Career Connections

Austin Adkins

Major: Kinesiology and Health

Minor/option/emphasis: Exercise Science

Company/Organization: Dowling Catholic High School
Company/Organization website:
Title: Strength and Conditioing Assist
Destination: 1400 Buffalo Rd, West Des Moines, IA 50265
Timeframe: Fall 2016

Advisor/Coordinator Email:

I was responsible for...
My responsibilities during my internship included working with students and athletes in the weight room while instructing and critiquing them on proper technique during exercises, filing documentation of athletes who are in season and or out of season lifting, working under the Bigger, Faster, Stronger program with all athletes and students, cleaning and organizing the equipment to ensure everyone’s safety, participating in a yoga class lead by my supervisor to learn to learn and teach different yoga positions to the students, and lastly, turning in assignments to my supervisor when they are due.

I accomplished...
My greatest accomplishment during my internship was building professional relationships with all the coaches and students at the school. As time passed, my relationships got stronger with them and it became easier for me to assist them in the weight room or office. I would assist the coaches by watching over the students in the weight room to ensure they are using proper technique to reduce the risk of an injury. I also got to work with a few students who have never lifted before and got teach them how to perform the exercises. Sometimes I had to make modifications for them during the exercise so they could build up their strength and be able to perform the exercises correctly. I would assist the students by giving them physical and auditory cues to help them correct their technique and strength. With good form, they could see themselves getting stronger on their weight lifting cards each time the students were in the weight room. Seeing their progress through the semester made me feel like I had a big impact on their progress towards becoming healthier individuals, and stronger, faster athletes to excel in their respective sports.

I learned...
The greatest lesson I learned from my internship experience is the harder you work, the more you are going to get out of it. With each and every day passing, I was learning something new, whether it was performing a new yoga position or instructing physical cues for lifting with proper form. I learned all the qualities that make a good strength and conditioning coach. Examples include documenting of lifts for athletes and students, organizing the weight room and scheduling of which athletic teams are coming in to lift at a certain time period, and also determining which exercises the students and athletes are going to perform during the week. No matter what we did, the ultimate goal was to get the athletes stronger, faster, and become a healthier individuals, and to help them move their bodies more effectively and efficiently to reduce the risk of injury and increase their performance in competitions. By applying myself to the system that I was working in, I was able to learn more and adapt my ways to become a better, more reliable strength and conditioning coach. I will always keep learning and adapting my understanding about the functions of the human body. By learning what types of exercises are better for a particular outcome of improving an athlete’s performance, I will be able to apply those to the people I will be working with. I will be able to teach my students what I learned over the years, and increase their knowledge about the human body, as well as show them I am passionate about my work and helping them become healthier individuals.

Advice for others...
My advice to future students looking for internships in the field is to make sure you do your research on the companies you are trying to work with. You want to make sure they are in similar field you want to go into. That way you can get the most out of your experience at the company of your choice and enjoy the time have with them. Hopefully turning that internship experience into a job and making a living out of something you're passionate about.

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