A winning performance

Tony Buchanan, Absolute Performance, on two schools which have achieved their goal to provide first-class training facilities

Schools face different challenges in achieving the best training facility, be it creating a gym for all pupils to benefit from or making the best use of limited space.

Absolute Performance has worked with schools from across the UK including Strathallan, Longdean and Royal Grammar School, Guildford to name but a few.

King Edward VI School, Southampton

The task

To provide an ‘access for all’ gym.

As a highly-regarded school with many advancing and able athletes representing their sport at a national and international level, King Edward VI School (KES) in Southampton recognised that its school gym was too focused towards 1st team school sports rather than developing its talented elite athletes. Coupled with that, it was also an un-welcoming environment for girls to train in.

So their decision to refurbish and extend the facility was driven by three key desires:

● To provide access for all students and teachers, making the ‘gym’ a place for all pupils – male or female – to enjoy going to and training in

● To support the school’s elite athletes who often found it difficult outside school to do the level of strength training needed to succeed

● To support all King Edward VI school teams (not just 1st teams) and make fitness training part of the weekly routine, to engendering a culture of fitness and conditioning needed to develop in sport

The solution

 The location for the new facility was a relatively unused squash court, providing the floor space and height for a great split-level facility – light, bright and welcoming.

What we did

● Created a bespoke, multi-purpose training facility for sporting athletes at all levels

● Incorporated a strength and cardio solution for developing elite athletes

● Added unique school branding using King Edward VI crest and colours

Products we supplied


● Spin bikes and treadmills

● AP Heavyweight flooring

● AP Power Series rack

● AP Power Series fixed resistance machines

● KES branded soft-plyo boxes

● A variety of functional fitness equipment including kettlebells, dumbbells and gym balls

Canford School, Dorset

The task

To transform a room with limited space into a multi-functional training area.

The solution


To make the best possible use of space available by using innovative flooring solutions and installing bespoke equipment designed specifically for the room.

What we did


● Specialist flooring was laid to provide a totally level area, allowing use not only for weightlifting but also for multiple training purposes such as warm-up sessions, general movement, fitness exercises and group sessions. A key requirement was to enable weights to be lifted direct from the floor, without the need for lifting platforms.

Products we supplied


● Specialist 40mm thick heavy-duty AP Heavyweight tiles – strong enough to withstand the toughest treatment that Olympic weightlifting training can throw at them

● Olympic lifting bars and plates

● Functional training accessories

● Branded half racks

● Flat incline benches complete with the school’s logo and colours

The result


Coaches are now able to run more efficient training sessions, with more students able to train together. The facility is also used by a wider range of ages and abilities, making it a truly multi-functional space.

Peter Short, Director of Rugby at Canford, says: “Absolute Performance delivered a solution beyond our expectations. Their personal approach and commitment to getting the job done is second to none.”


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