High School Physical Education: Speed Strength Training (SST) participation strengthens

The fourth annual Speed Strength Training (SST) contest between Homer High School, Kenai Central High School (KCHS), Nikiski Middle-High School, and Skyview High School took place at Nikiski High School on March 27, 2014. Over eighty students participated!

The SST lifting program highlights strength, power, explosion, endurance, and cardiovascular levels in each participant. The schools are currently running this program in their physical education classes. Students have the opportunity to show their growth and development through the contest to their communities. There are many highlights from this year's contest with many overall records being broken.

Special thanks to Chris Perk, Homer High coach; Jeff Baker, Kenai Central High coach; Ted Riddall, Nikiski Middle-High coach; and Eric Pomerleau, Skyview High coach. "Challenging and encouraging kids is a daily routine for these teachers and coaches. Students are motivated to reach personal and fitness level goals and targets," said Ted Riddall. "Each participant is working against their best self and can also compare to students in the other area high school who are running the SST program."

Collaboration and differentiated instruction is one of the most important objectives for the teachers involved.

Team scores are kept to help in a friendly competition between schools. Boys and girls points are combined to factor into total team points. Kenai finished with 221 points, Skyview 136 points, Nikiski 112 points, Homer 18 points. Homer High brought four students to the competition because they just started the program; in the future, Homer will bring a full team and will challenge all schools.

The stands were packed and massive amounts of dynamic energy filled the room from the participants, and families and friends cheering them on. School administrators, district officials, and community visitors were present and cheering. The Fitness Place sent representatives to help judge and encourage kids. This SST competition became an awesome community event. One of the main goals of the SST program is to promote lifelong health and fitness.

"It was very encouraging and hearting to be able to see in action the district wide level of cooperation, teamwork, and spirit involved in putting on a successful SST competition last night at Nikiski Middle-High," said John O'Brien, KPBSD director of secondary education. "I was very proud to be a part of this school district last night as a parent, employee, and community member.

To see so many students (some traditional athletes, some not) pour their heart and soul into something that for most isn't about winning but about self-improvement of their fitness level and strength is truly a testament to what you all have done. This has been such a positive transformation of our PE programming over the past few years. I am thrilled that next year SoHi will be joining in on the SST-cross fit program and that Homer was brave enough to come last night with just a few students and will also be committing to SST.

Watching you all work as a team and put aside school level rivalries in order to encourage, support, and cheer on every participant last night regardless of what school they attend was priceless. Thanks again for all you do for our KPBSD students!"

First Place Winners

  • 11-12 Boys Squat: Adam O'Guinn, Skyview, 445
  • 11-12 Girls Squat: Katie Costello, Nikiski, 270
  • 9-10 Boys Squat: Michael Tilly, Kenai, 350
  • 9-10 Girls Squat: Cipirana Castellano, Kenai, 285
  • 11-12 Boys Cleans: Edwin Marcos, Kenai, 245 
  • 11-12 Girls Cleans: Cat Schoessler, Skyview, 165
  • 9-10 Boys Cleans: Michael Tilly, Kenai, 245
  • 9-10 Girls Cleans: Cipirana Castellano, Kenai, 170
  • 11-12 Boys Snatch: Jace Baker, Kenai, 195
  • 11-12 Girls Snatch: Cat Schoessler, Skyview, 115
  • 9-10 Boys Snatch: Luke Johnson, Nikiski, 165
  • 9-10 Girls Snatch: Lara Creighton, Alexis Baker, Kenai, 105
  • 11-12 Boys FGB: Travis Cooper, Kenai, 567
  • 11-12 Girls FGB: Justice English, Kenai, 475
  • 9-10 Boys FGB: Dylan Broussard, Nikiski, 558
  • 9-10 Girls FGB: Julieann Wilson, Kenai, 363

Final Team Scores

  • Kenai: 221
  • Skyview: 136
  • Nikiski: 112
  • Homer: 18


Thank you to Ted Riddall (Nikiski) for providing the photographs and story. 

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