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Forres Mechanics Youth Development Zoom fitness sessions


By Garry McCartney

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Lucca McCullie and his brother Josh stretching in their kitchen.
Lucca McCullie and his brother Josh stretching in their kitchen.

SIXTY boys who make up Forres Mechanics Youth squads are preparing for a new season, whenever that may be.

Their online fitness and skills regime is known as the Isolation Challenge and involves all players, and many willing or not so willing mums and dads, in tough fitness and football skill activities.

The challenge has proved a big hit with both boys and parents, judging by comments and footage being shared online through Zoom.

Personal trainer Mollie Powney is keeping the squads on their toes.
Personal trainer Mollie Powney is keeping the squads on their toes.

Perhaps the toughest challenge of all is being offered by personal trainer Mollie Powney (20) whose fitness video and online encouragement have left participants of all ages gasping for breath.

The self-employed personal trainer is currently unemployed because lockdown has shut her place of work, Life and Sole at Forres Enterprise Park.

But Mollie is using the time to ensure that her football lads train for fitness in their gardens and front rooms.

She said: "The boys are extremely dedicated and I admire that. With gym training unavailable, I couldn't let them down, plus I couldn't wait to make them do burpees again!"

Conicavel based Mollie in 2017 became Scotland's youngest qualified personal trainer, an achievement she attributes to her parents.

She said: "My dad changed my mum's and many other lives through fitness. He now works as a rehabilitation specialist at Move4Ward physical therapy clinic in Elgin, continuing to change lives in a different way. Mum taught fitness classes of her own when she was younger."

Mollie admits to have found lockdown tough but remains positive: "Like everyone, we have found the pandemic difficult. It has been hard. However, the comeback is often bigger than the setback. We are adapting to circumstances and will continue to do so until we re-open Life and Sole."

Coach Alex McGettrick after one of the challenges.
Coach Alex McGettrick after one of the challenges.

Mechanics' Head of Youth, Allan Frisken, is a big fan of Moray's answer to Joe Wicks.

He said: "Mollie is totally respected by the boys and the parents. She has been fantastic for us and has made a big difference to the physical and mental fitness of our squads and a lot of parents, too. The only complaint I have heard is that some front room carpets will be worn out and need replacing if she keeps upping the ante!"

His view seemed to be supported by at least one dad after the latest session, who said: "Conlan is saying that Mollie is getting tougher!! Didn't think it possible."

Owan Royan crunching at home.
Owan Royan crunching at home.
Grant Napier working out in his back garden.
Grant Napier working out in his back garden.

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