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Meet the Team

Brian Nagel

Comox Valley Kettlebell Club Coach, He/Him

Long, long ago in a place far, far away (Moose Jaw SK) a bundle of joy came into the world! Yes that was me. I was a regular kid who participated in many sports growing up. Fast forward many years and I saw these “kettleball” things in the gym around 2008. Played around with them, but had no clue how or why to use them. Upon retiring in 2010 and moving to Ottawa; I found a kettlebell instructor, armed at least with the correct name now. I could not believe how crushing the workouts with these things were! I had to know more. So I trained more & more with my kettlebell group in Ottawa. I went on to attend many courses, certifications and training camps. Started with “hard style” but slowly moving to the sport side of the kettlebell world.

 

Learning from many of the Russian masters and continuing to train, in 2012 I began competing in Girevoy Sport (GS or kettlebell sport). I’ve had successes and failures, but it has been an educational journey along the way. At last in 2015 my better half also retired and after 18 years of planning to move to the Comox Valley, we finally made it!!

 

I built a fantastic gym in my second garage, but training by myself was boring. I looked at all the gyms in the area and picked one. Luckily I picked the right one! There I met Laura & Morgan. Laura is still trying to make me move better. Then the Perfect Storm happened - Morgan opening Wild + United, at the same time some others got interested in GS, kettlebell sport!!

 

So began my foray in GS coaching. Kettlebell sport is a fantastic thing, very challenging, but has introduced me to many wonderful people from all over the world. My hope is to get more people started in this sport and help them along the way to great adventures and improved physical performance.

Chantel Connell

Group Fitness Coach, She/Her

Chantel's passion for health began early, and led her to a career as a Registered Nurse. After moving to Vancouver, where her passion for fitness and the outdoors grew, she instantly fell in love with running. She worked up to completing her first marathon, in which she qualified for the Boston Marathon. Then, she challenged herself further by completing 3 triathlons. 3 years ago, Chantel moved to the Comox Valley. She quickly took up mountain biking, and is usually found in the trails in Cumberland on her bike.

After her second triathlon, Chantel suffered from overtraining. It was then that she learned about balanced exercise, health, and how to take care of her body. Her passion for health and fitness lead to her completing the Group Fitness certification, in hopes of inspiring others to live healthy, full, and active lives.

Brumby Berge

Coach, Certified Personal Trainer, She/Her

Brumby Berge hails from Australia and is happy to call Canada home! She has a passion for helping people live a life free of limitations.

 

Brumby trained as a Personal Trainer Health Consultant and Life Coach in Australia for over ten years, specializing in one on one coaching, weight loss, strength training and run coaching.

 

Brumby is a strength coach. Focusing on the importance of mobility and functional movements for life!

Additionally she brings a holistic approach to training with a focus on personal development. Specialising in balancing out the nervous system and patterns of unserving behaviours.

 

Brumby’s current hobbies lie in the forest running trails, mountain biking, rock climbing, snowboarding and backpacking. She is also a fan of Qi Gong, Yoga Nidra, Meditation and Bengal Spice tea!

 

Dawn Elgin

Yin Yoga Instructor + Mindfulness Coach, She/Her

Dawn fell in love with Yin when recovering from a concurrent TBI and whiplash. Along her road to recovery she found that the greatest results came from mind-body practices such as meditation and yoga and decided to support others moving through physical, mental and emotional stress such as anxiety, depression, and PTSS as well as brain injuries from concussions, strokes and more.


The more Dawn learned the more she realized a need for a functional approach, using science based tactics to healing the body and mind. She is certified as a Mindfulness Teacher in the Science of Mindful Awareness through the Mindfulness Centre. She also has her YTT250 through Aura Wellness and Paul Grilley’s Functional Approach in Yin Yoga.
 

In a time and Society where Yang energy is prevalent, Dawn believes there is a strong need for balance by bringing Yin practices into our lives through our bodies and our minds.

Ella Nowak

Master of Tidy-ness, She/Her

Ella is our awesome gym cleaner and has been a part of our team since day 1!  Ella has lived in the Valley for 7 years. Gymnastics has been a big part of Ella’s life, she started when she was little and kept it up till it was time to take a break in her mid teens. During that break she found Wild + United and that became one of her new favourite things to do, along with robotics and anything on the water or in nature. Ella is a part of the robotics club at her high school, they build robots to compete for points, in February 2020 one of her team's got into worlds. Ella is outdoorsy and loves paddle boarding, kayaking, hiking, biking and camping. She's also a sarcasm master!

