Tuesday, October 4, 2016

HHP Internship: A Change of Perspective

By Haley Overstreet '16

Coach Karen Harvey and Health and Human Performance
Exercise and Sports Studies major Haley Overstreet '16.
Haley is minoring in Coaching and will graduate in December.
I’ve never seen a day where there wasn’t a ball at my feet, or in my hand, or where I wasn’t on the field or in a gym. I’ve spent a great portion of my life being an athlete. I grew up playing two sports, basketball and soccer, until I decided to solely focus on soccer when it came time to make the big decision of where to go to college. Spending seventeen years heavily involved in sports I’ve had my fair share of coaches, some good and some bad, with lessons learned from each and every one of them. I’ve played college soccer at two different institutions. I’ve also played college lacrosse and field hockey, two sports I was never introduced to until recently, when my soccer career ended. I’ve had four different college coaches; four different coaching philosophies and values, four different teams, and four different jerseys I’ve worn throughout my college career. Now, some of you may understand what playing sports growing up is like, particularly in high school and even into college, while others may not. It’s not always big wins, trophies, and championship rings. Being an athlete is certainly not as pretty from the outside looking in. It’s sacrifice, determination, early mornings, late nights, long trips, missed parties and holidays. It’s painful, it’s ugly, and it’s the typical cliché of blood, sweat and tears. However, I believe it’s something everyone should experience and despite how rough it really is I certainly wouldn’t have changed one second of this crazy hectic lifestyle.

That’s why I am beyond grateful for the opportunity to intern under Coach Karen Harvey, head women’s lacrosse coach. These past five weeks have truly been eye opening. I really do not believe that athlete’s realize the amount of time and effort that coaches put into their every day job. It’s not just planning practices and facilitating them. There is so much more to being a coach, especially at the college level. Being a coach is demanding, stressful, and time consuming but at the end of the day it probably is one of the most rewarding jobs. I’ve realized that sports all around build character, create team players and instill discipline in individuals. That’s exactly what Karen is doing. Along with teaching these young women the game of lacrosse she’s also teaching them better time management, self-accountability, and the will to persevere even when times (practices, games, classes, etc.) get tough. I never really looked at it this way until I started my internship. It’s funny how when you put yourself in someone else’s shoes the things you will be able to see. Observing things from a coaching aspect is way different than from a player’s. I’ve learned that as an athlete we often get caught up in the choices a coach makes and how they affect us individually. Rather than being selfish and focusing on oneself, players need to understand that a coaches choices are made to benefit the team as a whole, not just to target a single player. Being a coach goes far beyond the field and some lessons that coaches teach players benefit them in all walks of life, this is the rewarding part. One of the greatest parts I’ve learned about being a coach is having successful players beyond their playing years. It’s a great feeling for a coach to receive a phone call from a former player and have them talk about their current lives and accomplishments and I can only hope to one day play a huge role in my players' lives and hear about how successful they have become.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

My Health and Human Performance Internship: A Summer Well Spent

By Brandon Hooks '17

As a student majoring in Health and Human Performance, I had the great opportunity to serve as intern at Athletic Lab, in Cary, North Carolina during this past summer. The experience under Athletic Lab’s founder, Dr. Michael Young was phenomenal. The hands-on work, independent research, and workshops afforded me the opportunity to grasp many skills and ideologies about being an athletic performance coach. I also had the opportunity to design and defend a program to raise athletic performance for a certain type of college prospect athlete.

Dr. Young gave lectures weekly about things he has learned and strategies for helping a client out when trying to reach a goal such as if somebody was trying to learn how to be faster and sprint better. I learned a lot about CrossFit, which was new to me because I have never been in a primarily CrossFit type gym before. Also during the course of my internship, I did research and wrote a total of four blogs on various topics. I wrote about whether kettlebell swings are effective in a full body workout; whether CrossFit is really good for you; whether using gymnastic rings is the new way of improving body strength; and whether adrenaline enhances athletic performance.

The entire internship was very challenging and rewarding. I was able to utilize a combination of kinesthetic, social, and solitary learning styles to successfully navigate the internship. The internship experience as a part of my academic plan at Ferrum College will certainly assist me in making career choices as I approach graduation.

Friday, May 27, 2016

The Spirit of Adventure E-Term 2016: As The Journey Ends, Our Spirits Thrive

By Michael Gauldin

Today was the last leg of the Spirit of Adventure E-Term. We began the day at Yogaville in Buckingham, Virginia with a sunrise yoga and meditation session at 6 AM. Seeing a group of twenty college students going from warriors to trees and then to cobras and pigeons was a sight to behold. With our muscles stretched, minds cleared, and not to mention, for those as inflexible as me, bodies sore, we moved along to a breakfast consisting a fresh picked fruits, vegetables, and other organic options. Following breakfast, we did Karma Yoga, which was a form of yoga that involves doing a service that helps others and makes them feel good also, in return, you gain peace. For our Karma Yoga, we helped clean yoga mats, garden, and spread mulch. After our last yoga session, we went to the Lotus Temple for a 30 minute meditation before heading back up to the vans to depart back to Ferrum.

