Technique vs. Concepts

So I recently had an in-depth chat with a fellow coach about what makes a good coach and what makes a great coach. One thing we agreed on was that there are those who you go to and learn techniques but the great ones teach you concepts regardless of the discipline. They do this with the view to eventually making themselves obsolete.


Sounds like a pretty terrible business model right? Well if you are not a professional athlete who needs their skills constantly refined and are simply looking to reach a base level of fitness then why would you need to stay with the same trainer for 5+ years? Seriously though why?


So let’s look at two hypothetical trainers. Both teach you the pushup, trainer A shows you it and you do it. Trainer B shows you it and explains just one concept leverage. Now if we increase or decrease this then the exercise will become easier or harder and we can now scale it to whatever level we are at.


Trainer A will show us the technique and when we can do X number of pushups then they show us what the next step is. However, trainer B has already explained the concepts of how to do it so now we can likely figure it out ourselves using what we now know. The point I am getting at is those good trainers will break down complex things and give us the concepts in a form we can understand.  A simple example would be trying to show some form of new technology to an older relative who has never handled it. If you use technical jargon they will be lost and give up similar to how many people do in the gym. But if you give it to them in simple terms they can understand then they will be able to comprehend what to do.


Learning concepts gives us the tools to figure things out and to train ourselves. If you have a trainer who just shows you one exercise after another and counts to ten for you then you might be wasting your money. Find someone who will teach you the concepts that rule over all aspects of fitness and movement and eventually you will have the tools you need. This is true for any discipline you might do so keep it in mind and feel free to use this concept in future.

If you understand how to apply leverage to body weight training you can figure out many progressions easily

If you understand how to apply leverage to body weight training you can figure out many progressions easily