SW7 Academy – Sam Warburton OBE

Creating a home gym for a rugby legend

There’s no denying Sam Warburton is a living rugby legend. Since becoming Wales’ youngest ever Captain at 22 years of age and going on to lead them to their highest ever finish at the 2011 Rugby World Cup, Sam won 74 caps for Wales, including a record 49 as Captain. He also captained The British & Irish Lions twice, remaining the only captain to have avoided defeat both times.

Now retired from rugby, Sam Warburton brings his years of performance training experience to the SW7 Academy online training initiative. Along with fellow trainers Josh Davies and Chris Tombs, SW7 Academy offers professional training and nutrition plans via their online membership and app.

Absolute Performance has worked with Sam Warburton and SW7 Academy for some time now, providing training spaces and equipment worthy of their high-performance, goal-lead programs. So when it came to creating a home gym for Sam, we were confident we could fit the bill. This would be a premium refit of his garage gym conversion, creating a professional strength and conditioning space that would also fit comfortably in Sam’s family home.

I’d like to thank Absolute Performance for their service in installing my home gym. I thought the quality of the equipment and the installation process ran like an absolute dream

– Sam Warburton

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Performance equipment

Sam Warburton’s pro-level training discipline requires equipment to match. Handily, we’d already created an SW7 ACADEMY HOME GYM PACKAGE  packed with everything a home gym user needs to follow their online strength and conditioning training programs. Complementing the SW7 package with a few more accessories and storage options easily created the ideal rugby performance training space.

Rubber gym flooring

Sam’s garage conversion home gym has a modest 17 square metres of floor space, on which we laid 30mm 1x1m rubber gym flooring tiles. This not only protects the floor and building but reduces the noise created by heavy dropping weights (essential in a home gym to avoid bothering family or neighbors).

Weight rack and accessories

As part of the SW7 Academy Home Gym Package, Sam requested our own Apex Quarter Rack with a dipping attachment and safety arms. This robust yet compact quarter rack features a pull-up crossbar, which doubles as an attachment point for the Apex Suspension Trainer which was also supplied for this home gym installation.

Home gym storage

To accompany the Apex weight plates and bars, a pair of our Apex Olympic Plate Racks (or ‘Toaster Racks’ as we affectionately call them) were provided to keep them organised.

An organised home gym is an effective home gym, and these plate storage racks include x2 vertical barbell holders to minimise the gym equipment footprint. Sam stores his new Apex Elite Olympic Barbell (with slick black sleeves) and Apex Hex Bar in these holders.

Customised gym equipment and graphics

For the gym that requires that little ‘something extra’, we offer several customisation options for gym equipment and other items. Sam Warburton’s home gym is no exception. Because this home gym would be somewhere for Sam and SW7 Academy to create training content for their online academy, extra customised items were added to the gym installation list. On top of producing dual-branded SW7 Academy / Absolute Performance wall graphics, we installed a premium layered oak lifting platform under the Quarter Rack, finished with further SW7 / AP branding.

I’ve been a trainer for over 15 years and I’m really glad that I’ve found a long-term equipment provider who I’ll use for the rest of my life. I was so impressed with their equipment and service that I can’t imagine looking elsewhere.

– Sam Warburton

The result

Sam Warburton’s home gym is the ideal hybrid of the personal gym and SW7 Academy training space. Because the subscribed members of SW7 Academy would often be training in their own homes, it makes sense that Sam Warburton would be able to build training programmes around equipment that fits in a standard-sized home garage gym. This gym now remains a testament to the ongoing partnership between SW7 and Absolute Performance, together providing training programs and equipment which allows SW7 members to push themselves mentally and physically toward their goals.


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– Apex 7ft Elite Olympic Bar (Click Here to Buy)
– Apex Black Rubber Training Plates (full set 10-25kg)
– Apex Fractional Change Plates
– Apex Suspension Trainer
– Apex Impact Foam Roller Black/Grey
– Apex Quarter Rack
– Rack Dipping Attachment
– Rack Spotter/Safety Arms (pair)
– Custom Branded Layered Oak Lifting Platform
– 1mx1mx30mm Solid Black Rubber Tiles + Ramped Edges
– Adjustable Incline Bench
– Apex 6ft Black Hex Bar (closed)
– x2 Plate Storage ‘Toast Racks’
– Full set of x5 Resistance Bands Large > Small
– Set Apex Hex Dumbbells 5-50kg

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