Shawnte is a core barre fitness instructor. Teaching TRX and cardio barre at her studio in Santa Monica, CA.
Growing up in a household where fitness was just as important as school and work, Shawnte was doing pushups and squats long before she understood the benefits of being physically active and fit! In her home town of Fair Oaks, California, she was on the swim team and played water polo during her high school years and later went on to compete in two mini triathlons in her early 20’s. The emphasis placed on fitness at such a young age stayed with Shawnte and her love for a great physical challenge and the feeling of accomplishment when conquering something that seemed impossible are what brought her into teaching classes.
A gym rat most of her life, she noticed her body wasn’t responding to the usual exercise routine as she was entering into her early 30’s. A close friend got her to try a cardio core barre class at a nearby studio and while skeptical that this new approach to exercise could transform her body she stuck to it. On her 2nd or 3rd class she was fortunate enough to take Nancy Norby’s class. Nancy has been a major force in the “barre” industry for over two decades and with the confidence that comes from teaching thousands of students and hundreds of instructors she said to Shawnte if you stop all other forms of workouts and just do this method you will see what it can do for your body and you will get results. She did not disappoint!
Within a few months there were some major changes! She had much more free time because her new form of exercise didn’t require her being in the gym for two hours a day. Instead it was more like 3-4 hours per week – total! Additionally, her body completely changed. The bulky muscular frame she had been building with hours and hours of strength training at the gym started to lengthen out and she went down two whole pant sizes!! Needless to say she was in love with this new “barre” method! That was over five years ago. She continued taking these cardio core barre classes and eventually, about 3 1/2 years ago began teaching the classes at the very same studio where she took her first class and to this very day is still teaching there.
In 2013, after many years of swimming and hard weight training (and a fall of her son’s Razor scooter!), Shawnte had surgery on her left shoulder. Coming back from that was more of an obstacle than she imagined it would be. For the first time she understood the pain and frustration people experience when they are injured or coming back from an injury. This was a big eye opener because it made her acutely aware of the fact that it takes will power for an individual to put themselves in a situation where they know they are probably going to be uncomfortable and they need that extra motivation and encouragement and patience as they are recovering. Whether at their peak physical fitness level, or weak or injured, everyone needs some motivation when it comes to being the strongest, healthiest version of themselves. Late in summer of 2013 Shawnte decided to attend a TRX workshop and just like with cardio core barre, she fell in love! TRX, which is full core work all the time, is suspension training done on an apparatus created by the Navy Seals. Until she tried it she didn’t comprehend how amazing the workout really was and how it targeted so many areas of the body, all while keeping her focused on form and feeling how every little move felt in her body. Even better was that with her shoulder still healing after surgery, she was able to greatly modify this workout by taking a simple step forward or back.
Shawnte has now been teaching TRX since September of 2013 and still loves it as much as she did that first day in the workshop only now she is able to do so much more with it! Her passion and love for bringing excitement into fitness for the people around her are what drive Shawnte to continue learning about different forms of exercise, learning different ways to motivate and encourage people, and helping people recognize their achievements in fitness.
Shawnte lives in Santa Monica, Ca, with her husband and two young kids.