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Meet the Winnipeg Team of Yvonne's Fitness!



When Yvonne’s Fitness started in Winnipeg in 2012, it began with one woman sharing her passion for Zumba. Over 12 years later, Yvonne’s Fitness looks a lot different than it did at the start. The team has expanded over the years, and although our Queen Bee herself, Yvonne Bayer-Cheung no longer lives in the city where her dream started, her fitness community at the heart of Canada is still going strong, thanks to the amazing group of people who keep her classes running. 

We are so excited to introduce the team members of the Winnipeg branch of Yvonne’s Fitness to you. These five individuals allow us to offer a variety of classes to our participants and have made it possible to keep our Winnipeg fitness community together and going strong in this next chapter of Yvonne’s Fitness. Perhaps you haven’t met all of them yet. Perhaps you know all of them and are excited to learn more about them. Whatever the case may be, we are excited to introduce you to the Winnipeg Team of Yvonne’s Fitness.



Laura Desbiens - Zumba and Kizomba Instructor



Even before joining the team as an instructor, Laura was a long time member of our fitness community. Welcoming her into the team was a no-brainer. She brings so much love and passion into her classes. Laura teaches our Monday morning and Thursday evening Zumba classes from May-December (her off-season at work) and hosts our special event Kizomba classes throughout the year.


A little about Laura…


My name is Laura Desbiens and I live here in Winnipeg with my spouse Jesse and our dog Khloe. When I am not teaching Zumba, Kizomba or dancing in general I am the Executive Accountant Assistant at K LIu Accounting Services Inc. 


How long have you been teaching Zumba?


I became an instructor in March of 2015 and just celebrated my 9 Year Zin-Aversary!! I’ve been teaching since 2016!


What is your favourite thing about Zumba?


What I enjoy as a Zumba Instructor is the pure happiness you see and feel from the students. This is that time in their day students are taking time for themselves, and looking forward to an hour of fun. I am lucky to be able to provide that for them in some way! One of the most important parts about Zumba is the community that it builds and keeps together!


What do you find is the biggest challenge in taking a Zumba class?


This is a great question! I feel when I’m taking a class as a student the biggest challenge would be how the instructor connects with their students. If I feel there is no connection with the class it would be hard to fully enjoy the experience. 


Why would you recommend Zumba, and what advice would you give to someone coming into your class?


No matter your age or ability Zumba can be can the most stress free part of your day. The way the music makes you dance and the other students share your energy it’s always a great experience! I always tell new students that as long as you are having fun it’s doesn’t matter what steps you are doing. It also takes a couple classes to get used to the music, routines, even the instructor. 


What is a fun fact about you?


I’ve recently found my love for building Lego and I’m a Harry Potter Fan! 



Caroline Beaudoin - Zumba Instructor




We knew Caroline for a long time before she joined the team. A long time member of the Winnipeg Zumba community, we’ve Zumba’d with Caroline over the years at numerous Zumba events/fundraisers throughout the city. We are so excited to have her with us at the Lindenwoods Community Centre. She is bubbly and energetic, and creates a welcoming experience in every class she teaches. Caroline takes over our Thursday evening classes when Laura is in her busy season at work. 


A little about Caroline…


During the day I work as a Physician Recruitment Coordinator for the Department of Internal Medicine with the University of Manitoba.  I have 2 beautiful daughters aged 16 and 18.


How long have you been teaching Zumba?


I have been teaching Zumba since October 2014.

           

What is your favourite thing about Zumba?


The students!

          

What do you find is the biggest challenge in taking a Zumba class? 


For new students, taking the first step may be a challenge.  Signing up, getting to class and trying something new is difficult, but once you get there, you’ll be hooked and love it.


Why would you recommend Zumba, and what advice would you give to someone coming into your class? 


Zumba is one hour of the day you can devote to yourself.  It’s your ‘me’ time to let go of the stress of work, family etc and just dance and be with community.  The exercise in disguise is an added bonus!


What is a fun fact about you? 


Growing up I took ballet, martial arts and folk dance classes.  Today I still volunteer with my same Folk Dance Group choreographing and teaching Youth that perform internationally and at local events like Folklorama.



Anthony Manansala - Zumba Instructor



The Winnipeg Zumba network has known Anthony for a long time - he started his Zumba career as the youngest instructor in Canada at the age of 16! In the years since starting his Zumba journey, Anthony has expanded his dance expertise and brings all of his passion for the industry into each class with him. We are so glad to have him teaching our Tuesday evening Zumba class, and taking over the Monday morning class when Laura is in her busy season. 


A little about Anthony…


 How long have you been teaching Zumba?


