Lifting spirits through social media

Weights and conditioning teacher Clint Rider posts on multiple social media accounts to spotlight his students.

Coach Clint Rider posts about his students in his weights classes.

Jenna Weyforth, Writer

A room full of heavy weights can seem intimidating to even the strongest person, but Clint Rider attempts to relieve the pressure of weights by supporting students through social media. Rider uses multiple social media accounts such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook frequently to highlight students and update information.

“It’s a safe place to fail,” said Rider. “But everyone who’s accomplished something great has failed, so I think that it’s the best place throughout the school day to learn that failure is necessary for success.”

Whether the student has reached a personal record or has been working especially hard that day, Rider said he aims to celebrate the student’s victories by sharing them with others. By working to create a supportive and fun environment in the weight room, he said he believes it will set the tone for the that day and improve motivation.

One student in Rider’s weights class is junior Julia Breidenthal, who said she has had a positive experience since she joined the weights program this semester.

“I think his social media use helps people get excited to lift weights, like when he posts for Fat Arm Friday.” Breidenthal said. “We all want to make it, so we’re all trying to work really hard, so I think it motivates us more.”

The weights program and social media accounts have become a greater emphasis for Rider, he said, since he came to BVNW in 2017. Rider said many of their traditions, such as highlighting students lifting weights for Fat Arm Friday posts and ringing the PR bell to celebrate reaching a personal goal, have given students a positive outlet to become more involved in the program.

“I always try to be positive with kids, especially on social media, where there’s a lot of negativity,” Rider said. “I think just one way that you can use to blow up kids for when they do something good, it’s kind of a window into what our kids do on a daily basis that maybe their parents or whoever else may not get to see.”

Participating in the weights program, Breidenthal said, has been a rewarding stress reliever, due to the encouraging environment of the class and media.

“I think it brings everybody together also, because we’re all seeing everybody’s progress,” Julia said. “I love watching the videos because it motivates me, and I think it’s really awesome to see how much other people are lifting and all the people behind supporting them.”

Most days Rider said he tries to post from a variety of classes and activities, when he notices someone is improving or has an especially energetic class.

Junior John Fischbach plays soccer and runs track for the school, but said he has had a positive, exciting experience in the weight room since he joined last year.

“It’s a pretty hard class, but overall it just makes you a better athlete.” Fischbach said. “It’s a really positive environment, there’s always people cheering each other on and hyping each other up”

The goal for the program, Rider said, is to keep utilizing social media to continue growing the program and environment. There are currently five weight classes at Northwest, and with the addition of freshman being able to enroll in Weights and Conditioning, Rider predicts that they will have at least six classes next school year.