BHSU opens student-athletes’ nutrition center

Representatives from Black Hills State University athletics, Monument Health, Stadium Sports Grill, and Lueders Food Centers hosted a ribbon cutting Thursday to open a student-athlete nutrition center in the athletic weight room. Pioneer photo by Jason Gross

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SPEARFISH — Black Hills State University (BHSU) student-athletes are gaining an edge in the weight room and in athletic performance with the help of Nutrishop Rapid City.

The school held a ribbon cutting Thursday to officially open an on-campus nutrition center complete with refrigerator, sink, and food storage. This setup allows strength coaches to provide foods aimed to increase recovery for post-training sessions.

Yellow Jacket football and the BHSU strength and conditioning program began working with Gunnar Swanson, the owner of Nutrishop Rapid City, in January to further improve the student-athlete experience.

“Having Nutrishop is an incredible resource for us,” Athletic Performance Co-Director Derek Van Blarcom said. “Nutrishop helps supply protein and supplements for our athletes, and also provides the In-Body scanner technology that helps us track our lean body mass gain and body composition over the course of our off-season training program. We can’t thank Gunnar enough for coming out and working with us.”

Kellan Anderson serves as BHSU’s Athletic Performance Director. He is a strength and conditioning coordinator for Monument Health, who has contracted him for Black Hills State.

Anderson and Van Blarcom work with the Yellow Jacket men’s and women’s basketball, track and field, cross country, and football athletes.

“For athletic performance, you need to have multiple things,” Anderson said of the impetus behind this project. “Without fuel, you can’t get the recovery; you can’t perform the way you want to.”

Anderson said providing that fuel to help athletes recover and perform is the ultimate aim. Many athletes come from classes or practices to a weight-room session.

“If they’ve been two-plus hours without anything to eat, at least we can get that jump start,” Anderson said. “It’s another way we can provide them with some extra calories.”

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