Monday, August 17, 2015

Athlete Spotlight #80) Nate Peters

Hello Everyone!

Our 80th athlete is a team player that knows the value of hard-work. He's a vocal leader that practices what he preaches. He demands only greatness from himself. He's receptive to coaching. He's humble and always wants what is best for the team. It's time to meet....

Athlete Name: Nathanial Peters
Sport(s): Basketball 
Position(s): Point Gaurd and Shooting Gaurd
School: CVCA
Graduation Year: 2016
AGSP Athlete Since: March 2012
Nate's vertical jump has increased multiple inches because of exercises like this Clean Pull.

Favorite Professional Sports Team: Cleveland Cavaliers 
Favorite Professional Athlete: Lebron James

Nate training his defensive speed and agility (side to side speed). Speed is science and can be learned.
Favorite Lift: Back Squat and Hang Clean
Favorite Movement Skill: Max Velocity

Nate's strength has increased every year because of his training and efforts.
When I am not training at AGSP, I am: In the gym
What are your short-term goals? Increase body weight to 170 lbs by winter 
What are your long-term goals?
 Play college basketball
How has AGSP impacted your performance as an athlete? Increased vertical jump, became faster

Check out some video of Nate in action at AGSP!

Keep Training! 
Coach Amanda Kephart and Akron General Sports Performance

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Joey By The Numbers: How To Lose 118 Pounds In Under 12 Months

I remember when I first met Joey Salser. His friend Tyler Marchand works at the front desk here at Akron General LifeStyles in Green. I didn't know Joey or Tyler very well back then. Joey would come in and talk to Tyler for a while before going into the gym to wander from one machine to the next. Sometimes he would shoot hoops. There wasn’t much direction in his training.

When Tyler told me that Joey was trying to get in shape for the Police Academy at Stark State College, I knew he was going to have to get serious about his training if he was ever going to make it past the physical fitness test.

This was Joey prior to starting his training regimen.

Here is Joey’s story in his own words:

I was like many others that started off on a journey to lose weight. I had no idea how to do it, I didn't know what to add to my exercise routine, I didn't know what or how much to cut out of my diet. But I knew it was something I needed to do in order to reach my goals in life. My college degree is in criminal justice and I wanted to pursue a career in law enforcement, but I knew in order to do that, I would have to be in tip top physical condition, but I had no idea where to even start, but I knew I had to do something. So I went to my good friend, Anthony Colarusso, who is the Head Sports Performance Coach at Akron General Health and Wellness Center in Green, with a list of physical standards that are required to make it into the law enforcement academy, and all he said was "This is going to be the hardest thing you have done in your life... We start on Monday."
We worked on getting my diet under control and getting me into a strict 5 day a week workout routine comprised of strength training and cardio. It was tough at first, but after I started to see the results every week I stepped on the scale, it became a lot easier. For the first time in my life I realized it was possible to lose this weight, so I kept with it. After 8 months I was down 95 pounds. I applied for the law enforcement academy and was able to pass the physical fitness test with no problem, something I would have never been able to do 8 months before.
It's currently August 2015, I am down 118 pounds on my way to my goal of losing 130. The journey wasn't easy, but thanks to my amazing friends and family for their support, and the dedication from Coach Anthony, I was able to reach my goal. The most important aspect of weight loss that I would tell anybody is that it is 80% diet and 20% exercise, and that there is no such thing as a magic pill or some amazing new workout program on TV that’s going to make it any easier. It's all about eating right, working out a few times a week and being consistent.

You know what the best part about Joey’s story is? He did it. He was the one who came in every evening to train at 8:00pm. He was the one who lifted the bar. He was the one who followed the diet. He was the one who tracked his calories. And he was the one who kept running on that damn treadmill at 6.5mph until he could go for 1.5 miles without stopping.

He did the work. No one would do it for him. No one could.

Joey pulling 405 easy! 

Athletes can learn a thing or two from Joey.

