Teenage Fitness

“What the heck just happened?” I asked myself.

I was on my stomach with my face in the grass. I had just gotten turned around in a football drill and ended up tripping over my feet. The running back had caught the ball and was running away from me.

I stood up and brushed the freshly cut grass off my shirt.

“That’s all right. I’ll get him on the next play,” I told myself.

But the next play came and I failed again.

And again.

And then again.

The coach blew his whistle and led us over to the other side of the field for a new drill. I was in the middle of my football tryout, this time trying to “shed” a block and tackle the running back.

The ball was snapped and the play ended in 5-seconds. Instead of being on my stomach with my face in the grass, I was on my back with my eyes gazing at the clouds.

The offensive lineman hit me so hard that I stumbled backwards and tripped over my feet (again).

“C’mon Tyler. You’re better than that!” I told myself frustrated.

But the next play came and I failed again.

And again.

And then again.

The coach blew his whistle and told us to go get some water. A few of the coaches pulled players aside and began asking them for their names.

I wasn’t one of those players. I knew that my dream of playing football was slipping through my fingertips.

We ran back out and did more drills: speed & agility, tackling, skeleton passing, among other drills.

Two-hours had passed when I found myself on a knee with the other players, surrounding the Head Coach. After a congratulatory speech to everyone trying out, I found out that I didn’t make the team.

What happened?

As I’ve looked back on that time, I’ve often asked myself what was the difference between the guys that made the team and the guys that didn’t.

After talking to some of my friends on the team, the answer was clear…

Weight training.

More specifically, the guys that made the team were working with coaches on their weight training.

But doesn’t it stunt your growth?

I was brought up with the belief that lifting weights too young was going to stunt my growth. As a consequence, I was weaker and slower than the other guys trying out for the football team.

That myth came back to bite me because, as it turns out, it’s not supported by scientific evidence or research.

What is supported by the science (and now my anecdotal evidence) is that properly designed weight training programs have numerous benefits including:

  • Increased strength and bone strength index (BSI).
  • Decreased fracture risk and rates of sports-related injury.
  • Matured self-esteem and interest in fitness.

Nowadays, I can’t help but think how things would’ve been different if I were more prepared. It’s now been years since that tryout, but it still consumes my thoughts. In fact, that’s what inspired me to become a gym owner.

My gym was born out of that failure to make the football team. It has become a gym focused on helping ordinary people with their individual fitness goals–especially teenagers.

Because I didn’t have a lot when I was preparing to play college football, my goal today is to always give away better stuff for FREE than what other people charge for. If you contact me, I’d be happy to help your teenager get a plan together.

But even if you don’t contact me, do your child a favor and find them a weight lifting coach.

It will make the difference.


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