The Kootenay Ice announced the hiring of Neil Ross as their new strength and conditioning coach on Thursday afternoon, adding to an already significantly expanded hockey operations and front office staff.
Ross recently returned to Canada after spending the past decade in Australia, where he held coaching, sports science and strength and conditioning roles with Cycling Australia and the Australian Institute of Sport. Ross is also a veteran of dozens of world championship and Olympic campaigns.
Prior to his time in Australia, Ross was the head strength and conditioning coach at McMaster University and the director and head coach of the Canadian National Cycling Centre in Hamilton, Ontario.
“Neil is an experienced professional that has a tremendous track record coaching world class athletes in a number of sport disciplines — he will be a tremendous resource for our organization,” said Ice president and general manager Matt Cockell in a team release. “The Ice are grateful to Kari and Ryan from Creekside Physiotherapy for making Neil available to us to support our players’ development.”
In his role as strength and conditioning coach, Ross will work on a daily basis with Ice players, coaching staff and Adam Douglas, the team’s recently hired sports performance consultant, to facilitate an off-ice development plan. Ross will also teach Ice players how to perform innovative training techniques and provide feedback on programming to the Douglas.
Ross graduated from the University of Toronto with an Honours Bachelor of Science in 1994, a post-graduate Bachelor of Physiotherapy in 1998 and a research Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Science in 2000.
Ross is also a certified strength and conditioning coach with the National Strength and Conditioning Association and a Level 4 Coach with the Coaching Association of Canada National Coach Certification Program. He has a special research interest in the role of the nervous system in fatigue, pain, performance and function.
ICE CHIPS: The Ice also announced on Thursday the launch of a ‘Minor Hockey Team of the Game’ promotion in partnership with the Cranbrook Colts, Cranbrook Royals, and Cranbrook Colonels. The team is inviting all teams within the East Kootenay region to register on the Kootenay Ice website.