This week is UK Coaching Week 2022 and we're kicking it off by introducing you to some of our hard working coaches and instructors across our centres.
Coaches and instructors form an essential part of Halo, helping our members reach goals, have access to different activities and classes and get involved in their local community.
This week we want to celebrate them, highlight their amazing work and find out what coaching means to them.
Tony - Swim Coach
First up, meet Tony, who's been a coach at Ross Swimming Pool since 2020 when he decided to get involved in his local community. After previously working as a PE teacher, Tony wanted to put his qualification to good use.
"I'm one of the swimming team at Halo Ross on Wye. I'm an ASA Level 2 coach which enables me to teach all the grades and groups.
I gained my swimming qualifications around 1990 as part of my PE Teachers training. During my years as a PE Teacher I seldom had the opportunity to use the qualification. When I retired from HM Prison Service I had the chance to use the awards at The Abbey Stadium in Redditch. I have always enjoyed seeing people progress with whatever I was/am teaching or coaching.
I've always worked within a team so getting back amongst a good group of people with a shared interest has been lovely. Seeing the swimmers enjoying the lessons and progressing week by week is the reason for doing the job.
It's great seeing people enjoy and progress with their skills. I enjoy planning how best I can ensure the participant gains from the session/lesson."
Mo - Swim Coach
Next up, we have Mo, who's be working at Leominster Leisure Centre for the past 4 years as a permanent swim teacher. Having previously been a lifeguard at the centre, Mo saw the opportunity to expand her skillset and become a swim teacher!
"I’m a swimming instructor, I teach pre-school through to stage 8 primarily, but have also covered the swim a song lessons and adult lessons too."
My favourite part of the role is the moment when something that has been a struggle for the student finally clicks and they realise that they’ve done it. From something as simple as doing a jump by themselves in the deep end, or retrieving an object from the deepest part of the pool, to swimming a whole length. It’s that moment that the goal becomes a reality and the elation on their face makes me feel genuinely proud. I have been known to cheer very loudly when someone finally does something that they’ve struggled with!
Being there to provide a life skill to a various range of people is something that I take very serious and can sometimes be hard going but is also incredibly rewarding.”
Helen - Gym & Class Instructor
Helen, a gym instructor at Bridgnorth Endowed Leisure Centre gave us a sneak peek into her lessons and what they entail!
"I’ve been teaching Aqua aerobics at Bridgnorth for the last 15 years now & it is always a very popular class. It’s a great class for everyone, but especially people with joint problems or having to combat health or weight issues.It’s also suitable for all fitness abilities, regardless of whether you are new to exercise or a regular gym user.
"My stretch & relaxation class I’ve been teaching for 15 years too. We stretch every muscle from head to toe finishing with a 10 minute relaxation at the end. It’s suitable for all ages & abilities. It is particularly appropriate for anyone suffering with stress & anxiety"
I also teach senior circuits, this is for the over 50s although younger people can join in if they wish. It’s an all standing class & people can work at a pace that they feel comfortable with."
Chloe - Personal Trainer
Chloe is a fairly recent addition to the Halo team and is a Personal Trainer at Ross Swimming Pool - helping people reach their fitness goals and have fun along the way!
"I offer 1 to 1 personal training sessions, programmes, and WhatsApp support whenever needed.
I am a new PT at halo, only starting on the 15th of March 2022, however I have been a member of halo since school. I became a PT as having been a runner since school, I have encountered endless injuries, and the gym was my sanctuary when I couldn’t run! From there it sparked my interest in strength training to keep my body strong and healthy to help deal with the load that running puts on my body!
I also find the feeling I get after a good work out and seeing my progress is one of the most empowering feelings! I want to share that with everyone, and increase people’s gym confidence, as it can be an intimidating environment!
The best thing about being a PT is making new connections with people, watching them progress and achieve their goals.
Having a PT can get you out of a fitness rut, change things up to keep it fun and challenging! It will help structure your workouts but more importantly a PT will keep your motivation high, enabling you to thrive!
