Strength & Performance in Pictures

Everyone trained HARDCORE at Strength & Performance today!!

The atmosphere was ELECTRIC and nothing less than 100% effort was accepted!

If you don’t turn up to training with your game face on you might want to turn tail and run out the fire exit coz we don’t mess about when it comes to the business of getting results!

We give 100% to our training so why should anyone else be any different?

Turn up ready to SMASH IT or don’t turn up at all!!

We expect dedication from ALL out clients and we give the same in return – its only fair.

At Strength & Performance our business is getting YOU results – that’s what we do best, it’s that simple!

Check out the pics below and get ready to take numbers!

Strength & Performance ‘No Rules‘ Training

‘The Edge’ smashing tyre drags!

100% spent!

‘Coach Keefe’ under the bar

Nothing left to give…

ready to do battle!

The return of the pythons..

Pull that sucker in!!!

Thursday was a AWESOME day at the gym!!

More training pics to come next week

In the meantime…

Lift BIG, get STRONG!!

Sean and Z



Inspirational People

When we think of sports people who inspire us, names like Muhammad Ali, Jesse Owens, Tammy Grey Thompson and Steve Redgrave spring to mind.

These people made the ultimate sacrifice to be the BEST they could be in their sport. Their legacies live on and continue to inspire the next generation of sporting greats, the world over.

When we think of these ‘idols’ we often overlook the people who inspire us on a day to day basis, people who may be much closer to home and who never really get the praise they deserve.

At Strength & Performance we don’t usually single out any of our members as we feel that they ALL deserve credit for giving 100% to every single session and dedicating themselves to being the BEST athlete possible.

However, we feel that one person in particular has stood out from the rest.. This person has continually pushed harder and harder, given more than has been expected of him and has kept training like a BEAST, despite having recently popped out his patela!!

This guy knows NO limits, feels NO pain and NEVER, EVER quits!!!

If you tell him to do 3 sets, he does 5!

When you think he is finished, he just keeps on going!

When ordinary people give in…. he just dons the gas mask, grabs hold of the prowler handles, says “I’ll do another” and is away, this guy is SUPER HUMAN!

This mentality and dedication makes Champions!

Steve Rouson has been training with us for a long time and just keeps on coming back for more…. we call him ‘Crazy Steve‘ and the younger members have  affectionately nicknamed him ‘The Machine’ When you watch the video clip below you will understand why!

Steve has become part of the furniture here at Strength & Performance. Over the months and years he has earned the respect of every single member, athletes and non athletes alike.. young and old.

As well as being a kick-ass inspirational character, Steve is the most humble person you will ever meet and he never asks for anything or craves attention in return. He simply gets his head down and gets stuck in to the graft!

You can’t teach this kind of commitment but you can learn from people like Steve. People who make excuses only have themselves to blame when they don’t get where they want to be in life or get the results from their training.

People like Steve don’t make excuses!

Watch the video clip below and get INSPIRED!

Come down to Strength & Performance and join the group of hardest working athletes on the planet.

Those who are not 100% dedicated to achieving results need not apply!

Lift BIG, get STRONG!!

Sean and Z

Strength Training for MMA

Anyone who takes part in or coaches Mixed Martial Arts will know that being brutally strong, lightning fast and supremely conditioned are all CRUCIAL factors in making a complete, well rounded fighter.

For years, training for MMA has consisted mainly of skill/technical work, either on the floor or stand up and various circuit based conditioning elements. Fighters would work on their kickboxing, grappling, BJJ etc and pay little or no attention to their strength work in the gym.

I’ll be the first to admit that we are no experts when it come to the skill side of MMA training. Without skill there is no adequate foundation for a figher to progress in the competitive world of the Octagon.

However, in order to be the best all round fighter it is vital that propper attention is given to fight strength, explosive power and conditioning. Working on these 3 elements will greatly improve an athletes ability to develop jaw breaking knock-out power, bone crushing strength and sky rocket overall conditioning so they can last the pace right up to the 5th minute of the final round.

Strength and Performance is tailored towards training MMA fighters. We are in charge of Michael ‘The Count’ Bispings Strength and power training in the run up to UFC 114 vs Dan Miller. During the next 8 weeks he will be transformed into an explosive BEAST!

For more information on Strength and Performance 8 or 12 week fight strength camps
Call: 0161 4808368

or e-mail:

Check out the website @ Strength & Performance

Lift BIG, get STRONG!!


Strength and Performance Coach

How To Make Your Own Sand Bags!

