WHILE the trip to Maroochydore is setting the Dees up for a big 2020 campaign, the benefits extend far beyond the field.

Jack Viney and his teammates have enjoyed the social side of the pre-season camp, using their spare time to bond as a group.

“It’s a good camp because we train really hard and the conditions are really tough but then there’s awesome facilities to come down to the beach and go to the shops down here,” Viney told Melbourne Media.

“There’s so much to do when you’re training and then also in your down time.

“To come up here, build deeper relationships with your teammates and coaches, I think it’s equally as important as training hard up here.”

On Thursday morning, Viney made the most of the early-morning sunshine, waking up early to hit the beach with Alex Neal-Bullen, Corey Wagner and Josh Wagner.

The four Dees headed out for a surf – a passion Viney has developed in recent years.

“I didn’t start surfing until I was in my second year of footy,” he said.

“I was about 20 years old and I needed an escape away from football, so I thought surfing looked pretty easy and looked pretty cool.

“Started up and found out it wasn’t easy at all and it’s taken me a few years to get the hang of it.

“And then I went through hurting my feet and that kind of stopped any extracurricular activities I planned on doing.”

After battling injury for a couple of seasons, Viney’s body is now in good shape and he’s certainly happy to be back in the water.

“It was the first time I’ve surfed in over two years which was pretty exciting for me because it was something I did enjoy doing and does help me get away from football and find a balance,” he said.

“To be able to get out there again with a few boys was good fun.”

While the majority of the camp has been focused on training, Viney said it’s crucial to switch off when you get the chance.

“When you’re out there you’re not really thinking anything about football or life, you’re kind of just in the present,” he said.

“That’s why I enjoy surfing, because you’re really just focusing on being out in the water and focusing on the now rather than what happened yesterday or what’s coming up.”

There have been plenty of opportunities for the players to develop their relationships with specialised sessions and plenty of free time, but the work on the track under the Queensland sun has been a major challenge for the group.

“This is pretty much our peak week of training, so training is pretty brutal,” Viney said.

“The light is at the end of the tunnel because we know games are around the corner.

“You know you’ve got to put in the work because if you don’t, you’ll get found out come a couple of weeks.”