Technical Mindset – Garage Strength

Technical Mindset


Garage Strength
Have a technical mindset ALWAYS!


Are you a weightlifter, thrower, wrestler, or any athlete in a technical sport that struggles to find that technical mindset? You get into the gym and you're sitting there wondering what can I do to stop being a meathead and to actually focus on technique? 

If that's you, then this podcast is for you. This is Dane Miller from Dane Miller’s Strength Secrets, I'm going to dive deep into the realm of the technical mindset. So this is something that I like to talk about quite a bit, especially with my athletes, is what is a technical mindset? What does it entail and how can we constantly improve our mindset to engage with proper technique? I think that this is something that a lot of coaches really missed the boat on and a lot of athletes really missed the boat on because their coaches aren't pushing them to have the technical mindset, the coaches aren't pushing them to think outside the box and to comprehend what is actually going to get you to become a champion. The answer is technique because technique is difficult to master.

It's hard. It's typically fast, it's precise and it takes a lot of brainpower and effort. It's easy to get stupid strong in the weight room, but it's not easy to get very, very technically minded. I think that that's where I want to start is if we can think about no matter what sport it is, we have to identify what is the technical model that we're going to use. If we're a triple jumper and we are going on the runway and we don't know how we want to cycle, we don't know how we want to ground our foot. We're not even grounding with our flat foot when we're doing our triple jump, well then we've got a problem.


I think the biggest thing here is establishing a technical model for every single thing that you are going to do. If you can put a technical model in your head. If I'm a shot putter, I want to look like Ryan Crouser, if I'm a wrestler I want to look like Jordan Burroughs, if I'm a swimmer I want to move like Michael Phelps. We don't need to get into technical discussions, but if we sit there and analyze the movement specific to our sport and recognize this is where I'm at and this is where I want to be, that is who I want to look like, Now we have a pointed method of training. We can go to training, we can see where we're at and we can comprehend that it is a long, long, long process to becoming a champion.

By having to engage with this long process, we establish this long roadmap of technical work. When you create that long roadmap of technical work, it has to be dynamic and you have to understand that when you're missing lifts or missing throws or whatever it might be, it's happening from a logical perspective. It's not happening cause you're a bad person. It's not happening cause you're not good enough. It's happening because there was a technical error. To improve your performance you have to figure out what that technical error is based on your technical model. Improve the technical error so it doesn't happen again, and then constantly adapt your technique towards that large technical model.

Click here for a technical analysis!

I think this is where the benefit of exercises like the snatch, clean, jerk, and all the variations that are involved with Olympic lifts come into play is that it can completely rewire the way that you think about movement, the way that you think about strength, the way that you're thinking about becoming a champion. Now, instead of pulling on a clean as hard as you possibly can with no regard to the actual movement of your knees, hips, ankles, elbows or anything along those lines. Now when you have that technical mindset from the floor to the knee, what do you need to do? What does your back need to do? What do your elbows need to do? What does your hip need to do? Now from below the need to above the knee. What do your knees need to do? What are your hips and every single joint and then all the way until the lift is finished. It's the same thing for the throw. For a shot putter coming out of the back of the circle, what do I need to do coming out of the back of the circle to ground in the middle and what does every single joint need to do?

Then when you have that blueprint of that technical silhouette that you can place over yourself. Well now all of a sudden when you start to think of things with that technical mindset or the technical silhouette, you can start to see where your errors are and where you can improve and what you need to focus on. Then when you take out all of the emotions, you can sit there and say, okay, I'm making this technical error either because I'm lacking that cue, I'm lacking the feeling of impropriate reception, I'm lacking the mobility to hold those positions, or I'm lacking the strength to hold those positions. Or maybe it's a combination and you can then find the lifts or the variations or the throws or the accessory work that is going to enhance those positions. It's going to enhance your proprioception, It's going to enhance your strength, it's going to enhance whatever you need to continuously build towards those technical models.


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I believe that one of the biggest keys behind success in all sports is understanding that every single movement must be executed with technical precision all the way down to a freaking bicep curl. If you're doing a bicep curl, you should lengthen your bicep as much as possible, and if you cock your wrist back just a little bit, you're going to lengthen your bicep even further. Now all of a sudden you lengthen it, You recruit more motor units and that in turn will lead to greater size in your bicep. That's a simple tip for bicep gains, but that goes back to that technical ideology and having that technical mindset is that every single movement that you want to accomplish, every single squat that you're going to do, every single reverse hyper or cossack squat or lunge or bench press or dumbbell bench press, has to have a technical path behind it to optimize your performance longterm and to ensure that there are minimal amounts of inflammation that can lead to negative performance over time because of mobility issues or whatever it might be.

Create that technical model or find that technical model, create that technical literacy, change your brain's makeup so that you comprehend the importance of technique, find that technical silhouette over every single exercise that you're doing. Then you will start to execute your movements with a technical purpose. That will carry over to the competition. You'll start to see that when you're competing if you're not competing as well as you want to be, it is very likely because of technical errors, not because of muscular strengths.

Dane Miller

Dane Miller is the owner and founder of Garage Strength Sports Performance. He works with a select handful of elite athletes building comprehensive programs for strength and sports performance. Several times a year he leads a seminar for coaches, trainers, and athletes.


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