Fall Activities for KIDS in Winnipeg

 

Autumn is such a great time for new routines. I love how the leaves are telling us to shed the old and get ready for something new. I always find my body and mind need a change this time of year with my fitness routine. Summer isn’t exactly my strongest season for the gym, but I love switching things up completely in the Fall and doing something new. Last year I did a 30 day Barre Challenge at Moksha Yoga. This year I am doing a 12 week program of kickboxing at Winnipeg Kickboxing and Muay Thai. Feels great to switch things up.

 

Just like adults, kids really change things up in the Fall. They go from staying up later, playing all day and weekends at the lake to school and activities. There are so many terrific options for kids to participate in, so this week’s blog we thought we would give you a few more ideas for kids sport and fitness. Our Fitness Journal for Girls happens to have discounts at all of these incredible places, and can be purchased online for only $10 here.

 

AQUATICA SYNCHRO CLUB

Want to give their amazing sport a try and check #136 off your Participation 150 Playlist? Here is your chance to try Synchronized Swimming FOR FREE with Aquatica Synchro club!

Girls and boys Ages 5+ welcome
Classes in Shallow & Deep End
Bring a suit and be ready to get wet!
Contact info@aquaticasynchro.com to RSVP or check out www.AquaticaSynchro.com for information on their current programs for all ages 5-Adult!

Come for the full hour:

September 12th, 6-7pm EK pool
September 20th, 6-7pm Pan Am pool
September 19th, 6-7pm Steinbach Aquatic Centre

If you have stronger swimmers that are looking for a challenge, their competitive programs are starting with our Kick-off camp September 9th at Kildonan Park. Check out www.aquaticasynchro.com for details or contact info@aquaticasynchro.com.

 

BASKETBALL MANITOBA

The Winnipeg Minor Basketball Association has announced its fall / winter 2017-18 basketball season registration information. Full details can be found here – http://www.wmba.ca
JR NBA 5-7 YEAR OLDS

Introductory program for boys and girls 5-7. Program runs 1 time a week for 1 hour.

STEVE NASH YOUTH BASKETBALL 8/9 YEAR OLDS 
Developmental program for boys and girls 8/9 Practice 1 time a week with 1-2 games per week.

COMMUNITY CLUB BASKETBALL 11-18 YEAR OLDS

Recreation based program for girls and boys 11-18. Practice 1 time a week with 1-2 games per week.

 

PRIDE MUAY THAI

Pride Muay Thai’s Kids Beginner Muay Thai course start September 25th.This 8-week program is divided into two age groups and they will tackle different striking and kicking techniques.

Ages 5 – 9 are Mondays and Thursday from 4:30 – 5:15.

Ages 10 – 15 are Tuesdays and Thursday from 5:15 – 6pm

They also have kids Grappling starting. These classes run Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 7pm – 8pm.

The fee is $160 plus GST and a $50 registration fee.  And don’t forget to use that great promotion located in the Fitness Journal for Girls! More information can be found on their website (www.pridemuaythai.com/kids-classes) or by calling 204-505-4048.

 

SKY ZONE TRAMPOLINE PARK

Sky Zone Winnipeg is incredibly excited to announce the implementation of four new innovations within Sky Zone. This September, they are installing four new attractions guaranteed to bring your Sky Zone experience to the next level. The innovations “Warped Wall”, “Free Climb”, “Jousting” and “Performance Wall” will make up their “Challenge Zone” offering new opportunities for guests to challenge and experience attractions completely unique to Winnipeg.

To enjoy this pass to its full potential, they are offering an unbelievable deal to guests. Each guest can jump an hour a day for every day in September for $49.99 (valued at $496). That’s 90% off! Their innovations should be complete by September 19 but the rest of the park is open to enjoy beforehand! Enjoy Sky Zone for a birthday party, group event or just an amazing time in the Open Jump!

 

WINNIPEG KICKBOXING AND MUAY THAI

I LOVE this place! If you are looking to find a new activity for your kids, Winnipeg Kickboxing and Muay Thai has kids classes running every Wednesday at 5pm and Sundays at noon. All classes are one hour long and take place at 1777 Portage Avenue. It is a great way to learn self-defense, increase self-confidence and have a ton of fun. For more information or to register, contact Trisha at 204.930.6780.

