Christchurch – Top experts from Whangarei, Palmerston North, Dunedin, Hamilton and Auckland have been named best personal trainer of the year finalists in ExerciseNZ’s annual exercise industry awards.
The finalists are Corinne Austin, Northland; Freya Thompson, Palmerston North; Matt McKay, Dunedin; Matthew Bevege, Hamilton; and Naz Spencer and Ross Bymolt from Auckland.
The winners will be announced at a gala ExerciseNZ event in Auckland on November 25.
Last year, Auckland’s Richard Ellis won personal trainer of the year and Christchurch’s Linda Miratana won the people’s choice award. See all of last year’s winner here.
The awards are very much the Oscars of the New Zealand exercise industry and they have been run by ExerciseNZ since 2005. They recognise excellence in exercise professionals and facilities, as well as for community contribution and support, ExerciseNZ chief executive Richard Beddie says.
“It’s a chance for clubs and individuals who positively contribute to the health and wellbeing of New Zealander to get recognition from their peers for their effort.
“The judging gets more difficult each year as the NZ health and fitness industry takes on increased responsibility and strives to come up with new ways of encouraging Kiwis to be more active.
“We know that, if considered a sport, exercise continues to be the number one sport in New Zealand, having more participants than the rugby, netball and cricket combined.
“There are an estimated 550,000 people who work on fitness at gyms and exercise facilities alone. But exercise is now just one of the many components to wellness. Many providers of exercise now offer far more holistic products and services, from dietary advice, to stress management,” Beddie says.
The ExerciseNZ award finalists are:
Chain / Group Facility of the Year – For facilities that are part of a larger chain or group. Sponsored by NRG Fitness
CityFitness Lower Hutt
CityFitness – Lyall Bay, Wellington
CityFitness – Moorhouse Ave, Christchurch
Les Mills – Newmarket, Auckland
Stanmore Bay Pools and Leisure, Auckland
YMCA Mt Albert, Auckland
Independent Facility of the Year – For facilities that are standalone businesses. Sponsored by Fitnessworks
Absolutes Fitness, Dunedin
Iron Hood Fitness, Christchurch
NRG Fitness, Cromwell
Total Body Gym, Gore
Studio of the Year – Studios and specialist facilities.
FXU Vibration Training Studio, Upper Hutt
Hot Yoga Works, Auckland
Power Living New Zealand, Wellington
Supreme Club of the Year – The best of the best.
Selected from the winners of the above 3 categories.
Personal Trainer of the Year – Finalists in this category attend the live judging event on November 24. Sponsored by AUT University
Corinne Austin, Northland
Freya Thompson, Palmerston North
Matt McKay, Dunedin
Matthew Bevege, Hamilton
Naz Spencer, Auckland
Ross Bymolt, Auckland
Up and Coming Personal Trainer of the Year – For personal trainers in business for less than two years. Finalists in this category attend the live judging event on Friday 24 November. Sponsored by Catchfitness
Abby Dutton, Hamilton
Devin Glover, Lower Hutt
Emma Goldstraw, Auckland
Polly Taylor, Blenheim
Shane Way, Hamilton
Tom Burke, Wellington
Small Group Trainer of the Year – Personal trainers who lead small group training sessions. Finalists in this category attend the live judging event on November 24. Sponsored by Fitnessworks
Adam Christian, Auckland
Libby Searle, Christchurch
Paula Brady, Lower Hutt
Manuela Sumetzberger, Christchurch
Steve Butler, Auckland
Group Exercise Instructor of the Year – Own Choreography – Instructors teaching freestyle group exercise classes. Sponsored by OneMusic
JB Anderson, Christchurch
Lis MacLeod, Auckland
Martin French, Auckland
Nicola Williams, Auckland
Group Exercise Instructor of the Year – Instructors teaching pre-choreographed classes. Sponsored by PowerMusic
Lee Radich, Palmerston North
Lis MacLeod, Auckland
Loren O’Hanlon, Auckland
Louise Neville, Christchurch
Vinny Lopez, Wellington
MindBody Teacher of the Year –This category includes Yoga, Pilates but can be any class style that incorporates extensive principles of mindbody philosophy. Sponsored by Courage my Love
Amy Green, Whakatane
Kotte Aguilar, Christchurch
Larissa Tonya O’Brien, Auckland
Lauren Tinker, Auckland
Nikki Ralston, Auckland
Outstanding Support Award – Individuals working in a support role in an organisation or a facility.
Di Lauder, Queenstown
Heather Bunyan, Wellington
Julia Laulu Faalogo, Auckland
Naomi Lovodua, Auckland
Community Excellence Award – Individuals or organisation offering exercise to populations that may normally find exercise difficult to access.
Silver Sneakers, Cromwell
YMCA Lynfield Youth & Leisure, Auckland
Active in the Park, Nelson
Tane Whanake , Christchurch
Programme Excellence Award – Programmes involving exercise nutrition or other lifestyle interventions.
Koha Fit, Tauranga
Nordic Kiwi, Auckland
OA Smart Course, Auckland
Puff Fitness postnatal recovery programme, Wellington
Innovation Award – A programme that is either a new idea or adds a unique angle onto an existing concept. – Sponsored by Active Management
Busybody 12 Minute System, Auckland
in2hula – Hoop with Heart Activity programme for preschool children, Christchurch
Stanmore Bay Leisure Centre – HIIT for Seniors, Auckland
Educator of the Year – A person supporting or training exercise professionals in a lecturing mentoring or presenting role.
Alistair Richardson, Hamilton
Mark Hurdle, Christchurch
Siona Fernandes, Auckland
People’s Choice Award – The winner chosen by popular vote. Sponsored by Horleys
For further information contact ExerciseNZ chief executive Richard Beddie on 027 5205744 or Make Lemonade NZ editor-in-chief Kip Brook on 0275 030188.
Photo: Richard Beddie