My mission is to turn your hobby of gym training into a habit…it needs to and will become your addiction! Ask yourself, if you started now, where will you be in 3 months of consistent hard work? Now imagine where you could be in 6 months, 1 year, even 2 years…the beauty of training is that you can start at any age to strive to absolute perfection.
Cue the world’s smallest violin,
Being diagnosed with a bone related disease at age two might be the end of the road for many people. Not me. This very disease that left me dependent on a wheelchair and crutches throughout my formative years is the catalyst to my sporting and fitness career today.
Perthes is a childhood disorder that affects the ball and socket of the hip as a result of reduced blood supply to the growth plate at the end of the femur. This causes the head of the femur to soften and break down by a process called necrosis. As you can imagine- not a fun thing to grow up with.*
*The day after my twelfth birthday I underwent a procedure to my Acetabular shelf- receiving a bone graft from the left iliac crest, to enlarge the socket part of the joint. This procedure insured that my hip had long last femoral coverage allowing for optimal remodelling of the hip joint. The road to recovery was pretty tough, but after a two-week stay in hospital, unable to leave my bed, and a further three months in a wheelchair and many months on crutches, I was able to walk again and continue living a normal life.
With a new hip in place I had to build up the strength and mobility so that I was able to run, squat and jump again; all the things a teenager should be able to do to play sports in school. Although I stayed active throughout my rehabilitation period, it was hard to imagine a life, or a career where sports would dominate.
The lasting effects of this childhood disease have caused a notable difference between the lengths of my right and left legs. Walking was an issue as I experienced constant pain in my left hip, and I developed a limp, further distracting from my already self-conscious teenage experience.
At age fifteen yet another procedure was on the cards. I had the growth plates drilled out of my right knee, in order to stunt the growth in my right leg allowing room for my left leg to catch up. Fortunately, the recovery time was relatively short and by the age of 16 I was fully discharged from doctor.
Although *physically* I started with a disadvantage and was labelled as technically disabled- blue badge and all- it never stopped me from playing sport. I always had the skill but never the athleticism…one of my biggest challenges from the beginning was my ability to move! From walking, running, squatting… you name it, my body needed to be fixed. The beginning of my sport science & biomedicine degree at UWE was when I was able to combine the scientific knowledge of exercise physiology that my body and years of rehabilitation had taught me with what I was learning about biomechanics. The circle was beginning to complete, and I was able to essentially start fixing myself as part of my gym training.
This takes us to where we are now. Hi, my name’s Will. I’m a Bristol based strength and conditioning coach.
I first started gym training at Force Strength and Conditioning when I was 17 to get fit for the Armed Forces. However, due to the condition in my hip I was ruled out on medical grounds declaring me unfit to serve. When I came back from university (which the army advised me to go), I got a job as a Personal Trainer at Force where I am forever grateful for the time I spent there. The wealth of knowledge I learnt from the awesome bosses Chris (l) and Andy (r) and the rest of Force family was not something I could have paid for. This provided the perfect platform to develop my skills both practically and theoretically as a Personal Trainer. If you’re ever in the area, check out the original blood, sweat and tyres class for the best circuit class in Wales.