The accelerometer measures bar speed during the course of a lift.

One piece of equipment that University of Minnesota head strength and conditioning coach Eric Klein has found particularly useful in recent years is the accelerometer, which measures bar speed during the course of a lift. For instance, if a player is performing a set on the bench press, the accelerometer will show how dramatically the bar speed decreases with each repetition.

Klein will designate ideal bar speed ranges for the particular workout. For example, if the players have a game the next day, Klein might restrict them from dropping below a bar speed that would result in fatigue during the game.

“We can look at the bar speed and prescribe the weight and number of reps to make sure they’re getting the rewards of the workout we planned,” Klein said.

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Dan Guttenplan