"My Story" -Coach Branden
Updated: Oct 28, 2019
My Story: At the age of two I got my first pair of skates, and by the age of four I began playing
organized hockey. To me, hockey is everything. As a kid it's your dream to be a professional
athlete in whatever sport you choose. Whether it be NHL, NFL, MLB, you want to be the best of
the best. For me, it was no different. I played travel hockey from squirts up until high school
where I played varsity. I always had the plan to play juniors and hopefully play D1 hockey. But I
suffered many injuries as I played growing up. During my junior year, a concussion and a
broken humerus did me in. The worst 8 months of my life. I couldn't get on the ice, I couldn't lie
down, I couldn't leave my room, it was miserable. I was told I would never be able to play my
senior year, and that statement was more painful than the injuries. I'm not one to quit when
things get hard, so I got into the gym and into physical therapy as soon as I got the green light.
By the end of summer I recovered fully, and as my big "F### you," I finished my senior year and
proved myself an asset for my team. For that I am forever thankful to those that helped me.
My Why: After my senior year I decided it was time to hang up the skates. As painful as it was, it
was for the best. I felt that I had a greater purpose outside of the rink, but once it was over I felt
lost, sixteen years of my life just up and left. After my experience, I wanted to make sure no one
else would have to go through what I did, it was just a matter of how. I was fortunate enough to
get an internship at Advantedge at the time. After reading and coming to understand the
systems in place, I had an epiphany. That I could help prevent others from getting hurt and
make them stronger. Having made the mistakes and knowing how important proper training is,
I'm able to help steer people in the right direction to get them where they need to be. After being
here for almost three years now, I never knew how much of an impact we as a team could have
on the community. I've been able to develop strong relationships with the members of our
facility. I get to see the results of people putting in the work, and over the course of time, see
them translate their efforts onto the ice, the field, the trail, the meet. It's a feeling unlike any
other. Things became clear, that this is my family and this is where I belong.
My Vision: Seeing where we started and where we've come. No one in the area can touch what
we've developed, and we are only getting better. As made famous by Louie Simmons "To adapt
to training, is to never adapt." That is a principle that resonates with me deeply and is applicable
in life. We constantly keep learning and improving upon ourselves as coaches, as friends,
members of our community, and as a family. Big things are to come, and I'm glad I get to be
apart of this team.
Thank you for reading, I am forever thankful for the opportunities I've been given to do what I do
today, and it wouldn't be possible without you guys. I look forward to providing more for our
community and show exactly what UP pride is all about.