November 28th, 2021 | Josh Adelman
The 2021 November Coach of The Month Award is presented to Marine Corps Veteran Dewight Carruth. He served from 2004-2009, with 2nd Battalion 2nd Marine, served three tours to Iraq with his unit based out of Camp Lejeune, NC.
In early November Coach Carruth participated in the Soldiers To Sidelines Basketball Coaching Workshop with the University of Northern Florida Men’s Basketball Team. Although he is currently a strength and conditioning coach, he has a passion for basketball and realized he could learn a lot from coaches in other sports. Dewight shared his story with us and it became evident that he deserves the STS coach of the month honor.
“I am employed by Reef Systems as a Strength and Conditioning Coach working Special Operations of the Air Force. I have been in the field of sports performance for almost 7 years.
After my enlistment, I exited the Marines, with an honorable discharge. I was always a fitness stud, ranking in the top percentage of my unit when came to physical fitness test (PFT) scores. And as NCO, I oversaw the Marines who needed get in shape for the 3-mile run or needed help losing weight to meet Marine Corps standard for height and weight.
Using this experience as a leader from the Marines was very impactful as I became a coach. The military gave me the confidence to lead, confidence to speak with authority, and discipline to stay focused and lead.
After the Marines, I knew I wanted to pursue something in the physical fitness/ health related field. I initially wanted to become a physical therapist, because so many veterans get out of the military broken. I wanted to be a bridge to help them still have long, active, and healthy lives. But after volunteering in a VA physical therapy clinic and seeing the impact I could have on veterans; I realized that the slow pace of rehab wasn’t for me. But, I still wanted to do something that would give back to other military members and be physically active.
While pursuing my B.S. in Exercise Science at Towson University I was able to do an internship at SmarterTeamTraining with Coach Rob Taylor, a sports performance center in Baltimore, MD. Interning with Coach Taylor I was able to develop the skills to enhance running mechanics, stride frequency, and stride length which are all used to improve speed. I also learned how to assess how athletes move, identify strengths, weaknesses, potential imbalance, teach balance and coordination. I developed skills to coach center of gravity when executing change of direction movements, and led resistance programs that promoted prudent, productive, practical strength training. After learning all these skills, I knew this would be tremendously beneficial for the military members. I made it my goal to become a strength and conditioning coach for the military.
After graduating and obtaining my degree, I studied for the national exam to become a certified strength and conditioning specialist and tactical strength and conditioning coach. I started to pursue work as a strength coach. I interned at George Washington University in DC, to gain more experience. Then my dream came true when I was offered a position with Reef Systems to become a strength and conditioning coach with the US Army at Fort Drum, NY as part of the Holistic Health and Fitness (H2F) initiative. I worked with the army for nearly 2 years, helping with the implementation of the new Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT). After my time with the
Army, I have been fortunate to transition to Special Operations of the Air Force working with the Pararescue men (PJ). My biggest challenge in this field is that it takes a while to change the culture of fitness within a military unit. From this challenge I learned to focus on the human element rather than trying to convince someone how much I know. Instead, I show them how much I care.”
Dewight has displayed passion and relentless pursuit to be the best strength and conditioning coach he can be. He is eager to constantly learn and network to further his coaching craft. It is with tremendous pride that we honor Dewight Carruth the November 2021 Coach of the Month Award.