Mark McLaughlin had a little more purpose than most when he decided to become a physical preparation coach. Citing multiple incidences of catastrophic injuries in youth athletes, McLaughlin started a career with passion and intention to fix an injury problem in youth athletics.

McLaughlin learned from and still learns from some of the best coaches in the business including Charlie Francis, Jay Shroeder, Dan Pfaff, and Henk Kraaijenhof. Mark has used that knowledge and his hands-on experience to help the next generations of athletes and coaches alike.

Combining a global understanding of performance management with critical communications skills has set McLaughlin apart and serves as a lesson for all coaches.

Topics Covered in this Podcast

Mark's Journey

  1. Catastrophic injuries in youth athletics
  2. 3 cases that got Mark's attention to research training
  3. Individual Training to Volunteer to Facility Owner


  1. Extensive medical questionnaire
  2. Subjective information form athlete: What are your goals
  3. Omegawave assessments
  4. Warm-up and performance testing
  5. Sports Specific Conditioning
  6. Strength Assessments
  7. How much time are they willing to train?

Balancing the athletes schedule with training

  1. Number of games, fitness level, particular team or coach

Communication with Sport Coaches

  1. Educating parents and the athletes to avoid
  2. The Training is only one part of it
  3. Recovering is a crucial aspect
  4. Recovery need s to be individualized and personalized
  5. Recovery becoming a natural endeavor
  6. Avoid glycolytic and lactic environments
  7. Allowing athletes to recover naturally
  8. HRV Fight or Flight vs. Rest and Relax

Training Youth Athletes

  1. Ban AAU Basketball and youth club sport games
  2. Educate coaches and parents
  3. A Platform for the education process
  4. Can science give us the data we need
  5. Governing bodies

Long Term Athletic Development Model

  1. The coaches don't have the tools to manage the process
  2. Education for when is the right and wrong time
  3. Differences between males and females
  4. The Formula 1 Analogy

HRV and other technology

  1. Charlie Francis observation of Ben Johnson
  2. Jay Schroeder Auto-regulation
  3. Coaches becoming great listeners
  4. Technology to embody the mission statement
  5. Buddy Morris, Tom Myslinski and the Omega Wave
  6. Observation plus training methodologies
  7. Learn from other coaches and how they implement their programs

Athlete Buy-In

  1. Quality trumps quantity
  2. Reducing Injuries in Athletes
  3. Educating parents and athletes on playing sport year-round
  4. Reducing games = reducing injuries
  5. Consistency of being active
  6. Helmets on before 9th grade?
  7. Concussions reducing exposures
  8. Best practices in terms of techniques

 What Athletes Need to Work on

  1. Running technique can fix itself depending on age
  2. Jumping, landing, bounding, etc
  3. Strength training: single leg bodyweight movement first
  4. Squat, Deadlift, Depth Jumps, etc. when the athlete is ready
  5. Its not the exercises but how they are integrated

The Best advice for young coaches

  1. Be extremely open about everything
  2. Best practices of the most successful companies
  3. Develop a deep passion for learning
  4. Communication by embodies your values and must connect with a multitude of work

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The Mark McLaughlin File

Founder of Performance Training Center. Mark attended college at the College of Sante’Fe in New Mexico. He is a native Oregonian currently living in Portland. His passion of all athletics flourished throughout his teen years. He participated and competed on various teams and in a variety of sports. Through his years of participation in sports and later in his education, Mark developed a deep commitment not just to sport but also to the complete well being of the athlete. This passion and commitment leads to continual self-education in the field of athletic performance enhancement. Mark has been active in the field of athletic performance enhancement since 1997. Mark has trained over 700 athletes on every competitive level ranging from Olympic, professional (NFL, MLB, CFL), college, high school and grade school athletes. As well as working with individual athletes, Mark works and consults with professional organizations (NFL, MLB, NBA), NCAA universities, high school, club, and youth sport organizations. In addition to Mark’s training and consulting services, he conducts speaking engagements with various organizations locally, nationally as well as internationally.

Courtesy PTC

Articles by Mark McLaughlin

The PTC Philosophy: Preparation of an American Football Player

Short-Term Periodization: Get More Bang for Your Buck


The Official Performance Training Center Website

Performance Training Center on Facebook

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