Adelaide midfielder Ben Keays says the positive influence of new high performance manager Darren Burgess is already being felt around the Club.

Keays was part of a contingent of senior players to join the 1-4 years on day one of pre-season on Wednesday.

Speaking to the media, Keays said players had come back fit and ready to go in anticipation for the tough sessions they expected Burgess to put them through.

“Quite a few boys turned up who are in the five-plus year group, which is always a good sign,” Keays said.

“I think a few of the boys were a bit nervous walking through the door thinking it was going to be a mammoth first session.

“But we can see already how much of a good operator he (Burgess) is.

“He addressed the group this morning and we are really excited to have him.”

There were a few teammates that had impressed Keays the most.

“He addressed the group this morning and we are really excited to have him.

“A lot of us were training in big groups together over the break and really pushing each other over the break which is a great sign and it showed out there,” Keays said.

“Jordon Butts is looking pretty good, he’s looking pretty shredded.

“Some of the guys I sort of ran with over the break - James Rowe, Nick Murray.... (Ned McHenry has) always been a good runner but he’s gone to a new level - and Harry Schoenberg as well.

“They just seem a lot fitter… a lot of the guys are just really well conditioned at the moment.”

Keays, who signed a two-year contract extension last month, said footy drills were the focus of Wednesday’s return, as well as some high-intensity running.

“I thought it was a really good first session,” Keays said.

“It was enjoyable to be back out there and into some footy stuff early.

“Already we are doing some game-like stuff, some game-like running… we were pretty flat out to start.

“That’s pretty exciting as a playing group, you want to get straight into that stuff.”