SDSC & PROTEUS Athlete Spotlight: Mikaila Deganhardt


San Diego Soccer Club is proud to announce a partnership with PROTEUS | Velocity Sports Performance in 4S Ranch.

Among the hundreds of athletes, teams and schools PROTUES has worked with in San Diego, their roster of soccer athletes ranges from youth through the professional level.

PROTEUS firmly believes their proven approach to developing the “complete athlete” will greatly enhance the growth, preparation and readiness of SDSC players and teams. They provide us with a great facility, passionate coaches, world-class training and culture of excellence and high performance.

We strongly encourage all of our athletes, teams and families to engage in their programs, and take full advantage of the special access and pricing they provide to San Diego Soccer Club. Our athletes receive a 20% discount on programs and can start with a free trial. Sign up today!

We asked one of our athletes, Mikaila Deganhardt, to share her experience playing for SDSC and training at PROTEUS...

ATHLETE FEATURE - Mikaila Degenhardt

  • How long have you been playing for San Diego Soccer Club, and what teams / coaches have you played for along the way?   
    “I have been playing for San Diego Soccer Club for four years now, starting with the 2014-2015 season. I played for Coach Jerzy Szyndlar’s G2002 team, and had a great first year. I made friends with many of the girls on the team and still am friends with them today. I played for Coach Ouying Zhang (known as Coach O) for my second season. My third season was the year I decided to play up a year. Coach Brennan Tenelle rostered me after practicing with his team for a few days. I am so glad I decided to play with older girls, for I felt that I was challenged. The girls were amazing people, and I met one of my good friends playing for him. Last season I went up another year, playing again with Coach Jerzy and his G2000 team. All the girls were Juniors or Seniors in high school. Despite the age difference, I felt really comfortable, had a great experience and will miss them when they all leave for college. I highly recommend playing up, even if it’s just one year, as I grew stronger as a soccer player playing with older girls.”
  • When did you first decide to start training at PROTEUS | Velocity Sports Performance?
    “I was 13 years old and in eighth grade when I decided to start training here weekly. I am now 15 and a freshman in high school, and would like to play soccer in college. For my first year with SDSC, I was definitely not one of the fastest or strongest girls on the field. I felt that the training I had been getting at soccer practice just wasn’t enough, so I started training at Proteus in November of 2016, and have been training there ever since.”
  • What were some of the reasons impacting your decision to start training with PROTEUS?
    “I wanted something more than just soccer practice a few days a week. I wanted to not only improve my speed and endurance, but my strength as well. I had never been exposed to an environment quite like Proteus before.”
  • What are some ways that you have seen the training experience with PROTEUS impact your performance in soccer?
    “Of course I was nervous going in, but after the first few days I got a hang of things. I started noticing improvements about three weeks into training. My kicks had more power in them and went farther than they ever had before. Things like picking up my feet while running and breathing properly became second nature. I felt stronger, for the strength and mental power I gained while training helped me perform far better than I had prior to training at Proteus. I’m proud of where I’ve gotten fitness wise, and am excited to continue improving. The environment the coaches have created for us is an environment that helps us thrive as young athletes.”
  • How has the training experience here impacted your life beyond soccer?
    “After every session the coaches have us huddle together. Each of the coaches gives us advice on how to improve certain skills. Improvement can be reached by doing simple things, even if they seem unimportant. Your quality of sleep, hydration, mindset, and eating habits play an essential role in becoming the athlete you want to become. These are little things that everyone is able to control. Control what’s in your command because little things become big things with time. This is where greatness starts. I cannot stress how important it is to be in good physical and mental health. I’ve learned many lessons from each of the coaches and have been applying them to my everyday life.”
  • What do you like best about the training experience at PROTEUS?
    “I’ve mentioned this a couple of times, but I really love the environment we train in. Everyone supports each other and treats each other with respect. We all have goals we want to obtain, and surrounding yourself with great people will bring you so much closer to reaching those goals. The athletes that train at Proteus are amazing athletes who’ve helped me gain many of the skills I now have. No athlete here is better than the other, for we’re all at different levels and have different goals set.”
  • What advice or insights would you give to parents or athletes that are considering engaging in training at PROTEUS?
    “Training at a high intensity is difficult. You have to be willing to do the hard work if you want to obtain your goals; nothing is easy. Even after training for almost a year and a half, nothing gets easier because you can always improve. Training here isn’t a right we have; it’s a privilege. It’s something you have to really want. Applying yourself and putting effort into what you’re doing not only makes you a better athlete, it also makes you stronger mentally. Training at Proteus is physically challenging, yes, but it’s also fun. When you’re having fun and working hard, you get a feeling of motivation. I go to Proteus because I want to be there. I take pride in the facility and am proud to be training at Proteus.”