Training is essential for athletes to improve their skills and keep up their stamina.
Student-athletes at Loyola spend an average 20 hours per week training. This time is split between weight training, watching film and practicing on the field or court.
Although schedules for the different teams vary, the outline of the schedules is similar. On a typical day, teams practice for two hours, weight lift for one hour, have team meetings for one hour and watch film for one hour.
Loyola Athletics has three sports trainers, which are assigned to different teams. Dave Vital is the head of sports performance for the Division I teams. Angie Sorensen and Alex Sharon are assistant strength and conditioning coaches for the teams.
The strength and conditioning coaches’ main goal is to improve the fundamental physical qualities and skills for each sport. The coaches design special workouts to help target the athletes’ specific needs so they can succeed at their sport.
Coaches and trainers focus on athletes’ physical bodies, while sports psychologists focus on athletes’ minds.
At Loyola, student-athletes have access to sports psychologists at the Wellness Center. Sports psychologists help athletes cope with pressures of their respective games, which can included pressure from coaches, teammates and their own expectations. Sports psychologists can also assist in athletes recovery from injuries and help them overcome their fears of getting re-injured.
Training at the Division I level can be extremely rigorous, but Loyola athletes have a team of professionals and each other to support them.