If I can make my clients smile & enjoy their sessions, that’s the most important thing achieved! “
Lee - Coach/Instructor
Lee is a coach at Bridgnorth Endowed Leisure Centre, you'll find Lee coaching and leading a range of classes across the centre!
“I coach a few different things at the centre, the main activity and my favourite thing to coach is swimming. I am also a fitness instructor and lead a few different fitness classes. I began working for Halo as an apprentice nearly 4 years ago, where I was trained up to be a fitness instructor and began teaching swimming. I enjoy coaching fitness classes because it allows me to contribute towards people's goals and make a positive impact on people's fitness journey.
As stated before, swimming lessons are my favourite thing to coach as this is one of the most rewarding experiences in my job. The fact that I can be a part of someone's journey as they learn such an important life skill is a great feeling.
One of the reasons I decided I wanted to become a coach was when I saw the work of some of my colleagues. They are hard working and dedicated to what they do. They are committed to making a difference and inspired me to get involved with coaching.
I enjoy getting to work with a friendly and knowledgeable bunch of colleagues. I find it rewarding and inspirational seeing peoples progress and achievements as they reach their goals.”
Mark - Coach/Instructor
Mark is Customer Service Manager at Maesteg and also teaches a range of classes too. Mark has been at Maesteg for many years and was inspired when he attended the centre in his teens!
"I teach Les Mills BodyAttack, BodyPump and BodyCombat, Zumba, Fitsteps, Yoga, Pilates, Circuits, HIIT, Aqua fit, Line dancing and Legs, Bums & Tums. I have been coaching at Maesteg Sport Centre for 29 years give or take a few months. I love helping our customers achieve their goals and ultimately have fun in the classes with motivating music.
I attended classes at Maesteg Sport Centre in my teens and was hooked on working out with others instantly and inspired by the instructor taking the class.
The benefits to me are staying fit and helping others stay fit as well. The choreography is challenging for myself and customers so helps keep the mind and body active. Coaching to me means providing a better quality of life for the customers and myself and improves mental health, mobility and the social aspects of life."
Jenny - Exercise on Referral Instructor
Jenny works at our Bridgnorth Endowed Leisure Centre on the 'Exercise on Referral' scheme, which allows medical staff to refer patients with specified health issues for assessment and individualised gym training by a trained instructor.
"I am the Exercise on Referral Instructor at Bridgnorth Endowed Leisure Centre and I have been at Halo for 9 years. My favourite part of coaching is taking the patients on their journey to increasing physical activity for the wide range of health benefits and supporting their progress to more independence.
Being a coach to me means being understanding of the individual's needs, empathy, being a great communicator, with consistent trust and support to the clients.”
Sarah - Exercise Professional and Class Instructor
Sarah is an Exercise Professional and Class Instructor, teaching and leading a range of our classes at our Hereford Leisure Pool!
“I have been instructing for halo for just over a year and working as a fully qualified gym instructor for several years. Throughout the week I teach circuits, HIIT and two legs, bums and tums classes. I also teach stretch and core style classes on a cover basis.
I have always been athletic, studied in dance, and have had a passion for fitness for over ten years. Once completing my first qualifications in POE fitness instructing I continued to expand my skill set into fitness instructing and personal training. Becoming exposed to the challenges of the fitness industry with a lack of vision spurred me on to set personal goals and achievements and encourage others to do the same.
After working as a gym instructor for Halo I was given the opportunity to take over a fitness class on a weekly basis, a year on, I now teach four classes a week and love every part of it.
Fitness classes provide structured workouts and guidance through various styles and training methods, this allows the freedom of the participant to choose the class for them whether it be a spin class to improve endurance, circuits or legs, bums and tums to build strength or tone up. Fitness classes not only encourage fitness improvements but keep you motivated. They are also a fun and social environment to be in and are suited to all fitness levels and abilities.
I am passionate about transferring my experience, knowledge and skills to others to help them achieve personal goals and overcome barriers through fitness and overall well being."