Get to know Huddersfield Town’s First Team and Academy staff
- ‘Know Your Role’ series continues
- Today we speak to Senior Physical Performance Coach Dan Hughes
- Dan aids the First Team’s physical and athletic development
With the coronavirus currently postponing Town’s fixture list, we’ve decided to introduce you to some of our First Team and Academy Staff – today we look at Senior Physical Performance Coach Dan Hughes!
Dan originally joined Huddersfield Town in 2008 as a volunteer whilst pursuing an undergraduate degree, before joining the Club on a full-time basis in 2011.
His role involves working closely with Danny Cowley’s First Team squad.
“In its basic form, the job entails supporting all First Team players with physical performance and athletic development.
“This includes strength and conditioning for the outfield players and goalkeepers. This also extends to strength prescription in late stage rehab.
“I work closely with the Academy strength and conditioning staff with developing players coming through. I also assist the Club Nutritionist with support for all players where necessary.
“As well as that, my role involves monitoring and tracking strength training volume/intensity and goalkeeper training load through analysing global positioning system reports (GPS) produced by my colleague Callum Adams.”
So, what does an average day look like for Town’s Senior Physical Performance Coach?
“Generally, it begins with preparation before the team arrives, supplying hydration and nutritional supplement needs.
“In that time, the Performance Services staff will meet to discuss the training week, and day’s schedule.
“Once the players arrive, the day can range from a full squad strength development session to a goalkeeper specific session and late stage rehab.
“Development players may also receive strength work along with any late stage rehab assigned to myself. Delivery of goalkeeper pre-training preparation is also delivered daily.”
Within the role, Dan works with a variety of people, from both the First Team and the Academy setups, on a daily basis at the training ground.
“I work closely with both of the Performance staff which is Callum Walsh and Callum Adams. John Iga is the Head of Performance and we work closely as a department.
“I also work closely with Paul Clements, the Head of Goalkeeping, regarding physical development.
“The Performance Department works very closely with the Medical Department to ensure sound communication, planning and delivery.
“I also work closely with the Academy Strength and Conditioning staff as it pertains to player development and transition.”
Dan insists that his biggest challenge faced at Huddersfield Town was “worth every minute”; gaining promotion to the Premier League.
But what is his favourite part of the job as Town’s Senior Physical Performance Coach?
“Being around the players and staff in a team environment, delivering work to assist in the athletic performance of the players, developing athletes and witnessing the players achieve their goals both on and off the pitch.”
If you’re aspiring to get into a similar industry, Dan has some words of advice for you!
“Always be prepared to work hard first and foremost.
“Spend time around the environment by taking opportunities presented to you, especially voluntary work.
“Attaining the relevant education and accreditations and once in, develop your craft, remain passionate about what you do and always have the players’ best interests and performance when delivering your work.”