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Strength and Conditioning Coaching for Athletic Performance

Strength forms the foundation of all athletic performance. Whatever your sport, strength and conditioning coaching will enhance your stability, strength, speed, power, agility, mobility, endurance and injury resistance.

Although sports people have lifted weights for years, structured effective strength and conditioning training is still relatively rare outside well funded professional sporting institutions.
I work with people across the sporting spectrum, from beginners to experts, from para-swimmers, to tennis players, to improve their sporting performance and make them more injury-resistant.

Strength and Conditioning Coaching — your questions answered

If you’re into exercise, sport or training of any kind it’s likely that you’ve heard of “strength and conditioning” or “S&C” as it’s commonly known. But what is it, and how can working with an S&C coach help you in your sport?

Simply, strength and conditioning is the practice and process of athletic development specific to a sport – i.e. the part of training that isn’t practice that gets you fit and strong for your sport.


Simply, strength is our ability to produce or apply force. To relate this to you, the athlete, strength can also be thought of as the highest amount of force that you can apply in any given situation while doing your sport. 

Strength is typically trained by performing appropriate high-load resistance exercises, such as lifting weights.


Unlike “strength”, “conditioning” doesn’t really have a scientific definition. It refers to a collection of activities and exercises that “condition” or prepare the body for the demands of training and sport.

Conditioning programmes might aim to improve: 

  • Posture 
  • Range-of-motion at relevant joints 
  • Ability of muscles, tendons and ligaments to tolerate repeated loading during training and sport
  • Movement patterns associated with your sport 
  • Energy system development and the ability endure high intensity exercise

Good strength and conditioning coaching that is specific to you and your particular sport will have a number of fundamental outcomes that will lead to performance gains: 

  • Improvements in your ability to generate maximal force specific to your sport. 
  • Improvements in the efficiency and economy of your sub-maximal movements in your sport – stronger muscles will allow you to run, move, strike a ball, for example, with less perceived effort at any given force. 
  • Improvements in your ability to generate force quickly – power.
  • Improvements in your capacity for training – you can train more often and at a higher level. 
  • Improvements in the effectiveness of your energy systems, particularly your ability to endure high intensity exercise.
  • Improvements in your injury-resistance.

Injury resistance and training capacity is more important than it might seem. The number one factor in athletic development is consistency. Training twice a week for 52 weeks will make you fitter, stronger, and probably happier than training five times a week for 12 weeks, getting injured and doing nothing for the next six months, before repeating the same pattern. We’ve all been there, but let’s use evidence-based training to build that Injury resistance and training capacity to stop the cycle! 

Yes! I coach athletes across a wide range of sports. The fundamental aspects of athletic performance span across all sports and human movement, and I ensure that all training programmes are individualised to the needs of your sport and you. As a scientist by training and a life-long sports geek I have an analytical approach that matches a strong understanding of movement, psychology and performance, regardless of the sport. 

This question is a genuine and major barrier to many of us taking up strength training, not helped by a persistent attitude amongst many sports along the lines of, “The best way to train for my sport is to do my sport.”

The good news is that if you are training strength properly, with modern, science-based approaches, you can make significant gains with as little as two sessions a week of 90 mins in the off-season, and less in the on-season. 

Similarly, with the right planning, conditioning exercises can be easily added into training.

If you’re still not sure how you can find time to add strength training to your life just contact me for a chat – one of my main responsibilities as a coach is to support you in getting the most from the time you put into your training. 

Contact me for a no-strings-attached chat!

I offer a highly consultative approach so our sessions and training plans work for you, personally. Whether you’re an expert or a beginner, we start by assessing your goals, your level, your abilities, and your other life-pressures and commitments. We then build a plan from the appropriate starting point. I ensure that you’re sufficiently well conditioned for the programmes that we embark on, and we progress and regress exercises and programmes appropriately so that your strength and form is developed properly and sustainably for today, next week, next month, next year. 

If you would like to start getting strong for your sport, drop me a line and we can make a start.