Pumped about teaching fitness
Helen Healey, 53, group fitness manager, Goodlife Health Club Morningside
What do you do?
I teach group fitness classes and am a manager at the Morningside club and also a program director for our PACE cycle program. It’s a few different jobs rolled into one but together about 25 to 30 hours a week.
Have you had any career changes?
My first ever job was as a legal stenographer when I was 15 years old, doing shorthand and typing.
When I was 18 I was at a bank as a data entry operator. I worked in that industry for about 12 years, working shift work as well as teaching (fitness) classes.
What is a highlight of working in fitness?
When I had my children I could still work part time. A lot of jobs aren’t that flexible. We were able to take the children to the gym crèche while working so it was the perfect solution.
Is your age a factor at work?
The fitness industry doesn’t just embrace a particular age. I have a wide demographic in my classes, including in their 20s and 70s. The population is getting older and they like to see role models in the industry.
Have you had to upskill?
I started teaching very basic classes, now I teach yoga, HIIT and cycle and the PACE program. Goodlife are constantly looking for new things in the industry to keep members engaged. You can’t just stay focused on one skill, you have to upskill to stay fresh and be marketable. It helps keep the passion for what you do, too.
Any plans to step your career back?
I want to stay teaching as long as I possibly can. We have a lot of instructors that continue to teach in their 60s. We have a male yoga instructor in his 70s. As long as you are fit and healthy there is no reason not to continue working.
IN SHAPE: Group fitness manager Helen Healey, 53, teaches yoga, HIIT, cycle and the PACE program.