Driver Fitness: Workout Overview

Our program can really be done just
about anywhere. You really don’t need a lot of equipment. We do have some specialized equipment that we use in our gym that
you can only get at Pit Fit and we don’t expect everybody to have that. We don’t want you to have that. But in the event you don’t have this equipment you can do a lot of the same training without
that equipment. Body weight movements are very
easy, dumbbells, kettle bells, bands, simple things like that that you
can really get anywhere. Resistance Training There’s a value in resistance training
and I think if you’re looking to add some mass and some size — which we have drivers who do need to add that, increasing the weight resistance is something you absolutely want to do but there’s a limit to that. Adding too much bulk,
too much mass, can limit range of motion. If you spend so much time in the weight room, working on getting the biggest muscles possible you’re probably limiting the amount of time you’re spending on
other areas of the body — your stamina, your flexibility,
perhaps a specific area of the core or the neck. So we tend to do much more dynamic-based movements with kettle bells, bands, cables. We use sledge hammers, tires, battle ropes,
these kind of things. We just incorporate all kinds of much more dynamic movement-based activities than just pure weight training. Core Strength Training A large part of our training is we train on what we call
an unstable surface. We load the body up as much as possible with an unstable surface which would mean an endo-board or a balance board of some sort and then we load with kettle bells, dumbbells, bands, medicine ball so that
while the body is staying very, very stable, trying to balance on the board,
the core is also stable. Then we load them up with some sort of resistance, which means it’s having to constantly move (as) the center of gravity moves back and forth. The entire time the core is tight, just like in the race car. You’re stable so it’s core stabilisation versus core movement — a totally different way of training. We load the body with, say, a body blade, a kettle bell, something of that sort, just like you would do in the race car. Now
you’ve got core stabilization loading the muscles of
the body that are being worked, and now you have
the closest thing to being in a race car that you possibly can be. The medicine ball Russian twist is a way to focus on strengthening the core — at a very dynamic movement pattern. With the core area of the body, you want to train it from various angles. By implementing a rotational side to the training of the core, you’re hitting various angles. The heavier the medicine ball the more work you’re producing, the stronger the muscle and the faster and the tighter the muscles are. The battle rope is a tremendous tool. The ropes have a lot of different uses. Some of these implements that have been
around for years have now kind of come full… full
circle to being used again. A lot of the old school training.
The battle ropes are, or any kind of ropes you use, they’re heavy.
They weigh somewhere around 40-50 pounds and you can
move them in a pattern up and down, up and down, around and around, and that helps work on the
shoulders, the core… Again, dynamically moving the body in a way that’s going to
benefit them in a car and it also tends to get the heart rate up pretty high so it almost
becomes a cardio-based strength workout combined in one. The heart rate is one of the most valuable areas that we focus on for the
training of the drivers. Not just for the training but for the recovery. The intensity levels, the training load — We use the Polar Team2
system which allows us to monitor real-time, drivers live on a TV monitor while they’re actually training. We can monitor up to 28 athletes at one time while they’re training. This gives us data that we can look at and look at and look at, and line-up with with their training loads to see are they improving? Are they not improving? Are they over trained? We could put the monitors on the drivers
in the car and do a correlation workout the kind of shows what their heart rate
does in a specific car, specific track. We can detail a workout that somewhat fits them into the same kind of situations
they go to in the race car. The whole premise of our program is
really based around variety and never really settling into a groove. Drivers, really, their sport is so
non-specific to any training that you want to offer a very
non-specific training program. A basketball player knows that if he
increases his vertical leap his performance will improve this much. With a driver, you can work in
one specific area but there are so many intangibles that you can’t control, so we just try to keep the driver very limber, very
lean, very strong — a lot of variety,
reaction training everything and don’t let them really
settle into a specific style of training but just with a lot of a variety. Well it’s certainly nice
to have some of the latest and greatest, fanciest
pieces of exercise equipment. The key is you. You have to do more than
the next guy or the next girl. You need to look at the
grid, look around with contempt and say I’m
in better shape than they are. I’m mentally
and physically more prepared than
the next driver. To do that there should be no excuses.
You don’t need a lot of fancy equipment. You need you to get out there, find the tools, research how to do it — a website like SAFEisFAST
will give you the tools to be a better driver.
Now it’s up to you to get out there and do it.

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