Warriors Announce Additions to Physical Performance and Sports Medicine Staff
The NBA Champion Golden State Warriors announced the addition of three new members of the team’s physical performance and sports medicine staff, adding Chelsea Lane as head performance therapist, Michael Irr as performance coach and therapist, and Kurtis Rayfield as physical performance coach. The new additions join Warriors Head of Physical Performance and Sports Medicine Lachlan Penfold and Athletic Trainer Drew Yoder.
Lane, who owns more than 16 years of experience as a physiotherapist, joins the Warriors from High Performance Sport New Zealand, which provides resources and support to that country’s national sports organizations and elite athletes. Most recently she served as physiotherapist for the New Zealand national track and field team at last month’s 2015 IAAF World Championships in Beijing, China. Prior to moving to New Zealand in 2006 to work in support of their Olympic-level athletes, Lane worked with elite-level rugby and gymnastics teams in her native Australia.
Irr joins the Warriors owning five years of NBA experience, having previously served as strength and conditioning coach for the Charlotte Bobcats from 2008-11 and as an assistant strength and conditioning coach for the Chicago Bulls from 2006-08. While with the Bobcats and Bulls, he focused mainly on performance training design and implementation. After leaving the Bobcats, Irr returned to school and graduated with a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in August of 2015. A certified strength and conditioning specialist through the National Strength and Conditioning Association, he graduated with a BS in Exercise Science from the University of Connecticut in 2006.
Rayfield joins the Warriors after spending the last two seasons working as an athletic performance coordinator for the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Oklahoma City Blue, the Thunder’s NBA D-League affiliate. During his time with the Thunder, he worked closely on the development of performance and nutrition programs for the Thunder and Blue, as well as their load management. Before working with the Thunder organization, Rayfield spent two years at Stanford University as a graduate assistant sports performance coach. While at Stanford, he was responsible for training the Cardinal’s women’s basketball, men’s swimming and sailing teams while assisting with men’s basketball. Rayfield is a certified strength and conditioning specialist through the National Strength and Conditioning Association and has Level 1 Sports Performance Coaching Certification from USA Weightlifting.
Penfold joined the Warriors organization earlier this offseason from his native Australia, where he most recently served as the head of physical preparation for the Australian Men’s Sevens Rugby Union squad. With over 20 years of experience in the field of athletic performance, Penfold has held positions in a wide variety of sports, including personalized work with 80 Olympic athletes in five different Olympic Games. In this newly created role with Golden State, he will oversee the Warriors athletic training and strength & conditioning programs, working closely with the team’s coaching staff to promote optimal player performance.
Yoder is in his third season with the Golden State Warriors, his first as the team’s athletic trainer. In this role, he assists with the day-to-day health maintenance of the team, including rehabilitation therapy of injuries. During his first two seasons with the organization, he served as the team’s assistant athletic trainer. Yoder joined the Warriors from Southern Methodist University, where he served as an assistant athletic trainer for football, men’s soccer and women’s rowing over the past three years. While interning at SMU in 2010, Yoder gained NBA experience working with the athletic training staff of the Dallas Mavericks.