PARKERSBURG - High school football players Wednesday got a taste of sports conditioning military-style.
Area National Guard officers, in cooperation with local football coaches, put students through their paces Wednesday at Stadium Field with a variety of military-style challenges, ranging from rock wall climbing to exercising with chains to pushing a 12,000-pound armored Humvee across a parking lot.
The "Push the Limit" program was brought to the schools by Sgt. First Class Clay Edwards who thought the exercises would give the students a change from traditional conditioning exercises while adding team-building opportunities.
Military-style challenges brought to athletes
Edwards was joined by members of the 1092nd Engineer Battalion of the National Guard, and said the program was offered to PHS and PSHS football players.
"It gives the football players a little different kind of training," he said. "Just like the military, they have to work in a lot of smaller units ,which require a lot of teamwork."
Edwards said he hopes to revisit the teams throughout the training season.
A group of Parkersburg High School freshmen football players pushes a 12,000-pound armored Humvee across a parking lot at Stadium Field as part of the National Guard “Push the Limit” conditioning and team-building program.
Murray Mace, head coach of Parkersburg High's freshman football team, said the event gave the students a chance to work together for the first time.
"We have kids coming from Jackson and Edison and Vandy" middle schools, he said. "This is the first time they are getting to be together as a team. Now they are working together as Big Reds."
The program also gave them a taste of hard work in a different format.
"Anytime you can mix it up, it makes it fun for them," Mace said. "It was a challenge. This is something they will remember."