Dec 18, 2020Benefits of the High School Strength Coach
A recent post from Tracy Baldwin, S.C.C.C., M.S.C.C. on the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) website highlighted the benefits of having a high school strength and conditioning coach.
Baldwin, the head strength and conditioning coach at Enid (OK) High School, detailed some of the major benefits she’s noticed through the years — student-athlete safety, injury prevention, improved performance, and proper in-season and out-of-season training protocols.
She brought 20 years of experience as a strength and conditioning coach at the NCAA Division I level to uplift the position at the high school level.
Below is an excerpt of her experience from the NFHS article.
What sold me on this transition was the school district’s commitment in wanting to make strength and conditioning an important part of the overall experience for all sports and all athletes.
That commitment was evident when I was shown the plans the district had to construct two modern weight rooms for student-athletes to be able to train year-round. One smaller weight room was quickly renovated from its older style to a more current functional facility. This smaller weight room provides the ability to train groups of about 25-30 athletes at one time.
The newly constructed weight room is a much larger multi-functional state-of-the-art facility. It is a 5,000-square-foot facility with the capacity to handle up to 70 athletes at one time, complete with state-of-the-art equipment for various styles of training. This facility is second to none at the high school level and shows the kind of commitment that has been made by our school district to benefit student-athletes at Enid High School.
One of the most beneficial roles a quality strength and conditioning program can bring to the table is that of an improved culture and improved mentality. Strength and conditioning professionals are given the responsibility of taking developing athletes to places they had no idea they could go physically. Once they get to those places, they start to grow mentally as well, and they begin to realize that the work they put in has made them tougher and more physically resilient.
Those traits come with other positive factors such as increased strength and power, growth in speed and overall athletic ability, and an improved ability for the body to be more resistant to injury. All of this can come from the change in culture which, in turn, comes from the athlete buying into a plan put together by a strength and conditioning coach who has their best interest in mind.