I wanted to take a minute and discuss some concerns about zero hour strength and condition that some of the boys signed up for. I am hearing concerns from some of you about work load and time spent at school. I want to first say that when I got together with or physical education coaches, and our strength and conditioning coaches, I was of the understanding that zero hour would be an A/B day class. I only recently came to understand that the class is being held for 50 minutes daily. Having said that, I also want you to know that I recognize your choice as a parent to determine you sons’ schedule. However I do want you to be aware of a few things before you make any changes:
- Zero hour strength and conditioning classes are common, and well attended, at the other two high schools in town and across the state. In football terms our opponents are getting the lift in.
- Our competing schools, outside the district, have a more traditional start time. That means they are starting earlier. They are getting up earlier, and yes, their day may finish earlier but relatively it is the same amount of time spent on campus.
- Lifting is important for health and strength maintenance during the season. Teams that continue to lift through their sports season have significantly less injuries and retain their strength gains from the off season. A regiment that includes moving the lactic acid from the muscles, continuing to build flexibility, and core strength only helps us compete.
- Finally, academics come first and foremost. Students who need extra help and tutoring with their teacher are encouraged to communicate that need to me and they will be allowed to practice without consequence when they return to practice with a note from the teacher. All of this is redundant if we are not being successful in the classroom.
Many of your sons have heavy academic caseloads and I understand your angst as well as your son’s stress. I have other players who have made schedule changes and are lifting later in the day. There are a few Strength and Conditioning classes that have spots but those are limited. If you feel a change is in your son’s best academic interest then by all means seek out that change.