Parametric Biometric Method
Biometrics are a form of cybernetic programming that originated in the Soviet Union. This regulatory process determines the appropriate level of training and stress an organism should undergo on a given day. Cybernetic Progamming is off called Autoregulation in the Sports training world.
Parametric biometrics involves using a different motor skill to regulate the training intensity for a specific task. Traditional biometrics, for instance, may utilize plyometrics or other exercises, coupled with tools like v-scopes, Tendo units, or force plates, to gauge variables such as speed and force. This enables the trainer to identify the point at which performance declines by a certain percentage, signaling the need to stop training for that exercise on that day.
However, when it comes to isometrics and eccentrics(like in the Triphasic Training method), the use of biometrics becomes ineffective because the tempo changes, no longer adhering to the concentric-based movement. In these cases, a separate measuring aspect of the same motor skill is employed to regulate the volume of sets and reps for isometric or eccentric lifting exercises. Here are some examples: during the isometric or eccentric phase of training, one might perform an eccentric or isometric back squat, followed by a prescribed rest period of 3-4 minutes (or as directed). Afterward, the motor tasks to be regulated are performed, such as doing a squat jump with a measurement tool. Whenever the athlete begins to decline from their best effort, the squatting or isometric leg press exercises should cease. Typically, I start by using the parametric method, taking into account the best results achieved on that particular day. For instance, if an athlete jumps 30 inches and then proceeds to perform back squats, they should continue squatting as long as they consistently reach the 30 or 29-inch mark.
To optimize lower body performance assessment, I implement a parametric motor task using Vertimax belts connected to Tendos. This allows me to measure the percentage of the athlete’s best squat jump. To ensure accurate parametric measurements, it’s crucial to eliminate the dynamics and variables involved in the motor tasks. For instance, during the squat jump, I instruct athletes to place their hands on their hips, avoid swinging their arms, and jump vertically. Jumping more horizontally can lead to pulling more wire out of the Tendo unit, resulting in a higher reading. By minimizing variables, we achieve more precise parametric readings. Another example involves the bench press. With female athletes, we use a lighter load of 45-65 lbs, and 95 lbs with males in the bench throw. Typically, we perform two reps, as additional repetitions beyond the second tend to diminish maximum speed and motor skills. I usually begin with the plyometric exercise, followed by a 6-second isometric bench press, one rep, and a few prehab exercises. Before returning to the bench press, I reassess with the same plyometric exercise to ensure the athlete is within the desired range, which can vary depending on training frequency and volume.
The drop off percentage question is often asked, and I arrived at the answer through trial and error experiments with multiple athletes. I observed their performance levels on a specific day, noting the percentage drop off, and then tracked their healing time to regain that same level. It all began with an article on cybernetics, unfortunately only available in Russian, which highlighted that an athlete’s best effort should be within 1.5-2% of their ability at any given time. However, this pertained to their sports skill, not their training skill. In other words, the discrepancy can be slightly larger when it comes to training. Sporting skills were practiced daily, so the training focus should have been within 1-2% of the main sports skill each day. On the other hand, lifting and strength training allowed for a greater percentage difference due to the fact that these activities are not performed daily. Training is done on one day and then followed by a few days of rest. This explains why I observed a higher percentage and wider margins for drop off in this biometric training method.
Wrote by Cal Dietz