OUR CITY OUR FUTURE: Kori McTaggart
TWO years ago, Kori McTaggart walked away from a secure job to go out on his own and it terrified him.
With perseverance and hard work, the move turned out to be a good one as Mr McTaggart's Hybrid Strength N Fitness has grown from a couple of hundred dollars worth of weights and a home-made rack to a thriving personal training studio.
Mr McTaggart said his decision to leave his job at Voyage Fitness was guided by a need to help those people on the fringes.
"Gyms can be daunting places,” he said.
"There will be people who shrink back or struggle to get involved, for one reason or another.
"I'm good listener and I wanted to help those people who either weren't sure how to use a gym properly or just didn't want to go to a commercial gym and have that pressure.
"One-on-one training is perfect for those people - it's the middle ground between exercising alone in a park and going to the gym.”
It all grew from a shed in his backyard to a large facility in McEvoy St, where the 27-year-old trainer now sees between 50 to 70 clients every week.
But all of this would be a surprising reality check to his 15-year-old self.
"I was the size of a mop and hated sport,” he said.
"I started to drift away from school in Year 9 and found myself a job at Dick Smith.
"I eventually finished Year 10, I drifted in and out and did a bit by distance learning.
"I was never a bad kid, school just wasn't for me.”
It was while working at Dick Smith, Mr McTaggart started to notice something about his customers.
"I started seeing how unfit and overweight people were, how long it would take people to get up if they leaned or kneeled down to look at something on the bottom shelf,” he said.
"I started to think about study personal training over the course of a couple of months, so I could try to make a difference to myself and others.”
Then came a few years at Voyage Fitness before he decided to go it alone.
"Six clients followed and I spent a lot of time on the back veranda wondering what the hell I had done,” he said.
"So I got up went to Bunnings and bought some cinder blocks, some wood, some rope and a found a few old pallets and a tyre and devised a boot camp in my parents' backyard.
"And it worked and started building from there.”