Dirk Schauenberg auf Channel 5 Singapore

Ein kurzer Bericht über GPS Tracking und andere sportwissenschaftliche Methoden, die das Leben von Profisportlern erleichtern und ihnen die richtige Hilfestellung im Training geben. Zusammen mit Paul Foster zeigt Dirk Schauenberg wie das VX Sport GPS Trainingssystem arbeitet und wie man es im Training einsetzt. 

Viel Spaß bei der Sendung „On The Red Dot“


Sleep – The important factor

The modern professional athlete knows that physical conditioning and good nutrition are critical factors to reach peak performance; another important factor is sleep. Sleep was often overlooked but plays an equally important role in the daily life routine of professional athletes. 

The scientific research of recent years found that the quality and quantity of sleep obtained by elite athletes can be the difference between winning or losing on game day. 

 Here are some facts how sleep can influence athletic performance:

 Sleep and reaction times:

Sleep deprivation can reduce athletes’ reaction time significantly! A single night without sleep can reduce reaction times by more than 300 %. The newest scientific researches have shown a surprisingly low level of fatigue can impair reaction times as much as being legally drunk. Of course there are differences between being drunk and being fatigued but the effect on the athletes’ reaction times is dramatically and similar. 

 Sleep and injuries:

A tired athlete is slower to react on the pitch or field. Secondly, fatigue affects athletes’ immune system, making them more prone to illness. Thirdly, shorter sleep periods don’t provide the professional with sufficient time to regenerate cells and repair from the overuse by workouts, games, and daily activities. Over time, game-earned injuries, health issues, and the inability to fully recover can wear on an athlete and contribute to more time spent on the sidelines or with the medical department.

 Sleep and a long career:

A healthy and injury free athlete (most of his time) can prolong his career on the highest play level. One recent study on MLB players has shown fatigue can shorten the playing careers of professional athletes. It is a great reminder that sleepiness impairs performance and a proper sleep creates a stable income for a long and healthy sport career.

 Sleep and sprint:

Sleep is crucial to all physiological, biochemical, and cognitive body functions. Optimal sleep is beneficial in reaching peak performance in different types of sport like tennis, basketball, soccer or weightlifting. 

 Sleep and motivation:

Sleep loss impairs judgement. Studies have shown motivation, focus, memory, and learning to be impaired by shortened sleep. Without sleep, the athletes brain struggles to memorise information and absorb new knowledge.

 For all athletes, sleep is an important component of maintaining optimum health and performance and a crucial pillar of success. Reaction times and motor function, motivation, focus, stress regulation, muscle recovery, sprint performance, muscle glycogen, glucose metabolism, memory and learning, injury risk, illness rates, unwanted weight gain…. sleep influences all these important points. 

Sleep can be the crucial element in winning or losing. It is important that the elite athlete understands the main role of sleep and organises sleep like a training session, like his nutrition or a video analysis. 

Have a good rest! 


Moderate sleep deprivation produces impairments in cognitive and motor performance equivalent to legally prescribed levels of alcohol intoxication – Williamson A, Feyer A. (2000) 

How awake are you? – Hardvard Medical

Sports-related injuries in youth athletes: is overscheduling a risk factor?  -Luke A, et al. (2011) 

Chronic lack of sleep is associated with increased sports injuries in adolescent athletes – Milewski MD, et al. (2014) 

How sleep deprivation decays the mind and body – The Atlantic

Studies link fatigue and sleep to Major League Baseball (MLB) performance and career longevity  – Winter C. MD

The effects of sleep extension on the athletic performance of collegiate basketball players  – Mah C, et al. (2011) 

Ongoing study continues to show that extra sleep improves athletic performance – Mah C, et al. (2008) 

The effect of partial sleep deprivation on weight-lifting performance – Reilly T, Piercy M. (1994)

The sleep crisis and the science of slumber – Maclean’s

Declining plate discipline during Major League Baseball season may be the result of fatigue – Kutscher S. MD, et al.



