Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

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Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby Drake Huggins » Wed 14 Feb 2018 4:08pm

Just reflecting on our 2017 season, I couldn't help feeling we were in less than peak physical condition, neither at the start of the year, nor in the last third of the year, when we fell away badly. After dispatching the eventual premiers by 67 points we seemed to be in a better position to salute than they were. We had the momentum and had finally seemed to get our act together. Quite frankly, we ran the tiggers off their paws, playing an irresistible and frenetic style. What happened after that?

When the whips were cracking, we slowed to a walk. This happened against the D's (twice) and infamously against WCE in Perth in round 2, aided by abominable goal kicking. Our efforts against the dopers the week after Richmond, the Dees and tiggers in the final round were as physically insipid as anything we'd served up for the year. When it was all on the line, we went off like a penny bunger, instead of a nuclear missile. This was reflective of Roo's physical demise and more than coincidental. His Maddie's game is how I want to remember the champ. That was his true swan song. After that, it was all a bit sad. He was, by his own admission, "on rails", or not out there at all. Our fortunes mirrored his. I can't help believing he has left a gaping hole, both in terms of playing ability and leadership, but I digress.

Richmond changed their fitness staff and preparation for the 2017 season. We all know how that ended. We inherited Matt Hornsby from Richmond. He worked there from 2001-13. The results speak for themselves in that time. A good mate of Danny Frawley's. Cronyism at work? His right hand man is Josh Low, a former Soccer player, whose credentials were tested last year. Lonie is one of his projects. Forgive my skepticism, but neither of these guys, their CV's, nor track records fill me with confidence. Last year's results were disappointing and disturbing in equal measure.

Fitness staff and sports science are two areas football socialism can't get a grip on. Both the WB and Richmond appear to have stolen a march on the rest of the comp. in these areas. I just hope we haven't fallen off the pace in this crucial area. Last year's results indicate we may have. I hope they've lifted their games.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby st.byron » Wed 14 Feb 2018 6:26pm

Don't reckon it's anywhere near as much to do with physical conditioning as it is with mental focus and capacity to manage their mind focus.
This surely is where the biggest edge is in the game.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby 8bloggs » Wed 14 Feb 2018 6:37pm

I think it was more a mental lapse, particularly after that Richmond win when we faced to Bombers and never looked like a team that wanted to push on and guarantee a finals berth.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby Drake Huggins » Wed 14 Feb 2018 6:41pm

What about the first two rounds? We just looked cooked just after half time in both games. We won't be able to afford lapses like that in the first two rounds this year. We have must win games against what is thought to be against potential cellar dwellers in Norf and Brisbane. Lose those two and it's almost season over before it starts.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby Drake Huggins » Wed 14 Feb 2018 6:49pm

st.byron wrote:Don't reckon it's anywhere near as much to do with physical conditioning as it is with mental focus and capacity to manage their mind focus.
This surely is where the biggest edge is in the game.

It doesn't matter how much you wish for and how much you want to drive on, when the tank is empty, the body can't give any more, no matter how good your intentions are. If it was purely mental, everyone would come equal first. Yes, you need the mental focus and will to win, but if you're not as fit as the guy next to you at this standard, who's just as focused and motivated as you are, no amount of will compensates.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby mr six o'clock » Wed 14 Feb 2018 7:47pm

Our preparation A to G was good .
We just lacked the preparation H !
Probably explains was 2017 was painful at times.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby Drake Huggins » Wed 14 Feb 2018 10:11pm

mr six o'clock wrote:Our preparation A to G was good .
We just lacked the preparation H !
Probably explains was 2017 was painful at times.

:D :) :D . Preparation H. Our new sponsor. It reminds me of the tampon company that sponsored the Crusader's rugby team in NZ. Their slogan was, " we're not number one, but we're right up there!"
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby bigcarl » Wed 14 Feb 2018 10:20pm

st.byron wrote:Don't reckon it's anywhere near as much to do with physical conditioning as it is with mental focus and capacity to manage their mind focus.
This surely is where the biggest edge is in the game.


Correct, and making the most of your opportunities/converting/kicking straight is a big part of that. We had chances but couldn't put teams away.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby Trev from the Bush » Wed 14 Feb 2018 11:07pm

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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby Numpty » Wed 14 Feb 2018 11:54pm

Drake Huggins wrote: I couldn't help feeling we were in less than peak physical condition

Spam! Spam Mr Huggins, spam! :idea: Believe me. And let me tell you, nobody knows Spam like I do.

