The Strength and Conditioning Department at the University of Indianapolis strives to progress athletes through the knowledge of weight-lifting, nutrition, flexibility, recovery and motivation, according to the UIndy Athletics website. Strength and Conditioning Coach Steve Barrick works with student-athletes to make sure they are coached well and things are progressing within the weight room.
“You start with the physical preparation that goes along with [what the] athletes need to have in terms of their strength, speed, their ability to move well,” Barrick said. “I think one of the biggest things that [student athletes] can gain from the weight room is confidence.”
Barrick said that confidence, discipline and accountability all go into what the strength and conditioning department does. According to Barrick, technique within the workout is first and foremost with everything that the department does. He said that while the coaches are teaching lifts, they want to make sure they are attentive to small details.
“With every single lift that they do, everything they do in their warm up, everything they do from a mechanic standpoint when they run and to when they change direction and cut,” Barrick said. “All of those things have to be done technically well first before we can speed it up or before we can put weight on the bar.”
According to Barrick, if student-athletes are coached well, there are no dangers within strength and conditioning, which is the reason for the coaches.
“A dangerous weight room environment is an environment in which they [the students] can just come in and do whatever they want to do. It’s dangerous to watch a video on YouTube and try to mimic it because you have no guidance in terms of how to do it properly, how much weight to put on the bar, and those things,” Barrick said. “ So, that’s what we [the coaches] are here for.
One of the sports that the strength and conditioning coaches work closely with is the football team. According to Offensive Line Coach and Offensive Coordinator Brad Wilson, the strength and conditioning coaches are around the players more than the football coaches are. Whether it’s at training, during strength and conditioning or just in the dining hall, they spend the most time with the players.
“The impact that those guys [strength and conditioning coaches] have on our program is immeasurable,” Wilson said. “They develop the strength, they make sure they are in shape, they also help develop their toughness and they do a really phenomenal job in developing our players and making them maximize their potential.”
According to Barrick, the philosophy of the weight room is do it right, do it fast and then do it heavy. They want to make sure that the student-athletes do not hit the point of failure, but they are still challenged.
As far as the future goals of the strength and conditioning department, Barrick said he wants to always make sure they keep growing. He said they have great coaches that he wants to help with their future goals in terms of where they want to go as a coach and he wants to be able to hire more people within the department.
“My goal as a strength and conditioning coach is to put the student athletes first and foremost and do what we can do to make our team better and our teams better,” Barrick said.