Head of Ultimate Program
Ultimate Program Philosophy
Colorado Academy is the only Independent School with an Ultimate Program in the Denver Metro region. A Co-Ed sport, that is also self-officiating, Ultimate is truly unique and provides student-athletes the opportunity to play a sport rising in popularity while developing life skills along the way.
The Ultimate program goals are similar to those CA strives to attain in the classroom. On the field, it too, is paramount to foster an inclusive community that is supportive of each other. As a graduating senior stated, “Being new to CA freshman year, Ultimate gave me great friends for the entirety my high-school career. Ultimate also is a gateway into great relationships in college. I haven’t even met the people I am going to college with but we already have a pick-up game planned.” Our team welcomes seasoned veterans and newcomers with the same level of enthusiasm, anticipation and openness. We do this, and we achieve results on the field.
Our Program’s success is measured by how our student-athletes grow as individuals first, as teammates second, as competitors third and finally our team’s win-loss record. We have no internal competitions - everybody plays during games, and there is no division between Varsity and JV.
Ultimate games are intense athletic competitions, yet the camaraderie that exists between opposing players and the level of respect that is demonstrated between teams is unlike any other sport. As one parent states, “In all the games I've watched of Ultimate, I have never seen players angry or upset but they still care to play their very best and win just like in any other competition.”
As a coach and educator, I understand that what will matter long after the student-athletes have left high school is not the seasons’ results, but how sports helped them handle the stress of life. They will take with them how they had a blast while practicing hard, what it means to compete, and what it truly means to respect their opponent, their teammates, themselves and the sport of Ultimate.
There is a popular axiom that sports build character, but I disagree. Instead, CA’s Ultimate Program provides student-athletes’ character to flourish. Ultimate reveals your son’s or daughter’s character – one that is accepting, that values, supports, encourages, competes, maintains perspective, and truly believes no member of the team is more important than another. As a parent of a former player states, “My son specifically enjoyed the camaraderie, friendship, cooperation and respect that this sport entails. The kids are learning so many ‘life lessons’ in this sport that will be sure to carry through to other aspects of their lives.”
High school sports is an extension of the classroom and not an end to itself. When we fail to honor that tradition, sports can build character, but not necessarily the type of character we desire. Instead, coaches are the teachers of an ‘alternative classroom’ enabling students to exercise their character, by demonstrating their maturity and appreciation of being part of a unified force.