One of the coolest features of Volt's intelligent technology is our dynamic periodized training calendar. It automatically optimizes your team's training program to your season dates, allowing your athletes to reach peak physical condition at just the right time.
The calendar is simple to set up and, best of all, easy to modify. You can make changes to your training calendar at any time, and the calendar will dynamically readjust your training to optimize your program to your new schedule. This article will guide you through the ins and outs of setting up your training calendar to help maximize the effectiveness of your team's Volt training.
Step 1: Set Your Training Dates
You need to enter 3 dates to optimize your Volt training:
- The date you wish to start your off-season/Preparatory phase of training
- The date you wish to start your in-season/Competitive phase of training
- The date you wish to start your post-season/Transitional phase of training
Your training program will change depending on what phase you're in, so it's important to get these dates right. You can always adjust them later on, if need be.
The Preparatory phase contains the highest volume of training your athletes will see in their Volt program. It's also typically the longest period of uninterrupted time your athletes will have to train all year, making it critical for athletes to stay consistent during this phase. Depending on your program and the experience level of your athletes, they will be prompted to recalibrate their Strength Numbers periodically by retesting their hang clean, back squat, and bench press.
Set this date for when you wish to begin your off-season strength and conditioning program.
The Competitive phase will provide a lower volume of training to accommodate for more practices and games. Athletes will see just 2 strength training sessions during this phase. Even though the volume is lighter, it's extremely important for athletes to continue training throughout their in-season. Training in-season helps ensure athletes maintain the strength and power they built during the off-season, while mitigating their risk of on-field injuries. (To learn more about the importance of training during the Competitive phase, check out Pro Tip: Training In-Season.)
Set this date for when your in-season is scheduled to start (typically your first game or competition).
The Transitional phase starts as soon as your in-season comes to an end. Some coaches will need to adjust their training calendars to accommodate for a post-season playoff run, pushing the Transitional start date back. Training volume increases to 3 sessions per week during this phase, and provides a crucial bridge for athletes between the lower volume of the Competitive phase and the demanding nature of the Preparatory phase.
Set this date for when you'd like to increase your team's training volume, at the end of your in-season.
Pro Tip: Any calendar adjustments you make will ONLY affect athletes training on that specific program—not every athlete on your roster.
Step 2: Insert Unload and Off Weeks
In addition to lengthening or shortening a specific phase of Volt training, you can make changes to individual weeks within your calendar by inserting an Unload or an Off Week.
An Unload week provides a week of lower-intensity, lower-volume training. Unloads are already strategically scheduled throughout your Volt program because periods of recovery are essential for continued improvement (for more on this topic, check out Breaking Down the Periodized Calendar), and we've made it so that you cannot remove every Unload week in your training calendar. You can, however, insert Unload weeks into your calendar to replace a regularly scheduled week of Volt training.
Many coaches will use Unload weeks to modify their training for specific reasons:
- To accommodate for stressful periods during the school year, like finals week
- If an athlete or team seems particularly stressed or overworked
- If an athlete or team is consistently scoring poorly on their Readiness Check-in, a measure of their physiological readiness to train
In addition to Unloads, you can also insert Off Weeks into your calendar, for weeks when you don't want your athletes doing any training at all. This allows you to account for weeks when your athletes don't have access to your weight room, like during a school breaks or holidays, without affecting the integrity of the rest of your training program.
PRO TIP: Be sure to click the Save button after you insert an Unload or Off Week!
As you set up your training calendar, you'll notice the training blocks rearranging themselves to accommodate your changes. This is one of the most important features of Volt's intelligent training technology because it means your athletes are training on a dynamic, not static, training program. We built strength coach logic right into the training calendar, so that when you make a change—like inserting an Unload week—the calendar recalibrates itself to ensure that your program will still safely peak athletes for performance, without over- or undertraining. The dynamic calendar lets you make the schedule changes you need, without altering the integrity of your program. The result is a strong yet flexible training program that prioritizes athlete health and safety, while effectively preparing them for competition.
If you have any questions about setting up your Volt training calendar, please contact your designated CSCS-certified Strength Coach Consultant!
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Learn more about Christye and read her other posts | @CoachChristye