A former elite middle distance track athlete, Thomas has taken his passion for athletics and fitness and molded it into a vessel for helping others achieve their personal fitness, health and athletic goals. Thomas has worked in the sports and recreation industry since 2002, as an athletics coach and strength trainer. In 2009, he began training full time in London before returning to Toronto in 2011. After years of working in a big chain gym, disenchanted by the work environment and training methods, he opted to open Primal Gym and forge his own vision for a fitness facility that puts it’s members and clients first. Since it’s opening Primal has seen two expansions with the addition of Primal MMA and Training Studio / Clinic in 2014.
Thomas believes in a wholistic approach to training, encompassing all aspects of fitness and wellness, both body and mind. He views the human being as an athlete inherently, and trains his clients following this mantra. Thomas trains clients of all ages, with a wide spectrum of goals. From young athletes looking to gain an edge with their strength and conditioning, to individuals who simply want to look and feel better through weight loss, lean muscle development and a change in body composition. His specialties include Hypertrophy (muscle development), Fat Loss, Injury Rehabilitation, Athletic Conditioning and Strength and Conditioning for MMA.
Having grown up playing high level competitive sports, specifically elite level Hockey, Justyn was immersed in athletics and strict training regimens from a young age. After hanging up his skates, Justyn transitioned into coaching hockey teams in the GTA. Having taken his knowledge of training in competitive sports, he transitioned into the fitness industry learning the ins-and-outs of strength training and nutrition. Through years of thorough research and first-hand experience, Justyn has a deep understanding of how nutrition plays a pivotal role in athletic performance, recovery, strength training and bodybuilding.
A strong believer that the mind is our most powerful weapon, Justyn continually pushes himself beyond his physical limitations to prove that our bodies are capable of exceeding our own expectations. Having dedicated himself to his passion, martial arts, Justyn has competed in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Boxing tournaments across Ontario.
Kalon has been physically active for most of her life: For almost 20 years, Kalon rode horses and was a competitive eventer and show jumper on the provincial circuit for the last 5 years of her equestrian career. When not at the barn, Kalon fed her energetic spirit by joining her high school swim team and became a semi-professional hip hop performance dancer in 2014. In order to become a stronger dancer, Kalon’s industry mentor encouraged her to find a personal trainer, and the rest is history: Presently, Kalon has experience in most forms of weightlifting (CrossFit, Olympic Lifting, etc.) but her true passion lies with Powerlifting and she is hoping to compete in the sport within the next couple of years. At Primal, Kalon is not only the General Manager but coaches the evening Strength program twice a week, fulfilling her academic background in education (B.Ed.) and biology (B.A.S.). A loud, fun-spirited, laugh-loving lady, Kalon has a clear adoration for all things health and wellness (and Primal!) that you just can’t teach.
I have always been passionate about sports and athletics. Since playing rugby and lacrosse in high school, I have become increasingly interested in different training methods and improving my athletic performance. Recently, I have become interested in functional resistance training and mobility work to gain an edge in the competitive Jiu Jitsu world.
I am hoping to share my jiu jitsu, health and exercise knowledge with others. It has had a huge positive impact on my life and I love seeing the how it positively impacts others as well.
I am certified Personal Training Specialist (PTS) with a passion for powerlifting and strength training. Whether you’re interested in losing weight or gaining lean muscle mass, body toning or increasing strength, I’ll help you achieve your goals with practical programming involving basic barbell movements and efficient conditioning. Growing up, my athletic interests were geared specifically towards hockey, but in high school, I joined the wrestling team. Weighing in at 155 lbs, I wanted nothing more than to become bigger, stronger, and faster to gain a competitive edge. My coach introduced me to the weight room, and I was hooked. With four years of intensive barbell training, I have gained 90lbs of mass, and my comparative strength has increased more than threefold. My focus has typically been powerlifting, but I also have experience with Strongman and Olympic weightlifting. I still strive to get bigger and stronger everyday, and I’m working towards powerlifting competitively in the near future.
I grew up in the east end of Toronto and have always had a close relationship with sports and athletic training. When I was 7 years old, I began competitive swimming for the Toronto Swim Club, and continued for the next 10 years. Over the years, I fell in love with racing and all of the preparation that goes into it. That love lead me to Halifax, NS, where I obtained a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Kinesiology at Dalhousie University. In my final year, I worked in the Kinesiology department as a teaching assistant for an Injury Assessment/Prevention course, where my knowledge of the human body grew tenfold.
