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The Student News Site of St. Charles North High School

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North athletics embrace off-season training

Athletes+in+girls+track+and+field+run+during+an+off-season+practice.
Alexa Tarte
Athletes in girls track and field run during an off-season practice.

It’s no surprise that sports in season are a full-time commitment; however, more sports are starting to become a year-long commitment. As of late, “Off-Season” workouts have become extremely popular. Sports such as basketball, baseball, and track and field have taken it upon themselves to work on their skills all seasons- but why?

According to Michael Tomczak, girls basketball head coach, the girls’ basketball program does work in the spring,  summer and fall. This off-season work includes a strength and conditioning program, summer camp and a program-wide trip. 

“When it’s going, we typically lift three days a week and have an open gym once a week,” said Tomczak.

“[Off-season work is] preventative in regards to injury,” said Tomczak. “I think that we were healthier last year than we were any year that we’ve been here and it’s because we had a better off-season program.”

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Off-season work seems to have benefits based on the observations of the coaches of girls’ basketball. It’s beneficial to not only improve the skills of the players but also to strengthen their muscles to reduce the amount of injuries during the season. 

“It helps our players connect and bond more, the more they see each other off the court the better they are on the court,” Tomczak said.

He elaborates on how important it is to have relationships off the court in order to make it flow more smoothly in games. The more comfortable players are, the more they take risks and improve their overall game. 

“There’s been no downside to doing [off-season work], we’ve only seen benefits from it,” Tomczak said. From a coach’s point of view, off-season work is invaluable and incredibly vital to a good season. 

Athletes agree that off-season work benefits them in the long run.

Junior and captain of the track team Callie Davidson, shared her thoughts about her pre-season work. 

“With our new head coach, we’ve been practicing two, three times a week, we recently just started running with the guys to help push ourselves,” said Davidson. 

“All this conditioning is going to help to build stamina and stay strong at the end of a race,” Davidson explains. “Off-season work is more individual because it’s optional, so if you’re the type of person who has that drive and sort of ‘I wanna get better’ attitude, and you personally have goals you want to do, it’s more individually driven to be there.” 

Off-season work is an opportunity for athletes to prepare more individually while also providing opportunities for team bonding and cohesion to start the season off on the right foot. 

Senior varsity baseball player Luke Holtz spoke about their pre-season routine. 

“As a team, we have workouts over in dirtbags [indoor batting facility]  in South Elgin…usually we have a coach or two look over and help get pitchers in shape and hitters get to see some live pitching,” Holtz highlights. “We are given a unique opportunity with [South Elgin Dirtbag Baseball], not a lot of high schools get to do that; we also have coaches that can be there…There are rules about who you can be around during the off-season so we have volunteer coaches who are able to be there. It’s a unique experience that helps a lot.”

Pre-season work can provide new opportunities for student athletes that they would not normally get during the season, allowing athletes to build their experience in new ways. 

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About the Contributors
Lynn Singh
Lynn Singh, Junior Media Editor
Lynn is a staff photographer for Stargazer. She is a Sophomore, and this is their second year on staff. Lynn engages in student journalism because there is something special about capturing moments that bring students together.
Lizzy Medina
Lizzy Medina, Staff Writer/Media Team
Lizzy is a member of both the writing and media team for the Stargazer. She is a Senior and this is her first year on staff.
Alexa Tarte
Alexa Tarte, Media Team

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