Over the past 12 months, Apple has quietly assembled an elite team of fitness trainers from around the world. Tied to secrecy, they have moved across the country to start new lives in Los Angeles, without even being able to tell their friends exactly what they are doing.
These are the stars of Cupertino’s latest subscription service, Apple Fitness +. It is the first Apple-branded product to focus so intensely on a handful of individuals. So as you might expect, they are a pretty extraordinary bunch. Let’s meet them!
When Apple Fitness + launches in late 2020, the company promises to deliver “a new training experience for all, powered by the Apple Watch.”
The trainers – who specialize in everything from cycling and strength training to yoga and dance – will be a key ingredient if the service is to succeed. They are the ones who motivate Apple Fitness + subscribers to push through the workouts and achieve their goals.
All the details in this article about the super-fit Apple Fitness + team come from the coaches’ Instagram pages. You can click on their names to find out more or go to the Apple Fitness + Instagram page.
Apple Fitness + trainers
Born in the Philippines to an Air Force family, Sherica Holmon lived in seven countries while growing up and believes that being exposed to different cultures at a young age builds acceptance and understanding as an adult. She has a mission to “spread love through fitness.” When she’s not cycling for Apple, she’s probably training for the next marathon.
Growing up in Colombia, Jhon Gonzalez always had a passion for music and dance. He moved with his family to LA to “live the American dream.” Today he works as a dance teacher and Zumba instructor, and now an Apple Fitess + trainer. Gonzalez likes “burgers, pizza, wings, travel, Family quarrel, cakes, cold water, Sprite, dance and men, ”in no particular order.
An elite bike racer became “indoor cycling party starter”, no wonder Kym Perfetto describes bikes as his “happy place”. Perfetto is already a YouTube celebrity, with 138,000 subscribers to her channel, where you will find many tips for fixing bikes and tight six-pack abs. Perfetto was originally a New Yorker and is now based in LA, but the bike ride takes her all over the world.
Treadmill and HIIT
Jamie-Ray Hartshorne’s dreams originally came from a small town in the UK, when he moved to “the big smoke” and appeared in a West End show. Now he lives in the even bigger smoke from LA with his pet chihuahua named Alfie and his fiancé. When he’s not teaching treadmill and HIIT classes for Apple, he’s probably pursuing his passion for kickboxing.
Strength and core
Born in Puerto Rico, Betina Gozo now lives in LA with her partner Nic and her two 140-pound dogs. She says strength training has been a big changer in her life, especially when she needs to keep the dogs from chasing a squirrel. Gozo is a passionate advocate for disability awareness and raises money for people with physical and mental disabilities in Kenya.
Tryell Désean is originally from New York City, but moved to Toronto, where he worked as a Soul Cycle coach and fell in love with the city. Today, he lives in LA, but he still wears the Raptors jersey with pride and lovingly refers to his old home as “Tyronto.” When he is not stepping away, he loves theater and dance. His personal motto is “be you, be true” and he describes himself as “gay, black and proud.”
Yoga and strength
With more than 40 years of experience as a coach, Molly Fox has seen the fitness industry grow and mature. She started her career at Jane Fonda’s gym in San Francisco. She later ran her own studio in New York City for 14 years. Now she’s based in LA, once again pioneering a new fitness trend, as an Apple Fitness + trainer. Proving that yoga improves both your flexibility and your longevity.
Yoga & Mindful Cooldown
Originally from Kaua’i, Hawaii, Dustin Brown is a Brazilian jiujitsu black belt who loves surfing. He says learning jiujitsu helped him become “more confident, patient and humble.” But it is his yoga skills that Apple hired him for. If you want to learn to deal with, Brown is your man. He now lives in Santa Monica, California, with his wife. They have been happily married for 14 years.
Yoga & Mindful Cooldown
Jessica Skye is a DJ from London who says that yoga makes her feel euphoric. And by increasing her core strength, it helped relieve the pain she used to be behind DJ decks all night. This is not Skye’s first collaboration with Cupertino. She appeared in a Close Your Rings ad for the Apple Watch Series 4 last year. Now based in LA, she looks forward to “creating a little escapism on the mat.”
