When you're tasked with training Australia's top athletes you need to make sure you set a high standard. That means not only practicing what you preach, but continually pushing yourself beyond this point in an effort to better your physical and mental conditioning.
It's this mentality and approach to training that has created the culture of excellence from Sydney's athlete-factory, 98 Gym, and what has cemented their stature as Australia's premier training facility.
While 98's approach may seem extreme and exclusive, the opposite is true. "The idea is to be so inclusive that everyone is held to the same standard," said 98 Gym Founder Chris Feather, a philosophy that has ensured the 98 culture remains a standard for the wider fitness industry.
For Feather, your results don't matter at 98, but your effort certainly does. This is the 'standard' Feather refers to when training his athletes. Physiological outcomes will follow the programming, as long as the mental commitment is there.
And this mental attitude filters down through the culture of the gym, directly from the top; Feather and his team of elite trainers.
"As much as people refuse to believe it, the company you keep does have an impact and influence on the choices you make," affirms Director of Strength and Conditioning Kevin Toonen. Essentially, the coaches at 98 Gym set the benchmark for their athletes.
So how do Feather and his team maintain their own mental and physical fortitude? Through grueling sweat sessions, designed specifically to test strength, aerobic capacity, mental application and teamwork. They also follow their own advice and surround themselves with other trainers, athletes and members in an effort to stretch their own limits in every one of the aforementioned domains.
In a session designed for his own team, Sydney's coaching elite, and South Sydney Rabbitohs' Burgess Brothers, 98 share their brutal 'Trainers Session'. Remember, it's not the result that counts, it's the effort. Complete the workout... even if it takes you all day.
TRAIN THE TRAINERS
Teams of 3
Complete an ascending ladder of the following exercises
[ie. 2,4,6... up to 20 (+2 reps each round)]
- KB Swing (32kg/20kg)
* The team must complete 7500m on the ski or row erg whilst the others are working
** All 3 players must complete every round. While one works, another rests, and the third is on the ski/row machine
*** Only when every player has completed 10 rounds and team has skied 7500m the workout is complete