 

WINNIPEG SYNCHRO

Winnipeg Synchro is celebrating its 70th year this year! Join them and see what they are all about. Free Try It Days include:

  • Free Try-it (Pan Am Pool, deep water only) Tuesday, Sep 19, 6:30 – 7:30 pm.
  • Free Try-it (Pan Am Pool, deep water only) Thursday, Sep 21, 6:30 – 7:30 pm.
  • Free Try-it (Pan Am Pool, shallow and deep water) Saturday, Sep 23, noon-1:00 (deep water) AND noon – 12:30 pm or 12:30 – 1:00 pm

Email them for more information (inquiries@winnipegsynchro.ca) or simply drop in for a Free Try it days wearing a bathing suit and a smile!

They also offer programming for ages 5 – 18+ for both recreational and competitive programs. Their pre-competitive program includes the following:

 

ZUMBA WITH YVONNE

Tons happening in the Zumba world at the Lindenwoods Community Centre:

Zumba Kids (ages 6-11 years) Classes starts Wed. Sept. 20 at 5 pm for 10 weeks.

Free Demo Classes for NEW Zumbini (ages 0-4 years). Classes on Tuesday, Sept. 26 at 9:30 am (45 min) and Sun. Oct. 1 at 5 pm

Contact Yvonne at (204) 295-6060 or zumbafunwithyvonne@gmail.com for more information.

 

 

Valerie Champagne – Inspiring CrossFit Athletes In & Out of the Box

Valerie Champagne exemplifies why I love sport. Her own personal history and experiences, views as a coach and motivating attitude are nothing short of inspiring. Interviewing her is like asking for a list of amazing mantras. I really feel like everyone should carry around Valerie in their back pocket!

Valerie is the coach and owner of Top Notch CrossFit located at 81 Plymouth Street in Winnipeg. Having started as a CrossFit athlete herself seven years ago, she began coaching the sport three years ago. For someone that has such a short coaching career, she is extremely knowledgeable and has a true talent for motivating her athletes.

Valerie herself did not grow up in a sports driven household. She was “the kid on the sidelines with the low confidence to even try out”. This personal experience growing up is why she loves working with kids – especially the kids who themselves, are on those sidelines hoping to be brought in. She knows first-hand how intimidating it is to start when you aren’t an “athlete”. She started CrossFit without a sports background, and became an exceptional athlete.

Coaching those like her – having never equated themselves to being athletes – is what she loves. “What excites me most about coaching is watching an adult or child walk into our box feeling a little overwhelmed and a little bit nervous. They are often doubtful of their abilities and hesitant. What transforms weeks and months later is a confidence. They are doing things they never thought possible. They feel better, they move better, and they hesitate a lot less. All they have to do is just start! Just start!! No matter where you are at…..just start. Believe in yourself…you are capable of so many things you never thought possible. Embrace the journey… it will have its highs and lows but it will be all worth it,” says Valerie.

Valerie is quite unique in that she coaches everyone from kids to adults. She is able to tailor training and motivation to each person, regardless of age or fitness ability. “We have people who are happy to come in and get a good sweat going, and hang out with some great people. There are others who want to take it to another level and test themselves in a competition environment. We support them and prepare them to do so,” says Champagne.

She knows that success is measured differently by each individual – whether someone has been able to stop certain medications, finally get into their favorite pair of shorts or a reach a specific fitness goal. She develops personal relationships and friendships with each individual and respects each of their own personal journeys and takes time to celebrate their successes.

Valerie recognizes that sometimes people have bad days and can get down on themselves and may want to give up. “As a coach you do what it takes to keep them there. It may take some adjustments of the workout itself, revaluating goals, or just a reminder of how far they have come,” Valerie says.

CrossFit is a community. As such, she has been fortunate to have many coaching mentors. It is no surprise that the ones that stand out most to her are “the ones that are able to make a personal connection, root you on every step of the way, challenge you and who keep you interested in the sport.” It is no surprise as this is what Valerie does with her own athletes.

Unlike most sports, CrossFit is a unique sport in that there are quite a large number of female coaches. Valerie equates these numbers to the fact that the sport itself respects women as equals. Even at the last CrossFit Games, the prizes for podium winners were the same for men and women – something relatively unheard of in sport. Valerie trains females and males in the exact same movements and progressions and they are all treated as equals.

