Elite Sports Performance – Expo 2016
The performance sport industry has seen massive expansion over the last few years, most definitely derived from the wealth of evidence-based research and data from advanced applications, technology and physical and cognitive training interventions. Exercise physiology has been successfully applied in many different sports, from dance, to gymnastics and rugby…not just cycling. The Elite Sports Performance expo is in its second year, and showcases commercial and non-commercial exhibitors aimed at sports and fitness practitioners from all backgrounds, with many companies new to the industry.
The expo covers a couple of days, and gives practitioners a chance to see whats new, all under one roof with a packed seminar and presentation agenda across seven lecture theatres to discuss the scientific rationale of the products and services on offer; supplements and nutriceuticals, advanced biomechanics to cryotherapy, sleep quality, metabolic flexibility and nutrition, Addiction in sport, isokinetic taping for injury to name just a few. This proves to be a challenging exercise to try and convince as many sceptical professionals as possible to engage with their offering, who ultimately need to convince even more sceptical recreational athletes, although I feel some of it is just ‘noise’.
Like many practitioners I like to keep on top of my game, and the ESP is a real chance to scan the horizon for what’s developing as a new trend and understand the utility behind it, this may even be something as simple as a new body composition device (bodystat.com) or new compression garments (isobar-compression.com) or a greater emphasis on bigger trends like whole body cryotherapy (cold immersion) with a plethora of solutions becoming available (cryosc.com).
The usual nutrition in sport and performance health representatives made an appearance, although with increasingly more novel approaches in the field. Last year I was introduced to Nutritics.com, a professional application with an edge over My Fitness Pal for assessing clients dietary composition and how well matched with energy expenditure to provide insight to how well tailored nutritional intake is for each specific phase of a programme, crucial for conditioning and body composition adaptation.
Of course it’s impossible to see and hear everything, but for me it’s about keeping an eye or ear out for a new addition to my coaching armoury. Learning from more unfamiliar sports, can help improve my offerings and let me evolve my practices. For instance in coaching philosophy, mentoring and style of delivery (). I sat through an exciting presentation of a great approach to deliver strength and conditioning programmes with emphasis on the individual and specific tailoring with ‘empathic accuracy’ as a pivotal focus in a programme. Empathic accuracy is the ability to accurately perceive, from moment-to-moment, the mental condition of another. For sport and exercise scientists to successfully work with a client they must constantly monitor their client and must be accurate in their perceptions. Abovefailure.net is a refreshing NLP-based offering to help coaches align the goals of their clients and something I will be looking much forever in to.
In my opinion, ultimately it is the coach-client relationship which determines the success of any training programme, while supplements, aids, devices, applications and more are superfluous until true insight into client training and response is fully understood so to be as productive as possible. Transparency is everything, and I hope to share my coaching processes and philosophies in my next post!