Meet Our Staff

Mark Philippi, CSCS

Owner & Director of Performance Training

Mark is a nationally recognized Strength and Conditioning Coach with 20 years experience both in the collegiate and private settings. He has helped over 5,000 college and professional athletes of all types and ages achieve their performance goals. Before opening PSI in 2007, Mark was the Director of Strength and Conditioning at UNLV for 15 years. He was responsible for overseeing the sports performance programs for over 400 athletes each year. While at UNLV, Mark also developed and instructed the NSCA recognized strength and conditioning academic program for the UNLV kinesiology department.

An accomplished strength athlete, Mark won the World Drug-Free Powerlifting Championships in 1996, won America’s Strongest Man title in 1997, has appeared on the World’s Strongest Man television Show seven times, and traveled the world and competed in over 100 international strongman competitions. Mark has appeared on the National Geographic tv show, written or appeared in Men’s Health, Men’s Fitness, Sports Illustrated, the New York Daily News, Las Vegas Life, Powerlifting USA, Milo Magazine, Muscle and Fitness. Mark has lectured across North America on coaching, motivation, strength training, and conditioning.


Tracey Philippi, BSN RN, AFPA, FLT, NASN

Owner and Director of Sports Nutrition & Functional Medicine

Tracey has over 20 years of combined experience in critical care nursing, cardiac rehabilitation, sports training, and sports nutrition. Tracey has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Montana State University, she is certified AFPA Cardiac Rehabilitation/Special Population trainer, a certified FirstLine Therapy Practitioner, and a Licensed Sports Nutritionist from the National Association Sports Nutrition (NASN). The NASN is the only licensed sports nutrition organization that is recognized by the Board of Registered Dietitians, and can advise and develop sports nutritional programs. As a FirstLine Therapy practitioner, Tracey utilizes functional blood testing to evaluate micronutrients, amino acids, immune function, hormones, food sensitivities, and gut function while developing individualized nutritional programs.


Dr. Aric Cruz

Director of Therapy Clinic

Dr. Aric Cruz runs the therapy clinic at PSI. Dr. Cruz has experience treating athletes of all ages and experience levels. In addition to treating collegiate athletes at Stanford and UNLV, Dr. Cruz has treated athletes from: MLB, NBA, NFL, CFL, AFL, NHL, PGA, MMA, boxing, Olympic teams, and International Strongman Competitions. 


Mitch Swenson

Facility Director

Mitch Swensen, currently the Facility Director and Performance Coach at Philippi Sports Institute, joined the staff at PSI back in 2017. Currently finishing his master's degree online from Southern Utah University, Coach Mitch is responsible for program development, facility enhancement, and office management at PSI.

Before his tenure at PSI, Mitch excelled as a student-athlete at Brigham Young University, graduating with a bachelor's in exercise science in 2015. While at school, Coach Mitch competed in field events such as shot put and discus, winning multiple competitions and earning a scholarship.

Since 2015, Mitch has worked with multiple strength and conditioning programs, including BYU, SUU, Utah Valley University, and various high schools in Utah and Alaska, earning CSCS and CPR-First Aid certifications along the way.

Born and raised from Alaska, Coach Mitch is married to his wife, Rebecca, and has two daughters.

Jay Staggs

Performance Coach

Jay Staggs starred at UNLV on the gridiron from 2003 – 2006. Then he went on to play professionally for the Chicago Bears in 2007 and the Montreal Alouettes of the CFL from 2008 – 2010.

Jay started his coaching career with PSI as a Performance Specialist from 2010 – 2012, he then moved on to UNLV to coach football from 2012 – 2014. After UNLV Jay took a coaching promotion at Adams State University from 2015 – 2017 where he was named Defensive Coordinator, the youngest in the nation to hold the position. Before returning to the Las Vegas Valley Jay was at Idaho State University as the teams Secondary Coach/ Pass Game Coordinator.

Jay is originally from Goleta, California where he starred for the Dos Pueblos HS Chargers football, baseball, basketball, and Track & Field programs.

Jay is married to his college sweetheart and proud Durango Alum Mandi Staggs, they have three beautiful daughters; Jordyn, Raegan and Presley who all share the families love of sports and compete in soccer, gymnastics, volleyball and of course strength & conditioning.