Student athletes jump higher as coach instructs them.

Spring break? No time to relax

Spring break can be a time for relaxation. For student athletes, it could be a time to become faster, stronger and more explosive.

Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System’s Sports Medicine Institute, along with Velocity Sports Performance, started a weeklong spring break camp three years ago, designed to improve the performance of student athletes and get children and teenagers more active.

During that time, the program has expanded rapidly as more young athletes take advantage of the training.

One such athlete is Chapman High School soccer player Tyler Visoury. A senior now, Visoury attended one of the program’s camps before his junior year.

He credits that week with helping his performance on and off the field.

“It was high intensity,” Visoury said. “It helped my speed, and taught me how to take better care of my ankles and knees. It helped me grow as an athlete and know what I need to do, but it also taught me how to compete the right way and helped me as a team player.”

 “We have come a long way in a short period of time,” Gary Hazelwood, a supervisor at the SRHS Sports Medicine Institute, said.

A session at one of the camps is intense. Separate sessions allow coaches to work with third through eighth graders, as well as high school students.

The camps combine new and old techniques, blending the use of slide boards, resistance bands and sled prowlers with jump ropes, medicine balls, bungee cords and more.

The training techniques are designed to increase speed and maximize performance.

“Our goal is to get kids involved and use the tools provided to make sure the athletes are achieving the top sports performance possible,” Hazelwood said. “We want them to get maximum value out of themselves while performing at a high level.”

The camps improve athletes of all sports, according to Eli Cothran, a performance coach for Sports Medicine Institute.

“We have every tool under the sun to really help develop these athletes,” Cothran said. “The camps help educate students on how to be better athletes through every drill. They learn and grow.”