## Unit 4 – Benefits of VBT

### Benefit #1- Auto Regulation

**Benefit #1- Auto Regulation **

J.B Mann states “Autoregulatory refers to a volume management system used to regulate individual differences in work capacity and allows these differences to be self governed and applied.”

In other words it means the load and intensity adjusts to the athletes specific fatigue level so they can get the most out of their training session.

The VBT autoregulatory component takes into account all of the stressors that an athlete may be experiencing for that given training session.

An athlete’s fatigue level can change from day to day. This is due to the stress the athlete’s place on their bodies daily. These stressors include previous training sessions, daily activity, sleep, nutrition, school, and many more.

All stress plays an impact. The body does not know the difference between physical or psychological stress.

These stressors will have an effect on the athlete’s ability to produce force, their ability to perform and their ability to resist injury.

An example of autoregulation in action would look like the following…

Week 1 Squats 100 pounds at .75m/s

In week 1 our athlete moves 100 pounds at .75m/s. This velocity is the desired velocity at which we have determined we want our athlete to train in this block. We call this first velocity and weight the baseline as this is the first data we have on our athlete. From this we will determine change in each training session as our athlete progresses.

Week 2 Squats 100 pounds at .6m/s

In week 2 our athlete moves 100 pounds at .6m/s. This week let’s say our athlete is fatigued. If we ask them to move the bar with 100lbs we would see a drop in velocity due to this athletes fatigue. In this case the velocity drop was to .6m/s from the previous weeks .75m/s. This is not ideal as our desired velocity for this block was .75m/s. To get to .75m/s we would have to encourage this athlete to drop the weight of the exercise in order to elevate the overall velocity.

Week 3 Squats 100 pounds at .9m/s

In week 3 our athlete moves 100 pounds at .9m/s. This week let’s say our athlete has recovered from the previous weeks fatigue. If we ask them to move the bar with 100lbs we now see a raise in velocity due to this athletes elevated readiness to train. In this case the velocity increase was to .9m/s from the previous weeks .6m/s. This is not still not ideal as our desired velocity for this block was .75m/s. To get to .75m/s we would have to encourage this athlete to increase the weight of the exercise in order to lower the overall velocity.

*To further illustrate our 3 days example this graph shows the actual day fluctuations of a projected back squat 1RM using VBT. This performance was actually tracked day to day in a real training block. *

*(This was a controlled study performed by KP Strength Coach Garrett Phelps) *

The fluctuations from day to day are due to the fatigue level of the athlete. Without the use of VBT these fluctuations would go unaccounted for and cause under or over training.

Autoregulation is one of most important aspects to increase performance and decrease likelihood of either over or under training. No other method of training can objectively account for these fluctuations.

### Benefit #2- Objective Feedback

**Benefit #2- Objective Feedback**

Another benefit of VBT is the objective and immediate feedback.

The visual and auditory feedback that VBT systems provide you have been shown to increase intent, and competitiveness of athletes.

The use of VBT and visual feedback in research has shown to increase sprinting and jumping performance compared to non feedback groups.

*The above images are examples of how the **technology used with** VBT ** can be used for immediate objective feedback in a training sessions.*

This feedback offered by VBT systems can not be replicated with any other training systems.

### Benefit #3- Power Development (Optimal Load)

**Benefit #3- Power Development (Optimal Load)**

A benefit of VBT that can not be done with other training systems is the use of optimal load training.

Optimal Load is defined as the “load at which maximum mechanical power is achieved.”

*This graph shows the relationship between force and velocity. The arrow demonstrates the “Optimal Load” which produces the most power. *

Optimal load training specifically targets the highest power output an athlete can produce. This is how to objectively determine an athlete’s “explosiveness”.

Power is the product of force and velocity.

In sport an athlete must not only produce a lot of force but they must produce a lot of force in a short amount of time. A shorter time frame means higher velocity.

Why is optimal load training so important?

Simply stated, optimal load has the greatest carry over to on field performance for all athletes.

How to find an athlete’s optimal load.

To begin finding optimal load you must start with a light load and increase the load until the power output decreases from one set to the next.

