Hi everyone, my name is Ryan Haff. I have been given the fortunate opportunity to intern at XIP under Coach Guyer and Coach Johnson this summer. I am a senior Exercise Science major at Castleton University. I am also working on three minors which include Biology, Health, and Fitness Sports Science. I am an avid fitness enthusiast and also an athlete as I am part of the wrestling team at Castleton. Much like many kids growing up I had always played every sport I possibly could, but it was football and wrestling that stuck with me through high school. Just like every other athlete I had my favorite sport and this was football; this is where my inspiration and passion for training and athletic performance began. My junior year I began training like a madman, most days two to three
times per day with aspirations to be the best player on the field. The changes and growth made in this year is what lit a fire in me and sparked such pivotal inspiration. If I could make these substantial changes in myself, alone, as a naive seventeen-year-old using YouTube as my biggest training resource than what could a professional accomplish with several years of training to work with? From this point forward it was clear to me what I aspired to do, train athletes.
Fast forward to freshman year of college I started off a strong minicamp in the top three of the depth chart at running back. With a quick jerk and twist of the knee this strong start ended very fast. A fully torn acl and a long road of recovery silently made me realize how broad my passion for training truly is. Learning recovery and injury prevention was added to the list of aspirations and not only just for athletes. Seeing first-hand these community members coming in and out of the physical therapy office with such passion and determination made me realize I want to work with the general population as well.
First-hand experience working with community members of the Castleton community also made me realize that it is not only athletes who have drive and determination to better themselves in sight of a goal. These individuals arrived mid-August ready to sign up and purchase eight months of training with students of the Health Science and Exercise Science field. With goals in mind a plan was put in place to meet every goal for every client. Once again, the passion and determination I saw and experienced first-hand from these clients was inspiring. This experience broadened not only my interests in training, but the field I desired to be involved with. I was from this point forward determined to work with individuals from a health standpoint overall and as well training with all ages.
I have already learned so much in just the few short weeks I have been here. One of the most valuable pieces of information I have learned thus far is not an exercise, technique, or is even training specific. It is that the relationships established between trainer and client are far more important than any exercise. A trainer may possess the best knowledge and ability to write a perfect program, but if they lack interpersonal skills the client will not want to return. Engaging in conversation, getting to know the individual not just the athlete, and having fun throughout the workout will take you far. It is clear every member of XIP is happy to be here. They show up with enthusiasm and excitement due to the culture the coaching staff has established. Interpersonal skills and quality communication must be fine-tuned in this industry to be successful.
I am looking forward to continue working with the members of XIP and even more excited to continue learning pivotal information from the great coaching staff. I plan to bring my knowledge of athlete and general population training from prior internships and experiences. I plan to utilize my knowledge of nutrition and health. Just like the members of XIP I too plan to get better every day.