There’s working out and then there’s training for peak performance. Steve Lidstone’s job will be to focus on the latter.
The strength and conditioning co-ordinator is leaving McMaster University to join Brock’s Department of Athletics and Recreation, where he will head up the new High Performance Centre scheduled to open next month.
The 3,000-square-foot facility is being built inside Brock’s Gym 2, where it will house state-of-the-art strength, conditioning and training equipment meant to get athletes from inside and outside Brock into top form.
Lidstone said the top priority for the centre will be varsity athletes, but it will also be available to Brock staff, other student-athletes, and Kinesiology students who will use the space to learn about high-performance training.
The new centre will also have a significant community impact with the doors open to Niagara-based sports teams. It will follow a similar blueprint to the high performance centre at McMaster.
“We will use the free times around our varsity athletes to allow for school groups, local hockey or soccer or basketball teams to just come in and train with us over a long term to develop athletes within their systems,” he said.
Lidstone brings an impressive background of high performance training with him to Brock. He has served as a strength and conditioning co-ordinator, athletic therapist and lecturer in the school of kinesiology at McMaster for the past nine years, heading up a team of three strength and conditioning coaches and more than 40 student volunteers. He has also consulted and worked as part of strength and conditioning teams for Canada’s national teams in hockey, basketball, trampoline and waterskiing. Through McMaster’s high performance centre, Lidstone has worked with numerous professional athletes and 12 of the school’s varsity teams.
“Given the trajectory that Brock Athletics and Recreation is taking, this is a great opportunity for Brock to have Steve join us based on his successes,” said Neil Lumsden, Director Athletics and Recreation.
Rather than competing with The Zone, Brock’s existing fitness centre, Lidstone said the two facilities will compliment each other.
“The Zone is mostly for students and community who aren’t as interested in what I would call high-level, periodization-based training that requires a certain type of program and assessment. Those will be the pieces that will separate the two,” he said. “The type of training and the equipment we will use will be much different than what you’ll see in the Zone.”
“The plan is for us to enhance the student-athlete experience at Brock and it fits nicely into our overall plan into where our athletics and recreation is headed,” Lumsden said, adding the new centre and Lidstone’s expertise will help the varsity teams be more competitive.
“It has been proven by other universities that making this available to the student-athletes significantly enhances their fitness and performance levels,” he said.
“My background is unique because I combine both athletic therapy and strength and conditioning to work with athletes in order to ensure that they’re healthy, but also performing at a high level,” Lidstone said. “I’ve worked with several integrated support teams, so I’m aware of how important it is to collaborate with coaches, therapists, nutritionists and sport psychologists to make sure we’re giving our athletes the complete package of support.”
There’s no set date for the High Performance Centre to open, as it will depend on the arrival of equipment and the training of staff who will run the centre.