What is strength, and why is strength so important?

In a sporting or physical environment, strength is one of the components of fitness, and is the ability to move an object, whether that object be an arm, a ball or a racquet. The more strength an individual has, the better that object can be manipulated. Strength is thus the fundamental component of fitness. Due to the physiology of the human body, other components of fitness, such as power, speed, cardio-respiratory endurance, muscular endurance, balance and agility require a base level of strength to function. Without adequate strength, no other component of fitness can be improved upon. 

Without specialised strength training, sportsmen and women at any level tend to only make gradual improvements in performance, training the way they play e.g. cyclists going for longer and longer rides, cricketers spending hours in the nets. Strength training increases strength and exponential gains can be made in performance, either due to increased physical attributes, or to increased concentration facilitated by the lower levels of fatigue experienced during competition. It is a fairly long-term process, but significant gains can be seen as early as four weeks into training.

What will I learn at The Strength Lab?

At The Strength Lab you will be taught the squat, the dead-lift, the bench-press and the overhead press. The initial lessons will be dedicated to refining technique to ensure risk of injury is kept to an absolute minimum, and potential gains are maximised – poor technique is the major limiting factor in gaining strength. A one-repetition maximum test (1-rep max: how much weight you can lift once) will be performed, once technique is sufficiently good enough to limit injury. This 1-rep max will then become the basis of the forthcoming training programs.

The squat, dead-lift and overhead press, then what?

The clean & jerk, and the snatch: The classic Olympic lifts. In order to perform these, clients will be taught the front squat and overhead squat, in line with the protocol of limiting injury, and maximising gains.

The Strength Lab got me strong, now what?

Conversion. The strength gains made, can now be converted into other components of fitness – power, muscular endurance, speed, balance and agility to name a few. Depending on the sport you play, or activity you take part in, training programs can be designed and delivered to make you more functional at what you do.

What will happen to my body?

Strength gains are reflected in the body through lower body fat percentages, and some muscle hypertrophy (increase in muscle size). The net result is a lean, athletic physique, rather than a bulbous body-builder appearance. 

I’m a woman, won’t I get bulky from lifting weights?

The short answer is: “No”. You will put on some lean muscle mass, but much of the strength gain from lifting weights comes from improved neuro-muscular connections, and these do not add significant bulk. The stereotypical bulky, body-builder figure is a result of a specific methodology of training – bodybuilders train to get big – The Strength Lab trains you to get strong.

Who will benefit from strength training?

Everybody. Men and women alike, of all ages. Not only will you perform better in your chosen sport, you will look good doing it! The over-arching principle is long-term physical health

Where does it happen?

The Strength Lab is situated at 96 Susman Avenue, Blairgowrie, Randburg.

When does it happen?

When you want it to. Mornings, afternoons and evenings. Contact Rob at info@thestrenghlab.co.za to make an appointment.