Mike Potenza has been the Director of Strength and Conditioning for the San Jose Sharks for 12 seasons. He is responsible for the team’s overall athletic performance program -- including the physical testing and evaluation at training camp, creation of individualized postseason workout programs and assistance in the rehabilitation/reconditioning efforts for all injured players.
Before coming to San Jose, Potenza served as the strength and conditioning coach for the University of Wisconsin men’s and women’s hockey teams, both of which were 2006 NCAA National Champions. There, he worked with current Sharks Captain Joe Pavelski. Potenza also had responsibilities with the wrestling and softball programs at Wisconsin.
A 2000 Springfield College graduate, Potenza earned his bachelor of science degree in applied exercise science. His post graduate studies brought him to Boston University where he was a graduate assistant until 2002, earning his master's degree in human movement science.
Potenza completed an assortment of strength and conditioning coaching and internship experiences before his time at Wisconsin. At the University of Miami (Fla.), he served as a weight training, speed and post-workout intern strength coach for the perennial nationally-ranked Hurricanes football team. While earning his master's degree at Boston University Potenza instructed professional, amateur, collegiate and high school athletes at Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning, a private training facility specializing in various weight training, conditioning, agility, plyometric, stretching and rehabilitation programs.
Since earning his master’s degree, Potenza has held notable positions for Harvard and Colgate Universities. He assisted and supervised all phases of strength training programs for all intercollegiate programs at Harvard and Colgate and held primary coaching responsibilities with football, men's and women's hockey, men's and women's basketball, lacrosse and field hockey.
Potenza was part of the evaluation staff for the U.S. World Junior hockey team that competed at the 2008 World Junior Championships in the Czech Republic. His responsibilities included offering presentations on nutrition and recovery, administering physical testing and designing performance evaluations for each prospect.
Away from the rink, Potenza has consulted with United States Air Force Pararesuce teams based in California (131st RQS) and Alaska (212th RQS) on the implementation and design of their Human Performance Program. The USAF Pararescue career-field provides medical and tactical support to tier-1 Special Ops assets during missions abroad. They are also a local asset state-side for rescue needs in conjunction with the United States Coast Guard, Law Enforcement and Fire Fighters.