(Strength Coach Neil) Here’s another great story of an NF Functional Performance/Functional Performance Online athlete making a huge jump after a hard fought off season of training! This post comes from professional Hockey player, Nick Jensen where Nick outlines some of the highlights from his training to prepare him from making the jump from an NCAA Division 3 Hockey player to the European Professional Danish Metal (Elite) League! Nick would have such an amazing season that he would be asked to try out for the Danish National Team at the World Championships and despite suffering an injury that would keep most players out, Nick not only made the team but he found himself matched up against some of the best hockey players in the world like Evgeni Malkin and Ilia Kovalchuk! He even managed to snipe a huge goal for his team by firing a laser from the point which helped his team cap off the win!
(Nick Jensen) Today I just had my first meet with Neil. We went through what he expected out of me and what my goals where for the summer. We talked about where I was heading and what I would need to be ready for the season ahead. Neil then told me the tests that he would have me do to keep track of my progress. He then went through the phases of the summer that we would do and how that would benefit me on the ice.
Week one and phase one! What a week it has been, my body feels good but I’m mentally drained from keeping up with all the information that Neil has been giving me during my workouts. I have always just been handed a workout to do where I would just power through it. Neil on the other hand has me thinking of what every exercise can do to make me better and achieve my goal.
Phase one is now done and I have mastered most of my exercises except pull-ups they have become my Achilles heel. I’m very excited for this upcoming test on Monday to see how much I have improved over just a short 3 week span. I used all the power I had trying to force myself above the bar instead of using the mental aspects that Neil had been preaching to me for the past 3 weeks.
Week four and phase two is a go. For the first week I have the pleasure of having my brother joining me through the learning process and pain. It is awesome to have a partner to compete with for speed, endurance and weights. As I was talking to Alex (brother) on Friday before our last day I asked him if he was sore before the workout and he had a quick NO! I then told him that I was pretty sore and he then quickly told me that so was he with a smirk on his face; both of us realizing that this training style is not just tough, but extremely effective!
Phase two is now done and I’m itching to do the baseline test again (Baseline Test to measure off season progress). I’m ready this time to just destroy me previous test times. The first one I had been at 11 minutes and the second one was at 10½. My goal or the final one is to get under 9 minutes. I want to finish on a high note and do great like me feeling from the workouts.
I DID IT!!!!!!! 7½ minutes it took me to finish the baseline test. My body is better balanced and I don’t compensate like I used to and now I’m a balanced strong and I’m able to use more of my body.
Fast forward….I am now 3 weeks into our preseason. I have had a great start with the new team feeling ready for the season to come. Neil was always reminding me to see if I felt a difference when I skate from the workouts we did. Neil always had me work on how low I could get to increase my lower body power. Three weeks in and I have finally started to notice my lower body power in my strides!
Phase three is now finally here and I can’t wait to continue the NF Functional Performance workouts. I have been mentally preparing this morning to motivate myself to do todays workout, knowing that Neil would always preach how it’s about quality of what you’re doing, not quantity and how to get the most out of my workouts. I have my brother by my side to do the workout with me and with Neil’s programs and guidance this is almost like being back at the gym in Canada and I’m ready to get the most out of the day and the most out of my workouts!
Aalborg Pirates – Danish Metal League 2014/2015
Danish National Team – World Hockey Championships 2014/2015