Parents and Coaches,
I had the pleasure of catching up with a colleague and friend, Eric Biener, last week. I’m sure many of you also had opportunities to reconnect with family and friends over the last few weeks as well.
Eric was a strength and conditioning coach for 8 years at the University of North Carolina. During that time he was in charge of 6 sports in that high profile college athletic department. During his tenure there he had a personal hand in the development of the physical and mental abilities of hundreds of elite athletes – many of them D-I All Americans and a good number that went on to play professionally in their respective sport.
Several of Eric’s teams also won national championships during his tenure at UNC. When comparing his good teams to his championship teams, Eric offered a simple yet profound assessment of what made the championship difference:
“THEY GOT BETTER.”
Understand we are comparing perennial top 10 Division I teams with perennial top 10 teams that won it all and took home a national championship. We are comparing shades of gray here….or maybe more fitting…gold. So when the comparison between any two things is very close, isn’t the differentiating factor magnified in its significance? I think so. So Eric’s assessment is worth repeating:
“THEY GOT BETTER.”
All the teams had blue-chip top notch recruits. And we are not talking just football and basketball. We are talking about Olympic sports that recruit internationally. So they had some of the best athletes in their sports in the world. All the teams had elite college coaches. Remember these are teams at the same university, so there wasn’t huge disparities between the programs that could easily explain the championship difference.
But the championship teams got better.
If you’ve been around TAT long enough, you’ve heard me coaching your athletes or read my writing about getting better. The athletes probably can predict when I’m going to spin out another “getting better” speech. I am happily guilty of being consistent. Our young athletes need consistency. Here is one of those speeches:
Getter better is fundamental to the process…arguably it is the process. We are in the “improving” business…the “development” business… the “getting better” business. TAT just does it in the delivery package of speed, strength, and agility training. And if your athlete isn’t getting faster, quicker, and stronger at the fastest rate that modern training practices can induce, then they will not reach their full potential in their sport.