Kirsten is a Physiotherapist, Crossfit Coach, Health Coach and mum of two. She has a passion for helping clients who feel like they are “starting from scratch”, whether that be after an injury, illness or life event. She truly believes that it’s the simple things that matter. Getting healthier doesn’t have to be complicated.
Take a simple idea and take it seriously. — Charlie Munger
How did you originally become interested in health and lifestyle medicine?
I have generally been an active person throughout my life. As a kid I played lots of different sports at school and through university. Then in my early adult life I continued playing hockey and going to the gym…sort of! But I can honestly say that through most of my 20s I didn’t really think a whole lot about nutrition or other healthy lifestyle factors. I was too busy enjoying life and burning the candle at both ends as they say!
About 6 years ago I moved back to Auckland and started working out at Crossfit North Harbour. I had done Crossfit before but the vibe at the box here was quite different – way more of a community feel, and definitely more emphasis on other health factors like nutrition and recovery. There were a few members who had some really impressive changes in their health – losing weight, getting fitter and you could see their confidence just changing in front of your eyes. So I started to take a bit more notice myself about my diet, training more consistently and just generally thinking a bit more about it. Personally, that has been a major win for me, especially now being in my 30s, having a family and trying to work out how to balance all that life throws at you. I also started to get more interested in coaching at the box, particularly with the older members, so we started a specific group for over 55s and that has fuelled the fire even more. Being part of supporting people who would previously have said “they were too old to change” and seeing them really make significant improvements in their health in the later decades of their life is truly inspiring.
Being able to clarify what is truly important and how to keep things ticking along despite disruption, has been a game changer.
Also, in my physiotherapy role I work mainly with patients with chronic or long term musculoskeletal conditions, so I see so many people with multiple health issues and how these impact on their life. I am lucky in this role to work with a team of other health professionals, particularly psychologists, so I have been able to see the bigger picture of health and appreciate how strong our mind-body connection really is. I did my Masters in Rehabilitation, which incorporated many different aspects of recovery, so I knew we needed a fully holistic approach to help people move towards a better outcome, but I felt like the nutrition aspect was not one of my strengths so I began searching for courses to upskill – and hello, PreKure!
How has becoming a PreKure Certified Health Coach impacted your life?
Oh, in so many ways! Personally I have grown so much in my thinking and approach to life. Particularly this year with the Covid-19 lockdowns, there have been some seriously stressful times and going through the coaching labs over these periods has been a godsend. Being able to clarify what is truly important and how to keep things ticking along despite disruption, has been a game changer.
Professionally, in my physio job, it has solidified a lot of knowledge that I already had but at the same time made me fine-tune how I deliver my information and work with patients to achieve their goals. Applying coaching techniques has resulted in some really positive changes in my interactions and patients being more engaged with their rehabilitation so that is fantastic. Also being able to more confidently talk to patients about other lifestyle factors has been great.
Last but certainly not least, it has given me another avenue in my career – one that can be flexible and fits in with my life. It combines so many interests and passions that I have for helping people so I am really excited to grow this part of my work.
Would you like to share any client success stories or a big ‘aha’ moment in your coaching career?
During the initial Covid-19 lockdown, I was doing some online sessions with a physiotherapy client and the rehab programme we had been doing together in the gym really wasn’t working for him now that he was at home. Instead of harping on about the importance of continuing with “the plan”, I decided to let go of my usual physio ways and take more of a coaching approach. We spent more time talking about the things he really wanted to do, what activities he found useful and enjoyable during times of high stress and overall helping him to work out a plan where we could meet those needs and still be heading towards the outcome he wanted for his injury. He totally ran with it and he loved it! Each week we would catch up and he was easily able to reflect on what things needed modifying, what needed to stay as it was and basically already had his plan set to go for the following week. It was such a different experience for me as a physio and since then I have been convinced it is a better way to approach rehab planning. I won’t be going back to my old ways anytime soon!
If you are sitting on the fence, just go ahead and sign up! These courses have exceeded my expectations both personally and professionally.
What advice do you have for others thinking about starting their study journey with PreKure?
If you are sitting on the fence, just go ahead and sign up! These courses have exceeded my expectations both personally and professionally. Yes, there was some information that I already knew but the way it was presented challenged me to look at it in a different way.
Are you interested in becoming a PreKure-certified Health Coach? Get the world’s best health coach training. At home, from credible medical, nutrition, coaching and wellness experts.