Member Since 2008 • Los Angeles
In 1979, Susanna Gayedon, inspired by a kinesiology class—and the movie Flashdance—became a fitness instructor. But she was no flash in the pan, going on to earn her AFAA certification, become registered with Yoga Alliance and make a difference in the lives of hundreds of clients as both a personal trainer and a group fitness instructor. Today, at age 68, she teaches everything from water fitness to cycling to yoga (and more), always focusing on the individual needs of her clients. “I give extra help to those who need it before and after classes and explain why we do the things we do,” she says. “They’re more likely to do exercises correctly and continue to come back.” As for her own motto? “Try, today, to do more than you’ve ever done before,” she says, adding, “Think positive and think young.” What a feeling!
Member Since 2013 • Smith Falls, Ontario
“It gives me great joy knowing I can make a difference,” says Natatia Gemmell. “I am passionate about health, exercise and nutrition.” First inspired to participate in fitness competitions by a friend, she later became a personal trainer to help others reach their goals. But her biggest agent of change was Todd Durkin, MS, during an IDEA® Personal Trainer Institute. “He said, ÔÇÿYou have to take the leap, and if you don’t, you’ll never know what’s on the other side,’” she recalls. “His message changed my life.” She took her business out of her basement and has twice moved to larger studios to accommodate her flourishing health club. “I am grateful to be where I am today,” she says, attributing her success to her “willingness to grow, many mentors . . . and the education that IDEA provides.”
Member Since 1994 • Curacoa
Ruth Kroes always loved to dance, so when she started aerobics classes, she was hooked. She became certified through The Cooper Institute®, enjoying a full and fulfilling life as a lab technician, group exercise instructor and personal trainer. Then, a debilitating accident left her in a wheelchair, unable to use her legs for 3 months. “The fitness instructor in me started thinking about what I could do [to exercise] and stay motivated during this difficult time,” she says. The result was PUMPONWHEELS™, a program that combines mind-body techniques with core training, especially helpful for those with lower-body limitations. There are no limitations for Ruth, though, who shares her passion for fitness through her many classes and charity work. “Nothing is impossible,” she says. “You have the power to sculpt yourself into what you want to become.”
We’d Like to Put the Spotlight on You!
If you would like to be featured in this section or know an IDEA member who stands out in the fitness crowd, email a brief description of your (or your colleague’s) fitness activities and achievements and a high-resolution digital photograph (at least 300 dpi, in focus, well-lit and at least 3” ├ù 3” in its original digital format) to Sandy Todd Webster, [email protected] Please include your IDEA member number, if possible. You (or the colleague) must be an IDEA member to be considered for this section.
With the pandemic, many fit pros rose to the occasion by providing online fitness platforms that offered business tools to improve training.