Speed school offers student athletes chance to hone their skills

Groups rotate through six stations says weight lifting teacher


Evan Schoettle

During Tuesday morning’s speed school, participants, including freshman Shiloh Means (in the green T-shirt), take part in the ladder drill, the purpose of which is to improve footwork.

Chandler Watson, Reporter

The early mornings, the cramped lungs, the tired legs.

These are all things with which student athletes here are familiar because of speed school. Head Football Coach Mr. Rick Streiff and strength and weight conditioning coach Mr. Cody Johnson started speed school to improve athletes’ agility and quickness.

“It started as an idea just for football to work out before school and get it out of the way, but then as the idea progressed, Coach Johnson and I thought many other sports could benefit,” said Streiff.

It was not only Streiff who had this idea. Mr. Ed Freije, who serves as the head coach of both the varsity girls’ basketball team and the varsity baseball team, said, “Prior to baseball starting workouts in December, I spoke with Coach Johnson about developing more speed, explosiveness and athleticism in our workouts. We incorporated a lot of that into what we were doing. The first advertisement from athletics promoted speed school for all athletes. Baseball was very interested in being involved, and it gives athletes a great chance to work out and compete with other athletes.”

Speed school takes place in the Welch Activity Center at 6 a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Athletes come in and hit the gym and sit in the middle of the court waiting for the stragglers to arrive. Johnson then gives a talk, announces the names of the group leaders for that day, and everyone files behind him.

After Johnson finishes instructing the stretches, he tells each group to go to one of six stations. For the next hour, all groups rotate between those six stations. When everyone has reached all the stations, the athletes spread out in the WAC and participate in a group exercise for the remaining minutes.

The idea of speed school is for all athletes to compete and become better together. There are many benefits to the early morning workouts of speed school.

Not only are participants becoming faster, but they are also working on explosion, acceleration, cutting and multiple other attributes that will overall make them quicker.

Freije said, “It’s a process, and it has meaning. Everything that is done is in order to develop speed, explosiveness, agility and athleticism.”

The first day of speed school occurred Jan. 5 and has continued every Tuesday and Thursday morning for more than a month.

Freije said, “Simply put, if (speed school) is an expectation of your coach, you should be there. Even if it is not an expectation of your coach, it is a great opportunity. It is a great opportunity to get better. It is a great opportunity to put in work and push yourself. It is a great opportunity to compete against high quality athletes. It serves a purpose.

“Not only is it helping you get into shape, but the idea of getting up early and getting into the gym and working out with your peers for a common purpose in a common place makes a lot of sense. It’s about working together with your teammates and classmates to get better. There is a lot to be said for that.”

Junior Mattie Norris has attended ten sessions of speed school since it began.

She said, “I think that speed school is a great opportunity for anyone willing to push themselves to get better.”