University of Maryland Athletes Train Hard in the Offseason

By Jess Feldman
Staff Writer

In most cases when people discuss the University of Maryland, athletics are bound to come up in the conversation.

With this university in the Big Ten, the overall expectation of the athletic program is much higher than that of smaller schools in different divisions. For teams to meet or even beat this expectation, it is necessary for each athlete to train throughout the entire year, whether he or she plays in the fall or spring.

For Abigail Bentz, a sophomore journalism major on the women’s volleyball team, training in the offseason is a necessity.

“We are a fall sport … we are on campus during the summer, but have all of winter break at home,” Bentz said. “Over winter break, we receive a lift and conditioning schedule from our strength coach. It plans three lifts a week and two conditioning days to keep us in shape for when we come back.”

Bentz and her teammates live in off-campus apartments throughout the summer, such as Terrapin Row or Landmark, in order to train properly before the season begins.

For sophomore communications major Caroline Williams, who plays on the women’s tennis team, training tactics are similar. She, along with the rest of the team, participates in running and weightlifting in order to work on the upper body, lower body and core. The team works out four times a week and plays tennis five to six times a week during the school year.

“I run and do ab work at a local gym by myself when I am home,” Williams said. “I think off time is important, but it’s harder to come back into season when you’re not in shape so we have to train.”

The training that varsity athletes participate in on a regular basis is beneficial for both their athletic careers, as well as their overall health and energy.

Captain of the men’s wrestling team Alfred Bannister, a redshirt junior, acknowledges that working out can benefit any individual, even if he or she isn’t a division-one athlete.

“I recommend non-athletes to go for runs as much as possible, preferably every day, as well as lift weights at least three times a week if possible,” Bannister said.

Anyone can be an athlete, no matter the skill level. To these division-one athletes, though, the training is what makes all the difference for their future endeavors.

“Keeping up with exercising while we are home is critical to our success,” Bentz said. “The Big Ten is an extremely competitive volleyball conference, and the other teams are not taking days off, so we have to ask ourselves everyday while we are home what we can do to get better.”

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