Sports Specific Performance Training


Sports-specific performance training is an approach to develop an athlete’s full potential in their sport. This involves three different factors: physical, technical, and experience. Physical ability is the exercise physiology that consists of strengthening and conditioning the body to handle the conditions of the sport. This includes:

  • Strength
  • Power
  • Speed
  • Endurance
  • Mobility
  • Stability
  • Flexibility
  • Balance

Technical ability involves the skill sets needed for the sport. This includes:

  • Running
  • Jumping
  • Kicking
  • Throwing
  • Catching
  • Hitting
  • Sliding

And finally is the athlete’s experience. This takes the knowledge, combined with the physical and technical abilities brought together to perform at optimum levels. However, it all begins with physical ability that needs to be developed. Even naturally gifted individuals need to develop their physical ability.

Sports Specific Performance Training

Strength & conditioning objectives are to develop the whole athlete. This involves:

An athlete’s health takes into consideration their body composition and current or past injuries. Along with injuries, the athlete’s mobility, flexibility, and stability are examined to determine if these were among the contributors or conditions that caused or could lead to an injury. Strength & conditioning is used so an athlete can return to play and allow them to be more resilient to injuries. Maintaining the body’s health means:

  • Keeping track of nutrition by making healthy food choices.
  • Maintaining proper hydration levels.
  • Allowing the body to recover from training thoroughly.
  • Keeping the body loose and flexible through chiropractic sports massage or a personal training therapist.

Mobility, Flexibility, and Stability

If an athlete is mobile and flexible but not stable, it increases the risk of sustaining an injury. The same can be said of an athlete with stability but limited mobility.

Athletic Mindset

An athlete’s mindset can win or lose games.

  • Athletes are encouraged to push themselves to see what they are capable of, which relies on mental strength.
  • Athletes that doubt their ability become their own worst critics and hold themselves in low self-esteem tend to underperform or become overly cautious when competing.
  • This is where a sports psychologist can help an athlete overcome any confidence issues.


Developing athleticism involves strength, power, speed. These physical attributes allow athletes to perform within their technical and strategical abilities.

  • It is recommended to spend 10-15 minutes warming up with each sports-specific performance training session. The warm-up:
  • Primes for the athlete’s nervous system.
  • Increases blood flow to the muscles.
  • Prepares the joints for optimal function.

Warm-ups can consist of:

  • Foam rolling
  • Breathing drills
  • Static stretching
  • Corrective exercises
  • Movement preparation
  • Movement skills

Speed training addresses linear, lateral, and multi-directional speed. The objective is to keep athletes learning and developing better reaction skills while maintaining high-quality movement. Speed training can last 10 to 15-minutes with the number of repetitions.

Strength training follows an individualized system for each athlete based on an initial evaluation. The objective is to eliminate any weaknesses that an individual may have and develop functional strength, giving the athlete the ability to take that strength onto the field, court, mat, etc.

It is essential to understand how the body moves. Kinesiology and programming parameters involve – sets, repetitions, overall training volume, and the body’s response to the stimulus.

Body Composition

Exercise and Blood Pressure

Blood pressure typically rises naturally as the body ages.  The American Heart Association recommends individuals get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intense aerobic exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity each week. This can be split up into 30 minutes per day on at least five days a week or in 10 minute short sessions throughout the day.  Aerobic exercise can include:

  • Walking
  • Dancing
  • Running
  • Cycling
  • Hiking
  • Swimming

Resistance Training

Research suggests that resistance training with bands or weights can supplement aerobic exercise to reduce blood pressure. It is recommended to complete 2 to 4 sets of 8 to 12 repetitions for each major muscle group during workouts. It is recommended that resistance training be spaced out throughout the week to limit the potential muscle soreness that can lead to injury. Resistance training can include:

  • Weight machines like chest press, shoulder press, etc.
  • Free weights like dumbbells, barbells, etc.
  • Resistance band exercises

Bahr, R, and T Krosshaug. “Understanding injury mechanisms: a key component of preventing injuries in sport.” British journal of sports medicine vol. 39,6 (2005): 324-9. doi:10.1136/bjsm.2005.018341

Iaia, F Marcello et al. “High-intensity training in football.” International journal of sports physiology and performance vol. 4,3 (2009): 291-306. doi:10.1123/ijspp.4.3.291

Jeukendrup, Asker E. “Periodized Nutrition for Athletes.” Sports medicine (Auckland, N.Z.) vol. 47,Suppl 1 (2017): 51-63. doi:10.1007/s40279-017-0694-2

Kraemer, William J, and Nicholas A Ratamess. “Fundamentals of resistance training: progression and exercise prescription.” Medicine and science in sports and exercise vol. 36,4 (2004): 674-88. doi:10.1249/01.mss.0000121945.36635.61

Nagorsky, Eugen, and Josef Wiemeyer. “The structure of performance and training in esports.” PloS one vol. 15,8 e0237584. 25 Aug. 2020, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0237584

Professional Scope of Practice *

The information herein on "Sports Specific Performance Training" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional or licensed physician and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.

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Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, RN*, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, ATN*


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Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, RN* CIFM*, IFMCP*, ATN*, CCST
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Specialties: Stopping the PAIN! We Specialize in Treating Severe Sciatica, Neck-Back Pain, Whiplash, Headaches, Knee Injuries, Sports Injuries, Dizziness, Poor Sleep, Arthritis. We use advanced proven therapies focused on optimal Mobility, Posture Control, Deep Health Instruction, Integrative & Functional Medicine, Functional Fitness, Chronic Degenerative Disorder Treatment Protocols, and Structural Conditioning. We also integrate Wellness Nutrition, Wellness Detoxification Protocols and Functional Medicine for chronic musculoskeletal disorders. We use effective "Patient Focused Diet Plans", Specialized Chiropractic Techniques, Mobility-Agility Training, Cross-Fit Protocols, and the Premier "PUSH Functional Fitness System" to treat patients suffering from various injuries and health problems. Ultimately, I am here to serve my patients and community as a Chiropractor passionately restoring functional life and facilitating living through increased mobility. Purpose & Passions: I am a Doctor of Chiropractic specializing in progressive cutting-edge therapies and functional rehabilitation procedures focused on clinical physiology, total health, functional strength training, functional medicine, and complete conditioning. We focus on restoring normal body functions after neck, back, spinal and soft tissue injuries. We use Specialized Chiropractic Protocols, Wellness Programs, Functional & Integrative Nutrition, Agility & Mobility Fitness Training and Cross-Fit Rehabilitation Systems for all ages. As an extension to dynamic rehabilitation, we too offer our patients, disabled veterans, athletes, young and elder a diverse portfolio of strength equipment, high-performance exercises and advanced agility treatment options. We have teamed up with the cities' premier doctors, therapist and trainers in order to provide high-level competitive athletes the options to push themselves to their highest abilities within our facilities. We've been blessed to use our methods with thousands of El Pasoans over the last 3 decades allowing us to restore our patients' health and fitness while implementing researched non-surgical methods and functional wellness programs. Our programs are natural and use the body's ability to achieve specific measured goals, rather than introducing harmful chemicals, controversial hormone replacement, un-wanted surgeries, or addictive drugs. We want you to live a functional life that is fulfilled with more energy, a positive attitude, better sleep, and less pain. Our goal is to ultimately empower our patients to maintain the healthiest way of living. With a bit of work, we can achieve optimal health together, no matter the age, ability or disability.

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