Kim Jaccard

Coach, Registered Kinesiologist, She/Her

Kim is a registered Kinesiologist practising exercise rehabilitation in the Comox Valley. She has an abundance of work experience in areas
such as personal training, hydrotherapy, fitness testing, and exercise
physiology.

Kim has an undeniable passion for the outdoors. You’ll find her hiking,
fishing, horseback riding, snowboarding, and taking on a variety of water
activities. She values a physically active lifestyle through her
commitment to strength training and running, as well as through her
involvement in field hockey and softball.

This island girl holds a deep love and appreciation towards travelling.
She has backpacked countries such as Nicaragua, Thailand, Bali, Costa
Rica, and studied for a semester in Australia.

She is a true animal lover. Kim has ridden and cared for horses her whole
life. She claims her happy place to be on the farm. Her 2019 goal is to
get her own dog.

Kim stands behind the development of self growth. She’s a strong believer
of pushing yourself out of your comfort zone- because this is truly where
the magic happens! She finds endless reward in guiding clients to crush
their goals.

Keighty (KG) Gallagher

Studio Opening Coordinator, She/Her

Keighty is back in Courtenay after 15 years abroad and is happily joining W+U as our Studio Opening Coordinator. Keighty comes with a competitive track and field background that she pursued at the University of Oregon, and finished her studies with a Bachelors of Science, majoring in marketing and advertising at Portland State University. 

Keighty has spent the last 10 years fostering an inclusive fitness community through her studio in Vancouver and is here on this earth to make movement fun, friendly, enjoyable and accessible. 

When Keighty isn't leading her zoom classes or helping Morgan and Steph coordinate the opening of the new gym, Keighty's shredding Mount Washington, dreaming of surf trips with her lusband (lover+husband Harrison) and prepping for her next Sunday skincare regimen. Yes, she has a skin care regimen and yes you can ask her about it.

In case you were wondering, Keighty's love language is positive affirmations. That means she really likes it when you let her know her skin is glowing. lol.

Malia (Mal) Irvine

Group Fitness Coach, They/Them

Mal is back in the Comox Valley since living abroad for the past 7 years. Growing up they played a variety of competitive sports including soccer, track & field, cross-country skiing and basketball. They graduated from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley in 2018 with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology. Mal always wanted to play a high level of soccer after highschool and decided that attending a University in the United States would give them the best opportunity for growth. 

 

Fitness has always been an outlet for Mal for as long as they can remember. With two parents who competed at National levels in water sports, Mal grew up around athletes and was always a driven individual. When they feel stressed, had a bad day, or just need to find common ground with themself, working out has always been the answer. They are extremely passionate about fitness, community, inclusion and equality and want to share these important qualities they display with others. Since 2018, they have been discovering new ways to move and finding a lot of joy in trying new things. 

 

When Mal is not in the gym, they are most likely outdoors either cycling, trail running or walking their mom's dog, Pumpkin. Their favourite spots in Valley are Seal Bay Park, Airforce Beach and Goose Spit. 

 

As a group fitness instructor and personal trainer, Mal's main objective is to help individuals reach their goals while creating a fun, safe, and inclusive atmosphere. "I want to make fitness enjoyable and help individuals find passion in movement while helping them overcome any boundaries they may face". 

Marnie Slater

Personal Trainer, Group Fitness Coach, She/Her

Marnie grew up in Qualicum Beach with her youth revolving around competitive soccer – her nickname ‘Pitbull’ should give you a hint of how she operates! Though she dreamed of playing professionally, she ultimately decided to focus on school, first attending BCIT for Building Engineering & Project Management, then after a tumultuous few years of a tanking economy and some serious soul-searching, she gave it another go, this time in Behavioural Neuroscience at SFU. It was during these years that she rediscovered her love of health and fitness from her youth, learning how to self-care and worked towards healing her body, mind, and soul.

After years of soccer battering her body along with some significant head traumas, she had to find new ways of rehabilitating and adapting to workouts, leading her down a rabbit hole of fitness & wellness courses. She began sharing her knowledge, turning it into Savion Health, a business that she ran alongside her full-time jobs over the next 5 years. Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, she had found the ideal balance of running her business and working as a Logistics Manager upon the Rocky Mountaineer, spending her days riding the rails through the majestic Rockies, getting to meet people from all around the world.

Fast forward through the joy and job-loss of 2020, she was prompted to do some necessary self-reflection leading her to the desire to be closer to her family, so she bought a travel trailer, renovated it for full-time living, and moved back to the island to get back to her roots. She recently got her CrossFit L1 Certificate and is so excited to be finally making health & wellness her full-time passion and to be joining the Wild + United family! She is driven to help people of all abilities strive to be their best self!