(Or just ask my very great friend ? ? ? He is the great patriot who is running, running as I speak to you all, running for me, the #StKildamegacasinobrothelcar&dogwashcoalmine. So much winning there, believe me!)

But it's about Spam! Our boys are out there on the frontline, fighting to keep us safe from Mexican rapists, towelhead Islamical socialists and those proles who support Collingwood!. Our boys are true patriots, they are heroes, and they are great friends of mine, great friends, believe me. And they are Saints! Believe me! But Mr Huggins, our boys, they need more spam! Specially prepared American meat! That is what they, our boys, that is what is needed, believe me! #stillmakingspamgrateagain
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby st.byron » Thu 15 Feb 2018 7:11am

Drake Huggins wrote:
st.byron wrote:Don't reckon it's anywhere near as much to do with physical conditioning as it is with mental focus and capacity to manage their mind focus.
This surely is where the biggest edge is in the game.

It doesn't matter how much you wish for and how much you want to drive on, when the tank is empty, the body can't give any more, no matter how good your intentions are. If it was purely mental, everyone would come equal first. Yes, you need the mental focus and will to win, but if you're not as fit as the guy next to you at this standard, who's just as focused and motivated as you are, no amount of will compensates.


Disagree with you on this one. The mind gives up before the body does. The old maxim of "train 'em harder" in the search for competitive advantage ignores that the leading edge of team sports competitive advantage is mind training. Teams leading the way are those addressing their players tendencies to mentally "go missing" during a game. It can be for a few minutes, a quarter of larger chunks of a game. The new edge of training is teaching players to manage their minds during a game. That's where games are won and lost.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby DJ Higgins » Thu 15 Feb 2018 9:08am

Both are valid points of view and it is a combination of the two that caused or issues last year. I think it is the game plan at present that the team wasn't able to sustain for the whole season. The frantic pressure pressure pressure does work when done right but it is also a drain both mentally and physically on the team doing it and it showed at the seasons end.

I think our guys were a bit young and naive last year when they came back from the off season last season, being over weight, not fit etc. fast forward 12 months and look what has happened. Guys are back and they are looking lean & hungry for success. Paddy and Mav especially. Be interesting come July to see how we are holding up physically
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby spert » Thu 15 Feb 2018 10:13am

Like any sport, if you play or perform smart and efficiently you will use up less energy. Our game style especially last season looked more like kids footy in some games, just grab the ball and run, and kick it as far as you can to no one in particular. I will be hoping that Richo can somehow get a more disciplined and structured system in our play this season.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby SaintPav » Thu 15 Feb 2018 1:00pm

st.byron wrote:
Drake Huggins wrote:
st.byron wrote:Don't reckon it's anywhere near as much to do with physical conditioning as it is with mental focus and capacity to manage their mind focus.
This surely is where the biggest edge is in the game.

It doesn't matter how much you wish for and how much you want to drive on, when the tank is empty, the body can't give any more, no matter how good your intentions are. If it was purely mental, everyone would come equal first. Yes, you need the mental focus and will to win, but if you're not as fit as the guy next to you at this standard, who's just as focused and motivated as you are, no amount of will compensates.


Disagree with you on this one. The mind gives up before the body does. The old maxim of "train 'em harder" in the search for competitive advantage ignores that the leading edge of team sports competitive advantage is mind training. Teams leading the way are those addressing their players tendencies to mentally "go missing" during a game. It can be for a few minutes, a quarter of larger chunks of a game. The new edge of training is teaching players to manage their minds during a game. That's where games are won and lost.


Using a maxim to refute Drake's post made me lol st.byron because it is a strawman argument. It's also not one or the other (false dilemma, false dichotomy either/or fallacy etc).

Mind training sounds like just another latest sports science fad and will eventually go the way of the dodo bird. Remember high altitude sports training and all those end of season training camps in Arizona and Utah? What ever happened to them?

The proposition is also impossible to prove either way but the issues Drake raises are worth serious consideration.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby dragit » Thu 15 Feb 2018 1:58pm

There are many different ways you can prepare a potato, but in the end it's still a potato.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby Drake Huggins » Thu 15 Feb 2018 2:03pm

st.byron wrote:
Drake Huggins wrote:
st.byron wrote:Don't reckon it's anywhere near as much to do with physical conditioning as it is with mental focus and capacity to manage their mind focus.
This surely is where the biggest edge is in the game.

