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GAINING THAT EDGE

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by Judy Antell

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Your kid may not be ready to have his/her own personal coach.  But a new sports program at Chelsea Piers promises the kind of training that may just help them jump the hurdle.



   BlueStreak Sports Training, which launched last month in New York City (and already has facilities in Hauppauge, Long Island and Stamford, CT), offers small group training, with no more than five athletes working together..  Speed, power, agility and strength are all targeted, and offered to kids 12 and up. The focus is on improving athletes in baseball, football, lacrosse, track, basketball, golf, soccer, volleyball, cross county, gymnastics, softball, figure skating, ice hockey and tennis.

   There are two “super treadmills” that can be used at up to a 40 percent incline. These treadmills are in front of mirrors, so athletes can watch their strides; while they run, their movements are taped, so the trainer and athlete can analyze stride and increase speed.

   For hockey players, BlueStreak has an artificial ice area, with a hockey treadmill.  As any hockey parent knows, ice time is precious; this hockey training area provides more skate time, so players can work on shooting and puck handling.

   There is a mini turf soccer field, where players work on kicking, dribbling and passing.  Chris Gannon, the soccer coordinator, says this program helps players learn to change direction quickly on the field, run faster with the ball, and make more powerful and accurate shots on goal.  A core training area, Plyometrics, focuses on balance and coordination, using colorful floor diagrams.

   The state-of-the-art equipment, including weight training machines designed so young athletes won’t strain muscles, includes a national network, Frappier Acceleration Sports Training System (FAST).  BlueStreak promises that with FAST, ”the average athlete will see a 2- to 4-inch increase in vertical jump, a decrease of 0.2 seconds in a 40-yard sprint, and a 50 percent reduction in recovery rates.”

   In addition to the 10,000 square foot facility, participants have access to the 150,000 square foot Sports Center, with its full-size track, sand volleyball court and ice training area.

   The summer acceleration program of 20 sessions over six weeks gives student athletes whose seasons have ended a chance to kick up their game before next season. Each session runs 75 minutes.

   For more information, go to www.chelseapiers.com/bluestreak.


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