The Student News Site of Taipei American School




Athletes soaked in Pooles of sweat


When athletic trainer Mr. Anthony Poole entered the gym as the newest member of the fitness training team this year, he immediately made his arrival known. “Poole” is no longer just a last name, but a word that has become synonymous with physical exercise beyond imagined limits.
When asked to describe a session with Coach Poole, Vera C., (‘21) immediately answered, “It’s hell.” Best known for his 23-minute, no rest ab workout and intense body-weight training, Mr. Poole’s workouts are capable of leaving the most seasoned IASAS (Interscholastic Association of Southeast Asian Schools) athletes unable to walk up stairs the next day.
Despite the pain, athletes and fitness freaks keep coming back for his help. “I was getting stronger each time I went even though it was really painful,” says Vera. “He’s like a friend because he’s always cheering you on through the whole process.” Cheyenne H. (‘19), 2017 IASAS Basketball Champion and All-Tournament, says, “Not only do you gain muscle, but you gain mental toughness.”
As a former brakeman for the U.S.A Olympic bobsledding team, Mr. Poole used fitness as a tool to advance himself to a higher level in sports. Inspired by the many athletes he came across when he was playing as a pro, Mr. Poole says, “I thought I was at that level, and I was. But I knew if I could find a way to create a pattern that could build myself, I can build anyone else.”
Mr. Poole implements this mentality to help athletes reach their potential. “Most athletes or parents or teachers coddle kids, meaning they don’t let you reach your highest potential because they are afraid when they feel pain. They think that’s the level to stop,” he says. “But when we feel pain we know that’s when we reach the barrier and when we get better.”
Athletes who have consistently trained with him have developed a capability to handle the physical suffering and develop positive results. When asked which of his clients were the most dedicated, Mr. Poole mentioned that the varsity boys basketball team stood out in their dedication to fitness training. Varsity basketball coach Mr. David Montgomery says that strength and fitness has been one of the team’s shortcomings in previous when they compete with the other IASAS schools. He says, “We encourage [players] to work with Coach Poole and even use practice time to train with him. It’s been a real success so far. Physically, [the players’] bodies are changing and it’s a credit to Coach Poole and also to the players themselves.”

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