Wez Pooley, an Inspirational Athlete
Wez Pooley, an Inspirational Athlete
Features and News by Nino Severino
I’ve spent over 30 years in the sports coaching business, much of this involved in the very important area of strength and conditioning. Its an area I’ve studied very closely and made sure that it has been incorporated in all the athletes programmes I have ever managed over the years. One of my meetings recently brought this subject to the forefront.
A few weeks ago, I met with Wez Pooley Performance Director from Muhdo an Ipswich based company focusing on DNA. As soon as you meet Wez, there are two things that strike you, his very warm smile, and the awesome size of his physique, we shook hands, sat down, and started talking all things health, fitness and strength and conditioning, this discussion created an immediate connection. I wanted to know more about this powerhouse, so I asked him how his life path had brought him to Ipswich, and it’s a very interesting story.
Wez started his sporting career with Worcester Under 20 Rugby Academy which was his entry into professional sport, he committed his life to rugby and carved out a very impressive career in this sport, going on to play rugby at a very level, initial in the Welsh and Cardiff District during 2001-2004, which led him onto the Cardiff Blues between 2005 to 2007 and then the Welsh Rugby League through the 2007/2008 season. Wez’s rugby talent did not go un-noticed and during the period between 2001 to 2018 he played for many Elite Rugby 7’s teams including Ronin, Samurai, Apache, Esher, Scorpion and the Wooden Spoon Marauders.
I often talk about sport being such a positive influence on young peoples lives, and if you are lucky enough to compete at the highest level, it can take you on a journey around the world, and this is exactly what happened in Wez’s case. During his time in the Super Series 7’s, he was involved in tours to Dubai, Amsterdam, Rome, Kenya, USA, Canada and Sweden. The global travelling was something that both of us had in common, and it goes without saying that our first meeting was a very long one, sharing the many stories, events and adventures that we had both experienced over the years.
As we talked, we clicked very quickly, and I found out that Wez’s life in Rugby is very inspirational, he told me that he wanted to do something very positive with his rugby skills and the connections he had built up over his time in this great sport. He told me that he was partially deaf in both ears, and that he wanted to create quality rugby opportunities for others in the same situation. This motivation drove him to launch Wales Deaf Rugby in 2004, which he has committed to in a very unselfish and relentless way. The Welsh Deaf Rugby team clearly have been led very well by Wez, becoming
World Cup 7s winners and using this success to tour South Africa and many countries across the world. As Wez was telling me his stories about his time in professional rugby, it was when he was talking about his beloved Welsh Deaf Team and their old rivalry with the England team which brought a look of pride on his face. Its very clear that he is passionate about the team, and what he has achieved with them during his 14 years leading them, he is still very involved and continues to commit to developing the team and being part of the competitive schedule.
Looking at Wez’s physique, it’s no surprise that his time in the professional world of strength and conditioning has seen him working at the highest level, with Premiership Football Team, Brighton & Hove Albion and England International Rugby. During our conversation he told me that during his time in Ipswich as Performance Director for Muhdo he wanted to be involved in some strength and conditioning, so, of course I took total advantage of this opportunity, and asked if he would like to join the many areas of sport I am involved in and pass his experience and master strength and conditioning skills on to the local and regional elite athletes I am connected with. I’m so very glad he accepted the offer, and we are now discussing him being involved with our Centre of Excellence at the Hub. Wez is not only an athletic Power House, he is an exceptional personality and character, I am very excited to see where our professional relationship will lead us!
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