The St George Illawarra Dragons officially returned to training to commence their conditioning and preparation for the 2015 Premiership season on Monday.

The Dragons first-grade full-time training squad returned primed and refreshed to commence the first phase of pre-season training which will end prior to the holiday period in late December.

The first-grade full-time training squad undertook an initial orientation period being introduced to the Football Department coaching staff for the upcoming campaign before undertaking their first weights and conditioning session in the newly upgraded gymnasium facilities.

The Dragons have upgraded several facilities in and around the training area which includes, in addition to the gymnasium, an altitude chamber and specialised conditioning rooms.

“We worked hard over the last four weeks to upgrade our training facilities in time for the beginning of pre-season as this time of year is critical in laying the right foundations down early,” said Head Coach Paul McGregor.

“It was pleasing to see the entire pre-season training squad get stuck-in with their weights and later on in the work we will start introducing further activities to their training programs including field sessions.

“Our focus in the first few weeks will be to build-up the fitness of the entire playing squad before we commence further intensive training.

“All the players know what is required of them througout this pre-season and I cannot ask for anything more than their very best with every session they do.”

Dragons first-grade players presently taking part in the Rugby League Four Nations Tournament will not report for duty until later in the pre-season period.