Andy Ryland has years of experience helping to develop programs that prepare young athletes for the sport of football. This week’s Friday Five talks to him about specialization, weightlifting, tackling, and more, as well as the importance of age-specific training of youth athletes for any sport.
Author: Elliott Richardson
Elliott Richardson is entering his eighth year as the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach at Acadia University in Nova Scotia, Canada, and took over the role of Manager of Sports Performance this summer. At Acadia, he oversees the development of 300 varsity athletes across 11 teams along with two other full-time S&C coaches, and mentors another 40 undergraduate strength and conditioning interns through the School of Kinesiology. In addition, Richardson operates a private training business that supports over 100 local athletes of different ages and abilities, and a satellite training site for the Canadian Sport Centre Atlantic to support provincial and national sport athletes in the Canadian Institute of Sport system.
Recently, Richardson earned his Master of Science in Strength and Conditioning with distinction from St. Mary’s University in Twickenham, London, where he delivered the top research project on “The effects of training 5% lighter on strength gains in collegiate football players.” Prior to starting as the first full-time S&C coach at Acadia, he completed his undergraduate degree there while competing as a varsity athlete with the football team, before going on to play three years professionally in the Canadian Football League as a free safety. Richardson’s passion to improve physical performance in others stemmed from the benefits he realized from his own training. His overarching mission is to deliver the level of service, programming, and coaching to his athletes that he wished he had as a developing athlete without much formal strength and conditioning coaching.
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