T Nation

Lifting Teams


I'm a high school senior, and my football team came up with a novel concept for increasing team cooperation and building leadership skills in the upperclassmen.

Lifting teams. The football team was divided into groups, and the team that came to the most 'optional' lifting sessions over the summer received a prize.

The randomly grouped seniors, ranging from two to three a team, each had to draft a select group of sophomores and juniors. I took this seriously, as there was an offer of 'lots of pizza' from Mama's Pizza on the line, and after 8 straight weeks of hard lifting and clean eating (especially since it was over the summer)I knew I would be eager for a cheat meal I could go all out with. I drafted the athletes I deemed the hardest working, while my other team members chose to draft people they felt 'had potential' but were in fact lazy when it came to any true effort in the weightroom.

My problem is that my senior teammates made completely crappy selections, and every person they drafted is not showing up. Granted, it is the first day, but if three people on a team of nine don't show up, how can we win?

I need some tips on how to motivate the underclassmen. I do not socialize with them, and for the most part, I am not friendly with them. Should I be a screamer who flips shit every time they don't make lifting sessions? Or should I take a calmer route?

Also, should I make corrections to their form on exercises? We have mandatory lifts to complete and a lot of times the younger kids do not complete them. Should I be dogging them for that?

Any advice from you guys would be appreciated.


We had lifting groups at my old highschool. They worked pretty well IMO, it was a good way to stay accountable to the team. I wouldn't recommend being the 'screamer' all the time though. The occasional outburst is money in the bank though, you gotta let them know your serious about getting the job done every once in a while. You said how you made no effort to be friends with them and whatnot. IMO being friends or at least being friends goes a long way towards keeping them motivated. At the very least make some sort of effort to be nice towards them. Anywho good luck with next season I hope it goes well.


Thanks for the well wishes. I am friends with a fair number of underclassmen, but the majority of them only wrestle. I guess it would be a good idea to be a little more friendly towards those of them that do play FB.


It's a great idea, my high school did something similar. The seniors cornered you if you missed a workout in my day. We had 7am lifting workouts on Saturday mornings. In your situation, talk to your senior in charge. He has to be the one to crack the whip, or you do it yourself. Someone has to keep the thing moving.


not that i have much advice to offer.

but DAMN. wish i had gotten involved in something like this in highschool.

lucky bastards


UPDATE: I made a few phonecalls and hassled one of the juniors and the senior that did not show up. It seems that they are both too lazy to lift in the morning, but I did convince them to lift in the afternoon sessions. The second junior is on a fishing trip to North Dakota and is due back tomorrow. It's really surprising to me that all of the freshmen I drafted have showed up with no extra encouragement from me. I'm really liking their work ethic.