May 30, 2018Nitka In Hall of Fame
Mike Nitka, MS, CSCS*D, RSCC*E, FNSCA, Director of Strength and Conditioning and an instructor of Physical Education at Muskego (Wis.) High School, will be inducted into the National High School Strength Coaches Association Hall of Fame, Class of 2018.
Nitka has been an innovator in the field, starting with developing his traditional physical education curriculum into a popular Human Performance class. It started with the goal of providing the ideal physical education class, with a greater focus on strength and conditioning, something he believed had been lacking in many traditional physical education settings.
He worked with others at the school to develop a program based on the philosophy that the physical education and athletic department staff all wanted athletes to learn how to safely lift and develop the necessary strength, power, and speed that would allow them to be able to compete. Their efforts resulted in a simple four-year LTAD model where students learn to lift, run, and jump during the school day and were trained and tested after school throughout the year. While Nitka admits that the initial process was at times challenging, he also believes it was a great experience that provided incredible benefits for the students.
The class has become so popular that it has led to several room expansions to accommodate the number of students and teams that asked to participate. Thanks to Nitka’s dedication, Muskego received a Strength of America award from the National Strength and Conditioning Association and the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports in 2010.
With over 35 years of experience, Coach Nitka has been frequently honored for his contributions to the field, including receiving the Strength of America award from the Presidents Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition five times. He has been elected twice to serve on the NSCA Board of Directors as the Vice President of Youth and Adolescent Activities, was voted the NSCA High School Coach of the Year in 1996, and chaired the NSCA Special Interest Group for High School Coaches. Nitka has also written a number of articles for various publications, including Training & Conditioning.
At the 2018 NHSSCA National Conference in Indianapolis on June 15-16, Nitka will officially become a member of the NHSSCA Hall of Fame, and he will give a presentation on building a high school program from the ground up.