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Originally published: 2012-06-14 13:55:19
Last modified: 2012-06-14 13:58:20

Athletic inspiration

Matthew Hundley / (

Among the many attractions associated with Step Up for Yellow Mountain, one unique opportunity that no athlete should miss is a workshop with Jeremy Boone, owner of Athlete By Design, an international sports performance consulting company based out of Charlotte. Boone, a coach, author, speaker and lecturer, has served as performance coach for various professional athletes from the NFL, NBA, MLB, and MLS, as well as Division I, II and III colleges around the country.

Boone, who serves as the off-season speed and conditioning coach for the Carolina Panthers, will provide two workshops each day of the event, at 1 and 2 p.m. on Friday, June 22, at Williams YMCA of Avery County, and 10:15 and 11:15 a.m. on Saturday, June 23, at the indoor tennis facility at Lees-McRae College.

The Friday sessions are entitled “Lower Body Performance for Sports,” and “Ready to Play/Parent Your Best.” The Saturday sessions will have the opportunity for physical participation, entitled “Learn by Doing,” which focuses on stretching and injury prevention, and “Get Faster Now.”

In preparation for the event, Boone described several of the sessions in detail.

“The first session is titled 'Lower Body Performance for Sports' and will teach the participants some cutting edge methods of how to prevent injuries and improve performance regardless of their sport. We will cover topics that include the best way to warm-up and get ready to perform; the truth about stretching; the three keys to getting faster that every athlete must follow; the safest and most effective way to get stronger and more powerful for your sport,” said Boone.

“The second session will focus more on the mental side of performance and will be a combination of two of my talks titled 'Ready To Play' and 'Parent Your Best,' a session for sports parents.

Participants will learn the key principles of what  it takes to consistently be your best. I will also discuss the importance of a healthy relationship between young athletes and parents, and why good, well-intentioned parents may be ruining their child's sports experience without even knowing it,”  Boone continued.

The Saturday session, titled 'Get Faster Now,' is a hands-on session that will teach participants exactly what it takes to improve speed. No matter if attendees are endurance runners, soccer players or even football players, these same speed principles apply. So, if you are a marathon runner looking to take off two minutes on your time, or if you are a football player looking to decrease your 40-yard dash time, this session is definitely for you.”

Boone focuses on helping others become “the best version” of themselves by addressing not only the physical aspect of fitness, but the emotional and mental aspects of sport as well. To help achieve this goal, Boone builds his fitness philosophy around several fundamental principles, such as “You can't outperform your own self-identity” and “Together, I'll play better,” which focuses on producing the most productive relationship between athletes, parents and coaches. 

Boone agreed to host lectures on these themes to benefit YME during its Step Up event because he believes in the organization's purpose and people.

“All of the individuals involved with YME play such an important part in reaching out to adults in need,” said Boone. “I hope I can try and add value to their vision in any way that I can. The impact that their facility has in teaching life skills and the importance of giving back to the community is tremendous. That alone makes me want to be a part of whatever they do.”

According to Boone, while his sessions focus on athletics, the themes are universal.

“First and foremost is that these sessions are not for elite athletes only. The information I will be sharing is for anyone looking to improve themselves,” said Boone. For more information on Boone and Athlete by Design, click to

For more information on Step Up for Yellow Mountain events, click to or call (828) 733-2944.