In today’s world, people will tell you all the time that they want something. But you know what? Talk is cheap. Nine times out of ten, what people say they want and what they are willing to do are two completely different things.

Joey knew what he wanted, he committed to making the change, and from that time on, there was no turning back.

When things got tough, he had us there for support. But he never stopped pushing, and he never gave up on himself. He stayed the course. And he always came back for more.

These photos were taken less than one year apart!

You just can’t beat a guy who won’t give up.

Keep Training!
Coach Anthony Colarusso & Akron General Sports Performance

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Make Time

Hello Everyone!

As I finished a recent coaching session at a local high school, I was passing through the high school auxiliary basketball gym and I saw one of our very first AGSP athletes practicing.
Great athletes make time to get stronger!
It was great to see him and he told me about how his summer was going. He is preparing for his senior year as a Collegiate Basketball Player, his "last year before he hangs up his sneakers" as he worded it, but he is also preparing for his "big kid life" as a working adult.

He said his summer has been the following:
5:30 am: lifting workout in the weight room
(shower, change into business clothes, breakfast)
9:00 am - 5:00 pm: working at a full-time co-op in his field of study
(eat dinner, change back into workout clothes)
6:00 pm: basketball skills training at his old high school auxiliary gym
9:00 pm: bed

What you need to understand is that this collegiate athlete is committed to two big missions:
1) finish his basketball career with everything he's got
2) gain the skills and network he needs so he can get a "big kid job" (and put his college degree to good use!)

That means he has to sacrifice:
- late nights with friends
- sleeping in
- dinners out
- hanging out

His sacrifices will make him the best basketball player he can be for his last go-around.

His friends probably don't understand and his competition probably isn't as committed.

He's living this summer with his thoughts on how he wants to live this winter. He's committed and knows what he wants, and thus, he makes time to get in what he needs to achieve his goals.

Great athletes don't find time for their goals, they make time.

What are you committed to? What do you need to make time for?

Keep Training!
Coach Amanda Kephart and Akron General Sports Performance 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Athlete Spotlight #79) Ryan Foguth

Hello Everyone!

Our 79th athlete is a high character athlete. He's humble, very mature, charismatic, and genuine. He's very athletic and has the ability for creating highlight footage every game, yet he understands and embraces the need for athletes to master the gritty fundamentals that win games. It's time to meet....

Athlete Name: Ryan Foguth
Sport(s): Basketball & Golf
Position(s): Small forward
School: CVCA
Graduation Year: 2017
AGSP Athlete Since: March 2015
Ryan's improved agility makes him tough to play against both offensively and defensively on the court.

Favorite Professional Sports Team: Cavaliers and Oklahoma City Thunder
Favorite Professional Athlete: Kevin Durant

Ryan back squatting over 100 kg for reps.
Favorite Lift: Back Squat
Favorite Movement Skill: Change in directions 
Ryan's confident in the air and his vertical jump has added multiple inches.

When I am not training at AGSP, I am: eating a lot of food, playing basketball or doing homework
What are your short-term goals? Two handed dunk 
What are your long-term goals?
 To get college paid for from scholarship 
How has AGSP impacted your performance as an athlete? AGSP has improved: vertical jump, strength, and speed.

Check out some video of Ryan in action at AGSP!

Keep Training! 
Coach Amanda Kephart and Akron General Sports Performance

Friday, July 17, 2015

Tallmadge Youth Football Speed and Strength Clinic

Hello Everyone!

Thursday July 16 Coach Nick and Coach Alec of Akron General Sports Performance put on a Speed and Strength Clinic for the Tallmadge Youth Football program. It had a great turnout of 45 hardworking and fun athletes!

Coach Nick and Coach Alec taught the athletes how to run faster and get stronger through our scientifically proven skills and drills. We'd like to thank Tallmadge Youth Football President Mr. Jeff Natcher for organizing the event. Check out the photos below!

Coach Nick sharing some speed tips!
Coach Alec, Mr. Natcher, Coach Nick.

Coach Nick explaining the next speed drill. 