LaShawn Jones was passionate about dance and choreography from an early age. She was a cheerleader in North Carolina and went on to take a master’s degree in public health while teaching side dance. In her daily job, she worked on HIV prevention research until she moved to New York to focus on dance and fitness full time. Now she lives her best life in LA with her sweet dog, Cashew. ->
Cycling, strength, core and mindful cooling
Multitalented Gregg Cook is the only Apple Fitness + trainer listed for four different workouts. But cycling is his true passion. Far from just fitness, he describes the bike as a powerful self-help tool. Cook explains that riding taught him to “undertake and restore my relationship with fear and thus gave me greater confidence in all areas of my life.” He lives in LA with his wife and family.
Cycling and treadmill
Emily Fayette’s daily motto is “be the reason someone smiles.” After recently having a baby, she is already working on getting back to her impressive marathon pace of 2:55. But she does not plan to stop there. Her goal is to run a marathon under 2:45 to qualify for Olympic trials. Originally from NYC, Fayette recently moved to LA with her husband and daughter.
Josh Crosby takes his rowing seriously. He is a former professional endurance athlete and world champion rudder. Nor is he a stranger to overcoming adversity. Eight weeks before competing in the Ironman Lake Placid, Crosby was hit by a car and needed surgery on his hand. But that did not stop him from qualifying for the World Cup in Kona, Hawaii. He lives with his wife and two daughters “between” Massachusetts and California. ->
Kim Ngo worked as a master trainer with 1Rebel Gyms in London, where she was also a Nike Trainer. A passionate advocate for inclusion in fitness, she co-founded Food & Lycra to offer affordable and accessible fitness events to the local community. In addition to its fitness capabilities, NGO is also a qualified accountant. British Vietnamese and proudly she recently moved to LA.
Cycling, HIIT & Core
Dancing is one of Bakari Williams’ favorite ways to express himself and cut loose. Put on the right song, and you can always count on him to “come up with some moves.” Originally from Danville, Virginia, he played Division 1 football in college before becoming a personal trainer and instructor at boutique studios in NYC. Bakari is a unicorn fan. They are his “symbol of magic and joy.” He recently moved to Santa Monica, California.
An avid gymnast at school, Anja Garcia has been an athlete all her life. However, she says that pregnancy and childbirth are the most difficult things she has ever done, both physically and mentally. Now she is the proud mother of a 1-year-old. She must be in a hurry, because she is also a nurse for children at UCLA and a trainer for Sweat Factor. She lives in LA with her husband, daughter and two dogs.
Strength and core
Amir Ekbatani was a college football player and played offensive lineman at UCLA. In 2012, he was hit by a van and lost his leg below the knee. However, his great interest in training continued. Ekbatani explains that “bones can be crushed, soft tissue lost, but I believe the human spirit is unbreakable.” When not training, he pursues the passion for making music. Ekbatani is a native of LA and lives with her best friends: two puppies.
Growing up in the 90’s, Ben Allen fell in love with hip-hop, R&B and pop. “Something about the music and culture of that time just felt right,” he says. He started his dance career playing bat mitzvahs and continued to appear in music videos and awards shows. Later he started with choreography and started selling his own dance courses. After living in LA for 18 years, he recently moved to Santa Monica with his partner.
Scott Carvin studied kinesiology at the University of Tennessee, where he also ran tracks. He had planned to become a physiotherapist, but he explains that he “started personal training and realized how much my knowledge could help people before treatment.” Carvin moved to NYC, where he worked as a trainer in City Row and as a running bus at the Mile High Run Club. He recently moved to LA.
Treadmill, core and strength
A proud Latina woman, Sam Sanchez is originally from Miami. She learned to speak Spanish and dance salsa by her grandmother, who emigrated from Cuba. Sanchez joined his first gym at the age of 15 and discovered a passion for indoor cycling and running. Later she joined CrossFit. She tried nine different jobs before realizing she could pursue a career out of a passion for fitness. Now she lives in LA with her husband.
Strength and core
A proud Canadian, Kyle Ardill, adapts well to life in LA and gets used to people making jokes on their accent. Since he was 12 years old, Ardill has been involved in playing or training football, but he says that his first love is baseball. He worked for more than a decade in the Toronto fitness industry, but moved to LA to join the Apple Fitness + team.
To learn more about Apple’s latest subscription service, check out our in-depth preview of Apple Fitness +.