Suffolk runners gain ‘New Energy’

Published 8:25 pm Monday, February 21, 2011

If your children are looking to be more active, the New Energy Youth Running Club in Suffolk may be just the thing to get them going.

The club is part of the area Tidewater Striders Running Club. The Suffolk club is beginning its second year of training beginning March 1. The group will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays at Sleepy Hole Park at 5:30 p.m.

“We are starting from square one again,” said Matt Trangenstein, a coach for the group.

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Last year’s numbers dwindled significantly toward the end of the season.

Trangenstein hopes the group will grow to 30 or 50 members this year, and he feels that the new location will help.

“We are hoping to grow significantly,” he said. “We are kind of excited about our new location.”

Trangenstein began the group because he wanted to give young people the opportunity to have another outlet for their athletic abilities.

“Most of the group running in this area seems to go on in Virginia Beach,” he said.

Trangenstein’s father got him interested in running when he was 6 years old, and he said he wants to give Suffolk kids that same opportunity.

“I’m a passionate runner,” he said. “You try to make your impact where you can.”

There is a $10 registration fee to be part of the Tidewater Striders, which covers an insurance policy for the runners. The running club is an all-volunteer program, and it is for runners at any ability level.

The club prepares runners for a series of one-mile races called the Youth Grand Prix events. The Suffolk runners will be competing against kids in the Virginia Beach area during these runs.

Not everyone loves football or soccer, Trangenstein said. “If you’ve never thought about it, come out and try it,” he said. “The point is not necessarily competition, it is to get them into a sport. It’s about getting kids in shape to give them that extra outlet for their energy and interests.”

“It can get kind of addicting once you start,” he said.