PBSCCS Coach of the Month
Luis Perez, Kansas City Royals
Luis Perez just completed his 15th year in strength and conditioning and his 13th year working in professional baseball, all with the Kansas City Royals. His career in professional baseball started in 2010 as The Arizona League Strength and Conditioning Coach with the Royals (2010-2011) after working with baseball and softball teams at the University of Central Michigan. In addition to his duties in strength and conditioning, Luis was also worked in player rehabilitation at the Royals spring training complex in Surprise, AZ. In 2012, he was promoted to the position of Latin American Strength and Conditioning Coordinator and still retained his rehab responsibilities in AZ. In 2016, the Royals assigned him the dual role of Assistant MLB Strength and Conditioning Coach and Latin American Strength and Conditioning Coordinator.
A native of Valencia, Venezuela, Luis graduated from Colegio Padre Seijas High School in Valencia. Because there were no high school sports in Venezuela, Luis participated on local baseball teams between the ages of 7 and 17. He was selected to represent the State Team four times between 2000 and 2004. As a result of his performance on the State Team, Luis attracted the attention of the baseball coach at Western Nebraska Community College. He enrolled at Western Nebraska Community College in 2005 where he earned All-Conference and All Region honors in 2005 and was selected as Male Athlete of the Year in 2006. In 2007, he enrolled at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg, MO where he earned All-Conference Honors in 2007 and appeared in the 2008 World Series.
After graduating from the University of Central Missouri in 2008 with a BS in Exercise Science and Kinesiology, Luis served as a graduate assistant in strength and conditioning for the University baseball, softball, football and track and field teams from 2008 and 2009.
Luis is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and Registered Strength and Conditioning Coach (RSCC) through the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA). He is also PN Nutrition and First-Aid certified.
A two-time recipient of the Arizona League Strength and Conditioning Coach of the year (2010 and 2011), Luis resides in Kirkwood, MO with his wife of 12 years Megan and their daughters, Ellie (9) and Kenley (7). His hobbies include Daddy Day Car in the off-season and mountain biking, golf, archery, and shooting.
He got interested in strength and conditioning while a student-athlete at Western Nebraska Community College. Training was a major part of the culture in college and, as a player from Venezuela, his experience with working out was very limited. In Venezuela, as in many Latin American countries, players grew up playing baseball. Everything revolved around learning the fundamentals of the game – taking ground balls, fly balls, hitting, throwing, drills, etc. He experienced the benefits of strength and conditioning first-hand. His arm strength, bat speed, running speed and on-field performance improved after being exposed to an organized strength and conditioning program. As his performance improved, so did his interest in strength and conditioning.
Luis credits his mentor, Ryan Stoneberg, Major League Strength and Conditioning Coach with the Royals, for helping his success in the field. Stoney helped him understand that attention to detail and care of the athletes are top priority in this field. He has also benefited from interacting and learning from other experienced coaches in the field.
His goal as a Strength and Conditioning Professional is to help players achieve the next level in their athletic development. Because longevity plays a significant role in professional baseball, keeping players healthy and performing to the best of their ability is a priority. Providing a well-rounded, collaborative and science-based program addressing player weaknesses, correcting deficiencies and improving strengths is imperative for effective progress.
He tries to help players understand that taking care of yourself is a lifestyle that, while uncomfortable and unfamiliar at times, needs constant attention. Staying active, fit and strong will challenge your mind, improve your body, enhance performance and improve your daily life.
For those new to the field and those who might be interested, Luis says that strength and conditioning is a jammed-pack toolbox for anyone who wants to improve their life, health and performance. Early in his career coaches told him – “If you think being strong and lifting weights is dangerous, try being weak. Being weak is dangerous.” Proper training helps make athletes more resilient, both mentally and physically. Training helps reduce stress and improves performance and longevity in the game.
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