New CrossFit room for Navy’s northern force

This article has photo gallery Published on LEUT Todd Fitzgerald (author), POIS Peter Thompson (photographer)

Location(s): HMAS Coonawarra, NT

Topic(s): HMAS Coonawarra, Health, Fitness and Wellbeing, Physical Training (PT)

Commander Shore Force, CAPT Stephen Bowater, OAM, RAN (third left), joins Chief Petty Officer Physical Training Instructor (CPOPTI) Stuart Rowe (second left), Leading Seaman Physical Training Instructor Justin Heard (left) and Executive Officer HMAS Coonawarra, Lieutenant Commander Kate Woodall (right) in opening the newly completed CrossFit room at the Larrakeyah Defence Precinct gymnasium, in Darwin, NT. (photo: POIS Peter Thompson)
Commander Shore Force, CAPT Stephen Bowater, OAM, RAN (third left), joins Chief Petty Officer Physical Training Instructor (CPOPTI) Stuart Rowe (second left), Leading Seaman Physical Training Instructor Justin Heard (left) and Executive Officer HMAS Coonawarra, Lieutenant Commander Kate Woodall (right) in opening the newly completed CrossFit room at the Larrakeyah Defence Precinct gymnasium, in Darwin, NT.

Redevelopments at HMAS Coonawarra in Darwin are placing the Navy base and the greater Larrakeyah Defence Precinct in which it resides at the top of Australia’s Defence Force bases for facilities and services.

The opening of a new CrossFit room at the gym, and the purchase of professional workout equipment, is the latest in a string of changes on base.

Navy’s Shore Force Command contributed $35,000 to the new facility.

Commander Shore Force, Captain Stephen Bowater, opened the CrossFit room and said Navy needed a robust program to ensure its officers and sailors in Darwin were fighting fit to perform border operations in the north.

“This facility is about making sure our servicemen and women are at the peak of their physical capability,” Captain Bowater said.

Afternoon group sessions in the room will incorporate cardio endurance, strength, stamina, power, flexibility, speed, agility, coordination, accuracy and balance.

Navy Physical Training Instructors will also run a 12 week strength and conditioning program and use the room to help injured personnel return to health.

Chief Petty Officer PTI Stuart Rowe said the fit out of the room had taken 12 months, but had been worth the wait. He invited all ADF personnel posted to Darwin and visiting the Northern Territory capital to come and use the facility.

“Before we started, the room had no identity, it felt disjointed and had no warmth to it. So after 12 months it is very pleasing to be able to offer a professional CrossFit room, comparable to anything you will find in the south,” Chief Petty Officer Rowe said.

Larrakeyah Defence Precinct and Coonawarra are undergoing a significant redevelopment.

Last year, Defence committed $272 million to upgrade naval facilities in the North, which will include a new outer-wharf at Coonawarra to support varying combinations of the Navy’s major surface combatant ships and submarines, and enhance the ADF capability to conduct operations and exercises in the north of Australia.

Defence has also committed a further $223 million to the Larrakeyah Defence Precinct Redevelopment Project that, in part, will support Navy operations in the North.

Captain Bowater opened the CrossFit room during his visit to Darwin for Navy Week in the Northern Territory.