Like a family to me
I had some nasty injuries on the board, but also some in football. All throughout junior footy I didn’t have any problems. But once I started AFL, the physical demands were much higher, obviously.
I had osteitis pubis in 2015 and played 18 games with it, I’ve had a broken L5 in my back, a hamstring tendon problem and broke my ankle in round 8 of 2014 and missed the rest of the season.
Since then, it hasn’t been too bad. I’ve been able to manage my body a lot better, doing pilates a lot more and understanding how to look after myself.
Football is physically demanding but I think it’s equally mentally demanding. You’ve got to look after your mind as well. It takes a lot of work but it’s really important.
The pressure of football – also just modern life – gets to everyone.
One thing I’m really thankful for is how open the Giants have been about helping us players develop the mental side of the game as much as anything else.
The people at the club have been amazing. It’s a large part of the reason why I had no hesitation in signing a five-year deal earlier this year and staying here in Sydney.
The development of the club has been immense and it’s coincided with my development as a person. I’m really grateful for the opportunities I’ve been given here and I never thought about changing clubs.
This place feels like a family to me, so it was an easy decision and the deal was done pretty quickly.
Documenting the Giants
Part of that development has involved getting prepared for life post-footy. What I’m thinking of doing is getting into film production and editing.
I’m working closely with our media team at the club and learning a lot from them, which I’ve enjoyed a lot.
Once that game against the Demons was over, I thought, ‘I can’t keep doing this’. I had this great opportunity with the Giants, but I wasn’t enjoying my football.
Recently the club let me make the ‘Welcome To Country’ video, which we play at every home game. They allowed me to film, edit and direct it. Seeing it up on the big screen before a game is something I’m really proud of.
A major project I’ve undertaken recently is a full-length, hour-long documentary about the Giants.
The point of the documentary is to show some of the history of the club, show how much hard work has gone into building what we have here, and the fact that whatever success we might have is based on brotherhood, not just talent.
I want to change some people’s perceptions of what’s going on at the Giants.
A couple of weeks ago, I found some ripping footage on some old hard drives from our first couple of years, which I’m going through at the moment.
The plan is to have about 60 per cent of the documentary done before the grand final, interview some players after it and then have the finished product out by January or February next year.
All that’s left for us to do is win that grand final!