I started my career in Zumba as the youngest instructor in Canada at the age of 16 and have been in the Zumba world for about 10 years, since I met Yvonne at her Zumba Masterclass here at Lindenwoods CC in 2014.


What is your favourite thing about Zumba?

My favourite thing about Zumba is that I get to share my passion and my gift of dance. I get to make everyone happy and energetic while burning calories and making new friends and Zumba family.

            

What do you find is the biggest challenge in taking a Zumba class? 


Taking a class, especially if it’s your first time, you’ll be so nervous, especially seeing the front-row divas in their matching Zumbawear. But as soon as the music starts, you’ll feel the music and energy, and your soul is just free. 

            

Why would you recommend Zumba, and what advice would you give to someone coming into your class? 


I recommend Zumba because it’s a class where you get to dance to throwbacks such as retro songs, as well as K-pop, some Filipino songs, and of course, can’t forget the best of Latin music.

            

What is a fun fact about you? 


I’m co-founder of KoreoBoos, a K-pop dance cover group from Winnipeg. My styles of dance vary from ballroom to line dance, modern hip-hop to K-pop, waacking and soca.



Caryn Suderman - Yoga Instructor



The yoga component of our fitness community has been taught by almost all members of the Bayer-Cheung family over the years - Yvonne, her husband Thomas, and her youngest daughter Katherine. When the entire family moved to British Columbia, we were left wondering who would be the right fit to carry on the yoga classes for the Yvonne’s Fitness community. Enter Caryn. Caryn is not only an experienced yoga teacher, but a long time practitioner of yoga as well.  She leads with intention and brings a wonderful meditation component to each class. We’re so glad to have her teaching our Thursday evening yoga classes. 


A little about Caryn…


Trained in counselling and therapy skills my day job is as an Employment Training Specialist, I assist people facing barriers (mainly mental health challenges) find meaningful employment. I’m also a mom of 3, 4 if you count our 12 year old big dog lol! 


How long have you been teaching Yoga?


I’ve been teaching yoga for 8 years, practicing yoga for 22 years.    


What is your favourite thing about Yoga?


My favourite thing about yoga is the health benefits, physical, mental and spiritual.


What do you find is the biggest challenge in taking a Yoga class?


When I take a yoga class, the biggest challenge for me is getting there lol!  Also my teacher brain wants to stay on during class and I cue myself which is not ideal for a proper practice….

   

Why would you recommend Yoga, and what advice would you give to someone coming into your class? 


I recommend yoga to everyone looking to have an easier time with life, especially into old age as it’s a brain exercise as much as it’s a core strengthening activity.


What is a fun fact about you? 


A fun fact about me is that I enjoy caring for plants of all varieties, indoors and out.



Judy Lam - Strong Nation Instructor



Judy has been the heart of our Strong Nation classes for a couple of years now. After completing her training in 2018, she started team-teaching with Yvonne and has slowly taken over the classes in the time since Yvonne left Winnipeg. She also taught Strong Nation virtually for our participants during the Covid pandemic. Judy is great at creating a positive experience for everyone in her classes. She is kind and caring - but don’t let that fool you. She can pack a punch like you wouldn’t believe! You can find Judy teaching our Saturday morning Strong Nation classes - talk about a way to get your weekend started!


A little about Judy…


Judy is an accountant by day. She is a CPA, CA, and works at a public accountant, specializing in tax. She has two boys, and enjoys spending her free time baking, watching Chinese/Korean dramas, and reading Webtoons.


How long have you been teaching Strong Nation?


I got my teaching license in 2018 and have been teaching ever since.


What is your favourite thing about Strong Nation?


I love martial arts movements, which Strong has a lot of. And I enjoy how the class challenges me and pushes my body to its limits.


What advice would you give to someone coming into your Strong Nation class? 


If I had to give just one tip, it would be to study the instructor’s moves, listen to the cues. The moves can be very technical, precise and intense - there’s a lot of power behind what we’re doing in Strong. Observing the foot placement for a punch or a kick is important not only for avoiding injury, but also for packing your punches as hard as you can.


What is a fun fact about you? 


I love exploring the various escape rooms in the city with my two boys. There’s nothing like bonding with the kids while trying to escape for your life (lol!). 




These are just snippets into the amazing people who run our classes in Winnipeg, and it doesn’t even begin to convey the passion they have for what they do. If you haven’t already, pop into their classes at the Lindenwoods Community Centre and see for yourself! Laura, Caroline, Anthony, Caryn and Judy - thank you so much for all you do for Yvonne’s Fitness. ❤️


PS - this is just one part of the Yvonne's Fitness team. Stay tuned to learn more about the BC Team and the Online Team!


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