Gloucester Rugby's playing season may be at an end but, behind the scenes, the Kingsholm machine ticks on as evidenced by the summer schedule of Strength & Conditioning Coach Barny Allen.
As he revealed to the Gloucester Rugby website this week, the close season period is a busy one for him personally as, in addition to his Gloucester Rugby duties, he prepares to link up with the England squad for their summer matches against Argentina.
Barny explained how the link with the national team had first come about.
"I initially did some work with England during the autumn internationals in October. It was a great experience - I really enjoyed working with the national squad and seeing the approach they take to Strengthening & Conditioning."
"The opportunity originally came about as a result of my boss, Mark Bitcom (Head of Strengthening & Conditioning for Gloucester Rugby). Mark used to work with England's Deputy Strengthening & Conditioning Coach, Paul Stridgeon and he arranged for me to have a temporary placement with them."
"During that time, I worked closely with the England team to support their training sessions and programmes. It was an intense period as I was still doing my full-time duties for Gloucester as well but I think I really benefited from the experience and they seemed to value my contribution as they've asked me to support the summer matches vs Argentina."
"I'll be involved from a pre tour training camp which starts on the 19th of May for a few days and then the following week in the run up to the Barbarians game all the way up until we get back from Argentina on June 16th."
Being involved at international level is a goal for anyone working in professional sport something that Barny agreed with wholeheartedly.
"Definitely. For anyone coaching or playing, being involved with the national team has to be ranked right up there at the pinnacle of the professional game."
"It's two test matches and full international caps at stake. Admittedly, it's a summer tour and some players may be absent but the intensity and the will to win will be strong. I'm very much looking forward to it."
The Gloucester Rugby first team squad will have reported back for preseason training by the time the England tour comes to an end which he admitted will pose some challenges.
"It's obviously not ideal to come back when guys will have already started preseason by the time I get back."
"However, I'll be getting back at the same time as some of the international players so hopefully we can collectively offer some fresh insight and share our experiences from the tour."
"In terms of the training we've been doing in the Gloucester camp, the season obviously finished disappointingly early for us so I've been working closely with the players who will potentially be touring. We've been working really hard and I'm really pleased with their progress."
"Our priority in the Strengthening & Conditioning team over the next few months is to really move things forward. As with any preseason, increasing body mass throughout the squad is our first priority and then we'll start to start to focus on the conditioning."
As well as the current squad members, Barny revealed that there has already been plenty of contact with the Gloucester's new summer signings.
"We've already started speaking to the new team members joining the squad. As soon as we knew our season was finished, we gave the current squad members their offseason programmes as well as the new signings."
"There are a number of generic programmes which we give to all the players and they will also have checked in with our physio team to sort out any niggles before cracking on with their individual programmes."
"Some players will still be playing so it'll be slightly different for them when they report to us for preseason but everything is in place for them to have a positive start to their Gloucester careers."
The picture painted by Barny reinforces the impression that professional rugby union is now very much a 12 month a year game.
"The year for me has gone incredibly quickly which seems to be the case every year. Before we know it, we'll be training again then playing preseason games and then into the season proper."
"Then it's week on week with the usual pressures. It's a great environment to be in. It's the career we choose and we wouldn't have it any other way."
Skipper Billy Twelvetrees told GRTV after the win in Brive that the game could have been a tough one to get up for, but that his Gloucester team mates did themselves proud on the night and got a big result.
Reflecting on the 31-20 victory in Brive on Thursday evening, Director of Rugby David Humphreys said that clinching a home European Rugby Challenge Cup quarter-final was the overall aim and duly achieved.
Gloucester may have already clinched a home European Rugby Challenge Cup quarter-final, but Director of Rugby David Humphreys wants his side to finish the pool stages on a winning note in Brive on Thursday evening.
Speaking after Saturday's win, James Hudson was happy to record a bonus-point win against a hugely physical Oyonnax side as Gloucester secured their passage into the European Rugby Challenge Cup Quarter Finals
Billy Burns was a try scorer on his first European start for Gloucester and, speaking after the game, admitted that it was good to get the five points although there are still things to work on before the trip to Brive.
Gloucester Rugby have added to their front row strength in depth for next season with the signings of Paul Doran-Jones, Paddy McAllister and Nicky Thomas from Harlequins, Aurillac and the Ospreys respectively.
Connacht's 30-20 win in La Rochelle on Saturday evening means that they are the third best placed runners up and will come to Kingsholm for the quarter-final of the European Rugby Challenge Cup in early April.