‘Top Gun: Maverick’: How Tom Cruise Put Costars Through Intense ‘Physical Preparation’ for Film

by Emily Morgan

There’s no doubt that the cast of Top Gun: Maverick is making headlines. For instance, Miles Teller is getting a ton of press for his iconic moments from the movie. From his viral dance moves to getting sick on set, people online can’t get enough of the actor. His personal trainer, Jason Walsh, is now revealing just how sky-high Tom Cruise went to get the cast in shape for Top Gun.

“I knew Tom was gonna put these guys through it and he definitely did,” he said during an interview on Thursday, June 16. “You can see it on their face. When they’re doing this, they’re not faking it. This is real.”

To get castmembers like Teller in tip-top shape for his role, Walsh had to determine how he would help the 35-year-old actor face the daunting challenge ahead of him. In addition to attending flight school, the Spiderhead star also had to ensure he was “prepared for flight training” — something unprecedented for Walsh’s career. 

“Tom is a huge advocate of making sure that these guys are really put through the rigors and the tests,” the fitness guru explained. “They were actually in these jets … so [it was about] physical preparation, just getting strong, moving well, make sure physically he was very fit.”

Walsh also revealed that he and the Footloose star primarily focused on conditioning and fundamentals. They crossed every T and dotted every I to ensure Teller was in the best shape of his life. And there’s no doubt he did just that. Just look at the famous beach scene from Top Gun if you don’t believe me. 

Miles Teller’s fitness journey for Top Gun: Maverick

“We did a lot of conditioning a couple weeks [before] the beach scene, just to try to, like, top off, but he really didn’t need it. He was ready,” the fitness instructor revealed.

Despite the grueling amount of training, which included “a lot of ab work,” “deadlifting over 450 pounds” and “learning to brace for G pulls,” Walsh proudly said that the star “never threw up.” He even said he was “a good old boy” who rose to the occasion.

“He took everything very seriously. He was very professional,” Walsh said of the Divergent star’s commitment to a role. “You could just tell that this had this thing that was really going to require and push him to his limits physically. And the payoff was, you know, an incredible movie.”

However, that doesn’t mean that Walsh can take credit for all of Teller’s recent viral moments from Top Gun: Maverick. “I definitely did not teach him that dance,” he hilariously quipped about the famous beach scene. “That’s all Miles.”

For those who have a newfound goal to get in the gym, Walsh encourages them to stay consistent. 

“You’ve got to get your mind right. I would get a program and make sure that you’re keeping track every single day,” he explained. “We had a program set that was ready to go, we followed that program, and we kept track of all the numbers. Every single workout there was a progression and then of course the diet side of it is 50 percent.”