May 30, 2020

Bighill back to work as IG Field re-opens

MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Winnipeg Blue Bombers' Adam Bighill (4) does some running drills on the field at Investors Group Stadium Friday morning. see Taylor Allen story 200529 - Friday, May 29, 2020.

Adam Bighill took a break from hauling tractor trailers, lifting chains and getting creative in his workouts to return to his old stomping grounds: the Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ locker room, weight room and the turf at IG Field.

The Bombers’ veteran middle linebacker was the first player to return to IG Field on Friday since Manitoba health officials and the Canadian Football League gave the green light to return to the facility under proper guidelines.

Those guidelines include being screened with questions about COVID-19 before entry to the facility, sanitizing, physical distancing and a one-to-one player-trainer ratio.

Bighill worked with Brayden Miller, the Bombers assistant athletic therapist and strength and conditioning specialist.

“It’s good to be back in the gym and using some of the tools you want to use,” Bighill told after his training session. “It’s good to get back to a normal training routine.

“I’ve been training in the garage, almost Rocky-style, using batteries or chains or different weights like cinder blocks to add weight. I’ve been pushing trucks… It’s just trying to make the best of what you can.”


The Bombers’ locker room, coaches and football operations offices would normally be abuzz at this time of year, smack dab in the middle of training camp. But the global pandemic has had facilities on lockdown for weeks before Phase 2 of the Manitoba government’s reopening plan was put into effect last week, followed by approval from the CFL to return.

“I’m used to being in there when there’s not a lot of people in there,” said Bighill. “I’m obviously there when it’s mandatory, but I also do a lot of training on my own and put in work when no one’s around.

“So, it wasn’t too different for me. I’m training right now like it’s March, even though we should be playing. When we’re back on the field, we’re back on the field. You can’t look at it any more than that. You have to take it for what it is and understand that when it’s time to be back out there we’ll be back out there.

“There’s no point worrying about things you can’t control. It’s just wasted energy, quite frankly.”

Bighill said his emphasis on flexibility, strength and movement training has him in the best shape in his life. He’ll continue his ‘Rocky-style’ workouts with what he now does at IG Field, following the new routine that requires players to set up appointments to work out at the facility. On Friday he did his work in the Bombers’ weight room before heading out onto the turf to work on explosive short distance runs, top-end speed work, agility drills as well as endurance training.

“I’ll mix in both because I really liked what I was doing, but it’s good to have the tools from the facility back at my disposal,” he said. “It’s something I’ve been working on, building more strength in my legs.

“Overall, the more flexible you are and stronger you are it helps you become a better athlete and produce more overall power. This will for sure make me the fastest I’ve ever been and more athletic than I’ve ever been.”


Like everyone in the CFL – actually, all sports in general  – Bighill is eager to get back to work with his teammates. He’s hopeful the league can return by September and still manage to play a meaningful regular season.

“Everyone wants to play,” he said. “I think everyone wants to have a season, so it’s just a matter of making sure everything is safe and coordinated properly.

“We’re obviously hoping we’re going to be able to get that done. I’m optimistic everything will work out.”