It doesn't matter how much you wish for and how much you want to drive on, when the tank is empty, the body can't give any more, no matter how good your intentions are. If it was purely mental, everyone would come equal first. Yes, you need the mental focus and will to win, but if you're not as fit as the guy next to you at this standard, who's just as focused and motivated as you are, no amount of will compensates.


Disagree with you on this one. The mind gives up before the body does. The old maxim of "train 'em harder" in the search for competitive advantage ignores that the leading edge of team sports competitive advantage is mind training. Teams leading the way are those addressing their players tendencies to mentally "go missing" during a game. It can be for a few minutes, a quarter of larger chunks of a game. The new edge of training is teaching players to manage their minds during a game. That's where games are won and lost.


We may be in furious agreement on this, st.byron. There's no doubt control of the mind is essential, especially in any elite pursuit. The margins are so tight, the advantages so small, that anything that can give you an edge is desirable. Simply training harder is not the answer, as is evidenced by Tommy Hafey overtraining the filth out of a premiership in the 1977 GF replay. However, I'm not advocating the players should be trained harder, just smarter, and in a way that leaves them in peak physical condition for each game and the season as a whole.

Just look at the influence Dave Misson's efforts had on the group under RL. We went from being one of the most injury prone teams, to being a side that could grind any opposition into submission. It was a tough game style, but the team was up to the task and came oh so close to the ultimate.

Perhaps that's the point. Maybe AR has them playing a game style the group as a whole is not physically developed enough for. That's the exciting bit for me. It is a relatively young group, with huge scope for improvement. As the group matures as a whole, and with another preseason under the belt, they may become more capable of delivering more consistently and for longer periods of time. If you saw them play in the last seven games of last year, and in particular, the last two, I doubt you could reasonably argue they weren't physically cooked, especially when compared to the opposition on those respective days.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby parkeysainter » Thu 15 Feb 2018 3:33pm

Sad fact is that the Saints will never have the money, facilities, numbers and quality of personnel like a Collingwood will off field in these areas.

But again, all that doesn't translate into success. Just look at the Collingwood sporting sides for that. They're abysmal.

We will always be behind the 8 ball in some respects, but it can be overcome with a bigger heart, more smarts and a good culture.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby sunsaint » Thu 15 Feb 2018 4:47pm

Trouble with the premise of this op is that it ignores ARs past experience
Remember when port had he and Hinkley at the helm they rose quickly up the ladder and into the finals they were certainly a quick fast side - he was there
Remember when he and ratten had a young Carlton side in the finals in 2011 - he was there
Remember when he was at the pies with Malthouse which at the time had the best training facilities in melbourne and saw them into the finals during those years
I think he has been round enough successful clubs to know the level of fitness required of a top AFL side

For the record I don't believe the club's fitness under RL was a league yardstick
A grinding grappling stoppage game plan does require any great skills supreme speed or Elite fitness
The fact that he and misson had no faith in Ball's ability yet he seemed to be fine at Collingwood
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby loris » Thu 15 Feb 2018 5:28pm

SaintPav wrote:
Remember high altitude sports training and all those end of season training camps in Arizona and Utah? What ever happened to them?



SaintPav, on this point I was listening recently to a podcast on the Saints.com site, the series - Inside St Kilda.

It was the podcast where the interview is done with Alan Richardson. Part of the interview was on Richo’s trekking the Kokoda Trail with his family. He talked how Hawthorn had done it as a team. Clarko & the Hawks leadership group had also completed it. Plus he said some other teams or parts of teams had trecked Kokoda.

The interviewer asked Richo would he consider taking the Saints there as a bonding experience or at least a leadership group. Richo thought it would be a good experience from a team perspective; however, the AFL had placed a ‘soft cap’ on these whole team experiences overseas. Now I’m not certain what he meant by that. I interpreted, it’s part of the equalisation system that the AFL has introduced. Only so much money can be spent on certain things/trips. This assists the less financial clubs who can’t compete with the money rich clubs who spent willy nilly on everything, to gain an advantage.

Maybe that why Clubs aren’t attending a lot of these camps as a team....... just a thought!

