World champ will headline Saturday’s Comet Clinic



World champion Jessica Beard will be the keynote speaker at the 10th Annual ASICS Comet Clinic this Saturday at Amherst Steele High School.

Born and raised in Euclid, the Panthers track and field star was a four-time Ohio High School Athletic Association state champion in the 400-meter dash and set the state record in 2007. She also lettered in basketball and cross country.

At Texas A&M, she became the Big 12’s standout sprinter and set a school record of 50.56 seconds in the 400-meter event at the NCAA championships.

Beard won bronze at the 2009 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships.

Later that year, she helped win the gold in the 4×400 relay at the World Championships in Germany.

As a senior, she won twin NCAA titles and relay golds in 2011, taking home the Bowerman Award as the country’s top collegiate track athlete.

Beard, now 30, also holds a psychology degree.

The free Comet Clinic has become a spring tradition, with a list of high-profile experts offering workshops and hands-on advice on more than 45 topics for both coaches and athletes.

Doors will open at 11:30 a.m. and the clinic will run until 4 p.m.

Registration is limited to the first 1,000 attendees.

Offerings include sessions on mentality of a champion, performance preparation, how to communicate with coaches and teammates, setting goals, event strategy and motivation, and competing with a purpose. The theme for this year’s clinic is “Become a coachable athlete and trust your coach.”

There are also sessions specifically for parents, focusing on nutrition, sports psychology, injury prevention, and scholarship negotiation.

Speakers include Olympian and World Championships bronze medalist Jim Spivey; 2014 MAC Women’s Coach of the Year Linh Nguyen; Olympic coach Lee LaBadie; Mike Schober of Kent State University, who has coached 17 MAC champions and four national qualifiers; orthopedic surgeon Victor Strimbu; Muskingham University sports science professor Tim Berger; NCAA Division III indoor champion Ryan Ladd, now director of the Mercy Health Amherst Healthplex; Findley University pole vault coach Clint Dillon; Amherst’s Alan Roark, founder of the Pole Vault Factory Club; Olympic coach Ralph White; and many more.

Attendees can enjoy team-building activities, get autographs, talk to college representatives, and buy ASICS gear at a discount.

For more information or to register, visit