Rory was born in Rome in 1962. At school he swam in regional championships – 100m breaststroke was his specialty – and captained the basketball team in his senior year. At university he rowed and played squash, and continued rowing with the River Lea RC until 1992 when back injury forced him to stop. Unable to stay away from competitive sports for long, Rory took up competitive cycling, mainly road racing and time trials, eventually racing as a sponsored rider for a season in 1996.
In the late 1990’s Rory combined his swimming and cycling skills with a third new discipline – running. Triathlon soon became his new passion and he raced successfully in age-group categories from Olympic distance races (1.5km swim, 40km bike and 10km run) all the way up to IronMan where racers swim for 3.8km, cycle for 180km and then run a full-length marathon of 42.2km.
For the past ten years Rory has been planning the opening of his own gym. Whilst working on an IT career in the City, he struggled to balance family / career / relationship with the immense training volumes necessary to compete. The Fitness Factory is the result of realizing the dream. Armed with in-depth knowledge on fitness, nutrition and training techniques, allied to his BsC in Biology, and with the experience of “having been there,” Rory embarked on a programme of study to qualify as an instructor in June 2004, then as a Personal Trainer in 2005. Rory’s highly motivational approach to teaching classes combines a powerful mixture of dynamics, aerobic and strength-training to cater to participants of all levels from beginners to elite athletes. Rory will challenge you, but will keep you safe.
Tonia qualified as an ICE trainer in October ‘05 and completed her Pilates Level 1 certification in August ‘06. She leads Easy Rider classes addressing the techniques of our low-impact aerobic exercise system, and Pilates classes addressing the core muscles for all levels of ability.
Tonia has always practiced a variety of sports. Born in Rome from American parents, she naturally took to basketball, and played in the school volleyball and hockey teams as well. At university Tonia cycled for fitness while playing badminton to a high standard.
Her teaching credentials are impeccable: Tonia taught primary school for 8 years until the birth of her daughter in ‘92. Between then and the birth of her son in ‘95 Tonia struggled to get back into shape so she joined a gym to take a more disciplined approach to training and nutrition. With regular exercise her pregnancy-related weight gain was quickly overcome through smart food choices and correct exercise.
Tonia’s holistic view of health and fitness combines nutrition, cardio, flexibility and strength training, as promoted at The Fitness Factory. Easy Rider (L2) is ideal for novices as it offers a pressure-free environment in which to improve slowly. Easy Rider and Pilates can both be as soft or as hard as you want them to be; when practiced correctly you are going to get a great workout at all levels.
Hannah was born in Surrey in 1976, and moved to Devon in 2001. At school she took part in all the sports, specializing in gymnastics. She competed at regional level in this discipline until the age of 18, and continued to practice until her first child was born.
After the birth of her third child in 2001, Hannah took up running, which soon became a consuming passion. As a runner she entered many races and enjoyed local success, particularly in the half marathon, which she has run many times.
Realizing that her vocation was in the field of health and fitness, Hanna qualified as an instructor in 2006, but her interest in all things sporting goes beyond the gym; a love for trampolining is shared with her daughters, who take lessons with her. Hannah also volunteers her time teaching youngsters basic gymnastic, and trampolining, and captains her local netball team (the “Denbury Devils”) who are fighting their way up the ultra-competitive local league.
Hanna’s approach to teaching classes fits in with The Fitness Factory perfectly: friendly, dynamic, motivational, energizing, and enthusiastic.
Brenda qualified as a specialist PE teacher in 1978, and taught initially in secondary schools. She has been passionate about encouraging young people to have a healthy active lifestyle and to take part in both recreational and competitive sports.
Brenda joined the Fitness Factory as a founder member when it opened in March 2005, impressed by everything it offered. She has since enjoyed a new level of fitness and wellbeing. Encouraged by Tonia and Rory she qualified as an Indoor Group Cycling instructor in 2010, and as a Pilates instructor in 2011. She then began teaching classes regularly at the Fitness Factory, whilst continuing to teach in school full time.
In July 2012, after 34 years, Brenda decided to end her school teaching career, and pursue work as a fitness instructor. She is excited about this new chapter in her life, and is enjoying the freedom to pursue new ventures, and to teach more classes at the Fitness Factory!