She is confident in her own coaching and feels that because this has been proven, she has gained the deserved respect. She believes however, that sport in general needs to recognize the expertise that women bring to the table and recognize it and respect it equally.

Valerie’s desire for her athletes goes beyond how many deadlifts, pullups or squats they can do. She wants them to be happy in their own skin and have the best quality of life for a long time… no matter how old or young. This is also her personal view on life and her hope for her two girls. She also stresses that all bodies come in all sizes and shapes but that the most important thing is that it is a healthy and strong body. Our bodies are capable of different things and we must embrace that.

Her biggest successes as a coach are the moments when a member has thanked her for supporting them. “It may have been a little tip I gave them to reach a goal or encouraging word to get them through the process. As a CrossFit kids’ coach the moments that stand out are when they come to me in class and tell me how they did their own workout at home or had family members do one with them. I know I have had an impact,” says Champagne.

It is obvious that Valerie gets out just as much as she gives from coaching. “I do this to give back what this sport has done for me. The level of confidence I have, the way I feel, the role model I am for my girls. I want to inspire those 9 year old girls sitting on the side lines and those 30 year old ladies that never played a sport in their life and now can call themselves athletes. Everyone has it in them, they just need someone to grab their hand and take them for the ride. It is quite the ride!”

Want to read about more inspiring sport women who are killing it? Click here.

Kickboxing For Women & Children in Need

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Martial Arts has been a part of my life since I was six years old. As a young girl in a heavily dominated male sport, I learned from an early age that girls can do everything and anything just as well, and sometimes even better, than boys. I learned that being true to who I was and what I wanted to do was immensely important. I learned how to utilize every muscle of my body for a purpose – whether I was doing sweep kicks, round houses or mastering a few form or weapon, I was gaining confidence. I truly attribute much of my self-confidence today to my life in Martial Arts. In such, at Fit Communications we love supporting girls and women in sport, especially combat sports. We are proud to partner with Winnipeg Kickboxing and Muay Thai on their upcoming fundraising initiative.

On July 19, 2016, Winnipeg Kickboxing & Muay Thai, located at 1777 Portage Avenue, will open their kickboxing school doors for a fundraiser in support of the Fort Garry Women’s Resource Centre (FGWRC). Two, one-hour open classes will take place, the first one at 4:30pm followed by the second at 5:30pm. All drop-in fees for this class will do directly to support the FGWRC.

The Fort Garry Women’s Resource Centre is a not-for-profit, feminist organization supporting women to engage in healthy life choices for themselves and their families through innovative and responsive programming and excellence in service. Fort Garry Women’s Resource Centre is committed to creating a community where women and children are safe, healthy, valued and empowered.

Trisha Sammons, two-time Canadian kickboxing champion and now Head Coach of Winnipeg Kickboxing and Muay Thai, wanted to bring a different type of fitness class to Winnipegers while supporting the FGWRC. “Kickboxing is not only a great workout, but it allows people of all ages and fitness levels to get fit, learn self-defense, increase self-esteem and have a ton of fun while doing it,” Sammons says. “At Winnipeg Kickboxing we provide a fun, safe environment for people to workout, and felt there was a strong tie to the FGWRC with their mission of safety and health for women and children in our city.”

Event Details:

Where: Winnipeg Kickboxing & Muay Thai, 1777 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg

When: Tuesday, July 19, 2016. 4:30pm and 5:30pm (each one hour classes)

What: Beginners kickboxing class open to all women, men and children in Winnipeg

Cost: By donation only. Suggested donation $10 per person

For more information or to sign up, join the movement on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/events/1086578908096878/

Media:

Winnipeg Free Press

Fitness in Winnipeg

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I love trying new fitness ‘everything’! Be it a new piece of equipment, a new gym or a new type of class, I love seeing what is new, what I can learn and how I can add pieces of each to my personal workouts. So it is not surprising that only three weeks into the new year, I have already tried three ‘new to me’ places. This week’s blog I will tell you about each and why I loved them all.

