Lion Dancer turned Fitness Trainer: Nelson Wong

Fitness Instructor incorporates Blaze Pods for his HIIT classes in the dark


He lacked the strength to carry the head of the lion when he joined his college's Lion Dance troupe overseas. That was what prompted Nelson Wong to hit the gym for the next four years and build up the necessary muscles to complete the task.

Little did he realise that it would eventually lead him into a career in fitness.

"For me aerobic wise I was okay, but strength wise I really needed to build up my muscles in order to carry the 20kg lion dance head, and to be able to dance around with it."

"Throughout the four years (of my time in University) I went to the gym a lot - and did a lot of compound exercises: dead lifts and bench presses etc just to build up my muscles to be able to take that kind of impact during Lion Dance."


As he also needed to work on his agility for Lion Dance, he took on Yoga to help him with overall agility and flexibility.

His time putting on muscle did not go without its consequences though, as he realised he started to gain a lot of weight after college when he stopped his Lion Dance training.

That was when he transitioned into running, a sport which helped him to lose unnecessary weight and gain a lot of lean muscle.


He went on to co-found the Superhero Runners group, now known today as the UA Run Crew of Singapore.

As if that weren't enough, the multi-talented trainer, who has taught across many commercial gyms over the years, founded Torch HIIT in 2020. His classes are done in the dark, which makes for an interesting and unique dynamic.

He shared: "In the darkness people are free to move, and they are just being themselves in that moment."

"Apart from the usual HIIT training, we've also decided to incorporate Blaze Pods (little blinking lights), so that members can train on agility and quickness, with different kinds of exercise using blaze pods."


When asked what he thought of the fitness industry trends in the post-Covid world, Wong believes group fitness is here to stay.

"It is still one of the most popular and effective ways for people to lose weight, so I don't think that will change much," Wong said. "But how classes are delivered will need to evolve with the times."

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