TAFE the perfect fit for John

Retiree John Cook finds new job as gym instructor thanks to TAFE

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FIGHTING FIT: John Cook with Wagga Wagga TAFE fitness teacher Helen Fisher.

FIGHTING FIT: John Cook with Wagga Wagga TAFE fitness teacher Helen Fisher.


John was happily retired, but decided to go back to work to help seniors stay healthy.


JOHN Cook was happily retired, but decided to jump back into the workforce to encourage fellow seniors to look after their bodies.

The 74-year-old former sheep shearer, bartender and service station owner is working as a gym instructor after completing a course through TAFE NSW.

The Wagga Wagga resident had been retired for over five years and was volunteering at Calvary Hospital.

He was inspired to reenter the workforce after becoming concerned by the lack of health and fitness knowledge of many seniors he encountered at the hospital.

He enrolled in a Certificate III in Fitness course at Wagga Wagga TAFE, graduating in December and then securing a role as an instructor of a seniors' gym class at the Workout Gym at Oasis.

"I kept hearing the same thing from older people: I don't want to join a gym because I don't want to be yelled at by someone younger than my grandkids who I can't relate to," he said.

"It's the simple things like when a younger gym instructor tells an older person to jump up off the floor, they don't realise it can take us a bit of time to get up."

John said some people seemed to think retirement was a reason to stop doing other important things in their lives.

"That's when you want to enjoy life to the fullest and to stay fit and healthy allows you to do all the things you want to do."

He said TAFE had taught him things he didn't know about muscle groups, heart function and much more.

"The teacher was fantastic and the course was a great mix of face-to-face learning, online learning and gym sessions."

To find out more about studying at TAFE, call 13-16-01 or click here.