A new Face at Prep: Strength and Conditioning Coach, Zach Houghton

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Instagram @coachhoughtz

Gage Mills, Staff Writer

 This year, Tampa Prep has the pleasure of introducing a new member to the staff: Coach Zach Houghton, the Strength and Conditioning coach. He started on July 1, and has been working with athletes of various sports teams ever since. 

   Previously, Coach Houghton was employed as the strength and conditioning coach at the University of South Florida, and most recently worked with the men’s basketball team there. However, he is already enjoying life at Prep: “It’s been fantastic so far,” Houghton said

   While his primary job and workouts have been similar since transitioning to training high school athletes, he has enjoyed the change of environment. 

   “I like getting back into a wide array of athletes and being around a lot of different people,” Houghton said. “I worked with one sport at USF, and here I get to train a variety of students. It’s refreshing.” 

   Another change Houghton has had to adjust to are the rules that Tampa Prep has put in place due to COVID-19. That means each student has to have their questionnaire filled out, there can only be a maximum of 15 people in the weight room at a time, and athletes have to keep our masks on. 

   “We’ve done the best we can given the tough circumstances,” Houghton said.

    Along with the rules mentioned, athletes also have to have their temperature checked beforehand and must remain socially distanced; some difficult rules to comply with, as the space and resources are limited. Luckily, Houghton had to deal with COVID protocols last school year at USF, so he is already well-versed in handling these protocols. 

   Outside of his new role on campus, Houghton runs a woodworking and home improvement business, Houghtz Designs, as well. 

    “I started it when I moved down to Florida, which was about 4 years ago,” Houghton said.   

   Outside of work, Houghton tries to spend as much time as he can with his wife and dogs.