I found a very good quote this week!

Communication does not always occur naturally, even among a tight-knit group of individuals. Communication must be taught and practiced in order to bring everyone together as one.”
(Coach K) 


Core Training – What you need to know

Core training is a very important component of any training programme; at the same time, it involves one of the most sensitive parts of the body and should be observed carefully.
Many people associate core training with abs training (sit ups), but core training is much more than just doing simple sit ups.

Let’s start from the beginning.

What is the “core”? The human body is similar to a wheel. The centre of a wheel is the hub, which is connected to the rim by the spokes. The hub of the human body is the trunk; the connecting arms and legs (the limbs) are the spokes.

The hub is the centre of the wheel’s stability and the spokes distribute the stability to the periphery. This is also the case in every athlete’s body. The better the stability of the core, and the individual’s awareness of his core system, the better it is for the arms and legs (“the spokes”) to perform all types of athletic movements. For example, throwing anything, shooting a ball or jumping high. The core muscles are very important for all types of movements. They give the needed stability for any type of high performance activity.

How do we train the core system?

Many athletes expect or associate a “good” training session to be performed with high speed or high intensity, a burning muscle sensation, or a painfully intensive training session to be adequate. This is an incorrect assumption. This misconception consequently leads to many people performing their core training with high speed. Doing hectic sit-ups or other types of „exercises“, are all part of this misconception.

The core muscle system consists of stabilisers, which are made for stability work with long muscle endurance capabilities, as well as prime mover muscles, designed to move specific limbs. You cannot train these muscles efficiently by performing exercises with speed and lack of control. It is better to perform a core exercise slowly with full awareness and control, than with high speed and incorrect technique.

Considering the position of the pelvis.

Coaches and athletes need to consider the position of the pelvis, because the core system is not properly activated when the back is hollow. We often see people performing their plank exercises with a hollow back and they are surprised to end up with lower back pain after their training session. In this situation it is helpful to start the core training with a “preparation-exercise” together with a training partner or coach. This exercise helps to activate the core muscles and to learn how it feels when these stabilisers are working well.

This is how to perform the preparation exercise. The athlete lies flat on his back with the feet flat on the floor, and the legs bent at about 45 degrees. The coach places a towel under the athlete’s lower back and the athlete starts to press the lower back down to the floor, squeezing the towel. At the same time the coach checks to see if he is able to carefully pull the towel from under the athlete. This should not be possible, as the towel should be firmly fixed between the lower back and the floor. With the force of the core muscles system, the towel will not be released and the athlete learns the correct location and control of these core muscles. This type of learning exercise is already a very good way to train the core muscles system.

As soon as the athlete is able to perform this “preparation exercise” easily, that will indicate that he is able to control the position of the pelvis and activate the specific core muscles. He is then ready to start the core training with other exercises and functional movements!

Skipping this preparation work is not a good idea, because starting with high intensity work or complex functional movements, without having the core system properly prepared, will lead to a high risk of injury. Any type of coordination or agility training, with a well prepared and well trained core system, will lead to a higher quality of execution.

Good posture and postural control need to be reinforced in all types of core training.

The core components of the core training should be:

a) Correct activation

b) The proper total awareness

c) an appropriate level of intensity!

Keep on moving!


Trouble with your muscles?

Very often I hear athletes complaining about tight muscles, hamstring problems or other muscle related problems caused by high intensity training. Is the high intensity training really the main problem which causes these types of problems? 

Let’s think about it! In general muscular problems occur when something is out of balance or the muscles are not functioning properly. We have muscles for movement and we have muscles for stabilisation. We call them mobilisers and stabilisers. The mobilisers produce movements and the stabilisers control the movements of the joints. 

Mobilisers like the hamstrings or the rectus femoris (extends your leg at the knee joint and flexes the hip) are very powerful muscles with more fast twitch fibres. However, these types of muscles also have the tendency to become shortened. Stabilisers are the controllers of a movement or the joint position during a movement. They are usually composed of mainly slow twitch fibres. They need to be highly coordinated and should have very good endurance capacity. Stabilisers tend to be underactive, and in some cases they are weak.

