Countering COVID with Sports

Some people have seen this pandemic as limiting and problematic. But it can also be an opportunity.  Some athletes have used this year to develop their fitness to its highest potential.

Zach McClain (“Zmac”) is the owner and head coach of a fitness training group called WideOutU. 

Zmac says he tried to create something for young athletes that he didn’t have growing up—an affordable, fun, family environment that offered speed training, strength training and conditioning, and coaching in specific sports.  

Coach Zmac

He attended college on a football scholarship and had a career after college playing in a football league.  But then, thinking about what he was going to do with his life after football, he enrolled in an online master’s program. That’s when Zmac says his life changed. He obtained his Master in Exercise Science and came to the realization that he knew absolutely nothing except “The human body is the ultimate jigsaw puzzle. A never-ending puzzle that keeps feeding you pieces day in and day out.”  He says that puzzle continues to challenge him to this day, but he has been determined to master it. 

After spending a few years as a P.E. teacher and high school football coach, Zmac became frustrated with the lack of resources, the poor organization, and the requirement to do things that he believed had no reasoning behind them.  So, last winter, he left coaching and teaching and started his own sports performance company right at the beginning of the nationwide epidemic. 

One of the results he reports: 21 of the 40 athletes enrolled in the program now run faster than 20 mph! 

Zmac encourages his athletes to ask the 5 W’s—who, what, where, when, and why—whenever it comes to any drill they do. If a coach or teacher can’t explain any of those things to a student, he believes then they are doing them a disservice. 

Throughout these past nine months, Zmac has seen kids become healthier and happier—even during this stressful time when parents are concerned about their kids’ mental health worsening. 

“Our athletes thrive,” he says, “and they come back every day wanting more.”

Photo Courtesy of Frank Enderle

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