Actually it’s worth listening to that podcast of Richo, goes through a number of interesting topics.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby sunsaint » Thu 15 Feb 2018 6:28pm

Kokoda would be good bonding and culture excercise
But It's not all that high
They may as well stay in oz and jog up kosciusko
Maybe do the ride with froome and get some Elite endurance tips
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby Drake Huggins » Thu 15 Feb 2018 7:54pm

sunsaint wrote:Trouble with the premise of this op is that it ignores ARs past experience
Remember when port had he and Hinkley at the helm they rose quickly up the ladder and into the finals they were certainly a quick fast side - he was there
Remember when he and ratten had a young Carlton side in the finals in 2011 - he was there
Remember when he was at the pies with Malthouse which at the time had the best training facilities in melbourne and saw them into the finals during those years
I think he has been round enough successful clubs to know the level of fitness required of a top AFL side

For the record I don't believe the club's fitness under RL was a league yardstick
A grinding grappling stoppage game plan does require any great skills supreme speed or Elite fitness
The fact that he and misson had no faith in Ball's ability yet he seemed to be fine at Collingwood


Have a look at the first 19 rounds of 2009, sunsaint. Outstanding football, great skills and ball movement combined with extreme physical pressure. 19 points from a perfect season. What is your yardstick, sunsaint? Pressure and tackling was just a part of it. We often forget how good we were at scoring and winning by big margins. Most people would take a 22-3 record, albeit we didn't salute.

The other point you make about AR being around AFL environments, so he must know what it takes to get a team to its physical peak, has more holes than a Swiss cheese. Neither Port Adelaide, nor Carlton came close. What sort of fallacious argument is that? Why do you think sports science is now such a specialised position. I'm reminded of the "eunuch at the orgy analogy". He sees what's going on, he knows what's going on, he knows roughly how it all works, but he can't do it himself.

It changes rapidly from year to year. Every year sees advances. Thinking AR has a handle on what is required because of where he was 6-7 years ago is laughable. That's why we employ specialists. Hornsby might be the man, but last year's results don't augur well. Hopefully, the immature bodies on the list develop into the sort that will see us compete with Adelaide, Swans, Geelong and Richmond. Just look at the difference between Richmond 2016 and 2017. Changes in structure and physical preparation have been credited as the difference. 13th to first. While Caddy, Prestia and Nankervis were good, they were hardly the difference. A better game plan, a better effort from the coaches and a new physical preparation regime have all been publicly credited for the tiger's incredible rise.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby SaintPav » Thu 15 Feb 2018 8:35pm

sunsaint wrote:Trouble with the premise of this op is that it ignores ARs past experience
Remember when port had he and Hinkley at the helm they rose quickly up the ladder and into the finals they were certainly a quick fast side - he was there
Remember when he and ratten had a young Carlton side in the finals in 2011 - he was there
Remember when he was at the pies with Malthouse which at the time had the best training facilities in melbourne and saw them into the finals during those years
I think he has been round enough successful clubs to know the level of fitness required of a top AFL side

For the record I don't believe the club's fitness under RL was a league yardstick
A grinding grappling stoppage game plan does require any great skills supreme speed or Elite fitness
The fact that he and misson had no faith in Ball's ability yet he seemed to be fine at Collingwood


Christ, some people love introducing red herrings and strawman arguments.

But please tell me your joking that you don't need to have an elite level of fitness to play a full team press/zone? That is laughable.

Sure, Ball had help but a big part of the reason he did better at Collingwood was because the penny dropped and he pulled his finger out. He admitted that he didn't pull his weight in his last few years with us; that’s why he hates talking about what happened. Filth had Ball signed, sealed and delivered in 2009.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby Drake Huggins » Thu 15 Feb 2018 11:48pm

Unfortunately, SP, you have a habit of pointing out uncomfortable truths. That man, who should never have been drafted by us in the first place, and cost us two flags because GT couldn't get past his Jesuit man love of a Xavier boy, then committed the ultimate disgrace by finally pulling his finger out and becoming the player he should've always been with us, doing it for the filth. I never want to hear from him again. Now plying his trade at the dopers. How appropriate. All the best, Luke. See you next Tuesday.
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby SaintPav » Fri 16 Feb 2018 1:03am

Lol
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Re: Was our physical preparation sub standard in 2017?

Postby resaintlee » Fri 16 Feb 2018 11:40am

RL would have known he was going so why give him the chance to be a hero in his last game?
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