Friday, 8 November 2013

Morrill Performance Fitness sessions

Over last weekend, I attended two Ultimate related fitness sessions hosted by Tim Morrill of Morrill Performance. The two sessions were structured like involved classes where Tim would teach us about the foundations and theory behind what fitness Ultimate players should be doing and why. The first session I attended was around Strength and Power and was held in a gym.
The beginning was an explanation of common problems with the makeup of an Ultimate player including asymmetry caused by throwing/pivoting and the need to not only produce force but absorb it also with a note that injuries happen on deceleration a lot more than acceleration, as well as what a typical regime should look like.
The rest of the session was surrounding the categories of exercises which should be included in gym sessions and example exercises to do with demonstrations of them and time to practice them to ensure we were getting the form right. This also included a 3 minute kettle-bell swing-a-thon by all participants which certainly caused a few tight hamstrings.
We also had time to build our own gym routine at the end, with a plan which included exercises from all the categories in an easy to follow structure.
I really found this session very helpful. Not only did I learn a lot about the theories behind why certain exercises are useful and got help planning a comprehensive gym routine which I will be using going forward, but I also used it to figure out which parts were directly related to areas of deficiency in my personal fitness.

The second session I attended was around Speed and Agility and was held on an artificial turf field. This session was similar in structure to the strength and power with the start dedicated to teaching the theory, before moving onto specific exercises and drills which would help build up Ultimate fitness and could be used as a training/tournament warm up.
The first part was discussing Self Myofascial Release. I already owned a hockey ball and a muscle massaging stick (and I’m buying a foam roller soon) and I knew the benefits of using these, but Tim showed us specific points where it would be useful to release and some of these I hadn’t known about before and so it was useful to go over these.
4 way Hip stretching was a big part of this session (as was as Glute Activation) and we were also shown plenty of ways to do this.
His warmup routine had a lot of similarities with the one’s Pedro has been running with Ka-Pow! this year so during that part I felt pretty comfortable, but there were some additional parts which I think we will be incorporating into our warmups for next year. We also ran ladder drills and agility drills which included serpentines, shuttles and 10 cut drills.
In some ways it was a shame that these sessions were scheduled during the offseason as I felt pretty tired and unfit completing these drills, but it was also highly advantageous to know what I should be taking into my own fitness going forward.

I had been intending to start my offseason fitness program this week with my program being influenced by these sessions, but I managed to catch some sort of bug which had been going around the office, and so I have been unable to go to the gym or yoga this week.
Speaking of Yoga, it was good to hear Tim talking about Yoga principles, positions and movements throughout both sessions as it validated my decision to take it up and use it as an additional session to include in my fitness program, both in the past and going forward.

Offseason fitness starts next week!

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