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Top Athletic Development Books: Daniel Martinez | Boddicker Performance

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Top Athletic Development Books: Daniel Martinez

by on Mar 11th, 2011

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If you have not read yesterday’s post do so prior to today so you have a brief understanding of why Daniel chose to include certain books within this list.

1.  Way of the Peaceful Warrior (Dan Millman) – A brilliant read that deeply explores the relationship between teacher and student.  Inspiring and enlightening in so many ways and communicates to the heart of what life experience should focus on and enrich.  The application to athletics throughout is gravy.

2.  The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (Stephen Covey) – Covey speaks to the core of the character development process that drives every process focusing on a specific behavior more effectively.  This has become an annual read for me for reinforcement and to continue to share with family, friends, and our athletes.

3.  Coach Wooden’s Pyramid of Success (John Wooden) – Any Wooden text will do as Coach Wooden did things right.  One of Wooden’s best gifts for coaches is he can communicate things simply in a way that allows people to grasp the concept and hit the ground running practicing it.  That lesson alone has dramatically impacted my coaching.

4.  The Talent Code (Daniel Coyle) – One could insert “Talent is Overrated” or other similar books here as well but I thoroughly enjoyed Coyle’s work as the writing is excellent and to me he effectively grasped deliberate practice and mastery with excellent examples (including “The Girl Who Did a Month’s Worth of Practice in Six Minutes”).  One sport coach I know working at the University level is known to tell Little Leaguers in clinics that they need to get their 10,000 hours but neglects to mention that it must be deliberate practice.  Otherwise things such as handwriting and driving would be far better than we all know they are…

5.  Athletic Development (Vern Gambetta) – This book is one that in my opinion closely ties together development in a way that takes physical preparation beyond simply getting better at what is practiced and instead teaches how to develop the general whole while allowing for effective concentration on the individual parts.

6.  Volleyball: IOC Handbook of Sports Medicine and Science (Jonathon Reeser and Ronald Bahr) – Best science-based text on managing and developing the volleyball athlete I have read.  There are excellent sections on Performance Enhancement and Applied Science, Sports Medicine and Injury, and Special Considerations (Female, Youth, and Disabled Volleyballer’s) and the chapter “Biomechanics of Jumping” was worth the price of the book alone.

7.  Power Volleyball  (Arie Selinger) – Selinger’s book was ahead of its time and is very hard to find these days.  The book was written as volleyball was undergoing a major change in systems and tactics that required an advancement of the physical performance of players at all positions.  Power Volleyball communicated this extremely well.

8.  Principles and Practice of Resistance Training (Mike Stone) – Fully comprehensive on matters related to physical preparation the great thing about science texts such as this one is they are exactly what they say they are (considering the research intensive process that supports the book).  What I don’t get about how some talk about which books are good and which are bad is how science books get knocked as impractical?  In what arena is not having an effective foundation on which to practice and build acceptable?

9.  Block Periodization (Vladimir Issurin) – Training and physical preparation as it predominantly exists for many today and not as we dream it to be.  The specific requirements of our volleyball athletes requires a block focus for much of the year and the system and strategies detailed in Issurin’s text match well with our needs.

10.  Speed Trap (Charlie Francis) – Speed Trap is a must read for all coaches as anyone who reads it realizes there was a complexity to Charlie that helped him get coaching done (the CFTS is an equally necessary read).  You take from the book that Charlie was invested deeply in the success of his athletes beyond their ability to help him themselves and that his quest for effective programming and eagerness to learn from the world’s best helped drive his program to among the best in the world.  A wonderful read.

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