Photo by Erin Nelson.
The Chelsea Hornets’ new weight room at the high school campus, seen Aug. 27.
When student-athletes were allowed to return to Chelsea High School in June, there was a new facility on campus ready for them.
School was shut down in mid-March due to COVID-19, and by the time athletes were allowed to return in a limited capacity, Chelsea’s new weight room and training facility had been completed and was open for use.
“It’s been a long time coming,” Chelsea athletic director and baseball coach Michael Stallings said. “This is a project that we’ve been trying to get through for a while now.”
For about a decade, Chelsea’s weight room was located in a cramped space above the bottom section of bleachers in the gymnasium. The space was less than ideal and began to create concerns about the gym’s infrastructure due to the wear and tear of weights in use above ground level.
Now, the school possesses a state-of-the-art facility. Inside, there is brand new weight equipment, a turf area for speed and agility training and offices for the athletic director and football coach.
“Going from what we had, we more than doubled the size of our weight room and our equipment,” Stallings said. “Now, we can workout more kids and be more efficient with our workouts.”
The opening of the facility came at a perfect time for the school, given the new guidelines brought upon by the pandemic. The new facility has allowed more room for athletes to spread out while training and allowed the top section of bleachers to be used in an effort to space spectators out for volleyball matches and basketball games in the winter.
Stallings thanked the city of Chelsea for making the project possible.
“Mayor [Tony] Picklesimer and the [Chelsea] City Council have been a huge part of us being able to see this process through,” Stallings said.
“They’ve supported us from the start. The weight equipment, the floor, that was paid for by the city of Chelsea.”
Not only is the equipment and space new, but the walls feature photography highlighting every athletic program at Chelsea. Brent Walker of Cre8ive Graphics produced the graphics wrap that shows many of the great moments in recent Chelsea sports history. The plan is to update the wall every few years to keep it relevant.
In the summer, videos made the rounds on social media as Chelsea athletes saw the facility for the first time. Stallings hopes the facility and the excitement generated by it will allow Chelsea athletics to take another positive step.
“The weight room is going to be a game-changer for all of our athletic programs,” Stallings said. “Our kids are excited about the space. I’m looking forward to seeing how that impacts the development of our student-athletes.”
This content was originally published here.