The cornerstone of our speed program is the Parisi Active Dynamic Warm Up (ADW). This signature training curriculum has been adopted by the NFL and many Division I college football strength and conditioning coaches. The efficacy of the Parisi ADW assists with enhancing performance training. The Parisi ADW is a better method of preparing the body for performance training and exercise. Common warm up training routines across many athletic programs have been proven to be ineffective in thoroughly preparing the body for training, including central nervous system function, muscle activation and even injury prevention.
When working with early elementary-aged children, you will find that everything you perform in class can become a lesson in itself. As you adapt the Parisi ADW, it is important to remind yourself that your student-athletes are 95% student and 5 % athlete. Every movement you demonstrate and direction you give is truly new. The average 6 year old that has played soccer since 4 years old does not have the movement vocabulary to demonstrate jumping jacks, push ups and squats.
The Parisi Speed School community is proud of the efficacy of its Active Dynamic Warmup. For three decades, the Parisi Active Dynamic Warmup has been used by top class athletes all over the world. The inclusion of the ADW in all Parisi youth training sessions is one of our most cherished rituals. The Parisi Pee Wee classes also use the ADW, but as the ongoing lesson plan. The most valuable movements that comprise the ADW are the movements you will be teaching throughout classes. These key athletic movements are steered by the Parisi 5 points of success. Our points of success will provide Parisi Pee Wee coaches with the framework needed to to shape the athletic vocabulary and foundation of early elementary-aged children. This methodology can give even the youngest Parisi students life-long movement skills.
The Parisi Speed School is dedicated to building healthy and well-rounded athletes. Our emphasis on mechanics, deceleration, the components of speed and speed-strength are revealed in all of our training manuals, videos and educational workshops. This is why the Parisi Speed School delivers result-driven classes for youth and advanced athletes.
Every company must have a mission statement that offers a clear goal. This defining statement unifies the efforts of everyone that represents and works on behalf of that brand. The Parisi program is no different. We are comprehensively committed to being the industry leader in performance enhancement. We expect our coaches to deliver positive training sessions that ultimately make their athletes’ faster, no matter their ability or economic status. The Parisi system provides an organized curriculum for all children. The Parisi 5 points of success are embedded in our program design.
This is emphasized every day. It is the overarching lesson for all classes. Teaching and reinforcing deceleration will help to keep your classes safe. Every athlete must know how to slow down and stop correctly. Without proper deceleration technique, an athlete is at risk for poor performance and potential injury. When decelerating, a pee wee must lower their center of gravity, keep their chest over their knees, maintain a wide base of support, and use soft foot contacts. All of these technical cues are simplified when teaching 4 to 7 year olds. Coaches will cue slowing down or deceleration every time their pee wees start a new drill or game. Deceleration training is emphasized and incorporated into every Parisi speed session including Jump Start and Total Sports Performance Classes, this is why it is one of our 5 points of success.
Landing from a jump, regardless how far you got off from the ground, is a critical skill in many sports. Proper jump mechanics can lead to success in many sports. Poor landing technique on the other hand can place an athlete at risk for both poor performance and injury. When landing, an athlete must sit back and lower their center of gravity placing the shoulders over their knees and ankles. Upon landing softly, the feet are shoulder-width apart to absorb the ground forces correctly. When using this technique, the legs will be in position to powerfully move in any direction and prevent injury. Athletes use this technique every time they land and therefore it is one of our 5 points of success.
Arm action is a critical part of proper running technique. In fact, the faster your arms go, the faster your legs go. Arm action is taught by initially positioning your elbow joint at a 90 degree angle at the shoulder. The hand proceeds to move from the cheek, where they can see it in front of them, to the back pocket, where they should feel it as the hand passes behind their body. We teach kids to ‘see it and feel it.’ This is a consistent teaching cue across the Parisi network.
As a Parisi coach it is expected to understand the correct alignment of foundational athletic movement. However, the detail at which our coaches understand the proper mechanics is not equal to how they explain it to the pee wee student. When an athlete has good postural alignment, their one elbow will drive back and down . The elbow angle will open at the hip to almost 180 degrees, then be close to 90 degrees when passing the hip into full shoulder extension. As the arm and hand returns forward, the elbow angle will close to 60-90 degrees again at the top near the cheek position. During each action, the hands are open and the fingers are extended. As the arm action moves smoothly without tension, athletes should focus 100% of their energy on hammering the hands and elbows backward on each stride. Your pee wees can also be taught arm action using opposite cues. For example, have the kids intentionally run with T-rex arms (hands propped in front of them). Then ask them to use proper arm action.
Parisi coaches will find themselves constantly reminding youth athletes to “switch their arms.” This reminder during exercises like skipping develops a fundamental locomotor pattern called contralateral movement. When performed correctly, the extension of one hip is met with an antagonistic movement from the opposing side of the core. Stride frequency and arm action are directly tied to a contralateral relationship. This concept is not taught to school-aged children, but kids can learn the word contralateral. Word alliteration on a word like contralateral is more challenging for 4 and 5 year olds, but you will find that 6 and 7 year olds will be able to learn the word. There are several fun ways to highlight the opposite arm and leg placement. You will discover as you teach other age groups that the contralateral movement drills will challenge even middle schooler.
The toes up position refers to dorsiflexion at the ankle. This technical aspect of athletic movement is more challenging to highlight in a pee wee class. It becomes emphasized more during the Jump Start aged classes (7-12 years old). As youth athletes execute a toes up position consistently during landing from jumps, you can pick moments to bring the kid’s attention to the fact that they land with the entire bottom surface of the shoe. While toes up becomes critical when applying force to the ground, this concept is too complex for the 4 to 7 year old student.
Toes up or dorsiflexion will become relevant when doing seated work and when doing drills like pogos, kangaroo jumps and landing from box jumps. This is where you can highlight these gross motor movements. For example, when seated and doing an arm action drill you can cue pointing the toes and flexing the toes (even though we know this action comes from the ankle joint). This is a simple way to bring the pee wee’s attention to the fact that they have control over this movement pattern.
There will be many opportunities to correct this movement if your pee wee progresses to Jump Start classes. The toes up position will become critical to develop the elementary and high school athlete’s ability to trigger triple flexion response of the ankle, knee and hip. Parisi Speed School coaches spend a lot of time emphasizing the importance of dorsiflexion. Toes up will assist in faster and more efficient leg recovery and allows the stored elastic energy in the calf complex to be harnessed. This will ultimately increase their speed. With pee wee aged children these concepts are too elaborate to be part of our lessons. However, rudimentary jumping drills like pogos in every class will develop this ability as they mature in the Parisi program.Exercises like low pogos require dorsiflexed ankles and are a great way to teach and feel ground reaction forces.