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Credit Classes Instructors

Ai Kuwayama

Fitness Training for Women
Beginning Yoga

Ai is originally from Japan and she graduated with a Masters in Kinesiology in Integrative Wellness from Point Loma Nazarene University. She is a NASM Certified Personal Trainer, AFAA Certified Group Exercise Instructor, AEA certified aqua instructor and 500 Registered Yoga Teacher. She is also one of the Fitness and Wellness Program Assistants. She has been teaching Group Exercise classes for 14 years and is very passionate about both teaching and taking Group Exercise classes. Ai believes in the powerful ability of group exercises to improve and promote individuals’ physical and mental well-being. 

Bethany Mendenhall

Bethany Mendenhall

Group Fitness Instructor Training
Beginning Yoga

Bethany was born and raised in San Diego, and graduated from SDSU in 2019 with a B.A. in psychology. She has been teaching both cycling and yoga classes at the ARC since February 2019. In addition to being a group fitness instructor, she is an ENS instructor and one of Aztec Recreation's Fitness and Wellness Program Assistants. Her love of fitness stems from a place of self-love and she firmly believes that one of the best ways to take care of yourself is to keep both your body and mind active and healthy. As an instructor, her main goal is to help you discover and celebrate how strong you already are, exactly as you are. When she’s not teaching at the ARC, you can find her hanging out at a local coffee shop or rocking out to live music!

Bill Aaron

Bill Aaron

Running for Fitness

Bill Aaron received his Bachelor of Science degree from San Diego State University in Exercise and Nutritional Sciences with an emphasis in Fitness, Nutrition & Health. He is Head Cross-Country Coach at Kearny High, has coached cross-country at the intercollegiate level, and coaches marathoners. A marathoner himself, his personal best is 3hr and 31 min. He is also currently president of the San Diego Track Club.

Cole Davis

Functional Fitness Training

Cole graduated from James Madison University in May 2020 with a B.S. in Exercise Science after dropping his business? degree in lieu of pursuing his dream of a career in the fitness industry. During his years working at JMU’s University Recreation Center Cole worked as a manager, personal trainer, and group exercise instructor with clients of all different shapes, sizes, colors, & ages! He is a Certified Personal Trainer & Certified Exercise Physiologist with the American College of Sports Medicine. He also has experience teaching a variety of group fitness formats with a focus on Strength & HIIT. Cole loves helping individuals build self-confidence, strength, and comfortability within their own bodies. To him, witnessing the positive impacts that fitness can have on clients' lives is ultimately what drives his work each day!

Cory Twitchell

Beginning Rock Climbing
Intermediate Rock Climbing

David Berling

Beginning Rock Climbing

Flo Pierce

Flo Pierce

Pilates, Posture, and Poses

M.Ed., M.A., Exercise Physiology

Flo is a lifelong teacher – from Middle School to the University, and from Active Adults to Law Enforcement Officers. For Aztec Recreation, Flo teaches Group Fitness Classes including Pilates and Barre Blast, emphasizing precision and posture. Taking a sequence of classes from Flo, you will get high level instruction to help move your Pilates practice to the next level. Flo holds certifications from ACE and ACSM with specialties in Pilates, Cycling, Yoga, PIYO, Barre, Gravity, and Aquatics. She would love to see you in her class!

Heidi Sarmiento Wilson

Heidi Sarmiento Wilson

Self Defense for Women

Heidi has been a fitness professional for over 25 years and currently is a member of the Health and Exercise Science faculty at the University of San Diego, Mesa College, Cuyamaca College, and Torah High School. She holds 2 Masters Degrees from SDSU; one in Public Health (MPH) and one in Exercise and Nutritional Sciences (MS). She is a 3rd degree Black Belt in Taekwondo and formerly ran a Taekwondo dojo with her late husband Grandmaster James A. Wilson. She currently trains in Hapkido with Grandmaster Stephen Hong and Aikijujitsu with Master Wayne Collins. Heidi is also a boxing trainer at Body By Discipline in Lemon Grove and Maxwell’s Boxing on Miramar Road. 

While Heidi teaches academic classes in health, sports nutrition, and various fitness classes her true passion is teaching women how to defend themselves.

Jennifer Melford

Jennifer Melford

Yoga for Athletic Performance

Jenny has been an athlete her whole life and her love for movement and sport go back as far as she can remember. Jenny graduated from the University of San Francisco with a degree in Exercise and Sport Science, where she also earned a scholarship to play Division 1 soccer. It was during this time that Jenny discovered Yoga. Though she was drawn to Yoga initially for the physical challenge it offered, she ended up falling in love with the holistic nature of the practice, and the deeper sense of ease and well-being that were a result of her regular practice. She now holds five different Yoga certifications as a teacher, although she will always consider herself a student of the practice.

Jenny is also a certified Personal Trainer through the American College of Sports Medicine, a Health and Wellness Coach, a Nutritionist, and a Grief Counselor. In her free time Jenny loves hiking, camping, snowboarding, hanging with her family and puppy, and seeing live music!

John Fasulo

John Fasulo

Olympic Lifting & Sports Conditioning

John is a Strength & Performance Coach, USMC Veteran, and fitness professional of 10 years. He is certified through the NSCA, EXOS, USAW, USATF, and NASM. He is also currently enrolled at SDSU, pursuing his Master’s in Exercise Physiology with a goal of working in strength & conditioning for tactical populations and collegiate speed & power athletes. Originally from Monterey California, John grew up playing sports year-round and has continued to maintain an active lifestyle as a fitness professional, competing in multiple strength, endurance, and physique events through the years. John’s athletic background consists of roller-hockey, football, wrestling, track & field, and Jiu Jitsu. He is always training for his next personal fitness goal and loves working with athletes who immerse themselves into the training process of their individual goals. When coaching, he relies on a holistic approach, emphasizing multiple disciplines to create a regimen unique to each person he coaches. His favorite part of coaching is witnessing the physical & mental transformation in his athletes and truly enjoys the training process for any goal in sports or fitness!

