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Lecture 1 - Principles of Training - F21 - student

Topic 1 – week 1
“Fads and trends will no doubt change, but principles
are timeless. A principle based program will never
steer you wrong.”
(Ron Mckeefery, Vice President of Performance and Education for PLAE)
Learning Objective
1) Define the 8 training principles relating
each one’s importance to program
Example exam question:
“Explain what progression is and why it is
important to consider when programming
Principles of training
Rules/laws that govern the process of training and program
design. Write these down! You’ll need them later 
Variety (variability or variation)
Diminishing gains
Take a second to think…
What would you say is the
most important principle to
consider when designing an
exercise program?
Principle #1: Overload
The system must be exposed to a stress/stimulus of
sufficient magnitude in order to stimulate
Overload Principle: examples
• Example: I want to make my deltoids stronger, so I do lateral
raises with my pencil…is there enough overload???
• What about a 15 lbs dumbbell for 1 rep?
• What about 10 reps?
• What about 10 reps for 3 sets?
Principle #2: Progression
The magnitude of the stress/stimulus must be
constantly increased to ensure sufficient continued
stress on the system.
Constantly increasing stress…can you do this
• How do we actually apply progression in terms of
exercise prescription?
Principle #3: Specificity
An organism will adapt in way that makes it more
resistant to the specific stressor that was applied.
A client performs 40 min of heavy strength training and
averages a HR at ~130 bpm over the session.
A client performs 40 min of steady state running while
maintaining a HR of ~130 bpm.
Will each example result in the same aerobic
fitness improvement???
The SAID Principle
ADAPT: to modify and become adjusted to new conditions
The type of demand placed on the body dictates the specific
adaptation that will occur. We adapt via hormonal,
neurological, and structural changes.
This is why exercise physiology is important to know!!!
Principle #4: Variety (Variability or Variation)
If the stimulus applied is not varied, the organism’s
ability to adapt will cease, and/or reverse.
Everything works…
but nothing works
Effective progression often requires strategic and
appropriate variation. What does that mean???
Variation can be applied to ANY training variable!
Principle #5: Diminishing Gains
What is this graph telling us?
Principle #6: Recovery
Adaptations to the training stimulus occur during
recovery from the exercise session
• Amount of recovery required???
– depends primarily on the type and amount of the training
stimulus…but not solely!
What factors can you think of that might
influence recovery from a training session?
Principle #7: Reversibility
Adaptations to the training stimulus will reverse in
the absence of the stimulus.
“if you don’t use it, you
lose it”
The rate at which each
adaptation reverses is
dependent on the adaptation.
Principle #8: Individuality
What is it about humans that makes everyone respond
differently to training???
Each client is different and thus will require an
individualized approach to programming.
‘What works for one client might not work for another’
Guidelines serve as general guidelines that should result in a certain amount of
training-related adaptations in most people.
Legit quote from the NSCA
Test your knowledge!
I’ll give you a scenario, you tell me which principle is responsible.
1. Overload
2. Progression
3. Specificity
4. Variety
5. Individuality
6. Reversibility
7. Recovery
Diminishing gains
What principle is this talking about?
The HERITAGE family study examine the response of 720
people to a 20 wk training program.
• Results showed changes in VO2max ranging from nothing to
doubling of aerobic fitness.
• Initial fitness accounted for 1% of the differences
• Sex 5%
• Race <1%
• Genetics 89%
What principle is this…neglecting?
• You have a client who wants to improve their 10 km run race time
• Your programming for this client primarily involves cycling for
What principle is the blue line representing for:
1) the steep part of the curve?
2) the plateaued part of the curve?
What principle is this talking about?
“I’m working out 5 days per week with
weights and I’m not getting any results”
• Training Principles
– Be able to define…but ALSO:
 Identify principles within programs
- what principle is being prioritized?
- are any principles being neglected?
 Use principles when justifying your own
programming decisions
- what is your reasoning behind certain choices you’ve
- if you can’t justify what you’re doing…does it belong