2016 Track Season for Sun City

Greeting Sun City Track Team!

Coach Aleah and I are still on cloud 9 from the successful cross-country season in 2015. With the three Harriers that went on to nationals just a little over a month ago to go with all of the new athletes who are just learning how much fun running is. We are thrilled with the direction our club is headed. Just as excited as we are about our past cross-country season, we are even more excited about track season. So here is what is around the corner!

1. Track training is going to start March 1st. Sun City is partnering with SportFit at the YISA (Yakima Indoor Soccer Association) facility on River Road. This training is going to be every Tuesday night at 7pm and will last about forty minutes. We will be doing drills, lots of core work (abs, back, box jumps) and some sprints. This will be for two months (once a week). These will be led by Gerd Strom who runs the youth soccer clubs in Yakima and has an abundance of training in young kids. We have also known each other for almost a decade (he competed for the University of Washington in soccer when Aleah and I both ran for the Huskies as well). There is a marginal cost of $30/month for the cost of the facility and training. If one wants you can choose to do one month and do not have to do two months. If you choose to do this, make your check out to SportFit and just bring it to the first day of training on March 1st.

2. Track season is going to start the first week of May this year. This will be a month later than last year. Last season dragged on a hair bit in our opinion. This will also make it start after or towards the end of most of the high school and middle school seasons.

3. We are moving the focus of our track club towards middle distances for this season. Our three main coaches (Erik, Aleah, and Chris Waddle) all specialize in distance (400 meters (1/4 mile) up to 3000 meters (a hair less than two miles). We will be doing a lot of focus on the 400 and 800 meters this year for most athletes unless they feel called to the longer distances. Unfortunately with the limited number of coaches and dependent facilities at this time there are not enough resources to focus on all of the track and field events. Last year we ran into problems with the Yakima School District not allowing us to use Eisenhower track, at West Valley they took away our high jump pits halfway through the year, and there were many other obstacles as well. Aleah and I talked long and hard about this but our philosophy is we would rather do middle distances really well, than be mediocre at a lot of other things so that is going to be our philosophy for this season. We will for sure not have any field events for this season. Kids can still choose to do sprints (100 & 200 meters) but at this time we do not have a coach for sprints. If there is a parent who feels “called” to coach sprints, she/he would have to join USATF, get a full background check, and then commit to working with Sun City through track regionals.

4. We will not be having a local track meet this year. Yakima youth track does put on three youth track meets in the summer so there is that option for kids. Our team will be traveling to Seattle for one meet in May and then running the Junior Olympic series (two meets in Spokane in June) and Regionals is in Seattle in early July to end the season.

5. Practice locations have not been formalized yet. The good news is we have figured out which locations are hard to work with (Eisenhower) and which ones are easier to work with. Sun City will be working with the local school districts to formalize our practice schedule locations. We are currently planning on the same schedule as last year though (track on Tuesday & Thursday at 6pm) and then Saturday mornings at Cowiche Canyon at 10am.

We want to be as inclusive as a track club as possible but we also want to allow kids to further their own talents as far as he/she can take them. In summary this is how we see the kids:

1. The “I always want more group”—This is who we were thinking of in regards to the March 1st cross-training sessions. Even though track doesn’t start until May, this will allow those athletes a chance to work out, start getting sharp, be social with their teammates, and start to freshen up. I will also be posting month supplemental training schedules for anyone who wants to work on some base work pre-season.

2. The “prime-time group”—This group shows up when it is time to show up and brings it. Usually our kids who do multiple sports throughout the seasons, does little running until the very first day of track, but when the season starts they are all in.

3. The “just getting my feet wet group”—These kids usually have little or no running experience and some of my favorite to work with because they grow so quickly. If your child has never run track before, have no fear we all started somewhere. We start slowly, believe in lots of encouragement, and have lots of success stories of previous kids.

Looking forward to 2016 and we will be blogging with more details in the weeks and months to come.

Coach Erik
Sun City Track

Feel free to call me at 941-5191 if you have any questions regarding the team.