion. Ask a good strength coach what constitutes good single leg strength or good vertical pulling strength and I don’t think you’ll get the same level of agreement or, if everyone will even have an answer. The answer might even be something like “what do you mean?” Last spring and summer I set out to answer both questions. How much single leg strength and upper back strength are actually possible? I think if you are going to train, you need a goal. If we are going to train for strength, we need to know what strong is. The four-minute mile is a great example. In 1957 Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile. On that day he broke a twelve year old record. By the end of 1957 sixteen runners had also broken the four-minute mile. It’s amazing what someone will do once they have seen that it is possible. Twelve years to break the record and sixteen followers in one year. My goal is to raise the bar on both single leg strength and upper back strength by telling the strength and conditioning world how strong strong might be…

to read the rest click below

Nice Piece on Breathing Pattern Disorders from Mike Reinhold

Posted in Core training, Guest Authors, Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Random Thoughts, Strength Coach Podcast, Updates, Training with tags on March 24, 2014 by mboyle1959

Mike Reinold did a nice piece on breathing pattern disorders on his blog.

Breathing is the next big thing, especially if you work in the adult fitness market. I think a lot of us ex-meatheads are seeing the value of a few minutes of deep breathing.

7 Days to Ireland

Posted in MBSC News, Media, Seminars, Strength Coach Podcast, Updates, Training, Training Females, Youth Training with tags on March 22, 2014 by mboyle1959

We are seven days away from the Irish Sport Coaches Institute seminar on Saturday March 29th and, there are still a few tickets left. This will be the only time I’ll be in Europe in 2014 ( as far as I know). To grab one of the last few tickets go to .

Functional Training for Sports

Posted in Core training, MBSC News, Random Thoughts, Seminars, Strength Coach Podcast, Updates, Training, Training Females, Youth Training with tags , , on March 21, 2014 by mboyle1959

My first book Functional Training for Sports was published in 2004. This year we broke 50,000 copies sold worldwide with translations in German and Japanese. How crazy is that?

PS-Hope to see lots of you tomorrow at the sold out Perform Better Seminar in Boston with Robert Dos Remedios, Nick Winkelman, and Martin Rooney.



Interview Homework?

Posted in Core training, Fat Loss, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Nutrition, Random Thoughts, Strength Coach Podcast, Updates, Training, Uncategorized with tags on March 20, 2014 by mboyle1959

My last post on A Strength Question was really well viewed so I thought I’d answer another question from a reader.

Q- Hey Mike, I have a second interview at a fitness center and the manager gave me “homework”. He wants to know what kind of program you would give this man:

34 yr old male, works construction, and has a weak core and anterior pelvic tilt. He needs to lose 15 lbs and has bad eating habits.

A- I could write about this forever but, a few tips. If a client works construction use your common sense and forget things like carries, sled pushes etc. This guy does manual labor and doesn’t need the “fake labor” we often use in training.

You also need to realize that under-training will be key. Make this guy so sore he can’t go to work and you lose a client. Make sure to explain this so the client realizes that you understand the demands of his job. Explain that you need to ramp up over a few weeks.

Also, this guy may have a weak core and anterior tilt because of all the flexion he has done for work. Think hip mobility and core stability. Definitely no flexion for this guy and hopefully some easy extension in warm-up.

As for the 15 lbs, nutrition, nutrition, nutrition. Again, as we talk about often, learn to speak construction worker. What is breakfast like? Coffee and a bagel? How many breaks do they take? Does he pack a lunch? When he understands you have put some thought into this he will become a fan.

The big changes are

1- Good, high protein breakfast

2- Food packed for breaks

3- Food packed for lunch.

Hope this helps.



A Strength Question?

Posted in Uncategorized on March 18, 2014 by mboyle1959

Got this question from a reader and thought I’d make the answer a post.

Q- “When you are in the strength phase for a specific sport that doesn’t require you to be brutally strong(basketball, baseball,tennis) would you train to be as strong as possible(how they do in football) or would you still stay fundamentally sound?”

A- The reason I wanted to answer this as a separate post is that I think we can address a couple of strength and conditioning misconceptions in one post.

If we read above,  the first assumption/ question is should you train to be strong in sports that might not appear to require maximum strength.  The answer to that would be a resounding yes. The bigger question relates to the question we pose frequently in seminars, “How strong is strong?”, or “what defines strong”?

All athletes should train to be as strong as possible, period. There may be rare exceptions but, they are few and far between.

The second issue relates to the “how they do it in football” part of the question. This relates to how we define strong. I don’t define strong by back squat or bench press. I define strong first by the ability to handle bodyweight.

Can you do a good pushup? 

How about 10 chin-ups? 

How about a one leg squat?

The simple answer is it’s not that simple.

GMO’s- Ban Them or Label Them?

Posted in Fat Loss, Media, Nutrition, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized with tags , on March 14, 2014 by mboyle1959

Genetically modified foods are a huge concern these days. Should they be banned or just labelled?

Read this and see what you think?

Shopping Last Night- A Trip AROUND the Store

Posted in Uncategorized on March 13, 2014 by mboyle1959

We all know the key to shopping is to stay out of the aisles. All the grain ladened stuff that can last forever is in the aisles. Stuff that can go bad ( but is good for you) is on the perimeter.

Our trip to the store yielded lots of staples ( I know the Bud Light is a wheat product but, we all have weaknesses).


Lots of quality protein including:

Australian Grass Fed Rib Eye, Canadian Bacon, Ground Bison, and Greek Yogurt. Also, Organic Milk. Our nutrition is far from perfect but, quick perimeter trips definitely help.