P3 Athletic Combine coming to Harding

STEUBENVILLE – Something new is coming to the Ohio Valley and there are a lot of people already on board.

The Trinity Sports Medicine and Performance Center will host the inaugural P3 Athletic Combine at 8 a.m. May 31 at Harding Stadium.

And, it’s not just for football players.

Athletes from incoming freshmen to graduating seniors are eligible to compete.

“A lot of players are under recruited or not recruited out of this area,” said Ryan Nolan, the combine coordinator. “This is an opportunity for them to get their name out there, promote themselves and see where it takes them.

“There are a lot of opportunities, not only at the Division I level, but at all levels of college athletics. A lot of people sometimes get locked in on D1, D1, D1, but that doesn’t always work. If you are a 5-foot-9, 180-pound kid, you might have other options.

“I think it is important that this isn’t just for football players. There are other sports besides football. Football is probably the easiest in getting your name out there. If you’re a soccer player, a tennis player or a swimmer, you still need the services that are here.

“You can still take advantage of the educational program, the nutritional program. The biggest thing, I think, is on the nutritional end. Kids don’t know what to do after practice or how to handle their nutrition after a game, pre-game or the week leading up to the game.”

The pre-event includes measuring height, weight, body fat and getting a profile picture.

The tested events will include: 40 yard sprint, shuttle run, L drill, vertical jump, long jump, medicine ball throw and an obstacle course.

There will also be a functional movement screen that will identify weaknesses so the athletes can learn corrective exercises to maximize performance.

“I think this is a great opportunity for our kids to get out, get exposed to some of the activities they will be expected to do at a recruiting combine or a college combine,” said Brooke head football coach Sean Blumette. “I think it is great something like this is coming to the Ohio Valley so our kids don’t have to go to Pittsburgh or Charleston or Morgantown, or a bigger place anymore.

“I think the outreach they are going to do with the program not only on the athletic end, but the community end, the academic end will be great for everyone.

“I am looking forward to getting my kids involved to get the information and if we see kids identified with the same deficiencies, then I can go back and work with our trainer to develop something in our weight program and our conditioning program that will help work and eliminate those deficiencies.

“Any time you can give an athlete this type of information and then they take it and will go out and work to correct any type of deficiencies they have, the athlete is better and your program is better.”

The mission of the program is:

– “To help individuals, athletes, and the community reach their health, wellness and athletic goals by providing resources, education and medically designed programs

– “To promote athletic ability, injury prevention and provide a positive environment for our youth, the future success and the well-being or our participants

– “To serve the Tri-State Area as a valued resource for business owners, parents, coaches, and youth sports organizations.”

“This is much more than just a one day thing,” said Dr. Michael Scarpone, the medical director of Trinity Sports Medicine. “This is more of a global look, if you will.

“This is where someone can come in and learn how to eat right, whether it’s during a sport or in their daily lives. Hopefully, when people of all ages go through this, and not necessarily the combine, they can be a more complete person, not just an athlete.

“That’s our real goal here. Obviously, the sports component is a big thing here in the valley and we know it is important to a lot of people. Most high school athletes do not go on to play college sports, so I think this is good vehicle where they can learn now to make their lives better in college and beyond when they have families of their own.

“If athletes can get a full scholarship to help their families, or a partial scholarship, go get a college education and be a productive member of society – we can help do that through this program.

“We’re looking at this in a bigger scope than just making you a faster track runner of a better football player. Those are good, but it’s not the end goal.”

The P3 stands for protect, progress and perform.

– Protect: From injury; from unhealthy situations; your health through eating to win; your heart by working out; through education and staying on the cutting edge of new technology and health information; your kids’ future by preparing them for college.

– Progress: By improving speed, agility and strength; by practice, dedication, and taking the extra step to learn and be all that you can be as an athlete, as a mother, as employer; by identifying your weakness and correcting them; by eliminating energy leaks or faulty mechanics that decrease your power or cause breakdown, injury or failure.

– Perform: By setting goals and achieving them; by unleashing your potential; by continuously improving your health and skills.

The functional movement screen is a system used to evaluate movement pattern quality for clients and athletes. It is comprised of seven fundamental movement patters that require a balance of mobility and stability and place the individual in extreme positions where weaknesses and imbalances become noticeable.

The seven tests are: deep squat, hurdle step, in-line plunge, shoulder mobility, active straight leg raise, trunk stability push-up and rotary stability.

Each test has a score from 0-3.

0 – pain in the movement.

1 – inability to perform the movement.

2 – movement performed, but compensation is needed to complete.

3 – completed movement with no compensation.

From a slide shown at the presentation, “According to multiple studies, a score of less than 14 (out of 21) is correlated to a meaningful injury risk. For example, in one study 69 percent of NCAA athletes who scored 14 or less sustained an injury in the season.”

“We have some tools to help decrease the risk of injury,” said Justin Baker, the director of Trinity P3 Performance Program, and, who, among other things, is a certified strength and conditioning specialist. “The FMS is the best we have based on research to try and decrease the rate of injuries. But, not just as a preventative thing. We really want to promote some training, some sports-specific technique stuff that will make the athletes stronger, so that they’re not hurt all the time.

“What we want to do with this program is take someone who has already squatted 225 and train them functionally stronger so they can do 400.

“We want athletes to be able to compete at the next level, at the national level. We would like the people who go onto college and compete in athletics to be able to represent this area as best they can. And, with a program like this with the guidance and the professionals we have, I think we can really help them.

“Athletes need a place where they can call home, learn some great technique and that’s what we’re trying to do.”

Cost is $25 per individual or $20 per person with a team of five.