Cardiff Blues players and management warmed up for today's clash with Connacht by attending St David's Hall for an exclusive access to Michael Flatley's Irish music and dancing spectacle, Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games.
Cardiff Blues’ mobility and recovery coach, Richard Hughes, has over 20 years of experience in fitness conditioning and personal training, and has worked alongside Michael Flatley and his team for over 10 years.
Hughes, the man behind ‘Celtic Fitness’, has also worked alongside some of the biggest names in the entertainment industry, including Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Pink and Kasabian and runs Cardiff Blues Bootcamp on BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park.
Flatley was born in Chicago but has family ties with the Connacht province, with his father a native of Sligo before crossing the Atlantic. In 1998 Flatley broke the world record for tapping speed with 35 taps per second, and is internationally known for his shows including Riverdance and Lord of the Dance.
The Blues players, alongside head coach Danny Wilson and CEO Richard Holland, were treated to an insight into the pre-show warm-up routines, conducted by Hughes, before meeting the cast, which included lead dancer James Keegan,who recently return from USA after performing at Donald Trump’s presidential inauguration.
Cardiff Blues forward Macauley Cook was fascinated by the intensity and discipline of the performance.
“We got invited to St David’s Hall by Richard, who does a lot of our mobility training. We got to meet the performers taking part in the show tonight, and see how they warm up, which was interesting to see,” said Cook.
“We also got tickets to see the main show performance in the night, and it was fantastic. I was really impressed with the speed and the timing. It was unbelievable.
“I’d like to know the amount of hours they put in to practicing the routines and the timings. They were all in-sync and it was really impressive to watch. I couldn’t believe some of the stuff they were doing. The boys really enjoyed the show and I would advise anyone to go to watch it.
“The footwork is something we could introduce in the line-out possibly! The speed on the feet were unbelievable. I don’t think I could get close to being that quick!”
For more information on Celtic Fitness and the Cardiff Blues Bootcamps please visit celticfitness.co.uk
Meanwhile, the Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games UK tour continues. For full tour dates and to book your tickets, head over to lordofthedance.com