Training

LP

An ancient athlete as part of his training would train in a classroom with a special teacher who would give him exercises to develop his fitness and health.

They then began to be recognised as something like either an eagle or a lion which were mentally fierce or a piece of string and lathe which were physically and mentally able to twist.

After this they would go through a day method of training:  first day they would do sharp exercises , second day they would do hard work. On the third day they would relax and recover from the hard work and on the fourth day they would practice their technique. They would have a break for a day and the process would start again.

They would also be on a strict diet of cereals, barley or wheat with vegetables ,fruit or fish. Very poor people would eat vegetables ,fruit and fish.

EMS

Monday

5.30–9pm: I start with a warm-up game of “wall tennis” with my coach (playing squash with your hands), then I start weight conditioning. This involves sit-ups (three sets of 10 reps) and weights. With weight training, I can’t lift over my body weight because I haven’t stopped growing yet. Then I’ll practise somersaults on a harnessed trampoline in the gym. This is followed by a series of dive-specific stretches and pool work,

Tuesday – Thursday

5.30–8.30pm: Wall tennis warm-up, weight conditioning, then gymnastics and trampoline work to develop my take-off technique and somersaults, before doing them pool-side. Once I’m in the pool, I start work on the 5m diving board and I can either do dive repetitions at this height, or work my way up to the 10m board.

 

Friday

Start training after school from 3.15-6.45pm. I follow the same regime as above.

Saturday

Training from 9am–12noon. Afternoon off.

Sunday

Day off.

PW

Most Greek athletes have a trainer. The trainer was usually a retired athlete who was expected to be an expert in all of the events. Instructing the athlete in the actual techniques of the sport. Trainers were called aleiptai (massagers) or hygienoi iatroi (fitness specialists). They have carried knowledge of physiotherapy and diet.

PM

The routines for athletes were very strict and the trainers were tough. Their diet was sincere and would never be allowed to eat what they want. Training started at a young age where they would start in a classroom with a special teacher to help develop their general strength. As they grow older they continue to work in the classroom but with more advanced equipment and working on your fitness. They do the 4 day training method:

First Day – Quick sharpening exercises

Second day – Work non-stop until tired and weak

Third Day – Given time to relax

Fourth Day – Left to him to practice his techniques

*Phase 1 – General development of strength, mobility, endurance and basic technique.

* Phase 2 – Development of specific fitness and advanced technical skills.

* Phase 3 – Competition experience – achievement of indoor objectives.

* Phase 4 – Adjustment of technical model, preparation for the main competition.

* Phase 5 – Competition. (Olympics)

* Phase 6 – Active recovery – planning preparation for next season.

In general, athletes lift weights, and do whatever the hell men do at a gym. I wouldn’t know I’m only 13! But that is to get fitter. If you want to train for the 100 metre sprint, or another running event, you would concentrate on your breathing, and then improve your speed. Events like the long jump, high jump, pole vault and throwing the javelin, require speed but skill and accuracy.

Athletes train amazingly hard, and not just on the track, but in everyday life. They have to watch their diet and their health a lot. I think I would still prefer competing in today’s Olympics that the Greeks Olympics.

MJ

There are many events in the Olympic Games. So every athlete is obviously going to train differently. But most athletes do macro-cycles. That’s not a word you see every day. Macro-cycles are cycles that an athlete does to increase or maintain their fitness and reduce chance of any injury. The cycle is divided into phases:

*Phase 1 – General development of strength, mobility, endurance and basic technique.

* Phase 2 – Development of specific fitness and advanced technical skills.

* Phase 3 – Competition experience – achievement of indoor objectives.

* Phase 4 – Adjustment of technical model, preparation for the main competition.

* Phase 5 – Competition. (Olympics)

* Phase 6 – Active recovery – planning preparation for next season.

In general, athletes lift weights, and do whatever it is men do at a gym. I wouldn’t know I’m only 13! But that is to get fitter. If you want to train for the 100 metre sprint, or another running event, you would concentrate on your breathing, and then improve your speed. Events like the long jump, high jump, pole vault and throwing the javelin, require speed but skill and accuracy.

Athletes train amazingly hard, and not just on the track, but in everyday life. They have to watch their diet and their health a lot. I think I would still prefer competing in today’s Olympics that the Greeks Olympics.

AH

Nowadays atheletes have many facilities to train with, like treadmills, rowing machines etc. We also have a lot of new foods which could help athletes take in a lot of energy but not so they get fat. It is a lot safer: we have shoes so we don’t cut our feet and boxing is done with boxing gloves rather than steel knuckledusters!

CS

Ancient Olympians were trained fairly differently from today in this world of pills and plasma screen TVs; in those days things were a lot different than now. From early childhood, an athlete trained with a trainer. There were three types of trainers. The paidotribes were physical trainers of athletics for competition. The gymnastes were high paid athletic exercise trainers; and the aleiptes were anointers who anointed athletes bodies with oil for muscle massages (which must’ve been fun for some). Trainers’ services were not inexpensive. If an athlete could not afford a trainer, his city paid for one (lucky). The most common form of training was the 4 day training cycle:

1.)    The first day was used for stretches for day 2.

2.)    On day 2 the Athletes were trained till they were weak and tired.

3.)    This was rest day. (Some athletes went to Costa Cows blood).

4.)    This was the last day when the athletes could do any exercises and training they wanted as long as they did some.

So being a Greek Olympic Athlete was I think probably a little bit tougher than a modern athlete even though in these modern days we have weights up to 150kg and above.

