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About Nordic Academy

Nordic Academy is the leading training provider, as well as the leading driver for the development of Nordic Walking, in Australia and the Oceania region.  We have been sought out to conduct training and provide expertise for health professionals from a number of countries including Singapore, Malaysia, New Zealand and Fiji.

Nordic Academy was founded in 2005 by Patrick Burtscher and Maree Farnsworth. Patrick’s background is in education and sports coaching, whilst Maree came to the team with a degree in Sport Science.  Both Founders undertook their initial training and gained their early experience in Austria under the mentorship of Markus Foermer under the umbrella of N.W.O. (Nordic Walking Organisation).

Since then both Founders have become recognised as international pioneers and experts of the activity of Nordic Walking, being actively part of the global development and members of the International Nordic Walking Advisory Board.

Nordic Academy’s vision is to provide opportunities for as many people as possible to experience the health benefits and enjoyment of Nordic Walking. This is achieved through the provision of high quality training to health professionals, a Professional Membership program to provide follow up support and resources, equipment and accessories, a network of certified Instructors for the general public, as well as general advocacy.


About the Founders

Maree_Farnsworth_-_Pro_Headshot_1 Maree Farnsworth   linkedin_image

Founder & Managing Director
International Nordic Walking Master Trainer B.App.Sci (Human Movement) - Uni of Ballarat
Certificate IV in Training and Assessment

Maree has been working in the health and fitness industries for over 20 years. Her experiences have included being manager of a corporate health club, an exercise physiologist at one of Australia's most respected health resorts, co-author of a women's healthy weight loss program, and a team trainer for a corporate development company.

These positions have enabled Maree to consult one on one, present seminars, mentor groups and train other professionals all in order to assist thousands of different people achieve their personal health, fitness and wellbeing goals.

Maree discovered Nordic walking whilst living in Europe and is now passionate about and committed to the promotion and development of this amazing new fitness activity in Australia. "Nordic walking is truly one of the best ways to achieve holistic health - improve fitness, get outdoors, socialise and have fun. I just love it!"


patrick-portrait Patrick Burtscher    linkedin_image  

Founder & Managing Director
International Nordic Walking Master Trainer
Bachelor of Education
Certificate IV in Training and Assessment
Diploma in Management
Advanced Diploma in Business 


Patrick is an International Nordic Walking Master Trainer and the founder and director of Nordic Academy, through which he has been training and educating health and fitness professionals to become qualified Nordic Walking Providers since 2005. In his home country of Austria he was a school teacher and headmaster, an alpine ski instructor and was a coach of tennis and rock climbing. He is dedicated to and masterful at bringing out the best in people so they can achieve and enjoy the feeling of doing and being their personal best.

Being a bit sceptic at first, once Patrick tried Nordic Walking he became an instant convert – swapping from jogging to Nordic Walking to maintain his own fitness.  “Nordic Walking suits me because I get the fitness benefit without the strain and impact on my joints and ligaments which get aggravated by most other sports.”


Nordic Academy International

Nordic Academy has Nordic Walking Instructors and affiliations across the Asia Pacific (New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia & Fiji), as well as the world (Saudi Arabia).

Our training, equipment, systems, programs and reputation are highly regarded and sought after by leading international health professionals and organisations.

International affiliations with other Nordic Walking organisations include Nordic Pole Walking Canada and Nordic Walking US.

For further information about any of our international activities, affiliations or Instructors please contact us:

Our Team

Nordic Academy is in need of excellent people to join their growing team!

If you are a health or fitness professional, enjoy the outdoors, love working with people and are keen to be at the forefront of a remarkable industry trend then we'd love to hear from you. Contact Us to find out more!