Pilates by VDS Prestons and several gyms, SW Sydney NSW
Instructor Name: Florina Nero
Studio(s) you work at: Pilates by VDS Prestons and several gyms
Location: South West Sydney
Instructor training: PITC and Authentic Pilates
PAA Level: Professional Level 3 Instructor
What originally motivated you to try Pilates and then go on to train as an instructor?
I started with mat at the gym, moved to equipment purely by mistake not knowing what I was getting my self in for. When the gym closed I followed the Pilates instructor to her house where upon opening the door was confronted with all this stuff I had never seen before. Walking in with a mat became obsolete, as I ventured into this new unusual world. Like most others I wish I discovered it earlier. Its effect on my body was great. I gave up the gym and did only Pilates. After three years of mat and equipment I decided it was something I could do and share with others this wonderful form of movement.
What did you eat for breakfast?
I don’t eat breakfast as I teach early in the mornings and I can’t roll like a ball or do roll overs with a fully belly. So it’s espresso coffee with almond milk. I do have early lunch but eating works around teaching.
In one word, describe your first Pilates experience?
What impact has the recent COVID-19 virus had on your world?
Pretty traumatic. My son passed away last year and was in ICU. As I had recently moved from Gold Coast to Sydney I was seen as a corona threat and my other children and family and friends and his girlfriend were taken out of his room on my arrival, so we couldn’t be together and I was the last one with him. I was ushered to quarantine for two weeks and had the funeral the day of my release.
We are in an industry of mixing close to people we can’t do much about it except follow our hygiene protocols. It is just part of our existence these days and it does not stop me being who I am or doing what I do.
You can’t truly live while you are scared.
How have you handled your Pilates teaching with COVID-19, any advice to other teachers?
I teach as I always teach and I am hands on, up close and personal. My advice is do what you love the way you need to do it, be who you are and trust that life is not there to to injure you, give you bad things or defeat you, it is what you choose to make of it.
What’s the best thing about your job?
I get paid for doing what I enjoy, not everyone can say that. I meet great people with great stories that open my eyes and give me new perspective everyday.
I have become more compassionate since being in this business.
Your ‘go to’ website for all things Pilates (other than PAA)?
I’m not a web person or a social media follower, I’m not even on face book.
My go to is my manuals, I pull them out and find something new each time I do. You miss so much stuff when you train, it’s great to go through them and refresh.
Also I’m very hands on so I enjoy the face to face courses.
The best advice you’ve ever had?
Don’t take advice from anyone you are not prepared to change lives with.
An indulgence you can’t live without?
Hugs and kisses.
How long have you been a member of PAA and how did you hear about PAA?
Since 2015. I started Pilates before this with other organisations who were not members of PAA.
Do you have a motto?
Be the change you want to see in the world!
What’s the most challenging aspect of your job?
Not been able to say no. If somebody needs an appointment I just accommodate, I like helping people.
How do you use PAA?
- I like the education programmes PAA promotes.
- I like the insurance program, it looks after us.
- I enjoy the conference, in person way more than on line of course, I need the physical interaction. I find it informative and I like we can choose which classes interest us.
On the whole, I feel they work for our best interest, it keeps us on track and at our best to be part of it.
Who is your Pilates idol or would love to meet, and why?
No one in particular, I gain something from everyone I come into contact with in this world. I am constantly learning and absorbing, sometimes something as simple as a word I never used could assist my teaching further.
What do you appreciate most about your body?
That it doesn’t let me down. If I look after it, it looks after me. I am grateful that at nearly sixty I can still teach mat classes in the gyms and studio and do all the exercises.
The book you’re currently reading?
Not currently reading, however my go to is The Art of Happiness by The Dalai Lama.
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