Velocity Based Training Tips for Newbies: VBT Quick Start Guide

It has previously been recognized that providing feedback to athletes as they train can enhance velocity and power outputs by up to 10% (92,93,96). Furthermore, because of the naturally competitive nature of athletes, by allowing individuals of similar ability or position to train together and observe each other’s kinematic outputs, greater competition may occur. However, the intended purpose of the exercise must also be considered, as the feedback provided may cause an athlete to sacrifice technique for greater velocities.

  1. If the athlete is lazy, or for any reason does not perform the repetition with maximal effort (i.e. lift the barbell as quickly as possible), then the information might not be accurate.
  2. If this sounds familiar, it may be because it is an adaptation of the original Bosco Strength Continuum as explained at the 2005 CSCCa National Conference (8).
  3. For example, a fixed number of sets may be applied (e.g., 5 sets) with a flexible repetition scheme (e.g., athletes exercise until a 20% velocity loss has occurred) (89).

To add to this, research has shown that velocity-based training can significantly improve an athlete’s performance. The body of research in this regard is quite extensive, especially for jumps, and shows that with both visual and auditory feedback, athletes tend to jump higher than those who do not receive feedback. In addition, VBT has been shown to promote the activation of type II muscle fibers.

You can add on more lifts to each day, but keep the squat and bench as the first lift on the indicated day. You could easily expand this basic template into a 4 day upper/lower split. The decrease in explosive fiber types is no doubt due to the significant increase in the amount of fatigue accumulated in the 40% group because of the huge increase in the workload it took to drop bar speed by 40%. Because the workload was so high and the bar speed dropped so much, aerobic adaptations started taking place to keep up with the ATP demand/waste removal needs. Augmented feedback simply refers to using the velocity data to direct coach feedback more accurately and also drive athlete motivation.

For example, practitioners are commonly faced with the issue of athletes coming straight off the training field and into the weight room. This often means that the athlete is fatigued and that the loads prescribed before the training session are no longer valid. However, VBT does not face these issues as athletes are prescribed a velocity range rather than a specific external load.

Velocity zones are dead – once and for all

A linear encoder is composed of an optical encoder capable of measuring angular movements and a coil that allows linearizing them, in this way, any linear movement can be measured. This free how-to guide teaches you everything you need to know about VBT and how to start using it today. He’s published research on the ‘Practical Applications of Water Immersion vbt chart Recovery Modalities for Team Sports’ in the Strength & Conditioning Journal by the NSCA (National Strength & Conditioning Association). He has also been featured in the Sports Business Journal and The Roar, Australia’s leading sports opinion website. Jade Jacob wasted no time at the start of the new year but instead immediately turned to the gym.

Traditional programming methods provide rigid programming (i.e., a number of sets and repetitions are prescribed), but VBT can mitigate the differences in athletes and their physiological characteristics (89). For example, a fixed number of sets may be applied (e.g., 5 sets) with a flexible repetition scheme (e.g., athletes exercise until a 20% velocity loss has occurred) (89). With identification of appropriate velocity loss cutoffs and their subsequent fatigue responses, these flexible programming methods can account for differing rates of fatigue, between-athlete heterogeneity, and daily readiness (89). Table 5 outlines some of the most commonly applied methods of prescribing sets and repetitions using VBT.

But before we dive into this complex jargon, we will first explain what velocity-based training is and why it is useful. In addition to this, velocity-based training can be used for many other useful purposes, such as providing instantaneous feedback to athletes to promote performance improvements. However, whilst this training tool appears to have many useful functionalities, coaches should not get distracted by the technology and forget what it is they are actually there to do, which is to coach. Have your athletes focus on power output, and continue adding load to the bar until they find their power output begins to dip. Their work sets then begin with the optimal load either at, just above, or just below the point of maximum power – depending on your specific training goal.


Velocity-based training allows coaches and athletes to train at very specific intensities. For example, if two completely identical athletes with the same strength levels etc performed an 80% of 1RM back squat, but one only lifted the bar with maximal effort whilst the other did not, would the intensity of the lift be the same? The intensity will be higher for the athlete who tried harder than the other, as it is more physically demanding to lift the bar with maximal effort. Velocity-based training is a highly effective and versatile training modality that allows trainees and coaches to adjust load and volume based on an incredibly accurate metric. It provides more flexibility in your workout, accounts for “bad” and “good” days, and provides you with a new form of training that focuses on muscle speed as well as strength.

Basically everything done in the weight room is going to be general physical preparedness (GPP) for team sports. This means, the movements and exercises utilized in a power rack in the gym are only going to supplement the actual sport specific physical preparedness (SPP) of actual on field team practice time. The lifting exercise is being performed with a higher velocity than its maximum velocity equation.2. We don’t have an available equation for that specific exercise (in other words, a load-velocity profile that provides an equation to calculate the 1RM hasn’t been created).3. The lifting exercise is being performed with a higher velocity than the established 1RM filter of the exercise.

Velocity-Based Training

If the bar is moving quickly, then the athlete’s readiness to train is high, and/or the load applied to the exercise is too low. If the bar is moving slowly, then readiness to train is low and/or the load is too high. For example, if you had 80% of the 1RM listed for that day, the actual relative load may be 98%, which would be way too heavy for that day, or it could be as light as 62%. This is why some days we feel strong in the weight room and some days we don’t. The absolute load is not the same relative intensity that we had pre-selected.

In this post, we’ll look at a new way of tracking your workouts – velocity based training (VBT). Reps, sets, and percentages can guide your training goals, but they’re not always accurate. Many use VBT in performance testing, as rehabilitation markers and as a load prescription tool, to name a few. Some have thought that this meant that there was no trait that you could develop from those intensities, which is simply not the case. Instead, because it was difficult to differentiate between strength-speed and speed-strength, there wasn’t a definitive cutoff by % of 1RM and a great amount of overlap existed between the two and the term non-quantifiable was used.

The Velocity Zones

This method of using velocity-based training is perhaps best described when thinking about the daily fluctuations in strength, as previously discussed. Because strength, and the ‘freshness/readiness’, of an athlete changes on a daily basis (Figure 1 – see above), velocity-based training allows the coach to adjust the training to fit the freshness of the athlete. This method of using velocity-based training is very straightforward and has been shown to provide very good improvements in performance (30-32). The same applies if the athlete has five repetitions left in the tank (highlighted in orange).

Week 1

Yes, reps, sets, and percentages based off your 1RM can guide your training goals, but they’re not as accurate as you may think. S&C coaches are creating a culture of accountability and intent in their weight-rooms with Output’s accurate velocity based training and novel angular-velocity based training modules. To break that down, VBT is a way to monitor an athlete’s readiness and ability to train via barbell velocity.

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