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Christie Houghton wins at the New Zealand Exercise Industry Awards!

Christie Houghton recently won the Small Group Trainer of the Year Award. Here she tells us a little bit more about this awesome achievement!

Jan 3rd • 

Christie Houghton, one of Body Beyond Baby’s affiliates, recently won the Small Group Trainer of the Year Award at the New Zealand Exercise Industry Awards 2019.

Here she tells us a little bit more about this awesome achievement!

Tell us a little bit about the New Zealand Exercise Industry Awards and what they represent.

The New Zealand Exercise Industry Awards are about recognising fitness professionals, trainers, educators and facilities for the amazing job they do in our industry, and celebrate the important impact that our industry has on the lives of so many New Zealanders.

Why did you want to enter?

Jen told me to! 😉

In all seriousness, it was Jen Dugard’s voice prompting me as a mentor years ago – coming from someone who is in the industry, has been through the process and seen the value; PLUS she instilled in me the processes and correct practice to go out there and give it a shot… It made sense to give it a nudge!

Tell us a little bit about the judging process – submission and face to face element.

The process for the awards was an extensive one in terms of reflections on my business and processes, related statistics and evidence to support this; all of which needed to be submitted months prior and then extended on in the final stages. Final judging involved panel interviews with esteemed fitness professionals, an observed group session and extensive questioning on business strategies, marketing, client care, health and safety, referral processes and how I do what I do.

How did you feel to be a finalist?

I went through to Stage 2 for three different categories: Small Group Trainer, Community Contribution and Programme Excellence. To have people in the industry see value in the work I was doing and want to know more felt pretty good! And then to be listed as one of the top 5 Small Group Trainers for New Zealand and in the top 8 for ‘People’s Choice’ for 2019 across the country was an honour.

Did you think you might win?

Not at all. I had seen the high caliber of trainers I was up against – some incredibly inspiring fitness professionals who are top of their game and really good at what they do!

Tell us how you are feeling now you have had a little time to reflect on your achievement.

So proud knowing a lot of hard work went in over the years with business mentors, professional development and continued learning. With the support and kudos of the industry behind me acknowledging and recognising I am good at what I do, I know I’m on the right track as a trainer doing great things in the industry!

What is your perspective on the current New Zealand fitness industry?

Having met some key people in the industry over the awards weekend, I can truly say there are some passionate people out there working hard to get Kiwis (from all walks of life, ages and stages) active and leading a better quality of life through movement. It’s very inspiring.

What does this mean for you moving forward? Do you have any grand plans or ambitions?

It’s amazing what a little industry recognition does for the confidence; knowing I am on track and doing good things makes me want to shout louder, drive harder, reach further and be bigger and better than ever before. Watch this space!


Christie runs Active Soul in Birkenhead, Auckland. To find out more about her and get in touch, click here.

You can also find her on Instagram and Facebook.

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