Below is an example of an optimal load protocol:

30% load for 3 reps record max power

40% load for 3 reps record max power

50% load for 2 reps record max power

60% load for 2 reps record max power

Once the power drops off (power decreases) there are two options for a coach.

**Option 1-** Use the load of the previous set before the drop as the optimal load.

Option #1 is the most simplistic approach to measuring optimal load.

**Option 2**– Split the difference between the previous set before the drop off and the drop off set.

Option #2 will narrow the optimal load to be more exact compared to option #1.

Once we have found the optimal load the athlete stays at that specific load for the prescribed sets and reps or until the power output drops a percent at the coaches discretion.

VBT offers a distinctly unique way to objectively capture optimal load that other training methods cannot. This is a benefit specifically unique to VBT compared to other methods.

### Benefit #4- Training Specific Strength Traits

**Benefit #4- Training Specific Strength Traits**

A great benefit to VBT is the ability to specifically train different strength traits.

Strength traits are simply “different ways the body completes a movement.”

Strength traits can either be more force dependent or velocity dependent. We will cover this in more detail through the “Speed Ranges” unit.

The use of VBT narrows the ability to train certain strength traits through the use of speed ranges and autoregulatory components.

Narrowing the focus of training to specific traits will allow for better optimization of each trait and overall training session.

Due to the lack of autoregulation properties in other systems it is almost impossible to train specific strength traits without the use of a VBT system. This makes utilization of VBT a key necessity for optimal athletic development.

### Benefit #5- Force/Velocity Profile (F/V) and 1RM

**Benefit #5- Force/Velocity Profile (F/V) and 1RM**

Another useful benefit VBT can provide comes in the form of a tool and is called a Force/Velocity Profile.

This can also be known at Load/Velocity profile. For the remainder of this Benefit we will discuss this as load instead of force. It is important to note that the two terms are interchangeable due to the higher a load the more force that will be required to complete the movement.

A Load/Velocity profile helps to identify if an athlete is either load or velocity deficient. Based on this profile the training cycle can specifically target the athletes greatest deficiency to make the athlete better.

A simple example would be an athlete that can squat 500lbs but can only jump 10 inches. This athlete would be a velocity deficit. Working on increasing his back squat would probably not help his on field performance as much as working through high velocity movements. The opposite can be said for an athlete that is load deficient.

#### To find a Load/Velocity profile would look as follows:

For each set you would take the highest mean velocity. It is critical that the athlete performs each set at maximum intent. In each set the load will increase which will decrease the velocity.

#### An example of a finished Load/Velocity profile is below:

Using the slope and intercept of this data a linear graph can be created. This graph is the Load/Velocity profile. Examples of this will be the following graphs…

**There are 3 different ways the graph can shift after a training cycle:**

**There are 3 different ways the graph can shift after a training cycle:**

** Even Shift**

**Shift Type One-** Even Shift of the graph = load and velocity deficient or an increase in load and velocity

The even shift of the graph means that the athlete is both increasing load and velocity at the same time. The program that would bring about this shift would be one that focuses on the whole load/velocity spectrum. This shift would be needed for athletes that are both load and velocity deficient.

**Load Shift**

**Shift Type Two-** Load shift of the graph = a load deficient athlete

The load shift would be wanted for an athlete that is load deficient. The program that would be associated with this shift would be a high load low velocity program.

**Velocity Shift**

**Shift Type Three-** Velocity shift of the graph = a velocity deficient athlete

The velocity shift is one that is needed when the athlete is velocity deficient. This program would be focused on a low load high velocity program.

These graphs of Load/ Velocity shifts can provide long term feedback for an athlete or coach to help determine overall progression from any targeted deficit thus leading to optimized long term development.

Lastly, the Load/Velocity profile projects an athlete’s 1RM for a day.Often times athletes like to see progress of a 1RM but may not be in a suitable time frame to test 1RM. With the Load/ Velocity profile we can accurately project a 1RM without testing an actual 1RM. With this we can more safely provide the athlete this information. This is just another example of how VBT sets itself apart from other training systems.

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### References