VFA Graduate Profile: Courtney Vogt
Massage, Fitness and a Successful Small Business – Fitness and Massage Courses Melbourne
Courtney Vogt is the owner of Energise Fitness & Muscular Therapies, a successful massage and personal training business in Gisborne. Her clinic is set in tranquil surrounds, cows graze out the back, the garden is regularly visited by curious fairy wrens and the clinic is busy with an ever increasing number of clients. Courtney began her training with VFA Learning while she was at high school and she was recently a finalist in the Macedon Ranges Shire Council Young Businessperson of the year awards. We recently interviewed Courtney, and she generously shares her experience here.
What training did you complete with VFA Learning?
I first enrolled with VFA Learning in high school as a school based apprentice studying fitness. I then went back to complete a Certificate IV in Massage, Diploma of Remedial Massage and Advanced Diploma of Myotherapy with VFA Learning once I finished school because I had such a great experience completing my school based apprenticeship.
What made your studies with VFA Learning so great?
VFA Learning offers consistently excellent training across campuses (I studied in Geelong and Essendon Fields). All the trainers are awesome. We developed Facebook pages for our class so that we were able to communicate with trainers and other students. It was great to know we were all going through the same things. Emily and Nova were my massage trainers, and they constantly went above and beyond what I expected. They were a huge support in class, and they found us amazing placements and opportunities all the time.
What was the highlight of studying with VFA Learning?
Being ready to work in your chosen field while you study is a huge bonus. After six months I had my Certificate IV in Massage which meant I was able to work in the industry right away and build up my clients while I studied my Diploma. VFA Learning made it really easy, there’s work online that you can access anywhere and getting to school was easy (I live in Gisborne). We did a lot of hands on stuff which meant I was confident to begin working right away and having the opportunity to do so much practical work made the study a lot easier. Practicing what you learn is far more fun than being handed a textbook.
Is your career what you expected it to be?
The days are longer than I expected, I start with personal training clients in the morning, massage clients throughout the
day and personal training again at night, but the fact is I love my job. When you enjoy what you do, it keeps you going. Business has built up like crazy since I became a finalist in the Macedon Ranges Shire Council Young Businessperson of the Year awards.
What was it like to be a finalist in the Young Businessperson of the Year awards?
Nominating for the awards was an intense process. There were 30 applications, and I was one of three finalists. The response from the community has been fantastic. The awards were for people 35 and under. I am only 22, and I was up against people who have been in business for 10 or 15 years. I didn’t win the award in the end but being a finalist was still a great achievement and a great boost to my business. The free advertising has been amazing, the day my nomination as a finalist went live three new clients booked through my Facebook webpage.
Would you recommend VFA Learning to someone considering a massage career?
Yes. Studying at VFA Learning was one of the best things I did. VFA Learning made studying easy, I could always get the help I needed when I needed it. VFA Learning’s focus on practical learning is what got me here. If I had to try to learn everything online or from books, there’s no way I would be where I am now. It wouldn’t have interested me. I’m still in contact with my trainers now. Emily (my trainer) still checks in and lets me know what she’s up to, and we let her know what we are up to. Emily still arranges professional development for us, and we are still welcome at VFA Learning – it’s a supportive environment from start to finish. VFA Learning also made it really easy to get provider numbers and be work ready. This means it is easy for my clients to claim private health benefits.
How do massage and fitness work together?
Many of my clients see me for both fitness and massage sessions. Fitness and massage work so well together, and my clients get the best of both worlds. When you understand someone from both a training and a massage perspective, it gives you a better idea of what is and isn’t working for them, and you have a better understanding about how the client’s body will cope with the treatment you provide. The sessions work so well together. For example, I am treating a woman that had little strength on the right side of her body due to a medical condition. We have been training on a fortnightly basis for quite a while, and we started doing massage over the last two months. Since we started the massage sessions she has picked up tenfold and now has equal levels of strength in both sides of her body. She is really happy, has far less pain and is a lot more able to do all the things she has wanted to do.
What is your favourite thing about your job?
I love my job. I love working in my massage room. I do mobile massage too, and I get to interact with a lot of people in different settings. I really enjoy seeing my fitness clients achieve weight loss and improved mental health and I love seeing how my fitness and massage sessions support my pregnant clients before, during and post pregnancy. Every day is different. If I’m ever having a down day, there will always be someone that perks me up and I’m often able to do that for them too. When you work in this industry you will never have the same day twice, sometimes it can be a challenge but I love the variety and it is super rewarding.
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