We at CSSM were lucky enough to have Andrew Russell join us as a guest presenter at our recent Run Long Run Strong information evening. As Hawthorn’s Elite Performance Manager, Andrew has played a major role in Hawthorn’s premiership three-peat and has a track record of 4 premierships in 11 years at Hawthorn.
His wealth of knowledge in the areas of maximising performance, strength and conditioning as well as the psychological aspects of elite sport was showcased throughout his captivating presentation.
Some of the very interesting and thought-provoking topics Andrew discussed were:
1) The way you perform on the training track makes only a small contribution towards your overall success as an athlete. The sacrifices you make outside of training (diet/lifestyle) increase your emotional commitment to success and play a much greater role.
2) The way you think influences your actions, your actions then develop into habits, and your habits harden into character.
3) Stress has a negative effect on the mind and the body. The most important factor in decreasing your stress response is having a sense of control over all parts of your life. Create strong social support networks.
An inspirational and hair-tingling video of Stephen Curry’s journey towards being one of the best shooters in the NBA was used to demonstrate the power of sacrifice, commitment and pure determination. A quote from this video that has stuck with me was, “Are the habits that you have today, on par with the dreams that you have for tomorrow?” …. Are they?
As Elite Performance Manager, Andrew ensures all players know exactly what is ahead of them at each training. He does not believe in throwing in any unexpected “lemon twisters”, valuing the trust that the players have in him each day. The players train hard, but recover even harder.
In pre-season Andrew designs the programs to have more extreme variations in training loads, with importance placed on pure speed and pure endurance early on, funnelling towards repeat efforts as the weeks progress. The importance of a strong preseason was portrayed in a ‘Games played vs % pre-season’ graph. The players that completed an average of 87% of the pre-season program, played on average 23 games with no injuries. Those who completed an average of 65% of the pre-season, played on average 16 or fewer games. The average group percentage of pre-season completed in 2008, and 2013-2015 was over 80%. These same years Hawthorn went on to win the AFL Premiership. Need any more motivation for a solid pre-season?
The Run Long, Run Strong education evenings are held to support CSSM’s preferred charity the Indigenous Marathon Foundation anf their Indigenous Marathon Project. CSSM was proud to donate $520 as the proceeds of this event.
Posted February 17th
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