Brown University Strength & Conditioning


Mission Statement:
Brown University's strength and conditioning program supports the mission and goals of Brown University, the NCAA, and the Ivy League. The department is in place to enable each student-athlete to reach his or her fullest potential socially, academically and athletically. We are dedicated to providing each student-athlete with every resource possible to help them reach individual and team success. This includes a demanding yet positive atmosphere at all times.

Brown University's strength and conditioning program is in place to develop the total athlete. Through comprehensive, research-based program design and application we reduce the likelihood of injury and increase athletic performance. Every student-athlete is important.

Training Principles:
1. Ground Based Movements: It is imperative that an athlete train in the same manner that they compete. Athletes compete with their feet on the ground, thus should train with their feet on the ground. Ground based force production is the key to athletic performance. The greater force generated against the ground, the faster the athlete will run and the higher they will jump. All joints must be developed together and learn to operate as one during physical activity.

2. Multiple Joint Movements: Athletes must learn to coordinate multiple joints fluidly in order to perform specific tasks. Using multiple joint movements will allow athletes to train more muscle mass at one time in comparison to single joint activities. This will create a more efficient and productive program.

3. Three Dimensional Movements: Training programs will emphasize the movements that are taking place on the athlete's field of play. The athlete must learn to stabilize their body front to back, side to side, as well as up and down. Stability during exercise is accomplished by training with free weights. This will produce a more complete athlete that is prepared for the rigors of competition.

4. Explosive Training: To become fast and powerful each athlete must train in this same manner. Training explosively with free weights, plyometrics and medicine balls will recruit more fast twitch muscle fibers and produce more power. Strength alone will be useless if it cannot be applied in a rapid manner.

5. Progressive Overload: The body will adapt to the stress that is applied to it. By continually, and progressively, applying greater than normal loads will cause muscle tissue to breakdown and go into a catabolic state. The body will adapt positively through proper rest and nutrition. Over time this repeated compensation will develop greater levels of strength or endurance depending on the stimulus. Proper progression of training loads throughout the year is a fundamental component of our program design to maximize performance and reduce the susceptibility to injury.

6. Periodization: A comprehensive approach to designing training cycles according to the period of the year and the maturity of the athlete will allow greater gains to be made in athletic performance. When the neuromuscular system becomes accustomed to a stimulus over time it will cease to progress. By periodizing our programs we allow continued training progress throughout each athlete's career.

7. Specificity of Conditioning: The objective of conditioning is to improve the dominant energy system an athlete uses during competition. The three major energy systems of the body are the ATP, Lactic Acid and Oxygen system. The ATP system provides energy for high intensity bouts of exercise lasting up to 8 seconds. The Lactic Acid system provides energy for moderate intensity bouts of exercise up to one minute. The Oxygen system provides energy for low intensity activities over a long period of time using slow twitch muscle fibers.

8. Recovery: The training that takes place is only as good as the recovery that follows it. Each student-athlete will be educated on proper rest, hydration and recovery habits that will maximize their daily performance. It is the student-athlete's responsibility to ensure these proper habits are continually practiced.