Don't Build a House on Cards.
Had an interesting conversation with someone the other day which sparked the topic for this blog content. I realize that I failed to really cover this topic in as much depth as it deserved so I think it warrants further explanation.
I tell people that understanding the guiding principles and theories for resistance training will increase their dog’s successes within the program. If you plan on teaching this idea to clients, you better be damn sure you know your facts. In prior blogs and throughout the online program content I talk about a few things. Progressive Overload, TUT, and Perceived Resistance. If you don’t know those terms, you need to stop reading this blog and read over those.
Progressive overload and time under tension are the crux of the foundational work. These core principles drive human strength and conditioning and should be in the forefront of anyone doing anything fitness related with their dog. These EXPLAIN the necessity for why you start with lower weight and make small incremental jumps. Again, I am not going to go explain these further. I encourage you to go back in the blogs and read up on those… if you are a student of mine currently- you already know and understand these.
MOST people seek CRT out because they want to induce muscle hypertrophy. I receive messages every day, asking if this program will help strengthen the hind end of their dog, or add some muscle tone. Of course it will…. but here is the kicker. Going back to the idea of TUT and Progressive Overload. Those ideas are important because when combined and utilized properly throughout training… they give your dog a strong foundation. I heard this on a dog training podcast (Controlled Aggression - check it out!) and it was something I loved and thought applicable here: No one wants a house built on cards….. it simply will not endure.
Muscle hypertrophy is the LAST thing you will see developing as a result of consistent training. THIS is why progressive overload and time under tension are key. Logic would assume that heavier weight, shorter distances to a novice dog would provide both adequate time under tension and sufficient overload… but it will not yield GPP. General Physical Preparedness or Preparation is the framework… this is your dog’s Building Blocks. GPP is loosely defined as the general conditioning to later be be built upon with goal specific training. It prepares the dogs for the rigors of advanced training! Going back to the “house of cards” comment…. you don’t want a dog that does not encompass the physical and structural integrity to withstand the challenges of heavier weight. Lower weight/ longer distance will allow bone density to increase ( needed to support that weight), soft tissue and ligaments to become stronger, and also start to activate the lymphatic system. These benefits aren’t outwardly seen with our naked eyes, so many forget about their importance within good resistance training.
The foundational work…. it should NEVER be forgotten or hastened. Those principles drive everything you do.