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Strength is at the Core of our Program

Do you remember your own childhood swinging from the monkey bars, climbing trees and riding your bike around the neighbourhood for much of the day? Sadly, over the last 10 years much of the play equipment has disappeared from our parks and the roads have become too busy for kids to ride around. The impact of modern society is felt by our children who have a diminished physical development and lower physical capabilities.

In the last decade we have also seen the iPhone and iPad become household items that even little toddlers can operate. This combination of less outdoor free play and more time on computers has robbed our children of their right to be strong. At ATC we believe it is important to fight against these new world influences. We are witnessing a change in the development of our students as they access our strength and conditioning program.

Our program goes beyond building strength in our sporting teams, it aims to develop each student so they can be the best they can be. We work on core strength at all times, initially with body weight only. Attention to proper form is paramount in the gym and much attention is paid to ensure this is carried out at all times. There is a lovely camaraderie in the ATC gym that sees our older more experienced boys supporting boys who have just begun in the program and encouraging them with words of motivation.

Our year 9 and 10 students have seen massive gains in strength. There are students who are proud of the fact that they can now do a chin up or 10 push ups on their toes when at the start they were unable to perform these moves. The posture of all these boys has improved significantly and core strength has risen across all year levels irrespective of the sports boys participate in. Likewise, there are many athletes who are finding that they are reaching (and exceeding) their goals in their chosen sport as a result of their ongoing commitment to strength and conditioning.

I would personally like to congratulate each boy who has continued to work hard in the gym throughout the term and across the year. There will be opportunity to continue this work over the school holidays as we open on holiday timetable. For any student in Year 7 and above who is considering starting in the gym, we welcome you to pay us a visit. You will need suitable clothes and shoes, a towel and most importantly a good attitude.

Fiona Kearney, Strength and Conditioning Coordinator