NEW YOUTH Training Facility Victoria

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I want to start with a little back story before we reach the exciting news. So, to start, I grew up in Victoria, BC and played the common team sports outside of school – hockey, baseball, and soccer – and then competed in every school sport – rugby, basketball, track & field, soccer, cross country, swimming, and field hockey. I loved sports and all I wanted to do was play from dawn until dusk. I think most strength and conditioning coaches can likely relate to this. I think that’s how most of us ended up in the field we did.  Coming out of high school I wanted to play college hockey, but due to a couple of untimely injuries, that path was derailed.

A group of young men playing a game of football

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These injuries, fortunately, lead me down the Olympic sport pathway. This is what really sparked my interest in training. I hadn’t really experienced individual sport to this extreme before, but when I took up speed skating and then track cycling, training and competition took on a whole new meaning for me. There was nowhere to hide in these sports. There was so much I never learned in team sports, that I was only starting to learn at 19 and through my next 10 years of chasing my Olympic dreams. During this part of my journey, I obtained both my undergraduate degree in Kinesiology and then a Master’s degree in Exercise Science while racing/training at the Olympic Oval in Calgary for speed skating and then transitioning to the velodrome for track cycling. It was really during track that I learned the most about the application of speed, power, and strength training, energy system development, and sports psychology.

Fast-forward a few years, and I found myself in the small town of Antigonish, NS, as the Head Strength & Conditioning Coach at St FX University. I was now in charge of the training for 12 varsity teams and about 350 athletes. There were many lessons learned during my time at X; most learned the hard way, but that is for another time. One of the main lessons I learned, though, was that during a student’s 4-year varsity career, the opportunity to have a strong impact on their physical abilities is quite variable. It depends on their sport, their class schedule, their goals/focus, and their desire to grow/learn. The same can be said for the high school athlete as well, but there are less variables to contend with. I’m not saying it can’t be done because there are great coaches getting it done every day. What I saw, though, was a large number of athletes coming into university with little to no experience outside of their sport in training. I saw this as an opportunity.

I was fortunate enough, though, to have a group of local development athletes through the Canadian Sport Centre Atlantic that I really enjoyed working with. They were hungry, nervous, awkward, but ready to learn. It was at this point I started to see I could have a huge impact at the high school level in their preparation for university, college, or national development teams.

Enter the NEW Speed Mechanics Training Centre.  The facility is designed for all elements of developing athletic movement. Our philosophy is based on the development of movement patterns and skills to build a broad foundation for athletes. Upon this foundation, we continue to build intensity and capacity leading to faster, stronger, more powerful and robust athletes ready to take on the challenges of their sports. We have a large indoor turf for sprinting, agility, and sport-specific training. On top of that, there is a netted cage for throwing, hitting, kicking, or shooting. On the strength side of the facility, we have four custom racks with platforms and all your strength training equipment. There are also specialized pieces of conditioning equipment including curved motor-less treadmills to improve sprint mechanics and work on max velocity. As our name suggests, everything is geared to make you as fast as possible.

Our mission is to offer the highest quality coaching for youth development in Victoria. There is a massive athletic community in Victoria, with kids playing, competing, and excelling in many different sports. We want to work with you and your coaches to help you reach your highest level.  We are hoping to open this summer or fall. Given the state of the world currently, we are working diligently to have our facility ready, with safety measures in place for when we can open. Your safety and our staff’s safety are of the utmost importance and we will be taking great measures to keep everyone safe during these times. Stay tuned in the coming weeks and months for facility updates. Stay safe and stay healthy!

If you have questions please email me at korser@speedmechanics.ca.

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