friction from the ground and grass would slow my pace and minimize the collision.
When I came to a stop, the top of my head was lightly touching the goal post. I heard Cliff scream between laughing fits as he sprinted up to me. He and Dr. Bob Ward entered my field of vision simultaneously. When I looked up there was not only grass, but roots and dirt lodged in my mouth, teeth and nose, as I had body-plowed face first the last seven yards. Most of the tubing that had pulled me was now bundled up on top of me.
Dr. Ward proudly displayed the stopwatch and announced, "3.2 seconds. Awesome!"
Bigger . . . Stronger . . . Faster.
Thirty years ago, that was the goal for then strength and conditioning coach, Dr. Bob Ward, just as it is now for Joe Juraszek, the present strength and conditioning coach. Every generation of football players is mandated to be bigger, stronger and faster. All coaches will also go to great lengths to improve on those three qualities. Some work . . . some don't.
Joe, too, knew of the genius that was Dr. Bob Ward.
"He was who I learned the business from - everybody knew of Dr. Bob Ward and his methods of training," states the disciple of the doctor. Juraszek also coaches and incorporates the same Eastern influence with his players.
I don't think he has ever pulled out the surgical tubing, but he is receptive to new and promising theories to complement his tried and true basics of strength and development. He manages to get a working balance between Western conventional thinking and unconventional Eastern awareness.
The Dallas Cowboy professional football player has a responsibility, a professional obligation to be in top shape: As big, as strong and as fast as humanly possible.
Dr. Bob Ward, in 1975, was way ahead of his time. His Eastern influence helped the professional football player who, here-to-date, thought collisions and overpowering force were the only way to win.
Juraszek, like the Doctor, believes and incorporates yin and yang to help win a battle, especially with close quarters fighting or man-to-man combat.
"Use the other man's strength to help you," the enlightened coach generalizes.
His specialized training techniques are standing up and proving themselves to the test of all tests: The grueling 16-game season.
When evaluating why this Cowboy team is poised to make a run at the playoffs, big-time credit should be lauded upon Joe Juraszek and his staff. Equally important are Jim Maurer and his "training" staff. Those on the training staff are more analogous with magicians as you explore the feats they achieve throughout the pressure packed season to keep guys or get them healthy. (That's for another day).
Juraszek and his mentors force the player to be diligent.
"Players get bored," Juraszek says. "I am their conscience."
Joe speaks of core dynamics and Pilates rather than squats and bench press.
"Old school coaches coach outside in," he says. "I coach inside out. I believe in the power base for balance and explosion."
Just like Bob Ward, Juraszek has had to debate Bill Parcells about what works and what doesn't. Coaches find a formula, and they depend on it and believe in it. It is hard to change, but to his credit, Coach Parcells allows Joe to "do his deal."
One reason why the coach is receptive to it is because of Joe's commitment to professionalism. He studies the drills each position coach runs the player through every day. Those drills are designed to best reflect the skills needed at their respective position. From that, Juraszek then develops various lifts, exercises and drills that complement or enhance the body to perform that position's specific skill.
His dedication to his job is nothing short of an All-Pro performance. Though an unsung hero, his professionalism and work habits are "out-front" with the players. They are influenced by him every day. Juraszek cannot guarantee perfection in training but he certainly is reaching his goals.
Because of Coach Juraszek, this team is bigger, stronger and faster.
And, because of dedicated professionals like Joe Juraszek, the Dallas Cowboys are physically ready to compete for a slot in