Athletics & Recreation

Personal Training

One of our Certified Personal Trainers will design and implement a training program that suits your needs and training goals. Personal Trainers are available when you need them. All appointments for Personal Training may be booked by emailing

Personal training fees

Add HST to all prices

 1 Session6 Sessions10 Sessions
Members $52.00 $306.00 $500.00
Non-Members $60.00 $354.00 $580.00

Meet The Personal Trainers at SMUfit

June 2015

Susan Cook

Susan Cook provides Pilates instruction on the Mat and Specialized Equipment. Stott Pilates is an excellent exercise program that will strengthen and lengthen your body, and balance the demands of your work & play. Susan will customize the work to suit your abilities, and encourage you to challenge yourself beyond what you think possible. Her creative and precise movement training will guide you towards feeling supple, strong, and ready for your next adventure. Susan is a graduate of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, and has performed with the RWB, Scottish Ballet, The Banff Centre for the Arts, and Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. She loves all forms of Dance and Somatic Movement. Susan’s other interests include hiking, biking, boogie boarding and x-country skiing the beautiful trails throughout HRM and NS. She has completed the Massage Therapy program at Northumberland College, and is now available for appointments at

Robert Brownell

A graduate of Dalhousie University, Robert’s career began at the grass roots level as a Physical Education teacher in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Robert is a certified practitioner with the National Strength and Conditioning Association and is the owner of Body Train, a professional service dedicated to strength and conditioning and personal training. Robert had a nine year affiliation with the Canadian Sport Centre Atlantic where he reinforced his knowledge of periodization and program design. While working with the CSCA was honoured to have training experiences with Olympic and Paralympic Athletes and many Canada Games Athletes. Saint Mary’s University in Halifax has used Robert’s service since October 1998. As a Strength and Conditioning Specialist, his service has been used by Men’s Soccer, Women’s Basketball, Women’s Soccer, Women’s Volleyball, and the Huskies Football Team as well as multiple assignments with other varsity programs. Robert has worked with all levels of hockey athletes in the East Coast League, West Coast League, American Hockey League, National Hockey League and Quebec Major Junior League. Robert’s services have been used by Myosymetries, a chronic pain clinic, and by Performance Physiotherapy, a full service physiotherapy clinic. In addition to the above affiliations, Robert has had over 8,500 individual personal training sessions at the Homburg Health and Wellness Centre.

Christie Dauphinee

Christie Dauphinee is a fully certified STOTT PILATES Instructor and Can-Fit-Pro Personal Trainer. With eight years of experience, Christie routinely teaches Mat, Reformer, small equipment, TRX, weight loss boost, and also rehabilitates injuries and Special Populations. She is a lifelong athlete whose passion for sports began with ringette and hockey at the age of 5. Christie was competitive until the age of 15 when her focus shifted to all sports, encompassing the process rather than the specific sport. The mind/body connection to health and fitness is what drives her passion today. “I believe that Pilates encompasses correct movement that you can apply to any form of exercise.” Christie has her B.A. in Theatre and Music from Dalhousie University. At Dalhousie she had extensive dance and movement training for four years. She also acquired an Education Certification from the University of Maine at Presque Isle, where she improved the art of teaching. Inspired by Pilates, she is now undergoing her prerequisites for physiotherapy and plans to enroll in the School of Physiotherapy at Dalhousie University. Whether it is a private session or a group class, her classes will help you rehabilitate your spine, improve your core and leave you feeling invigorated!

Rick Horsman

Energetic and friendly, Rick Horsman is a Certified Personal Trainer who is devoted to helping people achieve their goals. He has the knowledge to help his clients improve their sports performance, reduce their weight, increase their day-to-day energy levels or improve themselves in all aspects of fitness. In High School, Rick competed successfully in Track and Field as well as Cross Country Running. His athletic experiences and successes led to his interest in health, exercise and training. After High School Rick enrolled at Compucollege where he earned a Diploma in Health Wellness & Recreation. In addition, Rick is a Can-Fit-Pro Certified Personal Trainer Specialist. Rick understands the importance of living a healthy life while also having balance. His approachable demeanor makes him fun to work with and builds a personable and comfortable atmosphere. Rick believes anything is possible with just a little hard work and he loves helping people work hard for the goals they have set for themselves. Meet with Rick to start your journey towards a healthier you!

Stefanie Winters

Stefanie Winters is Certified Personal Trainer, certified through Can-Fit-Pro. She is also a level 1 Agatsu Kettlebell Instructor and is Certified as a Pre/Post Natal Fitness Specialist. As a new mom of a young child, Stefanie understands the importance of balancing a healthy and fit lifestyle for her clients who often lead very busy lives. As SMU alumni, with a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in History, Stefanie is happy to be able to work as part of the SMU community. Fitness has been a part of Stefanie’s life for as long as she can remember. Her parents have owned and operated their own small gym as well as being competitive body builders. This helped in encouraging her to compete in a NSBBA figure competition where she placed 3rd. Stefanie has a young son and remained active and fit throughout her entire pregnancy. Given the opportunity she will help you to reach your goals in a fun, fresh and exciting way. Stefanie enjoys working with committed and goal oriented clients who want to see a change in their overall fitness and lifestyle.

