It’s now six weeks since I have made the big move to New Zealand from Ireland. Prior to coming I had been told that New Zealand was a great place to live with a friendly relaxed culture, beautiful landscapes and an outdoor, active lifestyle that I would fall in love with. My expectations were definitely high and I can honestly say that New Zealand hasn’t disappointed me. On my flight over I met two kiwis who gave me some tips on how to settle in and taught me the lingo such as “yeah bro” and “sweet as”. They gave me their phone number and even invited me to go on a fishing trip up in Northland. Since then I have had similar experiences in how welcoming this multi-cultural country has been.

What I wasn’t told however was how bright the sun is here or how people don’t drink cups of tea every hour. To me Auckland’s winter is like Irelands summer. Walking and exploring Auckland did highlight some cultural differences such as passing a primary school yard and seeing the school kids playing rugby instead of football or hurling. No wonder you guys are so good at rugby and not so good at football :). With trips to Rotorua and Hobbiton I understood what people were talking about.


While the travel and lifestyle was a big factor in my move, I also came to further my career in Physiotherapy and Pilates. I had heard from a friend of mine Chris (from Next Gen) that I should check out Peak Pilates and Physiotherapy. I decided to contact Jason Richardson (Peak’s director) through skype and before the conversation was ended I had mentally packed my bags. What I like about Peak Pilates and Physiotherapy is the ethos behind it led by people who practice what they preach and actively want to improve the health and well-being of their clients. I have worked in many public and private hospitals and clinics, army rehabilitation centres and with sports teams etc. but what I think sets Peak apart is the longer treatment times with more emphasis on exercise therapy through pilates.

Having taught matwork pilates in Ireland – I knew of the benefits and could easily see improvements in my clients in terms of better movement, posture, strength and lower levels of pain. However, studios were sometimes on the smaller side and lacked equipment which limited variability in exercise programmes. After visiting all of the Peak studios I can safely say space is not an issue with plenty room for reformers, trap tables, barrels and chairs. If you haven’t used this equipment before – it can look like a bit intimidating. One recent client of mine described the trap tables appearance like a torture device with springs hanging everywhere. However, after one session they were soon converted and on the Pilates bandwagon.

Over the next few weeks I will be taking on more clients at Botany along with learning how to paddle board and how I can use this as a form of exercise therapy. Overall, this has been a great introduction and I’m looking forward to sharing more of my journey with anyone who’s interested. Should you have any questions about how Physiotherapy and Pilates can benefit you, please give us a call.

Slán go fóill – Goodbye for now

Gavin (Physiotherapist & Pilates Instructor at Botany)