Prairie Roots

Located at 562 Academy Road, this second floor space has a wide variety of wellness and fitness options for the whole family. Five local Winnipeg women are on a mission to bring wellness and showcase the physical, mental and spiritual side of health. They have everything from Yoga to Zumba to Ass Class. I tried the Guided Mediation class with Janet Lewis. As a meditation virgin, I was intrigued. Janet took the group through a 45-minute meditation where she assisted us in calming our bodies and minds. Similar to yoga in the idea of always coming back to your breath, she made me feel at ease, mellow and relaxed. That was a terrific way to start a Sunday, with a calm mind and soul. For more information about Prairie Roots find them on Facebook or check out their website at www.prairierootswpg.weebly.com

Shinobi Fitness

Located at 328 King Street with lots of free parking in the Exchange, I must admit I was slightly scared to try crossfit. It has an intimidation factor for some reason to me – not sure if it’s the people or the hardcore fitness factor, but I was scared. I tried an introductory course lead by owner Rich Thomas, which consisted of a group of eight women and two men, ranging in all ages, sizes and fitness levels. If you want to get in great shape, this will do it. Tons of squats which I love, and a workout that has a fitness-centered approach – strength, conditioning, speed, core. And without a doubt, I must say that owner Rich is perhaps one of the best trainers I have ever worked with in the gym. He really knows what he is talking about! He not only tells you what and how to do the moves but why. I have been doing squats for over 30 years and he gave me hints to make them better and in turn, cause less stress on my joints and increase my strength. Thirty years of working out and one hour with Rich made a difference. For more information about their classes and boot camps, find them on Facebook or check out their website at www.crossfitshinobi.com

Pilates Manitoba

Located at 390 Academy Road, I found Pilates Manitoba when looking for a pilates instructor for the high performance team with Manitoba Rowing. The Head Coach needed a program to increase the core strength of his athletes and build the base and stability muscles of the team. Owner Annabel Scott is really dedicated to her facility, pilates and her clients. Our one-hour classes lead by Tom for a ten-week session, started this part weekend and let me tell you – two days later I can still feel the workout over my entire core and upper body. The slight movements in pilates allow your body to focus on the smaller muscle groups that aid your larger muscle groups to be big movements. All high performance, dynamic athletes in the group – and we were all blown away with the difficulty of holding particular moves. An exceptional core workout, using various portable equipment pieces, including TR-X. I am really looking forward to these weekly classes. For more information about Pilates Manitoba and their wide variety of classes to suit all fitness levels, check out their website at http://www.pilatesmanitoba.com/index.html

The Key to a Healthy Gut

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Your digestive system. It can be the essence of your health. Almost everything (with the exception of breathing and skin soaking it all in) comes in and out through your digestive system. It keeps us nourished, it feeds all of our organs and muscles, can lead to being healthy or being a mess. So ensuring your gut is healthy is imperative. In this week’s blog I brought together some key information on what to do to ensure you keep your digestive system in optimal health.

Issues most often arise with your digestive system due to poor food choices, viruses, parasites, too much caffeine and alcohol, antibiotics, NSAIDs and bad bacteria. These can all damage your gastrointestinal tract, which can in turn lead to a “leaky gut”.

“Leaky gut” means “that instead of foods being broken down, absorbed, and eliminated, partially digested foods can now cross through the damaged area of the intestinal lining and enter the blood stream directly. This leak can cause intolerance that then initiate an inflammatory response in the body and the release of stress hormones. One of these stress hormones is cortisol, which further taxes the body and starts to impair the body’s immune system. This can then lead to a host of issues that may not seem related to the impaired gastrointestinal tract, like allergies, skin conditions, impaired performance, and stubborn weight gain to name but a few.” (Source: http://breakingmuscle.com/nutrition/the-four-rs-how-to-restore-optimal-gut-health)

So now that we have the basic issue understood, what can you do about it? The great news is that there is tons of ways to make your body work better for you. Here’s how to start!

Step One – Remove the foods and toxins from your diet that can be causing the issue. Processed foods, bad fats, alcohol and caffeine to start, and see what else is causing your stomach to ache. Often dairy and gluten cause upset stomachs – listen to your body. Personally if I eat read meat I have a real tough time digesting it – I think of it as a food hangover. So I simply avoid it – including whey protein.  If it just doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.

