NFL Baltimore Ravens Strength and Conditioning Internship
We sat down with Tony Fernandez, Performance Coach at Power Train Palmyra, to discuss his internship experience this past summer with the Baltimore Ravens as a member of their strength and conditioning team.
How was your experience?
My experience with the Ravens was really good. I learned a lot of new stuff, met a lot of good coaches down there and the players were all very good. I came away with a lot of new stuff that I was able to bring back to the Power Train facility.
My biggest takeaway was learning from Steve Saunders (Power Train founder and Ravens head strength and conditioning coach) himself and learning how certain exercises are supposed to be done.
How did the training compare to Power Train?
The training in Baltimore is very similar to a Power Train across-the-board, same exact exercises, same tempos – they are just larger humans!
The challenge for me was commuting back and forth while also coming back to Power Train, just balancing those out.
My favorite moment was probably on the sidelines for the games. Seeing it from that angle was pretty cool.
What did an average day look like?
I’ll get to the facility at 5:30 in the morning to stock the fridges and get the weight room set up for the lift that would happen. That would take us to about 7 am, then we would get breakfast really quick. The players would come in and we would train them from 7:30 to 8:30. We would clean up and then up hurdles and bands for mobility to get them loose. They’d have practice and then we’d have an afternoon meeting for about an hour. Next we would eat lunch, work out as a staff, and then help prep for the afternoon practice outside. We would get hurdles and bands again to wake up their nervous systems to get ready for practice. During their practice, we would train the injured players, getting them back to protocol, ready and healthy again. Lastly, we would set up for post-practice, which consisted of bands, foam rollers, and stretching just to make sure everything is loose so they can recover and to make sure they are ready for the next day. We’d finish off with an evening meeting.
Do you have any specific responsibility or leadership?
In the mornings, I got to train the actual coaches and assistant coaches. I also trained the injured players, so I got really close to some guys.
Did anything surprise you?
What surprised me was they are really just like us; some people don’t want to go up in weight here and they don’t want to go up over there! I was always just trying to motivate them and push them no matter what level they are at.
Advice for anyone in this industry?
I would say really get your heart into it because it is long hours and it’s a very big commitment and it will wear you down if you’re not prepared right.
How did Power Train prepare you for the internship?
Power Train prepared me really well for the internship because everything transferred over very well. We had two people on staff that were interns from Power Train and we adapted very quickly because we already knew the time under tension, all of the tempos, and all of the exercises, rather than coming into having to learn the whole system from scratch.