Evolution Of Revolution: How things have changed in our 8-years.

This past fall marked 8-years in business for Revolution Sport Conditioning in London, Ontario and this February marks 8-years in our location on Richmond Row.

It has gone quickly that’s for sure.  I thought I would take a little look back to see what has changed in our approach and maybe what has stayed the same.

If you look at our Mission Statement it is right there in black and white –

To help athletes achieve their goals and live their dreams using our proven, but constantly evolving training systems.  We have done our job when the athletes we work with experience a long, successful and healthy career in the sport(s) of their choice regardless of their age or level of competition.Stanley Cup Small

Our training systems work – that has been proven by Olympic, World and Stanley Cup Champions, but that is not to say that we just sit back and keep doing the same thing over and over, we are constantly evolving and trying to find a more effective, more efficient way to train athletes at all ages and abilities.  So here is a look at what has changed…

  • I guess, looking at the photo on the right – I cut my hair for starters 🙂
  • We have added small group private training, which has been an astonishing success.  The group dynamic fosters the ‘Team’ feel we want at Revolution and the small numbers (typically 3-4 athletes per group) allow the coach to give individual attention to each participant.  It also let’s us cut the cost to the athlete by approximately 50% compared to our standard private training rate.
  • Our athletes do not crunch at all in the Revolution studio.  We pay attention to the research, we listen to the experts, we spend thousands of dollars per year traveling to learn from them.  Most importantly, we take their advice.  So when Dr. Stuart McGill says disc herniations in the lower back are the result of chronic, repeated lower back flexion, we stop doing repeated lower back flexion i.e. crunching.  We are here to reduce the risk of injury and improve performance and doing crunches accomplishes neither, so they are out of our programming.
  • Our athletes do not back squat at all anymore.  Again, the risk reward ratio got to tilted in favour of risk.  You see it is possible to back squat very heavy and very poorly, not a great combination.  So now we front squat, hex bar deadlift, single leg squat, etc.  Our athletes get more bang for their buck with lower risk of injury.
  • I hired a coach to work with me.  This was a big one because I have such a clear vision of what I want Revolution to be.  I will admit for the first 6-years I was not even looking for a coach, I wanted to do it all myself – which was an exhausting proposition.  I am a little ashamed to tell you I teetered on burn out more than once.  But then two summers ago Adam Dafoe came on as an intern and it was a huge success, he made me see that adding a member to the team would be great, not just for Revolution or for me, but also for the athletes we train.  So a year ago Coach Tyler Doig applied for a job and I found the right piece to the puzzle and his evolution as a strength coach has been astonishing.
  • Our athletes stretch before we workout – always.  If you still think it is athlete training london ontario‘bad’ to stretch before you workout let me tell you, that idea is so 1997 J
  • Our athletes foam roll.
  • Since adding the turf in 2012, we do a lot more training with the sleds.

So those are some of the things that have changed – there are way more, but those are the big ones  that come to mind right now.  Here is a short list of things that have not changed…

  • Our number one concern is always what’s in the best interest of the athlete.  It guides our decisions on a daily basis.  If that means giving them a kick in the pants when they need it or slowing them down and taking them back a step, then we are happy to do it.
  • We do not follow the training fads.  There are brands that are very cheap to buy into, that have lots of exposure on TV and in magazines, but they are not built on sound training principles.  We don’t buy into that, nor do we buy into their style.  Yes the workout of the day is hard – – but is it making you better over the long-term?
  • We are constantly evolving.  Keeping what is working, replacing it when we find something better.

So thanks to all the athletes we have had the privilege to work with over the last 8-years, there have been some great moments – a Stanley Cup Championship, the Olympic Gold for Virtue and Moir, a near miss with the 4th place finish for the Women’s Eight in Beijing and the performance of a lifetime by Damian Warner at the 2012 London Games.  On top of that so many individual triumphs that I must admit, we have really awesome place to spend the majority of our days.