General Topics

Free flowing information about sports training, exercise equipment, and general topics of interest.

  1. Why Do Plateaus Occur?- Part II by Ron Wolforth

    A reminder of key points of Part I: 1) Plateaus are natural parts of EVERYONE's growth. 2) Very frequently I see solid and steady incremental growth being categorized and labeled by athletes and parents as 'disappointing' and 'discouraging' simply because the gains were 'so small'. 3) To truly be exceptional you must first learn to become discouragement proof... or at the very least... discouragement resistant. 4) At the Ranch we say... “To become great, you first must learn to enjoy the plateaus.” Continue reading →
  2. Why Do Plateaus Occur?- Part I - by Ron Wolforth

    Whenever a young man breaks a record at the Texas Baseball Ranch, I will as a habit, make the comment... "Wow... just think, if you can improve that much every week, by the time you are X (typically I add 10 years to their current age) you'll throw it 132 mph... and that'll be a record!"   Everyone laughs. But my point is made. Big jumps in velocity or bat speed, while nice, can't be expected every single week or month. While we all know that intellectually... emotionally we just can't seem to get our head around a plateau. We just assume we must improve from yesterday and give it no more thought than that. Continue reading →
  3. What makes the best, the best? by John LaCorte

    Bill Belichick does it again! No Tom Brady, no problem! There’s no denying the dude can coach some football! 3rd string rookie QB last Thursday night and they beat the Texans, who many consider one of the better teams in the NFL. Continue reading →
  4. “Khaos” Training Old but Becoming New Again - By: Gunnar Thompson, NASM-CPT, PES

    Take a look around at your gym, weight room, or training facility. Do you see a squat rack? Good. What about a bench, free weights, or maybe plyometric boxes? Awesome. Maybe if you’re one of the fortunate ones, you see some resistance bands, medicine balls, or kettlebells? Terrific. This means your place for training is like 100% of the population. This can be a good thing. You have strength equipment, speed equipment, and power equipment. This sounds like it covers all the aspects in being a great athlete. However, the majority of training programs lack the single critical component in creating the ELITE athlete. This is of course being prepared for every chaotic movement involved in sports. Continue reading →
  5. TAP Khaos Pivoter

    Last post I introduced our new “Khaos” line of products and the first product in that line, the TAP Khaos Ball. As a refresher, the Oates Specialties Khaos line consists of uneven and/or unstable training products that challenge athletes and transform otherwise routine or ordinary workouts. Today, I want to introduce to you the next product in Khaos line: the TAP Khaos Pivoter. The Pivoter is a training and conditioning tool based on the Asymmetrical Bar Training concept (“ABT”). ABT helps to train an athlete’s balance while simultaneously improving core strength and rotational power. ABT uses a bar with resistance on only one end to create an unbalanced load, which can be used in any number of exercises. The uneven load naturally forces an athlete’s body to rotate/move toward the loaded side. This requires the athlete to engage muscles throughout the shoulders, arms, core, and legs to help maintain a “normal” or “neutral” position. Continue reading →
  6. New Product: TAP Khaos Ball

    Oates Specialties has a number of new products that I plan on featuring in the coming posts.  One of our newest additions is a line of products that will share the name “Khaos.”  Our line of Khaos products are uneven and/or unstable training products designed to challenge athletes during their workouts, often taking routine exercises and making them much more difficult.  And for those of you who know anything about Greek Mythology, Khaos (or Chaos) was the name of one of the Greek gods at the beginning of the universe.  Khaos was the lower atmosphere which surrounded the earth—comprised of invisible air and gloomy mist, which seems apt to name such a line of products. Continue reading →
  7. How to Win Games with Your 'C' Stuff by Jonathan Massey

    By now most of you are either deep into the baseball season or have just begun. As much as I want each one of you to have your best stuff every time you take the mound, that is simply not going to happen. Not even the great ones like Nolan Ryan, Roger Clemens, Pedro Martinez, or Randy Johnson had their best stuff every time they took the mound. Yet the difference between those guys and the average major league guy is that those guys found ways to win with their ‘C’ stuff. And just like training to throw a 90 mph fastball, learning to win with your ‘C’ stuff can and should be trained. Continue reading →
  8. Are You Gator Bait? by Randy Sullivan

    When I first moved to Florida in 1993, I met a few good dudes at church who invited me to join them for a round of golf. During physical therapy school, I had become an avid golfer (before kids #2 and 3), so I was happy to go. Somewhere around the 7th tee, I had my first experience with a real live Florida alligator. As I stepped up for my drive, I noticed some movement on the bank of the creek adjacent to the tee box.  Upon further observation, I was surprised to see about a 5 ft long gator laying in the sun. Continue reading →
  9. How Chien-Ming Wang Got His Groove Back by Randy Sullivan

    Have you heard the talk of the town in MLB Cactus League? Seems there is a “rising phoenix” in Surprise, Arizona. And its got a lot of people confused The entire league is wondering how Chien-Ming Wang, a 35 year old, twice injured pitcher who was sitting at 86-88 mph in AAA last year is now bumping 96 mph and is showing better stuff than any time in his career. Continue reading →
  10. 5 Reasons Athlete’s Underachieve - by Coach Ron Wolforth

    The 5 Most Common Reasons 95% of ALL Athletes Underachieve and Never Reach Their God Given Potential  More Importantly…What Can You Learn From The Texas Baseball Ranch™ to Overcome Those Obstacles…and Assist You in Transforming Your Career? Skill development is truly NOT rocket science. Why more people don’t ‘get’ this simple concept I truly have no idea but I’m very grateful for it because in all frankness it affords me a very good living. Continue reading →

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