February 5, 2019 -
The last six months have been an exciting time for the NSCA. With the rollout of the education program accreditation initiative, as well as some new projects that are ongoing, the NSCA staff and volunteers have been busier than ever.
Most recently, at the Coaches Conference in Indianapolis in early January, the NSCA Board of Directors took the next steps in the education program accreditation process by approving a short list of candidates to serve on the inaugural accreditation board. We are currently interviewing those individuals and will make our final selections public sometime in February. This group of individuals will set the standards for the knowledge, skills, and abilities that need to be taught in bachelor’s degree curricula nationwide, as well as establish the process for an academic program to achieve accreditation. These actions will enable current degree programs with an emphasis in strength and conditioning to make the needed adjustments to their existing curricula in order to be ready when the actual program accreditation process begins in 2022.
In addition, the NSCA has worked with the NCAA and the CSCCa to create and endorse the “Interassociation Consensus Recommendation: Preventing Catastrophic Injury and Death in College Student-Athletes.” With the seemingly increasing number of tragic deaths related to sports conditioning, this position paper will send a clear message to athletic administrations and the public about the need for strong actions to prevent these occurrences from ever happening again. The NSCA will be publishing its version of the document, which will contain additional specific examples and recommendations, in both the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research and the Strength and Conditioning Journal in the coming months.
The NSCA is also well underway to creating a new certification in Sports Science. We hope to further define what sports science really is, as there is a range of possible professional paths from research to practice that relate to sports science. Traditionally, “sports science” has been the domain of researchers, but in recent years there has been a shift in professional and collegiate athletics towards hiring individuals as “high performance directors” or with other similar titles, who are focused on the application of science for direct monitoring and improvement of performance. These individuals often come out of strength and conditioning so we feel that this is an area worth exploring and helping to develop.
Technology has also been at the forefront of many of the latest initiatives to make strength and conditioning knowledge more accessible. From the redesign of the NSCA website to the live streaming of conference talks for both domestic and international conferences, we have been able to extend our reach beyond expectations. For example, for the last two major conferences worldwide (Coaches Conference and NSCA-Japan Annual Conference), between 25 and 35% of the total attendees were “virtual”, as these individuals live-streamed the event. Because of this success, we are examining ways to improve even more upon the great delivery of conference content.
Overall, we have been growing a community of committed strength and conditioning professionals, as evidenced by the increase in meeting attendance, the highest recertification rate in recent memory, and unprecedented numbers of members volunteering for leadership positions. The NSCA’s greatest resource is you, the member, and we thank you for your support!