Summer School for OPP

Summer time at Okanagan Peak Performance Inc means a number of things. It can mean the arrival of the hockey players we work with. It can mean the return of a summer intern. And it can mean school is in session.

Not literally though as summer is the time students are off from school. But more in terms of the staff at Okanagan Peak Performance Inc going to school. This summer has been no different. Here’s a quick recap of where we’ve been for learning.

NSCA State Clinic – Spokane, WA

Photo: The boys.  Awesome night at Laguna Cafe.

Heading to Spokane for a conference is always fun as I ‘m able to reconnect with some college buddies. If you’re in the area go see Dan and his staff at the Laguna Cafe. Try the Irish Death beer. I hear it’s good.

In early June Jordy, Megan & I packed up and headed south to Spokane for the NSCA Washington State Clinic. We would have been four but one of the interns forgot his passport and had to stay home. Interns…

A few years ago I had the opportunity to see Dr. Dale Canavan provide a review of the literature with respect to stretching. Knowing the quality of his own presentations I felt confident he would put on a great event this year.

We weren’t disappointed.

Sessions included topics on dynamic warm-ups, sprint training and training the high school athlete. As this all took place at a training facility called U District it was nice to have access to some turf and room to move for the hands-on portion. U District is located in the Gonzaga University district and thus the name.

Personally there were a couple of highlights of this clinic. First was Ryan Hite’s presentation on speed training. He did a great job on defining the various energy systems with an effective hands-on example. As well he very clearly described the necessity of hip mobility, particularly hip extension, during sprinting.

The other highlight of this weekend was when one of the attending coaches commented to me during the break that Jordy and Megan performed the hands-on drills better than anyone else. Comments like that make you feel that you are investing in the right people and that our clients are in good hands.

Perform Better Summit – Long Beach, California

This event is one of the highlights of the conference schedule. Presenters are the top of their fields and many present both lecture and hands-on presentations. The biggest draw back  of this event is the fact that there are four presentations occurring every hour. So it becomes virtually impossible to attend everything you’d like.

That’s where having 3 staff with you helps. Some of the sessions we attended together. Others we split into groups of twos and for a few we did our own thing. But we all took great notes and shared our new knowledge with each other after.

My favourites were Michol Dalcourt’s presentation on Shift Training and Nick Winkelman’s on Cueing the Athlete. I can’t recall Nick’s exact title but it made us aware of the importance of coaching. I won’t go into too much detail because I think Megan is going to write a blog post on this presentation and give you all the details.

As for Michol’s presentation you felt like you were in a university class with a really excited prof. The kind of prof who’s voice rises and falls and  they move around the room. Not the ones who look down at the floor, and in a monotone voice try and teach you about organic chemistry. Anybody else ever have Dr. Convery? He must have some really smart ties because he lectured directly to them for many decades.

Okanagan Strength & Conditioning Conference – Kelowna, BC

Photo: Chris LeBihan kicking things off. Great information about how Strength & Conditioning professionals helped him achieve a Bronze Medal in Whistler 2012

This was our event from a couple of weekends ago. And it was incredible. 100% of the attendees and presenters want to return. The presenter that closed the conference added a nice comment. He made mention of an event in Boston known as the Boston Sports Medicine and Performance Group. This event is known continent wide and highly regarded. This closing speaker commented that this event is on par with this established event in Boston. Wow! Humbling and encouraging at the same time.

More posts are on the way regarding these events. Some are from me. Some are from the other coaches and interns.



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