Heading into the 2017 school year, ElliptiGO launched its School Giveaway Contest in August, inviting high school and college coaches across the country from all sports to submit an application saying how their program would use the product and why they were deserving of this complete training package, valued at $3,000. By the time the August 28 deadline came around, the ElliptiGO team had received over 600 school submissions to evaluate. There were many great entries, which made it very difficult to select a winner, but showed how important this cross-training option has become among coaches and athletes. After much consideration, the winning selection was given to the Ursinus College XC and Track & Field Programs out of Collegeville, Pennsylvania.
The ElliptiGO Sports Performance team was able to visit the Ursinus College Campus recently, and discovered that after just a couple weeks, this program was already seeing the benefits of ElliptiGO-integrated training. Head Coach Carl Blickle has been an elite runner himself and is now in his fourth season with the Bears. “I am excited about adding the ElliptiGO as one of our approaches to cross- train. In the past, many of our injured or low mileage athletes were working out in isolation either in the pool or on an elliptical in the fitness center. The ElliptiGO bike now allows those athletes to now be with the team on the track and trail,” said Coach Blickle. The trail the Ursinus team uses is the Perkiomen Trail that runs right next to campus and connects to the Schuylkill River Trail.
Coach Blickle elaborated further on the run specific benefits. “In addition, the ElliptiGO bike provides the opportunity to increase training volume for our athletes without the added impact. The ElliptiGO bike pairs very well with our run training by providing our athletes with a workout stimulus that closely resembles the mechanics and cardiovascular gains of running,” he said.
Joining Coach Blickle on the coaching staff is Assistant Coach Crystal Bacon. Coach Bacon was previously a Performance Enhancement Specialist at a Physical Therapy Clinic and is now in her second year as Assistant Professor in the Heath and Exercise Physiology Department at Ursinus. Coach Bacon shared her excitement about the product as well. “Having an injury prevention background, I love that we have another method of cross training and better yet, this method allows them to be with the team. I love that we have the option to create workouts on it too. We have a few favorite short loops where they are able to switch from going easy to hard as a way to get their heart rate even higher!” she shared. Coach Bacon also boasts a half marathon PR of 1:16 herself and is currently training for a full marathon in hopes of achieving the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials Standard.
The ElliptiGO Training Package that Ursinus won also included a stationary trainer which is used among most ElliptiGO-integrated school programs, and will be especially appreciated by the Ursinus team. Bacon added, “In the winter, we look forward to setting the ElliptiGO bike up on the stationary trainer and having the athletes workout on the indoor track. This way we can keep an extra eye on them or even simulate a workout that the team is doing on the track.”
Ursinus College joins over 200 schools that are now incorporating this preferred cross training integration and it continues to gain momentum across endurance sports like Cross Country and Track & Field, but is also building a strong acceptance among team sports programs as strength and conditioning coaches work to keep the athletes fit and healthy.
To learn more about integrating ElliptiGO-training into your school program, contact [email protected].