Dear Student-Athletes, in the wake of George Floyd… You Have a Voice at Boost

As a gym/private school owner I wear different hats with my student-athletes.  As a certified strength and conditioning specialist my job is to provide science based programs to improve athletic performance.  As a coach, I need to motivate my athletes to give me their best effort in order to reach performance goals.  As a mentor, my job is to live the ideals I preach to my student-athletes; Disciplined to goals, accountability to actions, and correct effort to see them come to fruition. Bottom line is it’s so much more than getting athletes bigger, stronger, and faster. In all we do, us coaches play a role in shaping young student-athletes whether we’re aware of it or not.  The things we say and do mean a lot, but the things we don’t or are unwilling to say mean even more.

The killing of George Floyd by the hands of men sworn to protect and serve our community was one of the many tragedies faced by communities of color in our country.  The aftermath has been outrage, and rightfully so.  As an American I am disgusted, as a coach I feel saddened thinking of all the young athletes (some now young men & women) who may feel outraged and affected by this horror, and as a black man I feel heartbroken.  Yes, I need to say that me and the organization for which I stand for feels.

Boost has and always will stand for inclusivity, and connection. To the young student-athletes, your unique voice, style, and spirit matter here.  Boost is not a place to conform, but somewhere to come alive.  And while I will continue to push you out of your comfort zone, continue to keep it real with you, and continue to have high expectations of you, it is my utmost priority to keep Boost a safe space for you to be you.  You will make mistakes, you will fail, and you will be angry, but your individual journey is your own.  I will always be here to assist, to encourage, and live my life in alignment with those values I ask of you so that I can help show the way.

As President Obama stated, if we want our “American society at large, to operate on a higher ethical code, then we have to model that code ourselves”.  

I appreciate every unique person I have had the pleasure of working with throughout the 10 years of serving my community. If you need to talk, Boost’s doors are always open.

-Ray “Boostman” Bass