Balancing work and play

Catalyst N Holt cover (1 of 2)With booked out classes and queues of people wanting his fitness advice, Rickel Greenland has turned from budding musician to fitness guru.

And he’s finding balancing work and play a doddle – he’s currently got his dream job as a personal trainer at Northolt Active Gym. We caught up with Rickel to find out how his life changed when he walked into the Unity Gym in Brent.

What drew you to the Unity Gym?

I’m really into fitness and I train people in Brent. When I heard about the Unity Gym, I thought ‘let me see what’s going on there’. And I haven’t stopped going since!

Two years ago I did a NQV level 2 in fitness instructor training but didn’t really use what I learned. When the gym opened, it was the perfect time for me to try and get into physical fitness again.

What were you doing before?

I was a music artist, getting paid here and there for my work. I was only working on small projects and not really pursuing a career.

Even though I like making music, I lacked passion and drive – I felt as though something was missing.

How did you get a job at Northolt Active Gym?

At the Unity Centre, where the gym is located, I met Russell John Haynes [youth engagement officer] and Kamara Jackson [employment skills and training officer]. They helped me open my horizons by letting me know what employment and training support I was entitled to.

When Kamara found out that I have an interest and qualification in fitness training, she helped me look for a job in that area. Lucky for me, she found a job which would be perfect for me – as a fitness instructor at a gym in Northolt. I was quite nervous before the interview, but Kamara helped me prepare which boasted my confidence.

How is the new job going?

I love it here. I have the opportunity to build a career, and there’s room for creativity and progression. Every day I meet people from different backgrounds and cultures, and they are all lovely.

I don’t know why I took so long to get into physical fitness as I love it. Thank you Catalyst for helping my dream become a reality.

How come you still work at the Unity Gym?

I don’t really work there, I volunteer and wouldn’t stop doing it for the world. I don’t mind training people for free because I believe that if they enjoy what I do, they’ll gradually become paying clients.

I’m also taking part in residents’ forums and trying to be a voice for people in my area. Sometimes people need to see people from their area doing well for themselves and trying their best. I’m trying to prove that being successful isn’t that hard and it’s never too late.

What are your plans for the future?

I’m doing a NQV level 3 in fitness instructor training, which finishes this month. Once I’m fully qualified, I would like to start my own company and call it ‘Stress-free Fitness’. I want to people to drop their stresses when they come into my gym to work out and give it their all.

Get into work or training

Our employment and skills support programme is dedicated to helping people find and sustain suitable work. We can help you with:

  • identifying your key skills and abilities
  • developing a winning CV and perfecting your interview skills
  • building your confidence and improving your communication skills
  • targeted job searches.

For more details contact Catalyst Gateway