John Nagel

John Nagel

Ballroom Dance
Indoor Cycling
Salsa Dance

John Nagel enjoys exercise & dancing. He is presently teaching the GPX classes, Spinning®, core fusion & cardio dance at the ARC. He has been teaching partner dancing for over 30 year. He graduated with a BA in Social Science from UCI and has an AS in accounting from Mesa College. John’s approach to fitness is to set a realistic goal and then methodically work toward it. Plan your work; work your plan. When it comes to dance, let the music move you.

Kamau Jackson

Kamau Jackson

Jiu Jitsu
Intermediate Jiu Jitsu

Kamau is a 4th year student at San Diego State studying Criminal Justice and Psychology. He started training “No-Gi” Jujitsu in 2002 and went on to traditional Gi Jujitsu in 2010. He currently trains at Honu BJJ, a Ribeiro school in San Diego. Kamau trains and instructs jujitsu with an emphasis on self defense, utilizing sport and traditional techniques as well as techniques derived from wrestling, judo and MMA. He strongly believes jujitsu is a game of human chess, utilizing technique and problem solving skills over strength and agility. The study of jujitsu teaches humility while instilling confidence, gets one in amazing shape while learning to not rely on physical attributes and it teaches how to win by understanding your losses. The smallest opponent can defeat the biggest by using angles and manipulating leverage, making it as much a thinking game as a physical sport.

Kellen Dion

Beginning Rock Climbing
Wilderness First Aid

Ken Meryman

Beginning Bowling
Intermediate Bowling

Lisa Yee

Lisa Yee

Beginning Yoga
Yoga for Athletic Performance
Intermediate Yoga

Lisa Yee is a Certified Personal Trainer, Registered Yoga Teacher, Certified Group Exercise Instructor and Associate Certified Coach. She has spent the past three decades in the field of health and fitness working and traveling with organizations such as Yoga Journal and IDEA Health and Fitness. Her studies consist of both Western and Eastern medicine which supports a holistic approach to wellness that can be experienced in her ENS courses and ARC Group Fitness classes. Lisa has owned a private wellness studio in San Diego for over ten years where she helps clients take the necessary actions to becoming healthier and happier. She enjoys teaching all group exercise formats and prides herself in offering personal attention in her classes. Her hobbies consist of training in Mixed Martial Arts, creating plant-based meals, writing short stories and beach walks with her dog.

Madeliene Painter

Madeliene Painter

Beginning Weight Training
Intermediate Weight Training

Madeliene is a personal trainer, nutritionist, and powerlifting coach. She has her CPT through ACE and her CNC with NASM. In 2020 she launched her business after switching careers due to COVID. She has always had a love for fitness, and now she can make it her career. She is an active powerlifter in the USPA and competes at least once a year. When she’s not teaching at SDSU, you can find her at her favorite gym, Iron Mongers Gym. She loves introducing people to the sport of powerlifting and helping everyone gain strength. She’s always down to lend a helping hand or an ear to anyone who is wanting to start weight training. Besides lifting, she loves to horseback ride, hike, and surf. She believes that the human body is an amazing machine and should be treated well to perform.

Metin Meral

Metin Meral

Beginning Badminton
Beginning Futsal
Advanced Soccer
Beginning Soccer
Intermediate Soccer

Coach Metin received his master degree in Kinesiology from SDSU in 2015. Metin’s soccer career started in his early age and played youth clubs,high school, college and semi-pro level. Since he arrived to the USA 10 years ago he always pursue his passion for soccer. He has coached many youth teams, high schools, college and semi-pro team. He is also currently coaching youth clubs and semi-pro level. He won CIF high school championships in 2013, won league championships in high school, college and club tournaments. He loves teaching, developing and sharing his skills with experience to young athletes as a former semi-pro player. He believe soccer and other sports have to teach and learn in fun and competitive environment. Therefore he creates fun and competitive environment while he is teaching. He has National D license and goal keeper license. He is also a soccer official for 10 years and officiating other sports as a hobby such as lacrosse, field hockey and volleyball.

Stan Williams

Stan Williams

Yoga Inversions

Stan Williams is originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He began practicing Yoga in 1976 while a student at LaSalle College located in his home town. With a Bachelor of Arts Degree, he relocated to Diego and eventually started his own business importing art and decorative Porcelain from Limoges, France. Stan completed the rigorous Iyengar three-year teacher training program and taught as a ’teacher in training’ for several years before being fully certified in the Iyengar method. Today, with many years of experience he continues his ongoing training with senior Iyengar teachers and is currently teaching Group Fitness yoga classes at the ARC, at the Iyengar Yoga Center of North County and Full Circle Yoga in San Diego. Stan’s objective for ENS 143 Yoga Inversions is to teach the basic techniques of general poses properly and safely with emphasis on Salumba Sarvangasana (Shoulder Stand) and Salumba Sirsasana (Head Stand) as well as the many preparatory poses that help develop the strength and flexibility to do the poses properly.

Stan’s other interests include playing basketball at the ARC and volunteering at the San Diego Maritime Museum. He is currently a qualified sail crew member on the historic and gorgeous Star of India, a windjammer located at San Diego’s central embarcadero pier district.

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