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THE TEAM

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AARON BALSOM

Managing Director / Accredited Exercise Physiologist 

Aaron, or big boss as most people refer to me as. I started my journey towards the exercise and recovery sector by starting as a butcher when I left school and learning my anatomy that way. I think I found that I would rather work with things that are alive so packed my bags and went down to the mighty Palmerston North to join student life and do a degree in sport and exercise. The idea was to become a typical personal trainer building bodies to look good in summer however the experience I had when working with people with significant health challenges and the power that exercise had to impact their lives, changed my career path. After finishing my degree and heading home to the Bay I worked at a few gyms trying to seek out clients that had more challenging issues before finally getting my break and being asked to come and open up a rehab gym and 8 years later I am still here, loving it and taking the NextStep in my career with ownership.

 

My special focus areas are in the Activity based therapy side of things where I love to try and recover function, challenge your body in various ways and really make an impact with exercise for Neurological conditions. 

 

Fun facts:

  • I used to be a strength and conditioning coach for the Bay of Plenty Steamers rugby team

  • I have 4 awesome kids

  • I am a fanatical All Blacks fan

Qualifications:

  • Bachelor of Sport & Exercise Prescription

  • Post Graduate Diploma in Sport & Exercise

  • Medical Exercise Specialist Certification

  • Workplace First Aid Certification

  • SESNZ Accredited Exercise Physiologist 

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CASEY BRADY

Director 

My journey into the fitness industry started differently to most, in 2017 I had a motocross accident that left me with a spinal cord injury. Since this day my life goals and journey have been slightly changed as I added in giving everything in my will power to walk again. I started my rehab Journey the moment I left the hospital and created my own path for my recovery.

 

During this time I found a massive passion in the health, fitness and rehabilitation industry. I used this passion to my advantage and have made a business and a career from a situation that I did not want to be in.  It gave me the desire to learn more about my own body fuelling me to undertake a personal training qualification so I could aid people in similar situations with their health, fitness and recovery. I continue to do rehab every day but I have found my purpose to help and inspire others along the way .

 

I keep busy by not letting my injury limit me and carry on with life activities and adventures.

 

Fun facts:

  • My first job was milking cows

  • 1 of 4 sisters

  • Qualified teacher

Qualifications:

  • Qualified Personal Trainer 

  • First aid certificate

  • REPs registered personal trainer

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SAM BAXTER

Exercise Physiologist

Originally from Wellington, I started at Otago University in 2016 studying exercise and sports science. After my undergrad, I completed both my honors and master’s in clinical exercise oncology in 2019 and 2021 respectively. Previously I have worked at the ExPinkT clinic in the university of Otago, a gym specializing in exercise and cancer rehabilitation, and following that, TBI health. I am a big fan of movement and exercise for clinical populations and love being a part of people’s rehabilitation journeys. After 7 great years in the South Island, I’m stoked to be back in the northern half of the country!

My areas of focus are exercise oncology, musculoskeletal rehab and falls prevention, as well as a big interest in cardiovascular and neurological rehabilitation and long-term pain.

 

Fun facts:

  • I am a huge sport watcher; Football, rugby, basketball, golf, American football, you name it.

 

  • Playing wise, I play football and golf as well as being a fan of both snow and water sports.

Qualifications:

  • Bachelor of Science majoring in sport and exercise science and physical activity and health

  • Bachelor of Science with honors (first class) in Sport, Exercise and Health

  • Master of Science (distinction) in Sport, Exercise, and health

  • DMI Therapist 

  • Workplace First Aid Certificate

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BRETT MOORE

Exercise Specialist

Hello everyone, my name is Brett and I am excited to be working here at NextStep. After finishing High School here at Tauranga Boys college I made the move to the city of the future 'the Tron' better known as Waikato to start a mechanical engineering degree. This lasted a solid year and a half before deciding my passion for health and fitness outweighed my skillset for engineering so made the change to a degree in health, sport and human performance. Through my degree, I gained an in-depth knowledge about the human body and its movements. Some main papers being around injury diagnostic, prevention and rehabilitation, biomechanics, fitness monitoring and nutrition. After seeing what NextStep was all about and experiencing the friendly, motivational environment, I couldn't be happier to become a part of it with you all. I look forward to getting to know as many of you as I can and help make a positive difference.

Fun facts:

  • I love basketball and have played for a team every year since primary school.

  • I have recently taken up golf and would appreciate any tips!

  • I experienced working with the Chiefs and NZ rugby sevens team during my studies.

  • Known to dabble in a bit of online gaming from time to time.

Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's of Sports, Health and Human Performance

  • Certificate in Exercise (Lvl 4)

Team Leader - Exercise Specialist

After a lifestyle overhaul in 2015, when I started to prioritize my own health and fitness, my newfound passion took me to studying, and a career change where I set up own my business in the fitness space. I’ve been working with clients since 2016 and over that time have refined what I do, with continued study, hands on practice and learning from the people I work with.

 

I started off helping people lose weight and get in shape, but soon became acutely aware of the power of movement for all. Exercise should be on everyone’s prescription, no matter which health condition you are facing, movement helps you feel better mentally and physically.

 

A large area of focus for me and an area I specialize in is working alongside those with Parkinson’s, both 1-on-1 and in a class setting, this is what fills my heart. My next areas of learning are going to be working with those with dementia and MS. Most of all I’m about the people, my joy comes from supporting someone find a way of embracing a version of health that works for them.

 

Fun facts:

· I love to test myself with big hairy audacious goals, ask me about my latest plan.

· I’m currently learning calisthenics and enjoy playing on the gym rings.

· I love animals and have a cat and a dog.

· I’ve committed to getting in the ocean daily for a year, you’re welcome to join me.

Qualifications:

Fitness Instructor & Personal Trainer, AUT

Health Coach, PreKure

REPs & HCANZA registered.

 

Certifications:

Functional Ageing Specialist

PD Warrior Level 1 & 2

Counterpunch Parkinson’s

Breast Cancer & Exercise

Respiratory Conditions & Exercise

Parkinson’s Pro

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Emma Goldstraw

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