Equinox Profile of Jennelle Thomson, Fitness Manager & Trainer, Pre-Post Natal & Postpartum Doula, by E.B. GO Vision Media: The Equinox Fitness Clubs are in a class by themselves in terms of providing an environment of allowing members to get the most of out the training experience, and this starts with the Trainers and Fitness Class Teachers who transmit their knowledge, experience and expertise in a manner which translates into positive results. This is one in a series on Trainers and Fitness Class Teachers in the Southern California area.
Equinox Made Me Do It: Jennelle Thomson Brings All Her Knowledge, Experience and Wisdom to Clients & Trainers Every Day
A Flying Medicine Ball Started It All: Nations, Empires, Institutions and People all have Watershed Moments, when the world changes, for good or ill, following some key event. Sometimes the Watershed Moment is only understood, or perceived as such, years, decades or, in the case of Empires and Nations, centuries later. For Jennelle Thomson, Fitness Manager at the Equinox in Marina Del Rey, the event happened many years ago and, while almost immediately perceived as a turning point, it’s positive impact on many other lives continually changes perception of That Moment in Time. Training at a small gym in Oregon, a trainer, one not officially affiliated with the gym, pushed her too hard, didn’t listen to her pleas to stop, and knocked her over with one of those extra-large medicine balls and the result was a severe low-back injury that took six-months to heal.
In the throes of pain, misery and helplessness, she made the decision to become a Fitness Trainer and thus help others avoid what she was experiencing and make their lives healthier and better. Raised in the Canadian city of Edmonton, Thomson played basketball during her school years and was always active. She worked in various aspects of the fitness industry before signing on with Equinox in Southern California. Following two years plus as a Personal Trainer in Palos Verdes, Thomson became a Fitness Manager in Marina Del Rey in June 2017, two-months before this reporter walked through those same doors and changed his life. She holds an AFAA Personal Trainer Certificate, TPI, Trigger Point, ViPR, and Pre/Post Natal, the latter which also involves being a Postpartum Doula.
“I simply love being part of the Equinox Team, helping people excel at who they are and breaking the perceptions of who they think they should be, my gosh, what I know for sure every day is that walking through these doors each day can truly change your life, so much can be overcome by just getting through the doors and opening up yourself to all the possibilities, miracles are happening all around here every day,” says Jennelle Thomson.
Watershed Moments Unfurled: When I walked through “those doors” in August 2017, it took me about 72-hours to realize I had landed in the right place to complete a long-term recovery from a serious illness that involved, before joining Equinox, running 500 miles in the soft sand and swimming 3,000 laps in the pool. I met Jennelle on the stretching floor, while I was still getting acclimated, and her interest in my story further convinced me that I was indeed in the right place. A square-shouldered 5-feet 11 with long dark hair, an engaging smile and electric green eyes, she quite simply bubbles with life’s energy.
After that we didn’t talk much because I dove into Group Fitness Classes for 9-weeks, starting on September 14, and it changed everything; participating in group classes I never heard of before, like Barre Fit Cardio, discovering Pilates, the “exercise that makes everything else better,” and getting immersed in Cross Training and Strength classes all combined to shed over 25 pounds and re-order my body in a manner I never experienced before. Also, during this time, I wrote a series of Equinox Trainer Profiles, mainly of the Group Fitness teachers who, from my perspective, struck me as “Healers in their own right.” They were well-received by the teachers and I enjoyed writing them. Then I noticed Jennelle again, remembered something of her work at Palos Verdes, and knew I had to speak with her towards this end.
She readily agreed to chat and what I learned, some related above, made me realize how truly special Jennelle Thomson truly is; her Personal Training work at Equinox Palos Verdes, which has an older demographic, involved getting a stroke victim to walk again, pulmonary cases and helping a young girl with a severe case of knock knees to walk normally. She told how working with Parkinson patients was rewarding because small steps can feel like huge leaps and a beacon of light towards better days while easing the feeling of hopelessness.
Her work as a Postpartum Doula helps families transition from the stress of pregnancy to the stress of caring for a baby that requires constant attention. Described as “Mothering the Mothers,” this comes from her own experience, with two teenage children and a family history of postpartum difficulties, and is dominated by pro-bono work for those lacking resources or extended families to help in the process. Largely involving counseling, Jennelle often becomes part of an extended family and ends up being invited to birthday parties in the years to come. Her face brightens intensely with joy when talking of this aspect of her professional life, because from personal experience she knows that “if you get the first five years right, then the next 15 will be much better across the board.”
A Gift to Many from Beyond: As a Fitness Manager for the Tier 1 and Tier 2 Training Programs, Jennelle helps get new Personal Trainers up to speed while imparting her knowledge and wisdom to make them better. The Equinox Culture fits right in with her mission in life, for every day in every way it gives her the chance to make lives better. And the Giving of Herself might be about to reach another level: Jennelle is in the process of “trying” to donate a kidney to save to her ailing husband, Our Prayers Are With You!
At the end of our conversation, I asked the main question: “Do you consider yourself a Healer?” Jennelle modestly said, “I like to help others.” Well, from where I sit, this is a considerable understatement but fits in with her personality. After parting, I went to ice down my knee and started to run through the conversation and came to a series of conclusions.
First, I didn’t deserve to be in the same room let alone an acquaintance of this amazing person; second, and vastly more important, she is not A Healer, Jennelle is A River of Healing, one that gets stronger and more beautiful with the giving and one that splits and spills into lovely tributaries of new life and hope depending on day, time and location. She Leads and People Follow; She Works and People Get Better; She Talks and Lives Change; She Loves and the World Changes.
Whoever threw that medicine ball can be forgiven, for in that reckless act an Angel of Mercy was created whose radiance has changed many lives for the better and will continue to do so for many decades ahead. That medicine ball should be in a glass case and a flying medicine ball Jennelle Thomson’s logo, for in that Watershed Moment the Seeds of Beautiful Change Were Planted.