Coach Developer, Harbour Sport
Performance Director/Business Owner, DT Fitness and Performance
Bachelor of Sport and Recreation in Coaching & Sport and Exercise Science
AUT is the gold standard when it comes to studying sport and recreation, says Damian Tuiloma.
“I wanted to start a career in sport after I had finished playing rugby and I was really keen on developing my passion for rugby through coaching. I did my research on what university had the most to offer, and I chose AUT because I wanted to learn from the leaders in the sport and recreation industry.
“One of the things that appealed to me about AUT is that it’s also the home of AUT Millennium, a prominent facility where students can learn from professionals in the Sports Performance Clinics and the Human Potential Clinic. It’s a great facility to learn about research projects in action.”
A rewarding career
After graduating in 2016, the AUT alumnus now splits his time between working as a coach developer at Harbour Sport and running his own business, DT Fitness and Performance.
“Coaching is an environment that’s forever changing, and the delivery of the coaching content must be adapted to suit the needs and experience levels of the coaches we interact with at Harbour Sport. I’m always impressed by how much knowledge student coaches possess. More and more young leaders in schools are aware that a coach is not just a hat and whistle, but is a person that’s a leader and mentor to those around them.
“As a business owner of DT Fitness and Performance I’ve also established a small group of personal trainers who provide training services to a range of people and athletes. I’ve also launched an online group fitness programme for trainers and have projects in development for coaches at the secondary school level.”
He constantly draws on what he learned at AUT, Damian says.
“The skills I’ve developed through AUT have enabled me to work with a variety of people, and be dynamic in my approach to daily tasks. Thanks to the valuable industry experience I got as part of my AUT degree, I could learn from other professionals in the field and see where I fit in the industry. I enjoy sharing my knowledge with those around me and change lives.”
Advice for other students
Choose a degree you’re passionate about, Damian advises other students.
“People recognise passion and they love to hear and learn from those who are passionate about their work. I chose to study the Bachelor of Sport and Recreation because it was the path I wanted to follow, and I’ve been given so many opportunities because of AUT.”
For Damian, the people were one of the highpoints of his studies.
“The AUT staff are fanatics, extremists and pioneers in their respective fields. I’m fortunate to have the knowledge I have today because of the people at AUT.”