There are many programs which offer sports specific training, but what makes Parisi Speed School stand out and rise to the top? Because by not focusing on sports, and focusing on athleticism, we make athletes better at the sport of their choosing. Athletic development doesn’t come down to how much someone benches or squats, or how much weight they can push on a sled. Yes, in time, a good athlete may be the one who can do these things, however, I have seen many non-athletes do these feats. Take away the weights, and ask them to run, or jump, or move, and the lack of athleticism, the lack grace is amazing.
One of the things which I notice first and foremost when someone walks in the door is how they move. So much can be told from someone’s gait, their foot placement, their posture. I gain a sense right away about how they are going to move. Yes, we call ourselves Sports Performance Coaches, but what does that really mean? In actuality, Parisi Speed School certifies movement coaches. We teach young athletes how to move properly. By focusing in on movement, and fixing broken movement patterns and ingraining new and improved movement patterns, we make better athletes. Many places have gimmicks and advertise and promote shiny bells and whistles, but yet fail on delivering the fundamentals necessary for a good athlete to become a great athlete. Only once the fundamentals are set in stone, and an athlete takes a proper movement pattern, and starts adding resistance training to those proper movement patterns, the movement patterns get stronger, and the progression and usefulness of the strength work for that athlete grows higher than it would doing the same with poor movement patterns.
One only has to look at the most dominant sprinter in history, Usain Bolt, to see what dedicated focus to technique can accomplish. Bolt had raw potential but only once a coach forced him to change his flawed mechanics, was Bolt able to become the most dominant runner. Bolt’s coach, Glen Mills said,
“Coaches have to continuously react and replay and redo the drills, getting the athlete to run over and over to break habits.”
It is the execution of basic mechanics with precision which is the key to transforming technique. This only comes with proper practice repeated over time that will yield improvements in performance. Bolt’s training is very similar to a Parisi class, it includes a dynamic warm up, drills, application of those drills, and maximum velocity training. The focus on mechanics is not only during warm up drills but also during all workouts.
Our classes are structured to create these new patterns so that our young athletes excel on the field of play. While some of the drills may seem monotonous and repetitive, day after day, it takes lots of reps to break all the years and hours they have spent away from Parisi moving incorrectly. Our classes are structured to ensure that proper movement patterns become second nature. In class, the athletes have to think about the patterns. Only with focused practice will it become habit.
We all have seen that star on the field. The one kid who makes it look so easy and looks so eloquent doing so. She moves so gracefully. He moves like he is walking on water. That is the aspiration all of us have for the athletes we work with. But the key is It starts with movement. Movement is not a natural thing anymore. There are too many distractions for too many of our children. Movement needs to be shaped and nurtured. This is what shapes us apart and makes us the only place which does what we do. We are creating a movement!
About the Author
Judah Boulet is the Owner and Program Director at Parisi Speed School of Rhode Island. Judah is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach and Head Rugby Coach at Bryant University. Judah holds a Master’s Degree in Pharmacology and Toxicology from The University of Rhode Island a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from Siena College.