We love finding out about the philosophies of Aotearoa’s experts on health, nutrition, wellbeing and fitness! This week we asked Tai Correa, a Samba instructor at Auckland’s Viva Latino! Latin Dance Academy, the NZ Real Health 10 Quick Questions:
1. In a nutshell, what do you do for your job?
I am a Samba instructor at Viva Latino. Samba is a Brazilian dance that represents the Brazilian culture, the history and events of everyday life. It combines elements of dance, music and attitude. Usually the samba dancers wear beautiful, colourful and fancy costumes in the Carnival parade. The costumes are hand-made, full of feathers and gems. The Carnival is not just a party but also a feeling. It’s a wonderful show of colours, stories and a lot of fun.
2. How did you get into your line of work?
I have always loved dancing. When I was little, I used to watch my mother dancing and I became fascinated with Samba. In Brazil, Samba has been part of the culture since the colonisation. It has African influences from the slaves who first arrived. For that reason, we grow up listening to the music, watching people dancing, watching the Carnival and being part of it. When I moved to New Zealand, I had the opportunity of showing my Samba style. Since then, I’ve been doing Samba courses.
3. What’s the best thing about your job?
I appreciate the fact that people look for different things from other cultures. They want to know more and more about it. It’s awesome to have the possibility of sharing my passion with people who have never done Samba before. It feels great when I see them discovering things about themselves. Samba is pretty much about freedom, so I try to make them feel comfortable about being different. It’s part of the journey, find out your own style. The energy, the hard work and the great results of team work make me very proud and happy about what we have done together.
4. What do you do to keep fit?
I am passionate about food. I have been trying to find a balance between all I love and the nutrients that I really need. I also love doing exercises. I am very active person.
5. What’s your philosophy on nutrition and diets?
I do not start a diet that I’m not capable of keeping up. I have been cooking at home more often and I try to swap the ‘fat’ for a healthier ingredient. I usually take one day off for the fast food and if I’m rushing without time for cooking, I grab sushi.
6. What does keeping healthy mean to you?
It means taking care of your body and mind. Do the best for them because we will need them for a long time.
7. What motivates you to stay on track with your own nutrition and training?
I think that I got used to it. I feel better when I am taking care of my body and health. I am always searching for inspiration as well. New training programmes, new recipes, new goals and new ways to achieve that. The fact that I need my body working well pushes me to keep doing the best for it.
8. What’s your best health or fitness tip?
Try different exercises, sports and healthy food. Do not forget that is not about how good you look, but how good you feel. Take care and do not give up about yourself.
9. If you were stranded on a desert island, what three things would you want to take?
Three things only? Can I say three bags full of things? (laugh) I’m joking. I would bring a knife, water and a friendly dog.
10. Any favourite inspirational quotes?
Go hard or go home.
Images / Supplied