Q&A With University of Alabama Gymnastics Strength and Conditioning Coach Dave Albaranes
Dave Albaranes is in his first year with the Crimson Tide as their strength and conditioning coach. Previous to Alabama, he worked with both the men and women's gymnastics programs at the University of Illinois as their strength coach for 1 season. Dave recieved his masters degree from Springfield College where he was the graduate assistant sport coach for the men's gymnastics program. In his free time, he enjoys reading and coaching gymnastics.
He loves old school Adam Sandler movies!
1. You were a gymnast yourself--how did your gymnastics career influence your professional career choices?
I started gymnastics when I was 10 and because I came into the sport at a pretty late age, the one thing I had going for me was that I was stronger than most kids. Needing to improve my gymnastics specific strength ignited my interest in strength training and exercise science. I did gymnastics throughout college and studied exercise science and kinesiology at The College at Brockport. Once I graduated I was a personal trainer and a gymnastics coach back home on Long Island NY. I knew I wanted to keep learning so I went to Springfield College for their graduate degree in Strength and Conditioning. I was lucky enough to get a graduate assistant position as one of the men’s gymnastics coaches. Because I was the team’s sports coach, I also became their strength coach during my two years there. I moved on after Springfield to The University of Illinois as a strength coach for the men’s and women’s gymnastics teams. Training The Fighting Illini was an experience that dove me head first into what life is like as a collegiate strength coach. Working with Head Coach Justin Spring was especially unique as I grew up following his career as an athlete. The men’s team really bought into the training, and getting to be a part of that team’s culture had a profound effect on how I view coaching. I even picked up a part time job coaching JO boys during the week while in Illinois!
To ask how gymnastics had an effect on my professional career is an odd question for me. I’ve always been involved in gymnastics whether it be coaching the sport itself, or coaching gymnasts as a strength coach. They’ve both had an effect on each other! I consider myself lucky it has culminated into a position with The Crimson Tide.
2. In terms of coaching, what has been your biggest challenge your first year at the University of Alabama? Conversely, what has been your favorite part?