Now this might seem like a very simple thing to do but over at Strength and Performance HQ, we still get many e-mails per week asking us how we make our sand bags and what we use them for etc, etc…

Well, firstly, making sand bags is a fairly simple process and i’m sure the way we do it isn’t necessarily the best way by any means but for those of you who want to know, here is how we do it.

Ingredient list:

1) Pea Gravel – (£3 per 25kg bag from your nearest B&Q, Wickes/garden centre store)

2) rubble sacks – see above for stockists

3) silver duct tape – ditto

4) small army style hold-all bag (optional if you’re going for the creme de la creme look) – available in most good army and navy stores

The Process:

1) depending on what size you want (25kg is a great universal size/weight for performing most basic exercises), place a few good lengths of duct tape around both the length and width of your pea gravel bag.

2) Place your pea gravel bag inside a rubble sack and then place another over the top but over the opposite end of the bag so you now have no gaps.

3) Next, proceed to wrap every inch of the bag in duct tape. Make sure you go across the length and width again. Try to avoid cutting the duct tape as much as possible as you want it to be as strong as possible.

Now you are ready to rock and roll! If you have wrapped the bag well and you don’t throw it around or drop it in between sets/reps then it should last for a good while. If you want to be extra safe then take your canvass hold-all and place the ‘silver bullet’ inside it and remove all sharp edges/handles (unless you want the bags for farmers walks etc).

Repair is easy, just have spare rubble sacks and duct tape on hand and you can repair/create bags of any size, shape and weight with ease!

Next time I will cover exercises to perform with the new edition to your strength and conditioning arsenal.

Till then….

Lift BIG, get STRONG!!


Strength and Performance Coach.

Strength and Performance on ELITE FTS!

One’s Ambition

When Strength and Performance co-director, Sean Keefe took a trip down memory lane, little did he know that Elite FTS, one of the world’s premier strength training information/equipment sites would be publishing it on their website!

Here is how things got started in the words of Sean ‘Beef’ Keefe aka ‘The Bulldog’


This article is about my ambition, my dream, and my challenge. Call it what you want, but it’s what I’ve always wanted. Being told by people I know and trust that it was all just a crazy fantasy just made me want it more. If I was to give you the best piece of advice I could right now, it would be this—don’t give up on your dream regardless of how big the challenge seems. Success is found. It doesn’t find you!

Three and a half years ago, I started working for a big commercial gym, and I thought it was going to be the best job in the world. At this time, I had already done the usual b*llsh*t courses required to work in a gym that don’t teach jack, but in my own time, I was busy building up my knowledge, researching on various websites, and reading plenty of books! These were like gold compared to the courses I’d been in.

I wasn’t employed to be a cleaner, so why the f*ck was I on my hands and knees cleaning the machines. I didn’t sign up for this. If you’re employed to be a trainer, that’s what you should do, not scrub away at someone’s sweat gathered over a half mile walk. As the months passed and I was no longer the new boy, my cleaning duties subsided. Instead, I was encouraged to use the latest fad piece of equipment in this industry. I needed to get clients deadlifting, squatting, lunging, pressing, and pulling, not standing on a vibrating plate while watching them get a cheap thrill. I wasn’t having it!

After working for about a year, I became my own boss and chose my own hours to see my clients. This was what I’d always wanted—until I found myself fitting my schedule around my clients. I was waking up before I’d even gone to bed and working the kind of hours that a 24-hour security camera does! The more I read, the more I wanted to put into practice, but I was told I couldn’t do what I’d learned. No chalk. No noise. Deadlifting—what’s that? “Benching like that will hurt your back.” In the meantime, I had to put up with seeing exercises that a two-year-old kid could put together. The funniest thing I ever saw was someone sitting on one of those Swiss balls with one leg in the air while doing a rotator cuff exercise with a pink dumbbell with another trainer! This sh*t actually goes on in the gym!

While I was working, there came a point when I realized that my ultimate dream was to set up my own training facility. A year and a half ago, me and my now business partner, Zoran Dubaic, went to Dirty Jerzee to meet up with Zach Even-Esh and Joe DeFranco. After seeing what they were doing over there, I decided it was time to put it into practice in the UK. When we got back, we got straight to work pricing up everything we needed and emailing anyone who could help. But as the months passed by, we actually weren’t getting anywhere. We were knocked down by some of our friends who said it wouldn’t work, by the council for our unit space, and by the banks for money. The list went on and on. Being in this situation, it was so easy to give up, but we didn’t. We kept our goal in mind, digging away at it bit by bit while still slaving away at the local gym and having to watch the most stupid exercises and half reps galore. Over time, pieces fell into place. We used all the information gathered from strength coaches (our mentors) and put endless hours of work in and soon it was becoming a reality. The ambition, the dream, and the challenge were complete.

