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A Breed Apart

If you have ever had the desire to push your body beyond it’s physical limits for sport, it’s quite possible that you have used a Personal Trainer to achieve this.  These days its not uncommon to have a training specialist by your side at all times when you visit the gym or train for a special event.  Some lack the motivation to push themselves and require constant attention to reach their personal goals.

I met with Paul Heasley the other day at Hillsborough Park for a sports portrait as he is a fascinating character and I once had the opportunity to train under him when I decided at the tender age of 32 to take up rugby (whoops!). I was always very sporty in my life and loved pushing my limits on the pitch but my body got the shock of it’s life when I started to train under Paul.  He doesn’t suffer fools and I learned quickly that first night he has a knack of knowing just how much to squeeze out of an individual to get maximum returns.  Paul has been a Fitness Professional for eight years and has been running his own personal training business in Belfast City centre in the last three years.

Known affectionately in rugby circles as Diesel, Paul is one hell of a tackler (thankfully I don’t have 1st hand experience of this) and played senior rugby for a number of years before realising that he could marry his passion for rugby and training and teach others about getting the best results from their body.  Paul is Northern Ireland’s only C.H.E.K. practitioner (Corrective High-performance Exercise Kinesiology), using a holistic approach of individualised exercise program design and lifestyle coaching to help clients overcome common roadblocks to ensure they move and perform optimally, and look and feel in peak condition.  After speaking with Paul on the shoot it was clear how strongly he feels about his work and it’s affect on the lucky few he works with.  One of his favourite tools of the trade is the kettle bell.  You can see a few of his training techniques below in the image gallery.  Paul’s brute strength and endurance are not born of protein shakes and creatine but rather intelligent training and a healthy balanced diet.  When asked once at the club about protein shakes and the best for maximum gains Paul simply replied “None.”  I’ve never seen a fella so confused in all my life…..Paul just smiled and walked out.  End of conversation.

Paul was a senior rugby player for the best part of his youth and still remains very passionate about the game.  More recently, he was given the opportunity to work as a strength and conditioning coach to the Ulster under 19 clubs side who went on to win the inter-provincial championship in September of this year.  Paul also coaches at Lurgan Rugby Club.

To get in touch with Paul to enquire about a training session you can email him here at  He is an absolute gentleman and believes in client confidentiality so don’t be afraid to contact him to discuss your requirements in greater detail.

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