Speed, strength, size

Published 11:59 pm Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Increasing speed, size and strength are the three essential keys for the Pleasant Home Eagles’ summer workout program.

Since June 8, Pleasant Home has started to work out twice a week, Mondays and Thursdays, mainly focusing on a full-body workout for 2.5 hours.

Pleasant Home coach Robert Bradford said the main concentration, other than size and strength, is improving speed.

“One thing we’ve really been concentrating on this year more than we really have in the past is just actual running,” Bradford said. “Not necessarily for conditioning, but getting in the habit of running and improving speed and quickness.

“That’s been a key focal point for us this summer,” he said.

Bradford said the workouts have been going well so far this summer.

“It’s been looking pretty good,” he said. “We’ve had really good numbers and turnout this summer. Our kids have really responded. It’s tough on those kids because most of the players live close to Andalusia, so the drive from Andalusia out to Pleasant Home is a little bit different than, you know, kids that live two minutes away from Andalusia High School.

“So, they’re making a nice little drive down here,” he said. “Overall, I’ve been really happy with our commitment level this summer.”

PHS’ summer workout program will end July 30, just days before the high school football season begins.

Bradford said these two months are essential for the players because of the many sports some play.

“These kids are normally two-to-three sport athletes,” he said. “So, it’s not like at a bigger school where the kid only plays one sport and he’s training nine months out of the year just for his three-month season.

“Some of them stay so busy during the school year that it’s really hard on them to continue to focus on one sport,” he said. “In summer you get a two-month period of just preparing for football.”

Bradford said since June 8, he has seen a drastic improvement in his players’ speed.

“The kids are definitely getting in a lot better running shape,” Bradford said. “In the beginning of the summer, players would stay at max speed for 15 yards before they would max out. Now, with just repetition and doing it over and over and over, they’re starting to get where they can build up stamina and really stay at a top speed longer.”

Bradford said right now, the team is trying to work on finding that middle ground and not focusing too much on one aspect of training.

“There are three major areas that they try to hit on,” he said. “Putting on size, putting on strength and putting on speed. We’re trying to find that happy medium of all three.

“You don’t want to just put on size and hurt your speed,” he said. “Or, you don’t want to put on speed and no size. That’s the big thing coming for them being trained in the summer time because we put out a big regiment that I think ties all that together.”