Choosing a career in fitness is the best thing to make ourselves and others fit. Excelling the knowledge of fitness certainly helps to train others and allows to generate awareness among people. Keeping fitness as a sole priority, Gayo Fitness Academy is one of such kind, which is committed to delivering quality fitness education and personal training certification through its vocational education.
Founded originally in 1999, Gayo Fitness Academy has been seen and respected as a national leader and one of the world’s top 10 in Fitness Education and Training. It offers a flexible permutation and combination of vocational courses, all nationally and internally recognized certificate courses and workshops. Besides all, its vocational courses are hugely acclaimed and certificated by the University of Mumbai and accredited by European Active Professional Standards Committee, Europe Active EREPS.
In the bid to know more about this Fitness Sciences Education & Training provider / academy, Rajeev Biswas, Sr. Sub Editor, from Sportz Business Fitness Magazine, manages to speak with Dilip Heble, Founder and CEO, Gayo Fitness Academy, where he vehemently shares his story of setting up such a professional based fitness academy in Mumbai. At Gayo Fitness Academy, Dilip leads a team of over 45 faculty members across India, designing and teaching over 20 programs in Fitness and Nutrition Sciences.
Over the last 22 years, Dilip Heble and his team have trained about 19,000 specialists in general fitness, medical rehab, sports conditioning, etc, in 23 training venues across India. However, during his brief stint in the Indian Police Service (1979 batch – Maharashtra cadre), he was actively associated with the organization of national-level events like the All-India Police Games and CHOGM Retreat security arrangements in Goa, 1982.
Let’s read what he has to say regards to his journey so far.
Q Please tell us a little about yourself and what drove you to start a fitness institute?
I come from a family of fitness and sports fanatics. My father – also an IPS officer (first regular IPS batch in 1948) was the old Bombay University track & field competitor. My two younger brothers excelled in athletics, cricket and squash. Sport and Fitness were the main topics of conversation at the dining table. We all fought for the sports page of TOI in the mornings. So, I grew up in a sports and fitness environment.
My school in Pune – Loyola’s – had an exceptionally high standard of academics and sports. A typical PT class was a serious affair each class started with a “warm up” of climbing up and down a steep hill!
During my stint in the IPS, in the districts that I served – Jalgaon, Kolhapur and Pune City – I encouraged sports among policemen for several reasons including:
- Sport helps release stress and tensions – great for trauma management
- It gets policemen to pick up social skills – teamwork, esprit de corps, etc.,
- Helps policemen become fitter
- Helps police relate better with citizens
- Helps build a better image
There are several reasons why I took to Fitness and launched a fitness academy. After I left the IPS in 1985, given my experience in fitness and sport including organizing police games and my habit of reading scientific journals in Fitness & Sports Sciences, I realized that Policing and Fitness have one common factor: both professionals help people who require help.
I was also influenced by the work of the USSR in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s in the area of fitness across all ages. There are several sports scientists from the USSR whom I admire e.g, the kate Dr Yuri Verkhoshansky
Fitness is very technical and science based. But what I saw around in the 1970s and 1980s and early 1990s was that India had no organized Fitness industry leave alone fitness trainers’ education centres. Whatever we had was in the Indian Army and to some extent in the Central Police Organizations like BSF and CRPF etc – and this too was in the realm of some selected games like hockey.
But at the common man’s level, there was nothing really. Sports, even today in some parts of the country, is not accessible by all. Sports needs space, logistics and money. Besides, it is Fitness more than sport that leads to better PHYSICAL HEALTH which starts with physical activity (some of which ought to be recreational), exercise and sport. It is the physical activity and Fitness components that are easily accessible – you need your own body weight and a place large enough to stand or lie down to do your activity or exercise!
Till the late 1990s, we had very few fitness education centres and they too we more in the line of training people in weight training from the bodybuilding point of view. It was all the above that led me to found a fitness academy which looked at Fitness in holistic manner. After all, there are 16 types of fitness and there are 8 general training methodologies – this 16 X 8 = 128 types of fitness goals or clients! Teaching trainers only in barbells and dumbbells and that too a limited number of exercises from bodybuilding point of view is a very restricted perspective.
Our Academy approach is help fitness trainers deliver fitness goals that the clients desire – not what the (typical) trainers desire to deliver!
