Training load and recovery in MLB minor leagues – with Pat Trainor, Tampa Bay Rays – Ep. 6
Welcome to the Firstbeat Sports Podcast where we talk with coaches and sports scientists to explore the latest in performance monitoring and how it is making a difference in NCAA and pro sports alike. We’re going to connect you with practical advice from the best in the business to help you take your athletes to the next level.
On the line today is Pat Trainor. Pat is the Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coordinator with the Tampa Bay Rays where he works with the club’s four affiliate teams. He has previously spent time with the San Diego Padres and Cleveland Indians.
Among the topics Pat will discuss is his role in helping develop future talent, the use of heart rate data in Major League Baseball and the value of data when working with specific positions.
Topics discussed in this episode:
- The complex role of an MLB minor league S&C coordinator
- The difference between training programs that nurture talent vs MLB veteran program
- How to adapt training programs around busy travel schedules
- Individualizing training for different body types/positions
- The key metrics to monitor in baseball conditioning sessions
- How data influences workload and recovery decisions
- Patrick’s background, and what led him to the Tampa Bay Rays (1:06)
- What being a minor league S&C coach entails (2:51)
- Differences between minor and major leaguer programs (3:44)
- Balancing the physical side with keeping the position coaches happy (5:06)
- Common traits Major League players share (6:52)
- Player routines away from the practice facility (8:24)
- Adapting training programs for busy travel schedules (9:35)
- Moving away from the old school mentality (11:12)
- Patrick’s coaching philosophies (12:21)
- Doing things for a purpose, not just because other teams are doing it (14:52)
- Why Patrick chose Firstbeat Sports (16:10)
- Metrics that Patrick looks at (18:10)
- How Patrick kept track of training sessions before using Firstbeat (20:00)
- Protocol with pitcher training (21:20)
- Buy-in from players and coaches (23:08)
- Examples of data that influences training decisions (24:25)
- How much time Firstbeat adds to the weekly workload (25:50)
- Why has HR monitoring in MLB been slow to catch on? (26:45)
- The value of objective data in individualizing training programs (28:45)
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