Now, I strive to apply my knowledge to each and every one of my clients, while also continuing to learn more every single day. I consistently work to make sure that I don’t leave potential on the table, and I’m dedicated to making sure you don’t either. Life’s too short to live sub-optimally, so let’s change your life today.
Having been raised by a pair of exceptionally active parents, Kevin has been around physical activity all his life. Although being enrolled in a multitude of sports, Kevin fell in love with basketball at the age of 9 and in 2011 was selected to play for the U15 Canadian National team. From there, Kevin spent two years playing at Northeast Ohio Prep College. But, due to injury, finished his high school education Brebeuf College School in Toronto.
In 2014, Kevin enrolled at the University of Toronto to pursue his Bachelor of Kinesiology. Throughout his undergraduate degree, Kevin worked as a student therapist with various varsity teams to provide strength and conditioning training and soft tissue massage. Additionally, Kevin was able to work alongside professors in the biomechanics department to co-write academic papers and successfully published his first paper in his third year of studies. Upon graduating with high honours in June 2018, Kevin enrolled at the University of Toronto in August to pursue his Master’s of Kinesiology. Throughout his master’s degree, Kevin has worked with children with exceptionalities to help them develop their physical literacy and has done strength and conditioning training with high performance athletes at LPS Athletics. Upon graduating in December 2019, Kevin has his sights set on enrolling into a physical therapy program for September 2020.
Currently, Kevin is implementing his academic knowledge into real-world training scenarios by working alongside clients to help them achieve their performance goals. He hopes that he successfully enrols into a physical therapy program so that he can continue to learn and work with clients from all walks of life.
Josh is an NSCA Certified Personal Trainer and Agatsu Kettlebell Instructor who has been an athlete for the past 13 years. Josh started his journey into fitness as a troubled youth who found an outlet in sport at Toronto’s own Sully’s Boxing Gym where he trained and competed in boxing for 4.5 years. Through a curiosity of what the human body was capable of he eventually went on to compete in Ultra Marathon, Road Running, Triathlon and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. He discovered early on the power of discipline and mindset in the pursuit of goal. Josh believes that a healthy mindset and physical fitness provide us with a notable advantage in the pursuit of our dreams.
“I often find my self blown away by how much potential human beings have with regards to performance. I’m here as a coach to help you understand what ‘functional’ is for you, to help you grasp what makes sense in the light of your goal. I aim to help pave a path and encourage you on your journey from A-Z, to help you discover how far you can really take yourself… its further than you think”
Having grown up playing tennis, soccer and field hockey, Juliette, or Jules, has always led an active lifestyle. She began weight training while working at lululemon in 2015, before ultimately deciding to pursue her PT/coach certification. She has been leading personal training and group sessions since 2018, with a focus on strength and conditioning, HIIT, and other circuit training. She is a stickler for good form and mobility work, and for workouts that support other wellness goals, from carrying groceries to going on that vacation hike.
Some may call her cardio queen, and you can expect to get your heart rate up in her dynamic Sweat class. Jules loves music, and creates her own playlists to help motivate you through those extra few reps. As Primal’s weekend gal, she leads Saturday and Sunday bootcamps, though you may also see her sub here and there during the week. Currently, Jules is training for a half marathon (September 2021), and hopes to complete a sprint triathlon in Summer 2022. Bubbly but tough, she aims to challenge you all while encouraging you, and is always game to chat fitness and wellness goals.
I’m Lou Berkovits, a practicing yogi and Power Yoga teacher committed to sharing my love and passion for yoga. I teach a vinyasa or flow of movements based on the Journey Into Power series created by Baron Baptiste. I have consistently found this series to be the most challenging, rewarding and beneficial. Regardless of how many times I have practiced this flow, no two experiences have ever been the same. Each practice is as unique as that day, as that time, and as that moment. Get ready to work hard, get sweaty, get messy, and create the possibilities that lie within you to evolve into your grounded and true self.
Ryan has eleven years of personal training experience and has had success with countless clients. He has a deep understanding of the sciences that guide exercise, which he developed while studying at George Brown College, and pairs it with an art he has been shaping since age 12, when he first discovered weight training.
