Bigger, faster, stronger
By John George firstname.lastname@example.org Over the past several years, Perham High School has developed one of the most successful, from top-to-bottom, athletic programs in the area. In fact, last year, they finished second in Class A in the Minnesota State ...
By John George
Over the past several years, Perham High School has developed one of the most successful, from top-to-bottom, athletic programs in the area.
In fact, last year, they finished second in Class A in the Minnesota State High School Leagues Challenge Cup, which ranks activities departments based on State participation.
But most of that ranking came from three sports, cross country, wrestling and gymnastics. Several other teams had terrific seasons, but fell short of qualifying for State.
There is growing sentiment that just being good from season-to-season isnt good enough. Players, coaches, parents, fans, want to see their teams get to the next level.
Part of that sentiment was created when one of the schools teams, the gymnastics squad, won three straight State titles, in dominating fashion. If you want to keep up with the Jonses, look out, because they just moved into the penthouse suite.
To that end, PHS has started an Athletic Development Program (ADP). The program combines weight training, agility workouts and core strength workouts. Its a program that ALL student-athletes should not only be aware of, they should be participating in. Whether they are currently active in a sport season or not. Whether they are in seventh grade or 11th.
Now, I understand that not all athletes are taking part in their sport of choice with the expectations of winning State titles. Many just want to participate, have fun, be part of the team.
I say, Good for you. You should join for those reasons. You should still want to better yourself physically. You should still want to get better at your craft. You should still be part of this program.
But if youre a serious athlete, and winning is important, you cant afford not to be part of this program.
ADP begins the week at 7 a.m. at the PACC with an agility and plyometrics program coached by Mike Dinel. Dinel works on speed and acceleration every Monday and Thursday morning.
John McEachran runs the strength and power program on Tuesday and Thursday mornings.
The program is based on exercises to develop better athletes, McEachran said. The goal of the program is to develop strength, explosiveness and improve core strength, improve flexibility and balance.
Gymnastics coach Charlie Fleck works on core strength after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
One of the reasons weve won is were stronger than all the other gymnastics teams, Fleck said. You can never stop working on core strength, cardio. Its very important.
It would take both hands for me to count up the number of coaches in the PHS system whove told me, They have better athletes than we do., or, They are so much stronger than we are.. Not only have I heard that from numerous coaches this past season, Ive heard it more than once from several coaches in reference to a number of teams on the schedule throughout the season.
So many of our kids are able to just turn in on when the season starts, one varsity coach said off the record. And weve been able to have some success with them doing that. But to get over that hump, to win consistently, year-in and year-out and get to State and do well there, we need to hit the weights. Our kids dont workout like kids at other schools.
Runners need to do more than just run to improve their skills. Basketball players need to do more than shoot baskets all day long. Baseball players need to do more than just throw a ball. Theres more to getting into shape and developing skills than just practicing the game. Improving overall strength and agility will improve the skills specific to your sport.
Coaches will play a big part in the success of this program. All coaches, from every level, need to encourage their athletes to join this program.
These workouts can help prevent a number of injuries, PHS Activities Director Fred Sailer said. I think most kids could increase their athletic ability by 10-15 percent with this program.
This program is built for the hardcore athlete, the casual athlete, those in-season, and those in an off-season. Getting bigger, faster and stronger leads to more fun, more winning, and developing habits for a healthier lifestyle.