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Altitude gets Hall to the line

Michael Whiting  March 30, 2013 10:21 AM

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Small forward Aaron Hall is determined to play more senior football in 2013

I'm feeling a lot fitter on the ground and can get to more stoppages and get to more contests
GOLD Coast small forward Aaron Hall did everything possible to win his round one selection against St Kilda, including setting up camp inside an altitude room for 16 days.

Hall was hampered by a groin niggle and a fractured rib during the pre-season, so to help accelerate his recovery, the Suns went to extreme lengths.

Along with fellow injured duo Seb Tape (knee) and Trent McKenzie (knee), Hall trained as normal at sea level but slept in the club's altitude room throughout much of February.

The results were staggering.

Hall was aerobically tested before the stint, then returned 16 days later with a 7.5 per cent spike in his performance.

The 'train low, sleep high' theory is one that's slowly gaining worldwide momentum.

Hall played the final three NAB Cup matches and said the difference was noticeable.

"I feel a lot fitter, and I'm able to cover the ground a lot more while I'm out there," Hall said.

"We'd spend at least 13 hours a day in the room. Schwerdty (physical performance coordinator Stephen Schwerdt) and the fitness staff decked it all out with beds and tvs, and we had fridge and toaster and everything in there.

"It was better than going back to Arizona and I improved the same as I did there."

Hall played eight games last year, kicking eight goals.

He was outstanding in the last three pre-season matches and capped it with an 18-disposal, three-goal performance against Melbourne at Southport on March 16.

"I'm feeling a lot fitter on the ground and can get to more stoppages and get to more contests," Hall said.

"Half forward is a pretty high work-rate role, getting up and putting pressure on defenders and getting back to the fall of the ball and trying to hit the scoreboard.

"It's a pretty taxing role but it's one I need to mould myself into."

Aaron Hall is a forward in NAB AFL Fantasy. He averaged 62 points in 2012. Register your team at our AFL Fantasy Hub.

Michael Whiting covers Gold Coast news for AFL.com.au. Follow him on Twitter: @AFL_mikewhiting