The science of conditioning is a broad and complex discussion. It involves countless test subjects and scenarios that have helped formulate the 6 principles.

What does this have to do with the goat on the left?

Good question.

And now onto the 6 principles that will help you maximize your training:

Individual Differences

We are all physically different, the differences lie with our gender, DNA, body size and shape, injuries etc. The differences necessitate a program that is unique to everyone. A one size fits all approach cannot work universally, rather workouts should be modified to encompass these differences.

By acknowledging the differences, we can better set and manage our own expectations as well as our workouts. The mental aspect of exercise is just as critical as the physical. Don’t be discouraged if you’re not progressing as fast as your workout partner, odds are they’re ugly anyway.

Overload

The science of overload states that for progression to happen, the body needs to be challenged progressively. Translation, the workout has to be increased gradually.

What this doesn’t mean is that you jump levels in your workout since this may cause burnout and injury.

Progression

According to the principle of progression, there is an optimal level of overload for a workout to progress. By controlling and gradually increasing your workout, you help diminish the odds of injury significantly by giving your body time to heal and recuperate.

Adaptation

The body learns to adapt to the increased load after a workout. When starting a new routine, one is typically quite sore, after a period of time, the body adapts and becomes used to the workout. This makes the exercise routine and makes the athlete efficient in his/her movements.

Use/Disuse

You don’t use it, you lose it, or so says the principle of use/disuse.  If you stop working out, the muscles atrophy and you lose conditioning. Having a set and regular workout routine, is critical to prevent this.

Specificity

This principle is a good one and examples of it are found in every gym I’ve been to. The principle states that exercising a specific part of your body, will develop that part only. For example, if you’re a runner, you should focus on running. That being said, it’s important to remember the principle of use/disuse because if all you do is run then your other muscles will atrophy. You will definitely become more injury prone.

And now, for some random pictures of goats. I did add one pic of sheep, can you tell which? Enjoy!

goat Goat_roar_by_fbcota chevrotement-a-goats-trill-1361982334-view-0 769px-Ewe_and_lamb_in_Kent

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