Member of US National Team & Professional Volleyball Player
What can I say about Austin and the Apiros team that hasn’t already been said or shared by the many awesome athletes who they work with? Austin came into my life at a crucial point in my career. I was a junior-going-on-senior at Stanford University on the men’s volleyball team and had just finished yet another injury-plagued season. I was wondering if I’d ever make it through a year without the need for surgery on yet another body part, let alone if I’d be able to accomplish my goals of becoming a member of the US National Team or even a professional athlete. Austin, through multiple connections to our program, was fortunately swayed enough to become our program’s “volunteer assistant” and he, whether he knew it at the time or not, would take me on as one of his biggest projects. Needless to say, he made an immediate impact on the program, as we enjoyed a year virtually free of major injuries and were ranked within the top 5 in the national rankings and led the MPSF for the majority of the year. I was named a First Team AVCA All-American and MPSF Player of the Year, never missing a match for the first year in my entire athletic career. I bought in to his every word, and give most of the credit for those awards and accolades to Austin. He gained the respect of my teammates, our coaches, our training and weights staffs, and even the team’s parents. He became a recruiting point to (more than) mention for future Cardinal volleyballers, too.
His work with me didn’t stop when my career at Stanford ended, though. His greatest influence on me, amazingly enough, is not on my ability to stay on the court. His effects on me show even more so through his growth mindset, an example that all of his athletes and I try to follow in line with and emulate on a daily basis. His ability to teach growth in other areas of life is something I am inspired to not only utilize, but pass forward to other like-minded athletes and people in general. Austin got me to start practicing mindfulness through meditation. Austin got me to read some of my favorite books ever read- ones that I often pass on to my loved ones for them to read. Austin got me to start eating within the guidelines of the ketogenic diet, and altering within it in order to be able to optimize my energy throughout a grueling schedule as a professional playing overseas. Perhaps the most important part of he and Apiros’ M.O. is that they are inviting of criticism and questioning the process. Austin has wanted me to question everything he teaches me. When it comes to in-person workouts, he often asks athletes what they would like to work on that day, and how they’d like it to proceed. I appreciate this facet of his work to no end. As I move forward in my career, whether I continue to pursue the overseas athlete life or decide to make a 90-degree turn, I know Austin is going to be there not only supporting my decisions, but also wanting to see me push way past where I thought my potential was. There are no limits to what we’re capable of as athletes, in Austin and the Apiros team’s eyes. I’m so grateful to be a part of a team like this.