The following is an interview between Kerri Smith and One on One team member and Adam Pangborn, CSCS.
KERRI:  What is athletic readiness training?ADAM: The foundation of every sport includes fundamental movement skills such as running, jumping, throwing, balance, agility, and hand-eye coordination. Athletic readiness training focuses on the development of these basic motor skills.

KERRI:  Why do our young athletes need readiness training?

yart_med_ballADAM: Unfortunately, games of tag and backyard baseball have been replaced by video games, TV, and surfing the internet. Studies show that children between the ages of 10-12, for instance, are spending up to 6 hours per day in front of the television and/or computer. The price tag for this sedentary lifestyle is very high. Not only are our nation’s children at greater risk of becoming obese and developing chronic diseases, but they are also at risk of failing to develop basic motor skills.

For those young athletes playing competitive sports, readiness training is important not just to help them excel, but to help them become more comprehensively and dynamically fit. Many of these individuals are so focused on practicing for only their individual sport that they end up becoming unbalanced; strong in some areas and weak in others.

KERRI:  It seems as if there has been a rise in injuries to young athletes. Why?

ADAM: One reason has to do with the young athlete’s poorly developed motor skills. These young athletes are simply not ready to be performing sport-specific movements. We have seen a tremendous rise in the number of anterior cruciate tears (ACL), especially in female athletes. No, it is not their hormones…it is their inability to control the position of their femur (thigh bone) in relation to their tibia (shinbone). Because these kids haven’t been jumping rope and playing hopscotch, they don’t know how to control their bodies when they are landing from a jump. They lack the kinesthetic awareness to instinctively protect themselves from injury.

The second reason we see this rise in injuries has to do with specialization in sports. Many families believe their child will have a competitive advantage if they spend twelve months of the year focusing on that one sport. No thought is ever given to peaking or periodization. Unfortunately, overuse injuries such as shin splints and plantar fasciitis end up sidelining these young athletes.

KERRI:  What do you mean by “overuse” injury?

ADAM: Overuse injuries are more common than ever. In previous generations, athletes played two or three sports and summers were free for independent development or rest. Now players specialize in one sport and play year-round. We can not continue to ignore the stress placed on joints and growing bones and muscles through year-round, repetitive sports activity.

KERRI:  As a former competitive athlete, what advice do you have for parents today?

ADAM: If you want your child to be the best 12 year old tennis player, they can probably be the best 12 year old tennis player by spending more time playing tennis than their competitors. However, if you want your child to be the best 18 year old tennis player, you’ve got to allow diversity in their training. Even if they don’t want to participate in any other sport, you’ve got to give their developing bodies a balanced training stimulus.

KERRI:  Any final comments?

ADAM: Before joining the One on One training team, I had never heard of athletic readiness training. I certainly wish I had this knowledge as I was developing as a soccer athlete.

The bottom line is this: Most kids are going to have more fun if they can keep up with their peers athletically. Athletic Readiness Training will not only make a young athlete stronger and faster, it will also help them stay injury free.

Give your young athlete their best shot at success. Please contact Adam at and let him know if you have any questions about our Youth Athletic Readiness Training any other specialty programming you may be interested in.