The Anatomy of a Strength Coach’s Desk

About the Author: Eric Cressey

The nicest thing about baseball season is, obviously, the fact that I get to watch a ton of baseball and see their off-season dedication pay off on the field.  Another nice perk, though, is that I get about six weeks to gather my thoughts, spend a little extra time on writing/consulting, and just tie up loose ends on little projects here and there.

One such project from last week – which clearly wasn’t so little – was cleaning my desk at Cressey Performance.  As you can see in the picture below (numerically labeled for the sake of explanation below), it was something that really needed to get done.


1. Water Bottle…likely from 2003.

2. One of my old business cards – and it’s serving an important purpose: covering up the strawberry protein powder stain on #3.

3. Stained picture of my fiancee Anna and I.  For the record, she spilled it, and it was her shake – but this relationship isn’t about blame, is it, honey?

4. That’s a world record deadlift certificate.  I’m pretty sure it was a 567.5 deadlift at a body weight of 163 in my last meet as a junior back in 2005.  However, I’ve received so many awards for my devastatingly good looks since then that it’s all a blur (kidding, folks; they were all for my charming wit and personality).

5. Fiancee’s watch.  I’ve been engaged two weeks and she’s already all up in my business!

6. Packing tape – to keep my mouth shut after my comment on #5.

7. Laptop, and I need a new one.  Suggestions? I’m too big of a wuss to make the leap to a Mac.

8. Ball signed by all of my in-person pro baseball players from this past off-season.  I get hounded all the time for my autograph, so I thought I’d turn the tables on someone.

9. DVD of my presentation from Ron Wolforth’s Ultimate Pitching Coaches Bootcamp in December.  This set is fantastic, and it would be worth checking out.

10. Digital camera: quite possibly the most useful thing you can have kicking around if you are a strength coach.  It’s an awesome way to give athletes instant visual feedback, or to take videos of “team building.”

11. Cell phone.  Yes, I know it’s white, but they were out of the black ones, and I needed a phone right away.  I make up for it by being a text message rock star.

12. Keys, which are under something, meaning that I’ll probably lose them when I go to leave for the night.

13. Desk: you’ll notice it isn’t a very nice one, and the reason is pretty simple.  I’m a slob and don’t really need anything better.

14. I-Pod, because I’m very 21st century-ish.

15. Waldo (of Where’s Waldo? fame).  Actually, it’s an envelope I should have mailed to my brother a few days ago.  Crap.

16. Royalty statement for Maximum Strength.  Since we haven’t earned any royalties, I guess you could just call it a piece of paper.  Then again, reading these things is like perusing stereo instructions written in Chinese, so I’m assuming they’ll always just be pieces of paper to me.

17. Sunglasses, because MC Hammer taught me that you’re only cool if you wear sunglasses inside.

18. Two plaques I received for speaking at the Maine NSCA Symposium.  One of them was the first annual Dr. Richard LaRue award.  I definitely need to hang ’em up before I spill something on them.

19. This is a drawer filled with almonds, chewing gum, plastic forks, kryptonite, and Tony’s manhood (he’ll get it back when he stops listening to techno).

20. Basketball signed by the 2004-2005 UCONN women’s basketball team.  A lot of the girls on this year’s national championship team were freshmen during my last year on campus.  In hindsight, I never really got much stuff signed by the athletes with whom I worked, but this was one I actually got around to snagging.

21. This month’s NSCA Journal, the focus of which was entirely baseball.  Some of it was good (weighted balls meta-analysis), and some was absolutely atrocious (the take on pitchers distance running, to which I am ademantly opposed).

22. Free t-shirts, quite possibly the coolest perk of being a strength coach.  Here, we’ve got shirts from the SF Giants (Steve Hammond), Nobles & Greenough (Ben Knott), and Stonehill College (Clark Leger).  Thanks, guys!

23. Sticky note…as if a note could actually organize me!?!?!?

24. Journal article on glenoid dysplasia.  I always try to have something right on-hand to read if I get a spare minute.

25. Business cards for local physical therapists with whom we work: it never hurts to have a great network.

26. Business cards for a local sports psychologist (all the CP staff members need to spend time with him to put up with my crap).

27. Dry erase board, also known as the center of my universe.

28. Health history for a client I had just evaluated.  I use my notes to write his program.

29. Signed picture from USA Bobsled driver Bree Schaaf – and it reminds me that I have a bunch of other stuff like this that I need to hang up in my office!

30. Lincoln-Sudbury Baseball 2007 State Championship Plaque.  Bring home another one this year, fellas!

31. Towel – originally brought to work for showering purposes, but it eventually got devoted to towel pull-ups full-time!

32. Boots that I should have taken home months ago when winter ended.

33. Warm-up pants that I always have on-hand in case I need to catch a bullpen.  Putting catcher’s gear on top of shorts is not comfortable.

34. My supplement stockpile.  Chance favors the prepared mind, so I try not to ever get caught shorthanded on the calories front at work.

Fortunately, this is all pretty cleaned-up by now.  I feel pretty out-of-sorts as a result, though!