Scientific fitness education which is confirmed through a rigorous knowledge delivery and assessment system – as per UGC – NAAC standards was and is critical to me. Hence, we tied up with the prestigious BPCA’s College of Physical Education which is NAAC graded “A” and permanently affiliated to the University of Mumbai which itself is accredited in Grade “A with 5 stars”.
Q Tell us about your work that you have been doing on fitness nowadays with Gayo Fitness Academy?
As mentioned above, we need to develop fitness trainers who will –
- Contribute to the health and fitness of Indians
- Help make us all love discipline
- Help us make fitter
- Help us become better sportsmen
Keeping the above in mind and the fact that we have 16 types of fitness and 8 training methodologies, we have developed FIVE vocation courses which are nationally and internationally respected.
I lead GAYO’s faculty in teaching in-house developed programs across India and South Asia and Middle East. Many of these education programs are jointly conducted with BPCA’s College of Physical Education, which is permanently affiliated to the University of Mumbai. Besides all, I also represent, promote and teache programs of the following world-leading organizations.
- International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA), USA: Specialist courses in Fitness & Nutrition.
- All Pro Performance (UK): Strength & Conditioning courses, GameSpeed are programs that Prof Ian Jeffreys teaches across India.
Q You have been an IPS (Indian Police Service) of 1979 batch – Maharashtra cadre, kindly take us through how that has impacted your life, and share some of your experiences from a cop to a fitness professional?
As mentioned above, IPS and Fitness have one commonality – helping people who want your help. IPS helped me realise that Society has a lot of trauma and fitness is one way to redress that trauma. Policemen themselves have trauma – they are also part of the same society. A fit person will be able to handle stress better and that in turn will help police maintain peace and harmony.
Being uniformed service, Policemen have a strong bond and sense of loyalty. I find the same in Fitness. I encouraged sports among policemen for several reasons – including:
- Helps release stress and tensions – great for trauma management
- Gets policemen to pick up social skills – teamwork, esprit de corps, etc
- Helps policemen become fitter
- Helps police relate better with citizens
- Helps build a better image
- There are several reasons why I took to Fitness and launched a fitness academy.
Q What unique offerings Gayo Fitness Academy is providing to its students compare to others?
GAYO endeavours to be seen and respected as a national leader and one of the world’s top 10 in Fitness Education and Training through – delivery of quality fitness education and personal training certification to those desirous of pursuing these vocations development of knowledge and skills sets courses and their delivery through development of world class Faculty as well as teaching and learning resources creation of opportunities for development of skills necessary to construct and pursue vocational careers in Fitness, Sports and Nutrition provision of free post-enrolment guidance, mentoring and support student and alumni services and support provision of consulting and management services to commercial, corporate and other fitness centres.
Q Kindly tell us more about your classrooms/interactive sessions at Gayo Fitness Academy?
At Gayo Fitness Scademy, we have something known as ‘Knowledge Delivery Process’, which is divided into two parts i.e., Pre-COVID, and as per present circumstances In-COVID.
During Pre-COVID all of our training programmes were there in the classroom or in the gym. In the classroom or in the gym there are three things, first all the classes were conducted face to face, secondly there was a possibility that during the classes the teacher or the master trainer could gently touch or correct the particular technique or the exercise and the third thing was every classroom session was live, it was basically in person live.
Whereas in the present COVID-19 scenario, we have converted all our In-person classes into blended courses. When we say blended, it is a mixture of online classes typically for theory and the second part is in-person classes, which we have done across India whenever COVID situation has allowed us to conduct the classes, and the third aspect of this blended mixture is home assignments, which we say as a guided home assignment. So whatever students learns on Saturday or on Sunday, the next week the student need to practice at home and need to send us the video clippings. We get 100’s of video clippings every week and I go through them personally because that is the part of the examination system. So, this is what we have as a blended system of education right now. But all through, whether it was Pre-COVID or In-COVID the students were always in touch with me personally. Gayo Fitness Academy is the only academy anywhere in the world, which offers 1400 exercises through videos. During Pre-COVID it was 900 video exercises and now during In-COVID it is 500 video exercises. All sought of weight training, Pilates, yoga, functional flexibility, stretching etc are included in our video exercises. With this 1400 video exercises are students are fully market ready and hence it gives a readymade online training. At our institute we are dedicated to train trainers who can deliver knowledge.
