POLICE Magazine

SEP 2018

Magazine for police and law enforcement

Issue link: https://policemag.epubxp.com/i/1022864

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Page 66 of 136

64 POLICE SEPTEMBER 2018 training. at's just a fact of the job we must accept and adapt to. erefore, training should be efficient in providing the great- est benefit per unit of time spent in the gym, and multi-joint (compound) "large" movements are more time efficient. Many strength athletes make phenomenal strength gains without ever doing movements like curls, triceps pressdowns, leg extensions, calf raises, machine curls, and so forth. For our purpose, these movements waste time and use energy and time that could be devoted toward compound movements like squats, deadlifts, cleans, and push presses. USE FREE WEIGHTS e strength demands law enforcement officers face in the field are dynamic, unbalanced, and three-dimen- sional. Machines only move the body through limited and often artificial ranges of motion, making their ben- efit to officers limited. Free weights are much bet- ter for building "real world" functional strength. Items that are even more challenging and unbal- anced than a barbell such as sandbags are great as well. Avoid machines, and instead concentrate on free weights and "strongman" type implements like hammers and logs. As an added bonus, this equipment is com- paratively inexpensive. A few sandbags, a truck tire and sledge hammer, and an Olympic bar with a selection of weights, for example, will often cost less than one "fancy" ma- chine at the gym. MAXIMIZE STRENGTH AND POWER Lastly, we have to carry our own bodies, as well as some fairly heavy equipment with us to every call, so it benefits us to gain strength, power, and endurance efficiently. In other words, every pound of weight we gain should give "the most bang for the buck" as muscle that improves our functionality in the field. Patrol offi- cers should train with an eye toward maximizing strength andpower. Size gains will be a side effect but the goal is the strength and power abilities gained, not size for size's sake. Extensive research confirms that training in lower repetition ranges (1–3 reps and rarely in excess of 5 reps) preferentially builds strength per unit of mass gained. To get tech- nical, it prioritizes strength, power, rate coding, myofibrillar hypertro- phy, power, ATP/PC storage effi- ciency, and neural adaptation over sarcoplasmic hypertrophy, lactate tolerance, and capillarity. Training is always about tradeoffs and no training optimally improves all aspects of fitness. A person who was simultaneous- ly training for a marathon and a powerlifting competition would perform substantially worse in both than if he were training for one or the other. So we look at the "sport" of police patrol and the physical demands and risks imposed and devise training prefer- entially suited to those demands and risks. In brief, most aerobic or endurance training is decidedly sub- optimal and should at least be minimized. Yes, this goes against the vaunted "Cooper Standards," but those are minimally appli- cable to police patrol and in general a very poor metric for mea- suring patrol officer fitness. e energy systems used in patrol are far more often anaerobic and thus sprinting is far more beneficial than distance running. e human animal is re- markably well adapted among those in the animal kingdom for endurance and distance running. However, training as such is decidedly suboptimal for a pa- trol officer. ere are much better ways to build endurance and work capacity than distance running and aero- bics in general. Also, when work capacity is built up through strength training, minimal training volume in endurance type activities will yield quite good results. Interval sprints with re- covery jogging in between efforts or stair climbing are good options. Considering we spend more than eight hours a day in patrol wearing more than 20 pounds of gear, doing train- ing with weighted vests or similar equipment is an excel- lent way to condition the body to handle the uniform load. Using a weighted vest with 150% to 250% of the weight used in patrol will do wonders for your work capacity while wearing a patrol uniform. is makes a weighted vest another ideal part of every patrol officer's work-spe- cific functional strength training. Deputy P. Whitney Richtmyer has close to 30 years in law enforcement, the majority of which has been spent in patrol. He is a firearms instructor and has worked as a field training of- ficer, detective, undercover operative, and in several other assignments. He has competed in powerlifting and Olympic-style weightlifting and taught numerous Olympic-style weightlift- ing seminars. He has written strength training articles for several different publications. Will Brink has been an adjunct train- er for Smith & Wesson Training Acad- emy, and runs the websites OptimalS- WAT.com and BrinkZone.com. He is the designer of the Practical Applied Stress Training (P.A.S.T) program. His articles have appeared in POLICE Magazine as well as other law enforce- ment publications. GUIDELINES FOR FUNCTIONAL AND SPECIFIC FITNESS TRAINING PROGRAM FOR PATROL 1) Large multi-joint closed chain (standing) movements 2) Movements done from a standing position 3) Lower repetition ranges 4) Movements that use core/lower back and abdominal muscles 5) Movements that improve flexibility 6) Movements that improve grip and forearm strength (and size) 7) Training with emphasis toward readiness and minimal post-workout soreness 8) Time-efficient movements (see (1) above) 9) Free weights and strongman-type implements 10) Low volume of endurance training if it is used and sprint intervals, stairs, etc. beneficial 11) Weighted vest or similar implements to be used in training THE PATROL ATHLETE PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES

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