The Crusaders are just four matches away from completing a remarkable unbeaten season in Super Rugby. Their success has been built on an innovative approach to maintaining and increasing fitness as the long gruelling season has progressed. CONQA speaks to Simon Thomas, head off strength and conditioning at the franchise.
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fitness and conditioning
Subtlety and precision, or raw power and force of will; if asked to associate these attributes with either ballet or elite sport it would appear to be an easy match to make. Ballet is the prance of the aristocrat while sport is the everyman’s pastime. And yet, crossing the divide might provide a way for inhabitants in both camps to improve their already impressive attributes. Caryl Becker, Physiotherapist for the Royal Ballet Company, explains how her background in elite sport has helped improve the conditioning of dancers, and what ballet and the art world can teach elite sport.
Every coach and manager has to implement innovative and creative strategies in order to stay ahead of the field. Most elite teams have scores of advisers, specialists, coaches, and opinion makers; all of whom need to be focussed towards a single vision. It is no different for those responsible for the athletes’ fitness and well-being. Wayne Diesel, the Sports Performance Director for the Miami Dolphins, discusses why managing the philosophy within the medical team is vital to success on the field.
Injury: the greatest fear for every athlete. Across any code, at any level, injury is a part of life for sportsmen and women. A torn hamstring, a broken arm, a severe concussion; all injuries require extensive physical therapy. But what about the mental battle that needs to be waged when injured? How does the psychological process measure up to the physiological one? Doctor Charlie Weingroff and Springbok captain Jean de Villiers reveal what an athlete goes through psychologically when undergoing physical rehabilitation.