Matt O'Meara

Holistic Nutritionist, Chinese Med Specialist, Certified Acupuncturist, He/Him

Matt completed his education in Victoria, BC at Pacific Rim College, a leading school of natural medicine in North America. After completing his studies, he remained at the college as a faculty member, teaching courses in Chinese diet therapy and ethics. With the arrival of their son earlier this year, Matt & Claire decided it was time to move closer to the outdoor lifestyle that they craved, and the Comox Valley was the perfect fit!

 

Matt practices acupuncture at Inner Strength Acupuncture & Health and The Joint Physiotherapy.  At Wild + United, Matt teaches our United by Food class and offers nutrition support to our community.

Morgan Klieber

Founder, Personal Trainer, Coach, She/Her

Morgan grew up active in sports and specialized in tennis early on. Her tennis career culminated in an NCAA scholarship in 2007 but she eventually decided to return home to Vancouver Island and rebuild her body from all the wear and tear it had undergone in her teens.

 

She became certified as a fitness instructor and quickly thereafter a weightlifting instructor and advanced personal trainer.   She is a level 2 Crossfit trainer and Agatsu Level 1 trainer.  Now living in the Comox Valley, Morgan specializes in safe and technical movement patterns to ensure her clients are always moving forward towards their strength and health goals. 

 

She has taught Crossfit, kettlebells, functional fitness, mobility, coordination and even sport specific workouts for local athletes. 

In 2017 and 2018, she was voted finalist for the Comox Valley Record's Best Personal Trainer in the valley. In 2019, she WON Best Personal Trainer and Wild + United was voted Best New Business and finalist for Best Gym.

Rosie Eliason

Coach, Certified Personal Trainer, She/Her

Currently on Maternity Leave

Rosie was born and raised in the Comox Valley. She was brought up in an active family and had an early appreciation for the outdoors, sport, and movement. Growing up, Rosie played any sport she could including soccer, hockey, basketball, and was an avid downhill skier.

 

Rosie struggled with anxiety and depression starting around 10 years old. Fitness and nutrition became an outlet for her and allowed her a way to take control of her mental health proactively. She is passionate about creating that space for everyone and making fitness a fun and accessible outlet for all skill levels.

 

Rosie’s favourite spots in the Comox Valley are Seal Bay Park, the Goose Spit Stairs, Airforce Beach and Barbers Hole. She enjoys anything outdoors, including trail running, beach walks, hiking. She also loves ‘healthifying’ traditionally unhealthy meals and making them delicious!

Stephanie (Steph) Stone

Gym Manager, Mobility Coach, She/Her

Steph is brand new to the island life as she moved here from Alberta. Growing up originally in Kingston Ontario and always dreaming of one day living on the island. Steph came from a military background and knows all things administrative. She loves the outdoors and when not at the gym can be found outside exploring all the trails and beaches with her partner Ben and dog Poppy.

Steph has a passion for movement and helping people find balance in their bodies. She is s mobility coach creating balance in athletes through flexibility and a higher range of motion. We often challenge our strength but ‘Steph will be challenging us to push our mobility as well.

Steph is obsessed with all animals and will pet every dog that walks by. Being from Ontario she played most sports growing up. Since moving to Alberta she has learned to ski and is hooked. Now living in Courtenay her next thing to learn is mountain biking. She has never mountain biked before so if you see her on those trails WATCH OUT.

Zara Nybo

Coach & Personal Trainer, She/Her

Zara has lived in the Comox Valley for 6 years and counting, moving here with her family in 2013. Her favourite place in the Valley is the Goose Spit stairs and you will frequently catch her running the steps in any weather. (She actually prefers running them in the rain. Saying “It helps with my mental toughness”.)
 

Zara was introduced to Crossfit in 2016, which led her to Olympic weight lifting where she joined a team and qualified for Junior Canadian Nationals in 2018. Zara decided to take a break from competitive weight lifting to focus on her mental training. She picked up the sport of powerlifting shortly after and never looked back. In 2019 she attended the World Powerlifting Championships and won GOLD in her weight class for juniors and women's open!  She also set 7 Canadian records!
 

Zara’s passion for movement and strength inspired her to become a coach to help others live their best lives. Zara loves supporting others in their own fitness journey!


Favourite class at W+U is: Strong and United. (Because she gets to deadlift)

Our doors are always open to new team members!  We are a growing business with opportunities for certified personal trainers, sport and fitness coaches, cat-sitters and more...  If you're keen to work with us, the first thing you'll have to do is start coming to classes! We want to get to know you and work with like minded folks, so see you there!

Have a question? Shoot!
Links
Contact
236-255-1979   info@wildandunited.com
239-2 Puntledge Rd. Courtenay BC V9N 3P9
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