Home Is Where the Ship Is
Who better to get fitness instructions from while aboard than the guy who lives and works there?
Take a calorie-burning indoor cycling class, work on your abs, or find your Zen in a yoga session on the 4,000-passenger Norwegian
Bliss and your instructor just may be Henry Berry, a former rugby player from England’s Lake District.
Having worked as a personal trainer and run his own boot camp on land, Berry took his talents to sea with Norwegian Cruise Line in 2015. In addition to Bliss, he’s worked on Nor
wegian Epic and Norwegian Jewel.
In the gym, Berry says he tends to see two types of guests, both focused on trying not to pack on cruise pounds.
“Some are on a fitness program already and looking to maintain results while they are here on the ship,” he says. “Others are looking to use the time to kickstart a health program, both while on the ship and after the cruise.”
His goal is to make guests feel like a million bucks after a workout, and also to give them tips they can bring home. “It is a common misconception that just working out, or doing a grueling workout, is what it takes to get your body to where you want it to be,” Berry says. “For a lot of guests, it is just as important they are making more conscious choices on a more consistent basis with their lifestyle. We do our best to help educate them on these important principles.”
Before he arrived on board, Berry went through what he says was “intense, but rewarding” training with his employer, OneSpaWorld, a division of Steiner Leisure (operating the Mandara Spas and Fitness Centers on Norwegian Cruise Line ships).
Berry learned how to run a diverse range of fitness classes, to customize programs for guests, and to deliver an array of educational seminars and workshops.
His workplace on the Norwegian Bliss is a big, ocean-view fitness center equipped with the latest, greatest Technogym™ strength training and cardio equipment. Guests pump iron, hit the treadmills, and do all manner of stretching in fitness classes … some free, and some for a fee of $12 and up per session. Berry instructs on everything from Pilates to high-energy Group Boxing classes.
“Guests are always impressed by the number and frequency of classes we have to offer,” he says. “Between my fitness partner Ricardo and myself, we deliver all of the classes each cruise.”
Guests wanting more can book a body sculpt boot camp and personal training sessions for a fee. There are also options such as nutrition consultations and metabolic testing using the state-of-the-art InBody 570 machine. Free workshops and seminars focus on health education, and Berry says there is a lot of valuable information shared.
“We have seminars on how to increase your metabolism, secrets to a flatter stomach, and how to detox for health and weight loss, which goes into detail about the importance of exercise, nutrition, and detoxification,” Berry says. “We do our best to offer a program that highlights the importance of looking after your health and body through nutrition, supplementation, and exercise.”
Berry says he was first drawn to work at sea by his love of travel. “In my opinion, traveling is what truly makes you rich,” he says. “Now that I have seen the opportunities and rewards of working aboard, it makes it difficult to think of living back on land again.”
The job, he says, has helped broaden both his knowledge and business skills.
There are some challenges, such as teaching a yoga class when a ship is moving; getting into the Trikonasana (triangle pose) is the one he finds most challenging. Still, he says he especially enjoys leading outdoor yoga classes with the sea as a backdrop. “It can be very soothing to hear the wind and the ocean, putting our guests in a relaxed state,” he says.
His work schedule is intense, but Berry says that’s part of the allure of working on a ship. On days when the ship is at sea, Berry is fully booked. On port days he may get time off. “Life on a cruise ship is unique,” he says. “It is very fast-paced, but that’s something I love. You are always busy. You work hard but you get to enjoy your downtime.”
His favorite sailing region is Alaska. “The landscape of Juneau is incredible, not to mention the frequent wildlife you see every day,” he says. “Often, we will see the whales breaching from the water from the gym. Not a bad view whilst working out for the guests too.”
In his spare time, he strums acoustic tunes on his ukulele. He is especially fond of Ed Sheeran songs. He also takes advantage of opportunities to explore the ship. Norwegian
Bliss is home to the longest competitive racetrack at sea, and Berry says he’s a fan of the heart-pumping electric go-kart racing experience. Asked how he rates on the track, he jokes, “No. 1.” He says the ship’s original Broadway musical, ¡HAVANA!, is a must-do.
Among the crew, Berry has made friends from “all over the world and for life.” But it’s the guests on Norwegian Bliss that get his special attention.
“I love to spread good energy with my guests,” he says.
THERE ARE SOME CHALLENGES, SUCH AS TEACHING A YOGA CLASS WHEN A SHIP IS MOVING; GETTING INTO THE TRIKONASANA (TRIANGLE POSE) IS THE ONE HE FINDS MOST CHALLENGING.