Multi-Tier Vs. Single Track Programming

A programming philosophy that meets a variety of needs and capabilities.
Gabriel Rusher
August 13, 2022
Multi-Tier Vs. Single Track Programming

If you have ever attended any coach-led fitness classes from different gyms, you would likely notice that each tends to write their program using a single track. The workout is listed as written, and it is up to the coach to deliver and implement appropriate modifications to the class. This “write for the best, scale for the rest” model is a standard amongst most fitness programs. At Warrior Strength & Conditioning, we align, for the most part, with this programming philosophy. We simply like to use a different approach.

It is important that a training program challenges those following it, giving them a goal to work towards. However, it is equally as important to meet individuals where they are at, especially those just beginning their fitness endeavors. We realize, too, that there are those simply looking to maintain their health, and that certain exercises, such as a high skill gymnastics movement, carry more inherent risk than reward. Since there exists a wide range of capabilities and needs amongst any given membership base, we want to provide a program that delivers a clear plan with clear expectations to a wide variety of people. For these reasons, we feel a multi-tiered program is the best approach. Below is an example of what that looks like:

15 Min AMRAP


12 Ring Muscle Ups

36 Kettlebell Swings 70/53


12 Bar Muscle Ups

36 Kettlebell Swings 53/35


12 Burpee C2B (jumping if needed)

36 DB Hang Snatch 

Target Rounds: 3-4

Here are a few benefits of this approach:

A clear plan. Individuals attending class do not need to look at a workout that is beyond their means and wonder what their modification will be. Everyone has a clear idea of what they will be doing regardless of their fitness level. 

Reduced anxiety. For some, attending a fitness class incurs a significant amount of social anxiety. This problem is exacerbated when the individual does not know what to expect. Having a clear plan helps to reduce the anxiety some may experience while attending class. 

A smooth class experience. It still remains the coach’s responsibility to ensure that each person in attendance is performing a workout that is safe and appropriate for them. However, time and energy is saved when more people have a clear understanding of what they need to do.

Any gym is going to have a membership base with a variety of needs and capabilities. We do not feel anyone should be left in the dark because of their fitness level. We want everyone to be able to plan ahead and enjoy a positive class experience, and we feel a multi-tiered program is the best way to do that. 

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