Many players or professional athletes complain about muscular tightness. The first question is, what happens if the mobiliser is getting tight? The first problem is usually a limited range of motion and this limit can cause or place stress and unnecessary pressure to the joint. Another problem is that the tightness may inhibit the opposite muscle group through a process called „reciprocal innervation“. 

For example: A tight front thigh muscle (rectus femoris) can inhibit the function of the buttocks (gluteus maximus). The second question is, what happens when a stabiliser is getting weak?’ A weak stabiliser will not have the necessary endurance capacity to hold a position long enough. The result of this phenomenon will be the inability of the muscle to stabilise a joint for a longer period of time -for example, holding a position with a static muscular contraction. This is further related to chronic lengthening of the muscle and consequently the system becomes inactive and weak. The result is a joint instability.

How do we go about alleviating this type of problem? At first we have to assess and test the muscular system. 

Currently, there are many flexibility and strength tests available to identify these types of weaknesses. For example: The active straight leg raise test is used to assess the flexibility of the hamstrings. The athlete lies on his or her back and slowly raises one leg straight up to the maximum range. If the hamstrings are flexible enough, the leg will be able to raise and extend to an angle of 90 degrees. At the maximum range the lumbar spine should normally have contact to the ground. A short hamstring will pull the lumbar spine much earlier, and prevent full contact with the ground. 

Another test is for the gluteal muscular area. The athlete lies on his or her front and bends one knee to 90 degrees. With contraction of the gluteal muscular area the athlete should be able to lift his or her knee a little bit off the floor (2-3cm). If he or she is able to keep this position for 60 seconds without shaking or experiencing a negative impact to the lower back or the hamstring area, then the gluteal muscles are good in the endurance capacity.

In cases where the stretching of the hamstrings and strength of the gluteal muscles are of concern, there are two things to do:

1. Stretching the hamstrings (or other muscle groups) regularly.

2. Strengthening of the gluteal muscles (or other muscle groups).

For a powerful body function we need a balance between a good range of motion and the muscular endurance capacity. Only stretching, or just strengthening, is not the solution for these types of problems. It is always the combination of strengthening and stretching that will yield the maximum.


Recovery must be part of any training planning

I have prepared and trained many athletes, professionalfootballers in the German Bundesliga, and many other types of sports men and women from around the world. Most of the time the main focus is on the process of training and the planning of each session. The different intensities, durations and the amount of repetitions are important components of the training plan.

We primarily focus on the training aspects, but most of the time the recovery process is an undervalued part of the athlete’s preparation and development. Often coaches and athletes view the recovery as a day off from training during which they do nothing. But if athletes do nothing, they will not recover properly. Recovery should be an active process that is part of the whole training period and must be organised during the session planning. It is important to get the right timing (periodisation) to give the body enough time for all kinds of adjustments.

The FIRST recovery should take place after the competition (match). The two main recovery processes are the Post Workout Nutrition (PWN) and the Cryotherapy (CT). The 5 minutes ice bath is perfect for cooling down the body, increasing the blood flow and supplying the tissues with oxygen-rich blood. At the same time the Cryotherapy will help to decrease the production of catabolic hormones. It is important to directly provide the exhausted body with the proper nutrients to replenish glycogen and electrolyte stores. Aperfect example is with a protein shake, a water- juice mix (5:1) or any isotonic drink, or water and a banana.

The next day after the competition is the recovery day!The primary goals should be to increase oxygen and blood circulation on a stationary bike or an elliptical trainer for a minimum of 20 minutes. This type of activity will bring oxygen rich blood into the recovering tissues and enhance the elimination of metabolic waste products.