So in the comment box below decide what you think it was tougher to be an athlete in Ancient Greece or is it tougher to be an Olympic Athlete in training in these modern times?

 Not that I’m influencing or anything but the men did have to run nude when they were training and bare foot.

FM

In ancient Greece, boys were taught in a classroom with teachers who showed them their first training exercises. But as they grew older, the trainers were stricter and put into different categories judging on their physical conditions. The “Eagle” or “Lion” were athletes who were strong and powerful but knew how to back out if things didn’t go their way. The “Piece of String” and “Lath” were athletes who were capable of slipping away and finally, there were the “Bears” who were heavy and hard to move but were brave.

A good way of training for an ancient athlete was the four-day method. On the first day, the athlete was given “sharpening up” exercises which were meant to prepare the athlete for the training the next day. On the second day, the athlete was worked until he was too tired to do just about anything. The third day let the athlete rest and the last day let the athlete work on his own techniques and his own event or events.

Athletes were fed barley or wheat, vegetables, fruit and fish. Meat was rarely used because it wasn’t in a large supply and was difficult to get so it was eaten on special day.

RC

As an ancient Olympian life is very hard here. We usually have to train for 10 months before the whole thing has started and by the time we’ve got anywhere near the event we are so tired. Also sometimes other athletes cheat. One of the men who I trained with was caught and well, people say that he will never walk again and I mean who wouldn’t his legs were whipped so badly you could see the bone. Serves him right. I would never cheat. He was a runner like me so I guess that’s one less person to worry about. The last time it was the Olympic Games was four years ago something bad happened, my friend got disqualified because they said he was to slow, when the truth was he was going slow so I could win and vice versa, that’s how close we were. I was upset when he went but I pushed on and got an olive crown in the final which I was very proud of. This year I’m going for gold and I think I will get it as I’ve trained really hard and my coach says I have the potential. The opening ceremony is in 2 days and I’m just going to train really hard from now on.

IM

“I’ve just come back from injury following a crash I had in February — it’s the longest I’ve been off my bike in my whole career,”reveals Hoy. “I landed on my right hip, and it was a fairly nasty one, so I had to take a complete rest off the bike. Pretty much since then I’ve getting back into training, hoping to get back to full fitness pretty quickly. But coming back from injury, is like starting to exercise for the first time. You can’t get stuck in straight away because you might do yourself a mischief; you have to be sensible. Plan it out, do incremental changes, gradually increasing the volume and intensity of what you’re doing.”

Yearly Targets

The training is planned around a four-year cycle, so you can break it down from there into a yearly cycle, and then within each year you’ll have a specific target, be it the World Championships or the Commonwealth Games or whatever event it is that year. In each year you’ll break it down even further, and really it’s just about stepping stones towards your main target.

Weight Training

In terms of actual day-to-day training; a normal training day would begin with a gym session for about two hours, focusing on strength; so heavy weights on the lower body, with the main exercise being free weight squatting, with between one and ten repetitions depending on the time of year and the aim of the session.

On My Bike

If you’re looking to do real maximum strength then you’d being doing as little as just one or two repetitions per set. We’ll also do work on your core stability and the posture muscles, so it’s not just your legs and your lower back getting a work-out, it’s your posture muscles too.

After a two hour gym session we go to the track at the velodrome, and that usually lasts three hours. That would involve a number of different kinds of sessions focusing on one different component per session. So we might work on acceleration, and in that session you’re looking to do nothing but work on your change of pace, from standing starts or from low-speed to high-speed, and you’ll  do anything from between ten and fourteen efforts in a session for that kind of exercise.

In a speed session, we’ll do work on the track to work on your speed, and for those kinds of sessions we often use motorbikes to pace us and to break the air for us, and we’ll sit behind the motorbike going faster than you can go just by yourself, and you can reach in excess of 85kph behind a motorbike, whereas on your own, its more like 75-76kph. We sometimes do longer efforts in order to generate lactic acid to train the body to produce it and to tolerate it.

Usually in the evenings, I go for a one-hour road session for a gentle recovery road ride. It’s a really steady stint with the main focus being to loosen the body down. I’d either do that or go to the physio and have a massage, so it’s a similar thing. You would do that training session for five or six days in a week, but it all depends as it varies through the time of year.

FMg

 

Like many athletes of today, ancient athletes trained ALL the time and some more.  Training was a very highly developed art. From early childhood, an athlete trained with a trainer. There were three types of trainers. The paidotribes were physical trainers of athletics for competition; the gymnastes were high paid athletic exercise trainers; and the aleiptes were “anointers” who anointed athletes’ bodies with oil for muscle massages. Trainers’ services were not inexpensive. If an athlete could not afford a trainer, his city paid for one. Athletes arrived in Elis one month prior to the start of the Olympic Games, and continued to trained in one of many arenas there. The runners and pentathletes trained in the Xystos. The wrestlers and the boxers trained in the Tetragonon, and the boys trained in the Maltho.

WD

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2 Responses to Training

  1. Ms E says:

    I’m not sure if it was harder back then. It was certainly more basic. The atheletes only trained for 10 months rather than 4 or more. They didn’t have the media pressure that athletes today face. Perhaps the weight of expectation of their city or town might amount to the same thing. I take your point about running barefoot: painful! A good blog.

  2. CS says:

    Comment on EMS’s blog on Tom Daley: Very good blog, lots of info and detailed aswell. Very good job in all.

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