Peak Performance Testing (PPT) a summer conditioning program designed to help Douglas High School athletes become bigger, faster, stronger is back for a third consecutive year.
The eight-week program, which began June 3 and will end July 25, features separate 90-minute sessions for the boys and girls. It takes place every Monday through Thursday at the DHS football field and weight room.
Douglas’ Athletic Trainer Mitch Nelson is overseeing the program again this summer. Assisting him are the coaches of the various sports at DHS. Some of the coaches are paid while others are volunteer.
“It’s always a good thing to have a program that can give an opportunity for athletes to increase their strength, conditioning and speed and agility quickness,” Nelson said. “This program all goes into what they’re doing as athletes. I think it’s great the district is still supportive of this program and allowing us to have it.”
The first year an average of 250 athletes showed up each day. Last year the groups were separated allowing for more quality workouts and the numbers dropped slightly.
This year Nelson said he is averaging about 60 girls per session and 80-90 boys.
“Those numbers are down from previous years but it’s still a pretty good turnout,” he said.
DHS has a participation fee of $50 per sport. Those athletes who attend 70 percent of the PPT will have that fee reduced to $10. Attendance is taken at the start so DHS athletic officials are aware who does participate. The one criteria that has changed this year is that even before athletes can take part they must have a physical completed and on file with the athletic office.
“One group is doing strength training in the weight room while another is doing speed, agility, quickness and cardiovascular training out on the field,” he said. “We’re giving them a whole body workout. There is less down time, more lift time and more exercise time. The smaller groups equate to quality work.”
Nelson stated that no two workouts are the same even through some of the same equipment might be used.
“We try to work out different muscles that will create explosiveness and power in the athletes by utilizing the big muscles and utilizing the small muscles,” he said. “I believe this program will increase their performance.”
Nelson emphasized PPT is not geared towards any specific sport it’s more of a generalized athletic program designed to increase strength, power and agility.
“As the athletic trainer early on in the fall season we see hardly any injuries as far as muscle pulls,” he said. “There are some injures like ankle sprains, ligament tears that we really can’t have precaution on. But the preventable ones we really see a reduction early on.”
Nelson feels this program gives the participating athletes the best opportunity to prepare for their sports while allowing their body to prepare itself for the season ahead.
“I always tell the kids their body is like a machine that is oiled well and taken care of right and is strengthened will always produce more,” he said.
Ben Huish, a senior offensive and defensive lineman for the Bulldog football team said he has been attending PPT since it first started and feels it helps him get his body ready for the upcoming season.
“I’ve noticed a change in my agility, conditioning and overall strength,” he said.
Junior Clarissa Jaramillo said she likes PPT.
“I feel this program has helped me get in better shape for basketball,” she said. “I think this program is a good thing and needs to continue.”
Cariela Martinez, a senior girls basketball player, is also a three-year PPT participant.
“This program really does help me in my sport get better both mentally and physically,” she said.
Nelson encourages those athletes in the PPT to not stop the conditioning when the camp is over and continue to work out on their own or with a friend to keep their bodies in condition.