David Ballou and Dr. Matt Rhea Cut Alabama Injuries by 50% in 2020
Alabama head football coach Nick Saban met hit on a bevy of topics during his time at SEC Media Days 2021. While at the podium the seven-time national champion was asked to reflect on a coaching move he made last offseason, hiring David Ballou and Dr. Matt Rhea to replace a departing Scott Cochran to run the Alabama strength and conditioning program.
Saban commended the pair for being on the forefront of strength and conditioning philosophy. The coaches helped the Tide shift from a power lifting philosophy to velocity training to minimize injury and increase the team's explosive movements.
"Last year our injuries were down by about 50%, soft tissue injuries. We increased explosive movement during the season by almost 5%, which we had not done for several years," said Saban. "We bought into the things that they do, the players get feedback on a daily basis which they really like, because they can determine the progress they're making on a daily basis."
Saban explained that the players are monitored each and every day and that eliminated the need for periodic testing.
"It's a much more positive approach, the players have really bought into it from a flexibility standpoint and a strength and conditioning standpoint. The technology has been very instrumental in helping the players see their progress and buy into this process. David and Dr. Rhea have done a phenomenal job and this has really helped our program tremendously."
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