About Coach Sportland
Sam Portland has been a strength and conditioning coach at the elite level for nearly a decade with a vast array of experience. Sam has worked with premiership rugby, Olympic athletes, international competitors across a plethora of sports including hockey and track and field. Aside from this Sam keeps in touch with the grass roots aspects of athlete preparation by hosting his ‘combine program’. This program is a long term athletic development program filling the essential gaps in physical literacy that are not fulfilled at school or by club sports. A highly rewarding process on par with working with some of the elite athletes in the country.
Sam will now tell us now about his training philosophy
‘From my experience with athletes I have found that the best form of coaching comes from a foundation of education. This is present in the form of interactive coaching and small education sessions. A personal view of mine is if you coach appropriately you inherently educate your athletes. In turn this creates a strong grounding for success. A successful training program possesses shared values, a common goal and an accountable culture amongst the people within it. Supplementary to this is implementing a program that allows freedom for adjustment. This is also addresses optimal development for a wide range of exercises facilitating the body.’
What is the experience Sam has?
The roles that Sam has occupied within a professional capacity have been vast. This is due to the nature of combining working in the professional club environment to existing as a ‘one-man-band’ in his early private work. What this has allowed him to do is progress in skills otherwise unattainable. An example and possibly one of the most important to sport being the Return To Perform aspects of sport. The eventuality of this working process saw Sam progress to running a majority of a professional rugby performance program. His work in track and field allowed him to develop a highly successful speed development program within a team sport environment. In conjunction to this his academic pursuits enabled him to develop the skills to run and develop the sports science programs within the teams and companies he has worked with.
Alongside the action coaching Sam has a keen eye on lecturing. He states ‘it forces you to formulate all your ideas and refine your process…..giving this learning opportunity to those who can benefit is the essence of coaching’. Sam has delivered courses to existing professional athletes for them to attain qualifications in strength and conditioning. He has also hosted multiple CPD events to current fitness professionals, NHS physiotherapists and professional coaches with regards to rehabilitation, physical conditioning and performance coaching.
As a coach you need to still compete
Sam is also an avid sportsman. He has competed as a Semi-professional rugby player for a majority of his career. ‘ I am very lucky to have been able to compete at a competitive level for such a long time, this has allowed me to develop my own training programs and coaching based on my own real life feedback.’ .
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