He believes the key to achieving results lies in identifying needs through thorough assessment, creating a strong foundation and practicing flawless fundamentals. This allows you to maintain constant progress and avoid injury, leading to your highest level of physical fitness. Personal training isn’t just about reaching your goals, but also understanding your own body and building confidence and independence in and out of the gym.
He takes pride in having a diverse skill set and being able to work with a wide variety of clients. Specializing in assessment, Fascial Stretch Therapy, mobility training, strength and conditioning, nutrition and kickboxing; he has all the tools necessary to ensure your success and the highest level training experience. Within a few short sessions his clients are able to move better than they ever thought possible and are on their way to a life changing experience.
Mike began training jiu jitsu in the notorious 10th Planet system. After 6 years he travelled much of the US going from gym to gym and learning from many incredible black belts and coaches. The trip ended in California, one of the jiu jitsu meccas, the final stop before returning to Montreal. From there Mike began studying and living at the famed Tristar gym, spending time and learning from some of the top mixed martial artists and coaches in the world. He now calls Toronto home and proudly represents and teaches at Body of Four under Professor Marco Costa and their affiliate Primal MMA under Egor Radzik. Over the course of 10 years Mike has trained exclusively No gi Jiu Jitsu. This has afforded him the opportunity to refine the details and learn the nuances that make or break no gi techniques. His love for grappling and passion for sharing and exchanging techniques is what drives him to become the best competitor, coach and(one day) mentor he can be.
John is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach and Fascial Stretch Therapist. He uses a combination of training and therapy techniques to correct movement patterns and promote healthy pain free movement. Training with John, you can expect to gain new ranges of motion and get stronger and more powerful while moving with less pain.
John also offers sessions of pure Fascial Stretch Therapy out of the treatment room. FST is an assisted table stretching system that will release tight tissues in your body, increase fluid movement and break up adhesions in your joints. Ask John for a free demo to feel what FST can do for you.
Arden has been passionate about fitness for as long as she can remember. Growing up as a dancer, Arden always prioritized mobility training, strength training and overall cardiovascular health. She is always looking to try new sports, activities and forms of fitness to improve her mental and Physical health.
Seamus is a dedicated trainer who combines sound program design with an excellent ability to motivate. When you work with Seamus you get a program designed specifically to meet your own individual needs and goals and Seamus is right by your side to push, encourage, and teach you proper technique. After your goals have been discussed with Seamus, he will take you through an assessment to determine the emphasis of your program and how best to achieve your goals.
Seamus spent much of his youth competing in hockey and track and field. He then went on to compete in track at the University level with York University where he graduated with a BA in Kinesiology and Health Science. He is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) with the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), as well as a Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) through the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP). He is also a professional kinesiologist with the Ontario Kinesiology Association (OKA) and a certified hockey trainer with the Hockey Trainer Certification Program (HTCP).
Seamus has a wealth of experience working with many different types of people of various exercise backgrounds. He has trained athletes as young as eleven and all the way up to hockey players at the OHL Major Junior level. This has led him to a role as team trainer for the Mississauga Reps AAA hockey club. Despite his athletic focus, his work with the general population and non-athletes looking to lose weight, build muscle, recover from injury, or just get stronger and improve their overall health is a major part of his practice and equally rewarding.
PJ Palacpac is a graduate of the Fitness and Health Promotion Program at George Brown College. He was able to enhance his knowledge and skills both in Personal Training and Group Exercise Leadership and receive his certificate as a trainer through CFES. PJ’s passion and love for fitness started at a very young age having participated and trained in multiple sports. He grew up as an athlete competing mainly in swimming and basketball and that drive has led him into his new passion, calisthenics and movement training. With his knowledge and skills his goal is to help clients attain their fitness goals as well as empower them to live healthier lives. PJ started off as an intern here at Primal and is now honoured to finally become a part of the team.
Caitlin has been a practicing RMT for 13 years, and an instructor for 4 of them. She is certified in deep tissue, myofascial release, sports and pregnancy massage. Caitlin’s background in athletics lead her to pursue a career in massage therapy and believes in a truly client focused experience. She loves working with people, teaching them about their anatomy and helping clients achieve their goals.
Caitlin is an avid paddler, coach and traveler. In her spare time you can always find her outside and likely on the water.