As the journey ends for our Spirit of Adventure E-Term, we look back on what we have accomplished and how we’ve grown throughout the experience. I came in expecting both thrill and excitement to be accompanied with relaxation and peace and this E-Term came far from falling below expectation. From our activities such as, zip lining, rafting, and hiking to the peace of yoga and meditation, we each found a way to grow in our vocational and spiritual calling during this E-Term while acquiring friendships, peace, and excitement along the way. Although, it wasn’t always easy we still managed to learn and expand ourselves. Furthermore, as we leave for the summer, we all will be taking away different experiences that have made each of us grow differently but also in unity and with that, as the journey ends, our spirits thrive.

The Spirit of Adventure E-term 2016: Interfaith Comparison

By Tyler Belcher

The Spirit of Adventure E-Term was a very exciting and interesting course. The course began by learning the roots of Ferrum College in the classroom. We learned how the college was established as a part of the United Methodist Church. We then learned more about the Methodist faith. This lead us to our first place of adventure, Lake Junaluska. Lake Junaluska is a beautiful place that is associated with the United Methodist. The World Methodist Museum is located there. The museum was filled with all kinds of interesting things from the past related to the Methodist faith. We also were able to experience different types of prayers and meditations there. The peacefulness of the lake really made a difference for everyone and helped contribute to our learning. During our stay at Lake Junaluska, we visited Cherokee. At Cherokee we were able to see how the Cherokee people lived both past and present, as well as learn their spiritual background. The speakers there stated how accepting the Cherokee are of all kinds of people and this relates to the Methodist faith. It was very interesting to see how the faiths relate to one another. 

The second half of our adventure led us to Washington D.C. During our stay at D.C. we visited Foundry Methodist Church. This church had several different beliefs than what most of our class had, but it was interesting to learn how things are done differently in different areas. We also attended several seminars and went on a nature hike along the Potomac River. Along the hike several of my classmates had to face some of their fears, whether it being the fear of snakes or the fear of heights, they still faced their fears and completed the hike. After the adventures around D.C. we traveled to Yogaville for the last two days of our E-Term. Several of us were skeptical of Yogaville, but we all decided to stay positive and be open minded. I personally did not agree with some of the practices that the people there followed, but I was respectful of their faiths. Although, their beliefs were different, they were still open to all beliefs no matter what it was. The people there are very respectful to everyone just like the Methodist and Cherokee.

The Spirit of Adventure E-term 2016: It’s Yoga Time

By Keith Ricks

Today was awesome; we started off with leaving the nation’s capital and it took almost 4 hours to arrive to Yogaville located in Buckingham, Virginia. My first take on this community was that everyone here was very open minded and free spirited, and I was right! After getting settled in we had orientation and it was long but informational. The instructor Shankari gave us everything we needed to know and she was very clear that this location is filled with vegetarians and shoes are not necessary. After the orientation we had a successful 2 hour long yoga session. In the session we were able to engage our spiritual and physical well-being. Even though it was very hot in the room the class still enjoyed the wonderful experience.

Dinner was not so appealing coming from nothing but a meat eater however, the salad was the best part. Trying out new things has been a wonderful experience but the only time I was able to truly connect with myself was during yoga. To wrap up a very interesting day, we had a lovely speaker who discussed health, wellness and spirituality and their connections. The class really seemed to enjoy it. The first day at Yogaville was eventful and we all look forward to this new opportunity to step outside our comfort zone and learn and experience new things.

The Spirit of Adventure E-term 2016: The Rocks, the River, and the Snakes

By Austin Winkles

May 24, 2016 - Today we took our adventure to Great Falls Park in Maryland. Here we met up with our guide, Beth Norcross the Founding Director of the Center for Spirituality in Nature. She took us on a nature hike through the woods on Billy Goat Trail B. Our walk began with a simple trail, and then began to follow the river. Once we could stop and sit, Beth has us do some spiritual exercises. The first spiritual exercise required the group to find a peaceful place near the trail, to sit, and to write down the things around that caught their attention. I wrote about the trees, and how the woods looked like a good place to climb a tree with my tree stand and hunt.

After the first exercise we continued down the trail. Then Sarah screamed when we came across the first of several snakes on our hike. This snake was a copperhead snake that was about a foot long. Seeing this snake really scared a lot of people, including myself. When I saw that particular snake my first instinct was to run the other way. I deal with a lot of copperheads back home, and I know they can be dangerous. I can usually get away with cutting them up with the lawnmower, but not this time. This time I had nowhere to go other than back the other way. Once I calmed down and gathered myself, with the help of the group, I conquered my fears and went past the snake. Only to find out there were three more snakes up ahead! These snakes were at a distance by the river lying on rocks, but I know that if I can see them they can see me.

Once we finished our trip through Billy Goat Trail B, we met up and went down the road to see what is known as Great Falls. This place, on the Potomac River, was beautiful, and I have never seen anything like it. Seeing the way the water flows, and how it hit the rocks was truly majestic. I am not a big fan of snakes, or climbing over rocks like goats, also I have hiked before, but nothing like today. The point of adventures is to try something new and to face our fears, so in the Spirit of Adventure we took on those challenges today.