RUSSELL, Andrew

Andrew Russell

Degree:

Bachelor of Human Movement (Applied Science)

Graduation year:

1997

Current Position:

Head Fitness Coach

Employer:

Hawthorn Football Club

2016 Alumnus of the Year

After graduating, Andrew obtained his first major sporting role as an assistant first coach with the Essendon Football Club in the Australian Football League.   The club won the premiership in 2000, and Andrew was “head-hunted” by rival AFL club, Port Adelaide.

He took up the role of Head Fitness Coach with Port Adelaide a year later, and contributed to Port Adelaide winning a Premiership in 2004.

Andrew later moved back to Victoria to the Hawthorn Football Club as a High Performance Manager.

Andrew has constantly undertaken professional development to improve his effectiveness, and to this date, has been involved in six AFL premierships.

Andrew leads by example, by undertaking his own endurance running training, which has allowed him to compete at events such as the Stawell Gift.  Andrew has also coached Jeff Riseley an accomplished Australian middle-distance runner to a World Championship 800 metre semi-final last year, and a 5th place at the Commonwealth Games in 2014.

What are some of your career highlights?

Securing the role of Head Fitness Coach at Port Adelaide Football Club when I was 24.

Premierships I have been involved in - Essendon 2000, Port Adelaide 2004, Hawthorn 2008.

Describe the most enjoyable and challenging aspects of your job:

Enjoyable:

Working with elite athletes, seeing the development of young players – physically & emotionally.

No two days are the same in an elite sporting environment. I am lucky enough to work with a wide range of highly talented people who push for improvement constantly.

Challenging:

Managing expectations of stakeholders (internally & externally)

Keeping a team motivated and in optimum physical condition for a lengthy season.

What are your strongest memories while you were studying at the University of Ballarat?

How much fun campus life was – I made many lifelong friends and have great memories of my time at UB.

Quality of the lecturers and the learning environment in my course – definitely set me up for work life.

Do you have any advice about life after study to pass on to current students?

Be prepared to do the hard yards. So many young students that contact me have high
expectations about the starting point.