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Pilates Instructor Olivia Vidiuera and Her Fitness Journey

This past week, I was lucky enough to interview someone who sets a perfect example of using their passion to inspire and motivate others. Olivia Vidiuera is a student at FSU and Pilates instructor at Drip Drop Fitness. 

Her Campus (HC): Tell us about yourself! 

Olivia Vidiuera (OV): My name is Olivia. I’m from Boca Raton, Florida. I love the beach, traveling and learning new things and meeting new people. I go to FSU, and I’m double majoring in Advertising and Spanish. I also love to dance, and I’m very passionate about health and fitness! 

HC: How did you get into fitness/dancing?

OV: I’ve danced ever since I was little; I danced ballet for years and as I got older, I got interested in different types of dance like contemporary and hip hop. My fitness journey began in group fitness classes. I started taking all types of different classes with my mom back home, and then at FSU when I started college! I tried all sorts of different classes: weight lifting, cardio, spin, body sculpting, barre, Pilates and more. Pilates was definitely my favorite. As I became more comfortable in the gym, I started experimenting with machines and weights on my own, learning from fitness professionals and friends, slowly creating my own workouts. The more I learned, the more I wanted to contribute to the field. I eventually became so inspired that I studied and became AFAA Group Fitness and Pilates certified!

HC: What does a regular day as a Pilates instructor look like for you?​

OV: When I go into work, I get set up, put on my microphone, lay out my mat and prepare to greet clients at the door. Once everyone has arrived, I head back to my mat, introduce myself and the class, start my playlist and begin teaching! It’s super important to provide modifications and movement cues so that clients are getting the most out of the workout. My typical class begins with a warm-up and stretches, then into typical Pilates exercises like the “hundreds,” and bridge series. I teach a full-body workout, including strength training, some cardio and stretching! I believe it is equally as important to be encouraging, fun and help clients when they are struggling or have questions. I create my own classes, so if I’m not teaching one day, I might go into the studio to plan out new exercises, choreographing the moves to the music. I try to pick music and exercises that will make people want to move and make the most of their Pilates workout! 

HC: What is your favorite part of the job?​

OV: The people! At Drip Drop, we make it a priority to learn clients’ names and encourage them throughout the class. This helps us to really connect with participants, whether that means helping them achieve their goals or even just brightening their day! It was the most rewarding thing when I began to have the same people attend my class regularly! Whether it’s regulars or clients I’ve never met before, I love sharing my class with them. I absolutely love the people who come to my classes and always hope to see them again.

HC: How, if at all, has this pandemic impacted your job since it involves being surrounded by people?

OV: Before the pandemic, I was able to teach whatever class size, no limits. With the onset of COVID-19, there was a large gap where I wasn’t able to look for group fitness or Pilates jobs, so I was certified but had nowhere to teach because gyms were all closed. When gyms began to reopen, that’s when I got my current job at Drip Drop Fitness and began teaching. Our studio takes many safety precautions, including wearing a mask whenever we are not exercising or teaching. Before phase three, our instructors were taking their own and clients’ temperatures as they entered. We clean off equipment and surfaces thoroughly to ensure the safety of our clients and instructors. Class sizes are also a lot smaller, and there is less time to chat with clients before and after class due to the precautions. 

HC: What do you see yourself doing in the future and does it involve fitness? 

OV: Definitely. While I’d love a career in advertising, translating or communications in general, I definitely see myself being a fitness instructor for as long as I can. Whether I teach in addition to another career or just teach I would be very happy. I love my job; I honestly feel like I have found my dream job at 20!

HC: Do you have any advice for someone beginning their fitness journey? 

OV: Break the ice! Get out of your comfort zone and try something new. Take a group fitness class, go for an interval run, follow a YouTube home workout, whatever! Try all sorts of different things until you figure out what you like. Make it a consistent part of your life, and just take it from there. Exercise is so good for you, not only physically but mentally. Find a workout regime that makes you feel happy, strong and challenged! 

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Maddy Barlow is majoring in Interdisciplinary Medical Sciences at Florida State University.
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