Best and Brightest on Display at KU in First Day of Midwest Sports Performance Conference

May 13, 2011

Lawrence, Kan.– Plenty of innovative ideas and a wealth of experience were on display at the third annual Midwest Sports Performance Conference in Lawrence on Friday.

The two-day event, which is being held inside the Wagnon Student Athlete Center at KU, showcases more than 400-combined years of training knowledge from professionals around the nation.

“I think the whole purpose of this conference is to provide an educational backdrop for coaches, athletes and other sport scientists to really understand the physiology, the mechanics and the science of conditioning,” said Dr. William Kraemer, who is a professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Connecticut.

Friday and Saturday’s symposium give over a dozen speakers a chance to share their knowledge and experience with those in attendance. From strengthening and conditioning coaches at Ivy League schools to professors at prestigious universities such as Connecticut and Central Florida, even those giving lectures were honored to be included in such an exclusive event.

“I think everybody just brings so much to the table,” said key note speaker and two-time Olympic bronze medalist Mary Ellen Clark. “It is the variety of people that are in this room that is making this conference a bid deal.”

“What we have is a great faculty here today with a lot of great perspectives,” said Dr. Kraemer. “The field is moving forward and we have a lot of great young professionals out there.”

KU Assistant Athletics Director for Sports Performance Andrea Hudy is co-director of the conference. Hudy came to Kansas in 2004 after working with eight national championship basketball teams at the University of Connecticut.

“I have been lucky enough in my career to have surrounded myself with great people,” Hudy said. “Most of the people who are presenting today and tomorrow are people who have influenced my career and that I consider friends.”

“The reason I am here is because of Andrea Hudy,” Clark said. “She is such a dynamic professional and when she told me they were holding this conference I said absolutely, that I would come and speak.”

Even in Clark’s current post as a diving coach at high schools and colleges in Amherst, Mass., the two time Olympian is impressed with what she has seen during her first visit to the KU campus.

“It is a huge invitation for professionals like me to come in and see how they do it here,” Clark said. “Let me tell you, how they do it here is pretty amazing. I just saw a facility that blew me away because there are machines here that I have never seen before and I am in the business.”

“To have all these people here who are really the world’s best, I think is huge for KU,” Hudy said. “The caliber of speakers and presenters and coaches that came, speak for themselves, because they are at the top of their field.”

The two day conference wraps up on Saturday inside the Wagnon Student Athlete Center, directly to the west of Allen Fieldhouse, with a total of seven speakers scheduled to give presentations. Those presenting Saturday include Dr. Andrew Fry from KU, along with Scott Greenwalt and Chris Dawson of Kansas State basketball and football. Programming begins at 8:30 a.m. and finishes around 5:30 p.m. with a final lecture coming from staff members from Kansas basketball and others in the athletic department.