By Julia Harris and Grace Kuryan, Staff Reporters At IM Health, a facility that vertically integrates medical and health fitness and performance training, the Cammarata family combines their passions for rugby and fitness in a way that can benefit the entire boys’ rugby team. Rene Cammarata, father of senior Ryan and freshman Roman Cammarata, serves...
By Julia Harris and Grace Kuryan, Staff Reporters
At IM Health, a facility that vertically integrates medical and health fitness and performance training, the Cammarata family combines their passions for rugby and fitness in a way that can benefit the entire boys’ rugby team. Rene Cammarata, father of senior Ryan and freshman Roman Cammarata, serves as the director of the performance center at IM Health.
IM Health has an extensive training facility, with all of the same equipment as a Division I college. After the Cammarata sons noticed some personal improvements from training in the facility, they realized it could be helpful to create a program that would include the entire team.
“I think (the workouts) kind of grew organically from the work I was doing with Ryan and his buddies,” Rene Cammarata said. “I think the coaches saw value in what we were doing and didn’t really have the facilities to do it. At IM Health, I had the luxury to be able to pick and choose exactly what I wanted to have as far as equipment goes.”
Training all year long is important for any sport, but doing so as a team has proven to be even more beneficial. Now, the boys rugby players work out three times a week at IM Health. For them, it’s just as much about building team spirit as it is about physical strength.
“I like the team camaraderie. You don’t do anything as an individual, you do everything together as a team and it really brings the team together,” junior Peter Miller said. “Although some people might not be as strong or as in shape as others, we all work together and try to make ourselves the best that we can.
Throughout the process, both Rene Cammarata and the players have noticed solid improvements in both strength and team bonding. Some athletes came to IM Health having never trained before, and made dramatic progress in just two months.
When the athletes arrive at IM Health, they see screens for the workout they are going to do that day, and are then coached through the process. They start with a warm-up, followed by mobility and activation, and then the actual workout. Two days of the week focus on conditioning and one day on speed and agility work. To combat costs, the workouts are subsidized by the rugby team. Rene Cammarata takes a unique approach to training the athletes; as all of the workouts are individually based.
“They (the athletes) have to earn the right to do certain things. I never add weight or ask them to progress their exercise if they haven’t earned the right to do it,” Rene Cammarata said. “And they’ve earned the right to do everything that they’re doing in the gym, and they do it exceptionally well.”
Last year, the team worked hard at IM Health to foster their goal of making it to the state championships. Sophomore Nathan Kluge believes these training sessions were a main reason they were able to achieve that goal.
“IM Health helped us get to states last year for rugby (for two reasons),” Kluge said. “Number one: it is a group bonding activity. Everyone knows each other and everyone is really positive about it. Number two: we all knew that we were doing the right stuff because Rene helps us and guides us through the entire time, and we just feel comfortable knowing that we are doing the right exercises, stretches and weightlifting.”
This year, the full team goal for the year is to win states. Ryan Cammarata believes that if the team continues on this track, it won’t be far beyond their reach.
“I think the team lifts help us separate ourselves from our opponents. We train speed, power and strength within the three sessions a week,” Ryan Cammarata said. “This season, we could be close to a state title, and the training we are doing now puts us in the best position to do so.”
Julia Harris can be reached at [email protected]
Grace Kuryan can be reached at [email protected]
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