130: Pat Trainor on Holistic Performance Training in Pro Baseball | Sponsored by SimpliFaster

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Today’s episode features physical preparation coach Pat Trainor, who is currently the Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coordinator for the Tampa Bay Rays baseball organization. In his current role, he oversees the physical preparation of the Rays player development system, consisting of about 175+ athletes and 8 staff members. Pat is a coach in the pro baseball ranks who is a master of context. When it comes to training high-level athletes who already have a high degree of sport skill; enough for them to get paid for it, there is never just one solution for every athlete. On top of this, integration of one’s training system into the grand scheme and vision of the sport coaches is critical to success, something Pat does a great job of and goes in depth into in today’s episode. Pro sports are often a tradeoff of skills as well, if you get faster and quicker, you may lose some hitting power, so managing what to change and how to do it is important. In today’s episode Pat goes in detail into how he builds his physical preparation program around the needs of his players, and in context of their skill demands. He also goes into the importance of the feet, his approach to maximal strength development as well as how to approach agility development in baseball. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster, supplier of high-end athletic development tools, such as the Freelap timing system, kBox, Sprint 1080, and more. Key Points How Pat integrates his physical preparation work in context of what the skill coaches are wanting to accomplish The importance of the feet in training baseball athletes Maximal strength considerations in context for minor league baseball The differences in physical readiness between players of different cultural backgrounds (USA and Latin America) Building speed and agility in baseball players and lynchpins that determine an athlete’s ability to move properly “In field/court sports you don’t have this one variable you can point to and say “that’s what made this guy better” “We need to be able to train athletes to handle practice workloads” “The number one thing we can have the largest impact on is speed/acceleration (for baseball)” “We as physical preparation coaches always have goals, we want to make sure we spend some time on players weaknesses, but don’t want to spend so much time we take away from their strengths” “If we want to work on defense and speed, that’s part of the pie we are taking out of that guy’s day” “We use the 5-10-5 basic pro agility… it can be used as a measure of strength… we don’t use a 3 or 1 rep max test (outside of maybe January)” “Our outfielders may not need to do as much decelerative work as our infielders” “Agility is really weird in baseball… for me it more comes down to a mobility standpoint” “If players lack internal rotation, that’s saying something along the lines of that’s wrong from a tissue standpoint or a bony process” About Pat Trainor Patrick Trainor is currently the Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coordinator for the Tampa Bay Rays baseball organization. In his current role, he oversees the physical preparation of the Rays player development system, consisting of about 175+ athletes and 8 staff members. Prior to joining the Rays in his current role before the 2017 season, he has spent time with the San Diego Padres and Cleveland Indians, as well as a previous stint with the Rays as an assistant strength and conditioning coach at the Minor League affiliate level. Outside of professional baseball, he has held positions at the collegiate level with Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, PA (2007-2009) as well as Queens College in New York (2012), overseeing the physical preparation of varsity sports.

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