Step Two – Add things that are GOOD for your gut. Probiotics are key. Probiotics help fight illness by keeping the good bacteria in your system.   Omega 3s, Zinc, antioxidants, aloe vera and turmeric are all terrific. And if you read the Fit Communications blog often, you know that we are HUGE fans of these for various reasons. Add them to your day every day, and you may truly feel a difference.

Step Three – Add items such as digestive enzymes or organic salt to keep your bile salts, hydrochloric acid and digestive enzymes in check. You can buy all of these items at your local health food store. Personally I take digestive enzymes before a meal such as steak that I know will be hard for me to digest. Also before a big meal such as Thanksgiving dinner, I take my enzymes to help my body digest the foods I am not used to easier.

Step Four – A few extra nutritional tips.

  • Cinnamon – its great for keeping your blood pressure in check, but also can help improve digestion. Sprinkle some of your morning coffee or oats
  • Mint, Ginger, Cumin, Nutmeg – all terrific at aiding with digestion and settling your stomach on an off day
  • Fiber is your friend! Add fiber-rich foods to your day along with leafy greens
  • Give the good bacteria a boost with fermented foods such as yogurt, sauerkraut, miso soup, bananas, garlic, asparagus and onions
  • Dark chocolate – another great treat! Turns our good microbes feast on dark chocolate. So go ahead and break off another square

Last but not least…chill out! That’s right – your stomach will love you for it. Stress is a key issue when it comes to your overall health, your stomach included. So try and relax…your tummy will love you for it!

 

Christmas is the Season of Giving. Then what?

Christmas if the definitely the season of giving.  I am very proud of all of what our community does to help those less fortunate around the holidays:  toy drives, coats for kids, homeless shelter turkey dinners, and the list goes on.  All of these charitable groups, organizations and shelters are so worthy of support.  The only thing that upsets me about this is that Christmas, and the holiday season, is only one month of the year.  However, most people less fortunate need help all year round.

I have been thinking, what if we each gave 50% of what we give at Christmas to these associations throughout the year.  For example, if you give $100 at Christmas to a charity of this nature, why not plan to donate $10 each month after Christmas?  The need is still there long after the trees are put away or recycled.  If you budget for a maximum amount of $120 per year total, why not spread it out over the year – monthly.  Not only would this allow the groups to receive ongoing funding, but it will also be easier for you to budget.  As most groups can directly withdrawl from your bank account, it would be “pain-free” rather than a wallop at Christmas time when you are already spending a bundle.

If you are not donating anything to any charity now, and have the means, why not?  Start now.  Not sure where to give or how?  Below is a list of local organizations that I am sure would love to hear from you in January.  Please continue or start to give – either to these organizations or any other close to your heart.  It will help us build a strong, caring and vibrant community.

Main Street Project, Inc. – (204) 982-8260 – www.mainstreetproject.ca

Ndinawe provides emergency shelter and counseling services for runaway youth – (204) 586-2588

Native Women’s Transition Centre is a community-based, 21 bed facility providing support and services to Aboriginal women and children. Program and service philosophy is to strengthen and support Native women who have experienced victimization to become self-sufficient. – (204) 989-8240

Ikwe-Widdjiitiwin is a crisis shelter that provides safe accommodation, supportive counselling and advocacy to abused Aboriginal women and their children. Other services include a non-residential program and 24 hour provincial crisis line counselling. – (204) 987-2780

Agape Table Inc. serves the needs of the hungry in the inner city of Winnipeg – 204-786-2370 www.agapetable.ca

Powerhouse Winnipeg is a non-profit community organization that provides emergency and support services to street involved youth aged 16-29.  A drop-in center which provides peer support, referrals, advocacy, a free store (clothing, blankets, shoes etc), outreach, Internet, laundry facilities, food, an on- site Public Health Nurse and telephone access for job and housing searches. – 204-953-1310

Siloam Mission is a faith-based agency that serves 500 – 900 poor and homeless a day, at no cost or preconditions through its: meal program, food bank, clothing bank, counseling, emergency shelter, agency referrals, employment-training programs, health centre, income tax preparations, a 12 step recovery program, addictions meetings & groups, access to phone, postal mail service, a book program, optional spiritual services, haircuts, etc.
- 204-956-4344
www.siloam.ca