The conditioning team have been putting the Ospreys' international touring contingent through their paces after they returned to training on Thursday following the summer break.
14 players reported back for duty, 13 members of the Welsh squad that travelled to New Zealand in July, plus Ireland’s Tommy Bowe, and they were greeted by Head Strength and Conditioning Coach Mark Bennett, who with the help of Kevin Morgan and Keith Hollifield put the group through a series of intense fitness tests to monitor their condition on returning to Llandarcy.
The group underwent the same series of tests as the earlier returnees three weeks ago, which have been specifically designed to assess whether they had hit the goals set by Bennett at the end of last season. The tests focussed on speed, agility and endurance in the morning, before moving into the gym after lunch to test their strength and power, and will help shape their individual training workloads over the coming weeks.
“The boys involved today have gone through the exact same sequence of testing as the rest of the squad did on their first day back. As with those already back in pre-season training, they’ve all been given squad goals and I’d expect that they have all achieved them. They know that they will face the consequences if they don’t.
“The series of tests that we've had the players doing today will highlight any areas of weakness that they have, see where they are exactly and then allow us to focus both their and our energy in the right direction, to ensure that they get the maximum value out of pre-season without being needlessly flogged just for the sake of it.
“Like I’ve already said this summer, if everyone comes back in the condition expected, we can really kick on during pre-season, putting the squad quite a way ahead of where we were at the same time last year.”