A recovery day may be a good opportunity to engage in an upper-body strength and power training session – but only for those athletes who engage in primarily lower body activities! A professional massage will also be perfect to assist in returning muscles to their normal length. A foam roller or a self-massage can help as well.

The recovery is a very important part of any training program! Training or competition without recovery will not bring the required success. Recovery should be a daily activity. At the end of each training session, about10 minutes should be spent on light stretching! Recovery is as important as the training and should be part of every training session. It should also be included in the grand planning of the whole season!

The day off (doing nothing) is the perfect opportunity to spend time with family and friends. But the real recovery should be an active process and is considered a part of training.


Veränderungen und Chancen


Gibt es eigentlich einen Unterschied zwischen Veränderungen, Krisen und Chancen? Das ist eine gute Frage und ein Punkt, den man gut überdenken sollte.

Oftmals werden Veränderungen vorgenommen oder eingeleitet, wenn die gewünschten Resultate nicht eintreffen oder Ziele nicht erreicht werden. Die daraus resultierende Unzufriedenheit ist somit die Ursache für eine solche Erneuerung. Der Auslöser einer Veränderung ist in der Regel ein gefühlt negatives Ergebnis. Für viele Sportler oder Trainer bedeutet so eine Situation einen Tiefpunkt, ein Gefühl, das keiner mag und das die meisten Menschen versuchen, zu vermeiden. Die Vermeidungstaktik ist jedoch nur eine Aufschiebe-Taktik. 

Vielleicht ist eine solche Situation ein guter Umstand, ein Wendepunkt oder die größte Chance zu positiver Erneuerung. Leider wird dies in sportlichen Organisationen, wie Vereinen oder Teams, oft nicht so gesehen. Die Negativierung behält die Oberhand und diese erdrückende Dominanz verhindert den ausstehenden Erfolg. 

Es ist wichtig, die Perspektive zu wechseln. Sicherlich ist dieser Wechsel nicht einfach, aber dringend notwendig. Jede Krise ist ein Umkehrpunkt, der Start in eine positive Zukunft. 

Es gehört Mut dazu, diese nötigen Schritte einzuleiten. Es ist wichtig, ein positives Gefühl und eine offene Haltung einzunehmen. 

Veränderungen verursachen bei vielen Menschen Angst und Unbehagen. Neues sollte nicht verängstigten, Neues sollte begeistern, Neues sollte Kreativität wecken und zu neuen Ufern führen. 

Veränderungen können wirklich belebend sein, Spaß bereiten und Außenstehende begeistern. 

Das Wichtigste ist, dass man die Ruhe bewahrt, die Situation offen und ehrlich analysiert und anschließend eine positive Haltung einnimmt. Die Chance ist präsent und mit einer positiven Einstellung, kann der erste Schritt in die richtige Richtung unternommen werden. Auf keinen Fall sollte man auf alte Muster zurückgreifen, denn alte Muster helfen in neuen Situationen selten. 

Eventuell muss man externe Hilfe dazu holen, um eine andere neue Sichtweise zu bekommen. 

Jede Krise ist eine wundervolle Chance. Jeder Schritt, der Veränderungen mit sich bringt, ist ein guter Schritt. Mit dem richtigen Schritttempo kann eine neue positive Zukunft eingeleitet werden.



We have so many meetings in life, we meet so many people in life, we participate in group activities and we have many daily contacts with different people from different countries with different opinions.

That’s sometimes not easy! But to live a happy life we have to realise the concept of happiness!

To rejoice with others without envy, without jealousy, is a gift that we can develop in ourself and it may be initially very difficult.

Nevertheless, we must train our will and our attention, because to feel happiness is what we really strive for. And who is eligible to participate in others luck honestly experiences much more happiness than feelings of envy.

It is possible and we should aim for this! It is a value of life!



Ein Meister ist nicht derjenige, der etwas lehrt, sondern derjenige, der den Schüler dazu inspiriert, das Beste von sich zu geben, um herauszufinden, was er schon weiss. („Die Hexe von Portobello“)