Another new school year has begun, and I want to take this opportunity to wish each of you a safe and successful athletic season. The health and safety of the student athlete continues to be our primary concern, and you are encouraged to design and implement safe and effective programs based on solid periodization concepts and other established scientific principles. Please make sure you have an emergency action plan (EAP) in place should an athlete experience any health related issues or injuries and ensure that your professional behavior is beyond reproach at all times.
Last September I announced three committees that had recently been created by the CSCCa, and I would like to provide you with an update regarding the progress of these three committees. The first committee was led by CSCCa Board Member Sandy Abney and was tasked with updating the CSCCa Mentoring Booklet. The purpose of completing this project was to further strengthen the quality and effectiveness of the CSCCa Practicum/Internship Program. Coach Abney and her Committee members made a presentation at the 2018 CSCCa National Conference, and many of you attended and provided valuable feedback. We hope to have the new updated mentoring booklets available soon. The goal of this project is to make sure that no matter where or under whose direction and supervision the CSCCa-approved practicum/internship takes place that the candidate will leave the program with a wealth of knowledge and practical experience, preparing him/her for a successful career as a strength and conditioning coach of a collegiate or professional athletic team. We have a great internship program in place, and we sincerely appreciate the dedication and efforts of all our CSCCa approved mentors to prepare these candidates. This program could not succeed without your help and support!
The second committee that was formed was directed by CSCCa Board Member Don Decker. The NCAA had indicated a need for a document which provides best practices and protocols for the development and implementation of safe strength and conditioning programs during transitional periods. It is a well-established fact that the majority of serious injuries and athlete deaths have occurred during these transitional periods. Coach Decker and his Committee developed two simple rules or protocols that can be easily implemented that will protect the health and safety of the student athlete during these critical periods. We asked Dr. Tony Caterisano, a professor at Furman University and member of the CSCCa Written Certification Committee, to lead another committee to document the research that supports these protocols. We are working in conjunction with the NSCA to develop this extremely important work that we are preparing to present to the NCAA. This work has the potential to become a landmark document. More information will be forthcoming in the near future!
The third and final committee was led by MSCC Michael Doscher. This committee is focused on identifying and developing a plan of action for addressing the threats that currently face the strength and conditioning coaching profession. Coach Doscher and his Committee members held a panel discussion at the 2018 CSCCa National Conference. As you know, there continues to be a great deal of interest in our field regarding how qualified individuals can and should be identified. The profession continues to receive a great deal of criticism. This committee is critical to developing unity in the profession. This current lack of unity is making the profession look weak, disorganized, and fragmented—placing the entire profession of strength and conditioning coaching in an extremely vulnerable position. We encourage you to reach out to Coach Doscher and to the CSCCa National Office with your concerns and recommendations for effectively dealing with these issues.
The CSCCa continually strives to improve the field of strength and conditioning coaching and to ensure that our athletes are receiving safe and effective exercise prescription. We have many more projects and programs that we are developing to help us accomplish this goal and will be providing additional information in the coming months. The CSCCa is unique in that it is an organization created BY strength and conditioning coaches FOR strength and conditioning coaches. This organization is completely focused on meeting the specific and unique needs of strength and conditioning coaches of collegiate and professional athletic teams. The CSCCa continues to provide direction and leadership in dealing with the myriad issues facing our profession. We must make every effort to ensure that the field retains its autonomy, as well as the ability to control its own destiny.
Become involved! This is not the time to be complacent and think that others will fight this battle for you. It is the responsibility of every strength and conditioning coach to be engaged and take an active role in determining the future of this profession.