Q Give us the details about various training programs Gayo Fitness Academy is providing for aspiring fitness enthusiasts, and also share the fee structure?
Gayo offers the courses from the International Sports Sciences Association – ISSA (USA) – www.issaonline.edu– one of USA’s TOP 5 Fitness Education Programs.
Gayo is ISSA’s Sole Official Representative in India and Asia and authorized to promote, sell and teach these distance education courses
Our Courses are as follows: –
(A) Mumbai University – EREPS Level 4 Personal trainer course is ₹47,500.
(B) Mumbai University Fitness Centre Management course is ₹40,000.
(C) EREPS Level 4 Integrated Pilates Teacher course has three modules: (1) Pilates on Mat @ ₹25,000 (2) Pilates on ball @ ₹15,000 and (3) Pilates on Reformer @ ₹30,000.
(D) Certificate Course for Bodybuilding coaches @ ₹40,000
(E) Certificate Course in Strength & Sports Conditioning @ ₹55,000.
The fees are subject to change according to fluid situation due to COVID-19. We give EMI facilities – depending on courses anything from 3 months to 7 months
GAYO Fitness supports COVID-19 Widows in India
We invite women who lost their husbands to COVID19 to enrol on our BPCACPE – Mumbai University personal trainer certificate course @ 50% of the total fee of ₹47,500 – that is: ₹23,750 which they will pay in 12 EMIS starting December 1, 2022. (Skills India RPL / EREPS Level 4 fees, extra.)
Georgina D’Abreo, IFBB pro, personal trainer and educator, in Canada will train our COVID Widows in ONLINE TRAINING at no cost.
Fitness helps our families; communities and our NATION grow healthier and fitter.
This 50% deferred payment offer open till December 31, 2021, only for our personal trainer course. EMIs facility on our other courses: fitness centre management, Pilates, strength & conditioning and bodybuilding coaching.
Q After finishing the course in fitness, tell us more on what is the role played by Gayo Fitness Academy in offering a placement for individuals who want to make a career in fitness?
We encourage students to be self-employed, independent. We are the only fitness academy in India that offers free postenrolment and post-certification mentoring and guidance.
Q Shed some light towards Gayo Fitness Academy recognitions, partnerships and affiliations?
International Accreditation Organizations
Our international partnerships are based on our vocational courses that are approved and certificated through the University of Mumbai and / or are in the process of approval by Mumbai University.
Our international accreditation is by the Brussels based European Register of Exercise Professionals – EREPS (Europe Active). We have EREPS Level 4 grades for our personal trainer course and the Pilates teacher course. EREPS standards are recognized in 40 countries including the European Union’s member countries and India. It is also present in Australia – New Zealand and the Middle East except UAE (which is a member of another organization, ICREPS). In India, EREPS officially partners SPEFL-SC in the National Skills Development Corporation Ltd (Skills India).
We have an international partnership with IQ Lifestyle (in the UAE and UK) through which we have complied with the academic standards of FOCUS AWARDS (UK). Our personal trainer course students are compliant with the latter’s standards and, therefore, eligible for an upskilling process (in Dubai) which enable them to be awarded the Focus Awards Level 3 Diploma in Personal Training and the UAE REPS Level 3 card.
We are also currently in the process of further international accreditations. The goal is to ensure our knowledge and delivery standards are on par or higher than global standards.
For example, Prog Ian Jeffreys of UK – a world Guru in Strength & Conditioning is designing a course which will be specific to the Indian environment.
Q How do you see the fitness industry in India post COVID?
Fitness will be the second line of defence against COVID19 and all medical conditions. People will be more aware of the fact that health and relationships cannot be taken for granted. Fitness will ensure this.
Q Kindly tell us more about your expansion plans?
We need to keep in touch with ground realities. We are developing more programs in the areas of health-related fitness and sports conditioning. Another area we are into is RESEARCH. Most of the western fitness sciences are bases on western culture – westerners are bigger in size, there are climatic and cultural differences, etc. We want to develop Fitness concept suited to India and Indians. We also developing indigenous formats of exercise – example: lezim, Indian clubs (mugdhar), and some north east Indian folk dances and martial art, etc.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as a health advice. We would ask you to consult a qualified professional or medical expert to gain additional knowledge before you choose to consume any product or perform any exercise.