By Sam Wilson

With students stuck at home for at least a month, Jason Marsh wanted to give them a chance to stay in shape while staying safe from spreading the coronavirus.

Marsh sent out an email to his Franklinville/Ellicottville football players with a simple home workout. 

“It was really a push-up program and then a medicine ball, core strengthening activity, then with some cardio ideas and things like that,” he said. “I had a few people, I haven’t had much response from it. But I put it out there so hopefully kids would take advantage of it. Hopefully they’ve got it and they’re doing it.”

Marsh said he sent out the plan to help athletes who aren’t used to downtime with schools closed until at least mid-April. A physical trainer for the Salamanca City Central School District, Marsh has been a varsity head football coach for 10 years: nine at SHS and one at F/E last fall, leading the Titans to an 8-1 record, including an undefeated regular season.

“I sent it out to a group thing because kids are probably sitting around without a lot of activity, so we don’t want them sitting around for a month not using their muscles,” he said. “I just gave them a few exercise ideas that they can be doing at home that don’t require any equipment.”

Normally, F/E football players could use the school weight rooms during the spring, if they weren’t already busy with spring sports. Now, weight training or practicing outside of home is out of the question with schools and public fitness centers closed.

“The guys who weren’t playing spring sports would definitely be looking to get in the weight room (right now),” said Marsh. “At Ellicottville, we’re fortunate because we have a weight training class that’s incorporated into their physical education. That really helps us out, it keeps the athletes going. But right now, even the spring sport athletes, they’re not out at practice, they’re not using their bodies, so it’s something that we threw out there for everybody.”

Of course, Marsh said there’s more you can do than a home workout plan to keep up your fitness level. He offered general advice to students to stay active during the shutdown.

“Really, stay active in some way,” Marsh said. “Go for a run, go for a hike. You don’t want to sit around all this time and be dormant. You want to get up and move and get your cardiovascular system moving and then do some of the resistance exercises to keep your muscles strong in this time that we’re away from our sports and our physical education classes.”