“Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is Yours. Yours, Lord, is the kingdom; You are exalted as head over all.” -1 Chronicles 29:11
Strength and conditioning coaches are unique, at least in the sense that they are uniquely positioned. Many assume they are simply in the business of getting athletes bigger, stronger, faster—building a team that dominates or responds in crunch time. In fact, they are. But for an individual player, they can be so much more.
“Our players must know we care about them beyond what they can do in the weight room or on the field,” says Anthony Lomando.
At its core, strength and conditioning coaching is a people business. In his five seasons as assistant strength and conditioning coach with the Denver Broncos, Anthony has come to understand the value of connecting.
“If we authentically love, serve, and care for our athletes and they know we are someone who they can truly trust, we have provided them a powerful support system they can turn to when life gets tough and when they face adversity.”
Strength coaches might be most uniquely positioned to invest in athletes beyond the game itself. Few staff members spend more one-on-one time with an athlete than the strength coach, and while their work is mostly hidden from the public—the early morning conditioning sessions, hours spent in the weight and training rooms, lifting and nutritional programming—the result of their work is on full display every time an athlete puts on a jersey.
“Strength coaches interact with every player on the team more than any other coach on a team’s staff,” says Anthony. “We have a unique opportunity to influence the mental, physical, and emotional growth of our athletes. Our energy and attitude on a daily basis can make a huge difference on the personal and professional development of our players.”
Eight years in the NFL led Anthony to this realization and it gave him a vision for his community of coaches. What started as an idea quickly turned into a movement and then, a moment—the first ever Power Conference, a one-of-a-kind event coming June 17-18 to Mile High Stadium in Denver, Colorado.
So what exactly is it? Anthony is excited to share his vision:
“The Power Conference is an event where strength coaches can come together to hear powerful messages from world-renowned speakers, network with other strength coaches from various backgrounds, and talk a little strength and conditioning philosophy. We want to provide an opportunity for coaches to not only maximize their coaching skills in the weight room, but, more importantly, learn ways to make positive mental and emotional differences in the lives of their players.”
This event, presented by Strength Coach Outreach and Coaches Time Out, brings together best-selling authors and speakers Erwin McManus and Jon Gordon, Broncos Team Chaplain Luther Elliss, as well as several other current and retired NFL players. Through keynote and breakout sessions, each speaker will share stories, testimonies, and examples of how they’ve been impacted and challenged while connecting with and serving others. They’ll explain how harnessing the power of the Gospel can make a lifelong impact in people’s lives.
“For me, spiritual strength is the capacity to stay grounded in our faith and beliefs when life hands us challenging circumstances,” says Anthony. “Staying committed to our faith, no matter how tough life gets, will eventually lead to greener pastures if we have the courage to trust and stay the course.”
“How we choose to motivate, lead, and carry ourselves as coaches can set an example for our players to follow,” he adds.
Anthony explains how the 2015 season, the year the Broncos won Super Bowl 50, changed things for him.
“After being blessed with an amazing opportunity and experience winning a Super Bowl this year, I felt like I wanted to serve and make a difference in the strength and conditioning community. I began to wonder how other strength coaches connect with their players both in and outside of the weight room.”
“I want coaches to be inspired and empowered by the messages and stories of our speakers and attendees and through the new relationships they create with other coaches from across the country,” he continues.
For Anthony, this vision is just getting started.
“We are at the ground level of this movement and we want the attendees to help create a community that enriches the mental, physical, and emotional lives of their respective communities, players and families.”
“We can only improve our own strength and capacity if we commit to serving and helping others grow as well.” This attitude, summed up in Proverbs 27:17, speaks to Anthony’s desire.
“Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.” -Proverbs 27:17