Journal Issue #1
Total Athlete Performance (TAP) is housed inside the massive GRB Academy. A monstrous 52,000 sq. ft. baseball training facility with 14 batting cages, a full Major League infield and 6,000 sq. ft. weight room. It is one of the best kept secrets for athletes in our State. Located at 6385 North Towne Road in Windsor, Wisconsin, TAP is an incredibly dynamic workout facility that helps athletes achieve measurable results that translates directly to their sport(s).
Head trainer and co-owner, Paul Zweifel, along with his brother Zach have quietly built one of the most incredible programs an athlete can add to their performance arsenal. Paul is one of the most sought-after strength coaches in the Madison area for his ability to use his passion to help athletes maximize their full potential in sport and in life. Utilizing a joint-by-joint assessment and analyzing movement patterns, Paul always takes the extra step to correct, adjust, and educate his clients. He considers himself a lifelong student, and through his varied experiences he continually seeks new and more effective ways to train his athletes.
His extensive background in hockey and insane work ethic have propelled him into being one of the top physical instructors in the State, if not the nation. He is the head strength coach for the Janesville Jets of the North American Hockey League, as well as various sports clubs and organizations in, and around, the Madison area.
At TAP, they offer a handful of carefully selected training options for athletes of all types. Training that includes; Semi-Private Training, Team/Group Training, Speed Training, Yoga, Movement/Recovery etc. Join us as we follow our student athlete, a freshman in High School we will call “JD” as he participates in Semi-Private Training at TAP over the next few years.
Over the last two years JD mentioned he wanted to get a personal trainer to help him perform considerably better. But the timing was never perfect with his schedules for hockey, lacrosse and MMA training. At least a couple times a year when we ran into Coach Paul, we talked about getting the training with him started at some point. After this freshman hockey season concluded, it became apparent there would never be a “perfect time” to start a training program. Especially since these days multiple sports seasons overlap all the time. So, we pulled the trigger and headed over to TAP in order to start a workout program with the best instructors to help accomplish goals for JD.
At our first meeting with Paul, we told him what our goals were for JD; (1) Increase foot speed (2) Improve agility and (3) Gain muscle mass. Coach Paul smiled and assured us we would properly cover all of those goals. He, and his team, have performance training down to a science. For any prospective athlete, the initial assessment, preliminary testing and observations that happen during the first meeting with the coach are critical to the success of the athlete.
During this first meeting, TAP staff are able to truly see what the individual athlete needs after watching them respond and react to a series of exercises in the initial assessment. One of the core approaches to helping athletes is the focus on functional strength training, proper acceleration/speed mechanics, and movement skill/problem solving as keys to a successful training regimen.
I asked Paul what he thinks is important to share with athletes in today’s competitive environment and he was quick to point out, ““Be a good student, teammate, and work hard. That’s what everyone else out there is doing. What are you doing to separate yourself from competition? There’s so much more information and knowledge for athletes to take advantage of. Consistency, intent, and a detailed program that works on all aspects of performance can set you apart. DIG DEEPER!”
JD jumped right into Day One with a small group “Semi-Private” workout that included other athletes from middle school to high school and college. The individuals in his group were from many different sport disciplines like: hockey, volleyball, football and baseball. Which sport didn’t matter because they all had the same goal. To learn how their bodies perform and how to improve their own performance through a variety of specific exercises and techniques.
Each athlete has their own binder that begins with their baseline numbers recorded the first time they completed a specific set of core exercises. Measuring key results from activities like; vertical jumps, long jumps and sprints, for example. From there, they are provided with specifically tailored workout plans. As they progress, their performance numbers are recorded again and illustrate the gains they have accomplished as the TAP instructors guide them toward their goals.
One of the (many) impressive things to happen during the initial assessment, is the TAP instructor meets with the individual athlete to talk about what goals they would love to hit not only short term (3 months), but also long term (Senior and beyond). For many High School age athletes, these goals revolve around what they would want to accomplish their Senior year.
Even though it was a challenging one-and-a-half-hour Semi-Private group workout, JD was all smiles when it was over. Coach Paul was incredible as he coached, educated and pushed each athlete to learn and improve on every movement/exercise. The environment and atmosphere was incredibly motivational as the group of mixed athletes all encouraged each other and even helped spot JD on his first day in. There wasn’t any judging or attitude from any athlete toward another. EVERYONE worked together at times even as they still had laser focus on the path to hitting their personal goals. JD could not wait to go back for his next work out session at TAP.