Principles of Training


To ensure that you’re going to get the best out of your training, respect the following training principles:
• Overload
• Progression
• Specificity
• Variation
• Reversibility.


If you want to improve or enhance a particular ability?, it is important to apply the principle of overload. This means that you must work with exercises/intervals/training stimuli with a greater workload than what is usually performed. The old quote rings true here!
‘If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got!’

Both progression and Overload can be achieved by adopting the FITT approach to Training.

Frequency – how often the training stimuli is performed?
Intensity – how hard you train (easy, moderate, hard/measurable)
Time – duration of exercise/training stimuli.
Type – the type of training performed? (cardio, strength, flexibility etc).


The principle of specificity means that in order to improve a particular skill that Skill must be practised. ‘Practise makes perfect’.
Training performed should be relevant and appropriate to the activity. Training progresses from general conditioning to specific training for improvement of particular skills/abilities required in that sport.


The principle of variation means that variety in training protocols/methods is more likely to yield gains in performance. Specifically, training programs should include variation in intensity, duration and volume of practice.

One of the better examples of variability is by training in phases. Typically, an annual training plan includes phases of training for transition to training, general conditioning, intensive sport-specific work, in-season maintenance, and an off-season regimen. Training in phases is called periodisation.

Periodisation was devised by Tudor Bompa and has been used by Eastern Bloc Coaches for over 50 years. Macro-cycles (e.g. Year), mesocycles (e.g. month), and micro-cycles (e.g. week) include planned changes in exercises, intensity, volume, and other training variables that target the athlete’s goals to ensure peaking at the competitive end of the season.


Reversibility refers to the loss of fitness/condition etc with cessation of training stimuli.
‘If you don’t use it, you lose it’. Ideally, it’s best to try to do short maintenance training sessions if a long break from training occurs. This way the ‘detraining’ effect (loss of fitness) is minimised.

Get In Touch

If you would like to learn more about our coaching services please get in touch:
Andrew Budge – Head Livefit Australia Coach
(08) 9377 3554 or 0421811938

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