In 1982, Russell cut short a naval career to pursue university studies in Physical Education. A year later he embarked on his first job as a Gym and Aerobics Instructor, which in combination with his university training, led him to teaching instructor training courses.
During his career, Russell has worked across a diverse range of fitness categories, from elite sports conditioning and education, through to sales and corporate health.
In addition to owning his own gym, he has also been elected to leadership positions for a number of Industry bodies.
In 1997, Russell established the Australian Institute of Fitness in WA. And in 2000, along with Greg Hurst and Nigel Champion, he brought the Australian Institute of Fitness together as a national group.
Russell was appointed Commander in Chief the following year, and steered AIF through its formative years as a national group until 2007.
Since then, he has played an active role as a Director on the National Board of the Australian Institute of Fitness.
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