Gothenburg Swede athletes are getting a jump on their fall sports seasons this week as the first days of sports conditioning have been productive. 

Workouts started Aug. 5 at various sites around campus.

Nebraska School Activities Association rules required teams participating in preseason conditioning engage in general conditioning designed to promote physical fitness and be no longer than 60 minutes each day. Conditioning program must be voluntary.

“Coaches are good about sticking to the 60 minutes since it is an NSAA bylaw and we don’t want to be in violation of it,” Gothenburg Athletic Director Marc Mroczek said.

Box jumps, planks and jump training were at the top of the workout list for volleyball coach Bryson Mahlberg. 

“The girls spent a lot of time in the gym over the summer, playing in tournaments, so now we are working on shifting their focus to season play,” he said. “We are helping them focus their mentality from off-season to in-season, which is a different type of conditioning.”

The cross country team ran through town as they worked on endurance. Coach Tony Neels said the girls’ team numbers are down but was encouraged by the turnout overall.

“These kids put in a lot of miles over the summer together. It’s a great group of kids,” Neels said.

He went on to speak of the first week of the season.

“We have a busy first week, with the Lexington Invite on Sept. 5 and the Minden Invite two days later, Sept. 7,” he said.

Luke Dea’s softball team met at the 4-Plex, working on skill stations and in smaller groups, one way he found to get around the NSAA rules.

“By working them in groups of four, we are able to use equipment and work on skills. Once we get over that number, we have to put the equipment away,” he said.

Dea said he was happy with the number of girls who had signed up for skills sessions.

“I’m looking for commitment this week, knowing that the girls are going to follow through on what they commit to,” he said. “These girls are here to work, and that makes me optimistic for the season.”

Coach Craig Haake took the football team through the paces with timed 40-yard-sprints. He said he was happy with the work the athletes did during the summer to improve their power and quickness.

“Numerous players made some big jumps in strength and speed,” he said. “This equates to a more powerful athlete who should be more resistant to injury.

“Now we are working on conditioning to get them ready in a cardiovascular sense” he said. “With fewer numbers, we will have to be in better shape than ever.”

The week of conditioning will wrap up Aug. 9. Regular practices begin Aug. 12. 

The Swede softball team leads off a jam-packed fall sports schedule Aug. 17 when the girls travel to Samford to take on the Southern Valley Eagles.

Contact Rebecca Steward at rebecca@gothenburgleader.com or call 308.536.6499