About Us

The Academy is a full time health and fitness studio situated in Basildon. It has been running now for seven years, starting at a premises in Rayleigh, then moving to Basildon in the Cranes Farm Road and finally settling in it’s present location in Burnt Mills. Originally it was essentially a martial arts academy it is now more firmly established in promoting health and fitness to all. The Academy officially opened by Steve’s good friend and mentor Bob Breen.

Owner and Senior Instructor Steve Merrett


Steve has long been involved in teaching, first karate then a multitude of other things since. It was with a view to being a school teacher that he left a managerial post to attend university to get a degree and the qualifications to be a teacher. After working in local schools for almost a year he decided that teaching in schools wasn’t for him and he opened his first fulltime gym.

He received a BSc (Hons) degree in sports science from the University of Greenwich. He is a REPs Level 4 Cardiac Rehabilitation Trainer, a Lower Back Exercise Specialist and qualified sports therapist. Having practised first aid from the age of 8 he has taught first aid for the last 15 years and runs H.S.E approved courses. An Advanced SCUBA diving instructor with the British Sub-Aqua Club, a triathlon level 1 coach and taken part in nineteen triathlons and ran five marathons.

Currently a 6th Dan in Karate he started to learn in 1974. He also has grades in Japanese Ju Jitsu and kick boxing. He has practised JKD and Filipino Martial Arts for over thirty years and Tai Chi now for seven years. Recently he has been exploring Systema a Russian martial art which seems to link all his previous martial arts training under one roof.

Simon Merrett

Simon teaches functional strength at the Academy, he is certified directly under one of the top strength and conditioning coaches in the world Steve Maxwell. He has a degree in sports science, he is a REPs Level 2 Gym Instructor and a qualified Life Guard. Simon also likes to run and has completed three Tough Guy competitions.