Thorman’s Thoughts

17th December 2011

In the third of our series Skolars player and community Coach Neil Thorman a look at what’s been happening in Skolars pre-season training sessions and tells us a bout some unexpected visitors to training.

The final training sessions of 2011 are upon us and then the boys will get a well deserved rest. A lot has been squeezed into the last two weeks, with last Monday night starting as normal, splitting into two groups, half in the gym and half in the combat room. Then we switched and the last hour consisted of ball work and fitness on the floodlit 3G pitch.

My group was in the gym, just finishing with weighted planks and V-sits, when five guys walked in asking for the coaching staff. Thinking nothing of it I pointed them towards the combat room for Head Coach Joe Mbu. Then I spotted their ID and of course it was the nice gentlemen from the UKAD aka the drugs testers. Of course I was to be picked at ‘random’ along with Ollie Purslow, and junior players Dion Chapman & Louie Sutherland. Being seasoned pro’s at peeing into jars myself and Gaps (Ollie) did it in record time of 15mins, including all paper work and separating samples and pouring into two sealable jars. This was done over the head coaches desk, I might add, and to both ours and more so Joe’s amazement, thankfully we didn’t spill a drop! The great speed of our drugs test wasn’t really that pleasing as we were hoping that we’d missed a little bit, if not all of the outdoor session. That wasn’t the case and we were just in time for the warm-up going into fitness. For Dion and Louie on the other hand it was a different story. They took pretty much most of the session to get the sample out. I think the both got a little bit of stage fright at the thought of a middle aged guy watching them pee in a glass! Finally, once they were bursting at the seams full of water they got ‘relief’ in handing the sample over and were able to join the team for the back end of the session.


As Joe said, we would be getting more intense as the weeks went on, with us now concentrating on tackle technique. We were doing this with some wrestling warm up leading into 1 on 1 then 2 on 1 tackles. We had some good battles in the wrestling ring between Ollie Purslow and Martyn ‘weeman’ Smith. I’m personally hoping they make a tag team together, or just offer their services out to stag do’s! We’re starting to getsome big hitters in the club. In our last session we had to make 6 tackles. James Anthony was hitting above his weight, recently selected South England Students player Louie Robinson  put a good shot on, even against the immovable object Lameck Juma.

In the gym we’ve moved on to more power lowering and reps and increasing our weight, with some big scores going on the board for deadlift and front squat. We now have a leader board each session on who lifts the most on each exercise, so when the group switches from whatever session they were doing to the gym, they now know what their target is. I personally take any extra sessions, be it on gym related stuff, boxing, tackle tech etc. Usually it’ll be for our younger players to come to. At the moment I’m very impressed with our newest junior recruit, Jack Clover. He hasn’t missed a session and, being very new to Olympic lifts, he has had to learn the basics but now he is up to speed and has most techniques down.

Pre season thought.

“Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t.”


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