Thomas Kochanoff

Thomas is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and Certified Personal Trainer through the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Thomas also has a B.A. in Social Sciences from Dalhousie University. He has worked as the Performance Coach for Saint Mary’s women’s varsity teams in Rugby, Ice Hockey, Volleyball, Basketball and Field Hockey.. He assists the men's hockey team in fitness testing and in training individual players for performance and rehab. Thomas' work with quickness and movement is opening up young tennis players to more explosive play. His training approach is about results, using cutting edge drills, video analysis of the sport/activity and the newest movement base training concepts. Through Olympic lifts, plyometrics, yoga positions, speed/agility modalities or his area of focus, core stability and power, your goals become reality. He uses real life training to help elite athletes or active adults with better posture, fluid movement and less back pain. His Global body training emphasis has helped elite golfers, young tennis players, runners, tri-athletes and national level hockey and volleyball/basketball players. This 360 approach has allowed them to achieve improved speed/power and greater efficiency of movement for activity or sport level performance. His belief is to focus on training movement, more than just individual muscles. Thomas is currently training all levels of athletes from novice to those competing at the national level for their specific sports; additionally, he trains individuals preparing for the police, RCMP or fire department. His motto is "Life has no limitations except the ones that you set".

ocean pic july 2014

Ocean Samuel

Ocean has been teaching at Saint Mary’s University for many years. She is a well-liked and versatile trainer and fitness instructor. She is trained in STOTT Pilates and incorporates this knowledge into both her Mat and Equipment classes. Her ability to be flexible in her training approach makes her a good trainer especially for people with special needs and for this reason her participants have great success in rehabilitation. Ocean’s Spin and various Pilates classes keep people coming back for more because of her high energy and infectious smile.

Margaret Federico

Do you want to get fit? ! If you are between 45 and 65, these are the best years to develop the body and infrastructure that will last a life time. But, what ever your age, you will find personal support and goal advancement with Meg. Meg Federico , aged 59, is a fitness trainer and a writer. Seven years ago, she realized that her sedentary life style would translate into lost strength and ability in her future. To become strong and fit, to enjoy her life and to work with others, Meg began a personal fitness regime that led her to become a trainer herself. Meg has Personal Training certification from CanfitPro, Fitness Theory and Resistance Training Certification from the Nova Scotia Fitness Association, and she has taken Older Adult Group Fitness from NSFA and Older Adult Fitness Training from Canfit Pro. She has also written on the consequences and experience of aging for the Globe and Mail and the National Post. In addition to official certification, Meg received excellent personal training from Rick Horsman and Robert Brownell, both available to you, as well as Meg, through SMUFIT.

personal training picture of sonja

Sonja Esber

A business entrepreneur for over 25 years, now shares her passion for healthy living through fitness and lifestyle coaching. “My goal is to motivate, empower, educate and inspire my clients both mentally and physically to achieve their fitness and wellness foals. Through personalized one on one training sessions we are able to develop strength and flexibility for long term functional living.” Educated in Montreal, Sonja is a CanFitPro Certified Personal Trainer, Group Fitness Instructor, Zumba, Zumba Gold, Zumba Toning certified and is currently enrolled in nutrition coaching. Sonja was the 2012 “Community Champion” recipient, nominated by her class participants and she was an active member of the 2013 “Bust a Move” Fitness Team.

Jason Zhang

Jason Zhang’s athletic career began at a Chinese Martial Arts School when he was 5 years old. He was trained as a Kung Fu athlete for more than 10 years. As an athlete, he won several prestigious prizes at different levels of competition in China. Soon after, he became a team coach and trainer. He was an instructor of Physical Education Department in Xiamen University TKK College. Currently, he is a Certified Personal Trainer and hopes that his professional athlete knowledge and background can help people understand scientific training techniques and to achieve their fitness goals. Also, as an international person and a movie stuntman, Jason’s interests are versatile. He would like to share his interesting stories and experience, and make more friends in his personal training and small group training class.

Ekaterina Smirnov

Ekaterina Smirnov has been working in the Fitness Industry since 2011. She is a certified Personal Trainer with Can-Fit-Pro and Fitness Instructor, Spin and Step Instructor with Nova Scotia Fitness Association. She is still fairly new to SMUfit but already possesses all of the skills needed to help you on your fitness journey. Ekaterina is proud of her team of highly qualified Personal Trainers and Fitness Instructors. Her main goal is to provide the members with an environment which motivates and enhances physical fitness and well-being. Ekaterina strongly believes that she can make a positive impact by sharing her fitness knowledge and serving as a healthy role model to the SMUfit community and to make sure that Fitness members will enjoy a positive and rewarding experience here at SMUfit. Her interests include hiking, biking and kayaking which is a proof that her philosophy is “Our bodies are meant to MOVE. We are designed to experience a wide array of movement and so we must take advantage of this blessing by using it to our fullest. I believe in fun, enjoyable, and rewarding experiences that allow our bodies to feel strong: physically, emotionally, and socially. Being physically active and physically healthy requires us to make a decision to be in motion rather than be motionless, so that’s why I say just “MOVE“!”

Group Personal Fitness Training

Get a small group of friends (2, 3 or 4 people) together to share the cost of your own Personal Trainer to achieve collective goals. Some examples of training groups include New Years Resolutions, Sports Specific Training, Weight Loss/Tone Up, Beginner Training, Exercise for Older Adults, Abdominal/Core Training – the possibilities are endless. Fees for any Group sessions (2,3, or 4 people) are at a rate of time and half the above rates.

Larger Group Personal Training Rates (5 or more people):

Group rates are available upon request. Contact Sandra Jamieson @ for more information.