The point I’m trying to get at here is never ever give up on what you want. I know a lot of coaches say this, but when you realize your dream, you have to do what it takes to make it happen. Don’t let anything or anyone get in your way! We didn’t and look what we’ve achieved now. I went from working in a commercial gym to becoming a proud owner of one of the best training facilities in the UK. For me, it still hasn’t totally sunk in!

“Never, never, never give up.” –Winston Churchill

Please have a look at the birth of our new facility—Strength and Performance—at

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About the Author

Sean Keefe is a director and co-founder of Strength and Performance. ( A talented athlete and former international competitor, he has risen through the ranks of the fitness profession over the last five years and is now one of South Manchester’s most highly sought after performance enhancement specialists. Having worked with some of the nations sporting elite, Sean has earned a reputation for his no nonsense approach to training, unique perspective on program design, and corrective exercise experience. With his extensive knowledge of strength conditioning, postural correction, and nutrition consolidated with thousands of hours spent under the bar as a dedicated athlete, Sean takes a hands-on approach with all his clients. His winning mentality and meticulous attention to detail enables him to push his athletes further than they though possible.

When Fraser Murray stopped by at Strength and Performance

 When one of the UK’s most knowledgeable Performance Enhancement Specialists and owner of fitness consulting website, Fraser Murray announced that he would like to stop by at Strength and Performance to train, talk shop and do an interview with us, we jumped at the chance!

For those of you who don’t know Fraser Murray, he is a highly tallented personal trainer, fitness guru, consulting business owner and a great athlete in his own right!

If you live in the Dundee area and are looking for a trainer to take your strength and fitness goals to the next level then do not hesitate to contact Fraser, you will NOT be disapointed!

Check out the website:

We are looking forward to hooking up with Fraser in the near future.

Here is what Fraser had to say about Strength and Performance:

The Best Gym in the UK!

This past week I had the opportunity to train at Strength and Performance (a new gym that opened in Manchester last month). I have to say, the guys down there have absolutely nailed it!

“Zoran and Sean are the owners and are the most competent trainers I have met in the UK.”

The way that these guys are running the place is a bit different, and for good reason. Strength and Performance is not the kind of place you can just walk into and sign up – it’s the kind of place where you have to really want to achieve your goal.

As I entered the underground style gym I had an old familiar feeling. You know the one? The feeling of eagerness and anticipation. The feeling that you are about to have the toughest, yet most productive session you have had in a long time.

When you enter Strength and Pe! rformance and look around, you know it’s the kind of environment where you have to work hard.


The energy coming from Sean and “Z” made me feel like I could lift all the weights in the gym, unfortunately experience has taught me to know my limitations and so I settled for what was supposed to be a 3RM (but actually felt like 80%)! All I could think about when I left was that I really wish there was a set up like S&P in Scotland.

The bottom line is, if you live in Manchester get along to Strength and Performance.

Fraser Murray.

Check out Fraser Murray at for more information

The site is GOLD! You will gain access to all of Frasers articles and an endless supply of excercise tips and videos!

Expect BIG things from this man in 2010!

Lift BIG, get STRONG!!


Strength and Performance Coach

Easter Friday Blitz at Strength and Performance

The Friday morning crew just cranked out a SICK ‘Blitz’ session at the Strength and Performance HQ!

EVERYONE gave just a little bit more and the atmosphere was INTENSE!

I LOVE it when people come down to the gym with the right attitude, highly motivated and ready to SMASH it! – makes our job the BEST job in the world! 🙂

Here’s what the guys rocked out this morning:

1) tyre flips x5

2) sand bag clean and press x8

3) chins x MAX

4) Kettle Bell swings x10

5) Tornado ball x10

6) Prowler runs x2 30m lengths

ALL participants cranked out 5 or more sets with short rest periods!

One BEAST hit 8 sets wearing a weighted vest for ALL rounds – he just kept coming back for more!!

Now as coaches it pays to be able to walk the walk, not just talk a good game. Coaches who talk the talk but can’t do the walking get exposed as frauds – these people  give our industry a bad name!

Not us! – Soon as the last member had left the gym we were ready and pumped to shift some iron!

Heavy Trap Bar DL’s were pulled for high reps, rack pulls were hit, sand bag glute bridges, kettle bell swings and prowler runs were smashed, to name a few…

More to come on Monday.

Time to rest up, spend time with family, eat BIG and recover in time for Bench on Monday!

If YOU  are hitting the gym today, make sure you SMASH IT!!

Lift BIG, get STRONG!


Strength and Performance Coach