HAMILTON – McMaster Performance, the Marauders’ elite strength & conditioning program, has announced a paid, summer coaching internship program targeting applicants who identify as female.
Strength and conditioning as a profession is dominated by male coaches, and this has proven to be a significant barrier for female athletes seeking representation and connection with coaches to work with. As part of the inclusion excellence initiative of McMaster’s Department of Athletics & Recreation, this internship will aim to help increase exposure and opportunities available for young and aspiring female coaches.
The position is a paid, 18-week internship providing hands on experience in the field of Strength & Conditioning in a university athletic setting. The individual selected for this position will work 15-20 hours/week at $20/hour under the direction of lead performance coaches.
“At this point, similar to the sport coach profession, there is not enough female representation in the field of strength and conditioning. We need to provide development streams for more female professionals to see that future for themselves” says Ben Bahrami, McMaster Peformance Strength & Conditioning Coordinator.
The purpose of the summer S&C internship program is to educate an up and coming coach in all aspects of sports performance coaching. The selected applicant will conduct physical development and literacy sessions of all kinds with varsity athletes, youth athletes, and professional/national level athletes.
Sarah Gates, Women’s Athletic Leadership Council (W.A.L.C.) Coordinator and Marauder women’s basketball player, says that it’s crucial for young women to be able to see role models in positions of leadership, and that this internship is helping to support career growth in an underrepresented area in sport.
“The whole idea of W.A.L.C. is to create a space where women can support and empower other women” said Gates. “It’s especially important to see other women succeed in sport, whether that’s as an athlete or in other supporting roles such as coaching and managing. This [internship] proves that nothing can’t be done and acts as a catalyst to empower the future female generations.”
The desired outcome of the internship program is to provide participants with the opportunity to be instructed and mentored by McMaster’s Lead Performance coaches to better prepare them with the tools necessary for employment in this increasingly competitive field.
“Providing internship opportunities for young women to enter the strength & conditioning field is an important step in seeing more representation in coaching positions” says McMaster Performance coach Alena Luciani. “In previous years, many women had to create the opportunities for themselves, so the fact that McMaster is creating space for it is a great step forward for our industry.”
Tasks for the position include:
- Weekly educational seminars and tutorials administered by coaches, professors, and professionals in the field.
- Completing assigned projects based on weekly educational topics.
- Work as camp staff for the Marauder Sport Camps – Sport specific development
- Conduct team, group or individual training sessions, including but not limited to:
- Leading preparation/warm-up and recovery sessions
- Athlete return to play protocols
- Biomechanical and physiological assessments
- Movement and plyometric training sessions
- Strength, power, and energy system development sessions
- Learn how to use and gain competence with typical assessment tools including: Force Plates, Timing Lights, Velocity/power tracking devices etc…
- Work alongside our staff in advancing McMaster Performance training systems
- Supervise weight room
Shawn Burt, Director of Athletics & Recreation at McMaster University, says that opening doors for more female representation in male-prominent positions is important for the long-term success of athletic departments across the country.
“Taking a leadership position when it comes to ensuring equity in sport remains a top priority for our department” says Burt. “We’re thrilled to offer this opportunity to aspiring female S&C professionals and build upon the success of the female football coach apprenticeship program we implemented last year. By seeking ways to further change the game when it comes to gender equity in – and across – sport, we hope to inspire others to do the same.”
According to Bahrami, what sets the McMaster Performance internship apart is where its previous staff are now. The program alumni includes former interns pursuing Masters and PhD’s in Strength & Conditioning, employed with various national teams, Canadian Sport Centre’s and pursuing internships with professional teams, private sector facilities and NCAA Universities.
“This internship ensures that we’re giving young, developing female strength & conditioning coaches the ability to network, to build their skill set and to earn a position at a university or in professional sports. We really look forward to launching the program this year and continuing to develop a new crop of strength & conditioning coaches on an ongoing basis.”
Qualifications and skills required:
- Graduate of a University/College program in Kinesiology/Fitness Program.
- Strong interest and passion for Strength & Conditioning.
- Minimum 1-2 yrs experience in training & conditioning athletes.
- Highly motivated leader with strong coaching skills.
- Ability to work flexible hours including weekends (expect 20 hrs/week).
- Ability to work in a fast-paced athletic environment.
- First Aid CPR & AED.
- Criminal record check.
This 4-month position begins May, 2022 and completes on Aug 30th, 2022. Those interested in applying for the position should email Ben Bahrami, Strength & Conditioning Coordinator (Bahrami@mcmaster.ca):
- Cover letter outlining career goals and why this internship will help achieve those goals.
- Up-to-date resume.
Application Deadline: April 29th, 2022