The athletes worked hard and got faster!

Great group of hardworking future Tallmadge Football players!

If you are interested in having Akron General Sports Performance come out and teach your athletes how to get faster and stronger please email me at or call 330-945-3183.

Keep Training!
Coach Amanda Kephart and Akron General Sports Performance

Friday, July 10, 2015

7 Things I Learned from The 2015 MAC Women's Basketball Player of the Year

Hello Everyone!

One of the best parts of my job is getting the opportunity to mentor up-and-coming university students during their required collegiate field experience. I've had many students spend time with me over the past 7 years at AGSP and I've learned something from all of them. Some things are positive, some are a bit lacking, but as much as I hope I teach them, they also teach me.
It is rare that I know who the university student is before they start, but it was hard not to know who Sina King was before she started her field experience. Sina is the 2015 MAC Women's Basketball Player of the Year for the University of Akron. Her athletic story and journey from life-threatening injury to becoming Conference Player of the Year is well worth your read. Check out the following stories:

The Cleveland Plain Dealer's article: 

The Akron Beacon Journal's article: 

The University of Akron's article: 

Here are 7 Things I Learned from Sina

  1. Great athletes are made, not born. Sina shared many stories of intense training sessions she did with the coaching staff at the University of Akron. Often times, she was the only one of her teammates participating.
  2. Have a support system. Sina shared how tough her freshman year was for her. She had doubts and turned to her parents for counsel. Her parents gave her the support she needed to persevere.
  3. Use your arms. Sina demonstrated how one of her coaches would put his arm out to force her to get into a lower and better position. I've incorporated this technique into many of my drills with great results. 
  4. You have to be seen. Sina is from a small Ohio town. She said if it wasn't for her travel team getting in front of college coaches she's not sure if she would have achieved her goal of being a D1 basketball player.
  5. Commit 100% to your dream. Sina said she knew from a very young age that she wanted to be a Division One basketball player. She kept her focus on her dream. She didn't allow life's distractions to stop her.
  6. Run everywhere. Sina said she was known for always running between stations and never walking (like everyone else). She said, "If I got there sooner I had more time to improve."
  7. Light up the room. Sina has the special talent of walking into the room and instantly making everyone around her better. What a great thing for all of us to strive for!

If you have questions for Sina, or want her thoughts on how you can become a collegiate athlete and achieve your dream like she did, please email me at and I will try and put you in contact with her. 

Keep Training!
Coach Amanda Kephart and Akron General Sports Performance 

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Athlete Spotlight #78) Nic Anderle

Hello Everyone!

Our 78th athlete spotlight is an athlete that brings confidence and leadership to every training session. He's determined and coach-able. His energy is contagious. He's a workhorse that wants to be challenged. He's the kind of athlete you want on the court when the game is on the line. It's time to meet....

Athlete Name: Nic Anderle
Sport(s): Basketball
Position(s): Point guard/guard
School: Padua Franciscan High School
Graduation Year: 2016
AGSP Athlete Since: 2013
Single Leg Strength work has improved Nic's jumping and dunking.
Favorite Professional Sports Team: Golden State Warriors
Favorite Professional Athlete: Steph Curry

Nic's vertical has increased multiple inches since he started training at AGSP in 2013.
Favorite Lift: Back Squat
Favorite Movement Skill: Ladder 

Pullaparts strengthen the back and shoulders. Crucial for basketball players like Nic.
When I am not training at AGSP, I am:In the gym putting up shots, working at Marcs, golfing, or fishing.
What are your short-term goals? Get my vertical to 34" and get as many scholarship offers as I can 
What are your long-term goals?
 Playing college basketball, and doing a windmill dunk 

Nic getting faster with resistance band sprints.
How has AGSP impacted your performance as an athlete? AGSP has mde me into an above average athlete by making me stronger, faster, and helping me jump higher. AGSP is making me into a super athlete.

Check out some video of Nic in action at AGSP!

Keep Training! 
Coach Amanda Kephart and Akron General Sports Performance