New Staff at Solcana

We are so excited to welcome new staff members to our team! We are welcoming Scout (they/them) as our new client services administrator, AJ (she/her) as our social media director and Garrett Ferderder (he/him) is coming on as our new Programming Director.

Name: Scout Ober

Pronouns: they/them/theirs

Where are you from originally: Brooklyn Park, MN

What drew you to Solcana? 

The organization’s mission and values are in line with my own. As a disabled trans person, it’s been so important to me to find a workplace where my perspective is valued and celebrated as a part of a diverse team. I have different access-needs that have kept me from pursuing gym memberships in the past, for fear of judgment and institutional ableism in the health and wellness industries. I feel supported and encouraged to find and define my personal limitations and goals within the container that Solcana Fitness provides.

What is one thing you hope to do to help Solcana grow? 

I have found that I naturally gravitate to the role of advocate within my own communities, and I’m excited to use these skills to help Solcana better reach and serve historically underrepresented and marginalized athletes moving forward! I’m looking forward to exploring what is possible within our current sliding-scale structure and I hope to expand our membership offerings for athletes who may face multiple barriers to accessing the space.

What is one thing you love to do when you’re not working?

I just recently joined the Minnesota Mycological Society and I’m looking forward to learning more about mushrooms and fungi that grow on the Occupied Dakota land where we live. When I’m not at one of the state parks hiking, I like to learn about and care for my carnivorous plant collection.

What is a fact we may not know about you?

I’m teaching myself the Python programming language for fun!

Name: Adrianne Jones, but yall can call me AJ 🙂

Pronouns: My pronouns are she/her/hers

Where are you from originally: I was born and raised in Lawton, Oklahoma until I was 8 years old, and moved to a very small farm town in northwest Minnesota called Oklee. I lived in Oklee until my first semester of college online, and have been living in Minneapolis since August of 2021. 

What drew you to Solcana? My interest in Solcana stems from not having inclusive or accessible and safe spaces for people that looked and identified like myself, who also wanted to be able to go to the gym comfortably like everyone else. I also wanted to be able to interact with different perspectives than mine, and make an impact that aligns with my own identity and values.

What is one thing you hope to do to help Solcana grow? I would love to help build our social media presence overall, and bring in more BIPOC queer members, such as my friends, who I know would love a space to workout where they can stay active.

What is one thing you love to do when you’re not working? When I’m not working, I love being outside (as long as it’s not cold), watching every show I can find on Hulu, listening to BTS and R&B, and spending time with my friends and boyfriend at the park.

What is a fact we may not know about you? A fun fact about me is that I am probably one of the few queer people on this Earth that doesn’t like cats.

Coach Garrett Ferderber’s Programming Philosophy

I am really looking forward to the opportunity of directing programming here at Solcana.  Though I have been doing my own programming for many years, from running my own Active Mobility classes here to creating programming at my previous jobs, taking on the role of Programming Director at Solcana will be a new experience with new challenges. 

Luckily, Jerik and Hannah have a very open door and transparent process around their programming, and I have gotten to contribute to and observe several of the more recent programming cycles. I have added to the hip and shoulder stability drills we have been using in the warm-ups as well as getting to test out a few strength and high intensity workout formats. The programming team has been very good at pulling ideas from coaches, athletes and outside sources and I plan to continue reaching in and out for inspiration. 

As the new Programming Director, my first job will be to understand and replicate the kinds of workouts that coaches and athletes at Solcana are already familiar with. We will continue to focus on building up a few heavy lifts each cycle while also offering a wide variety of movements and plenty of opportunities to work hard and get sweaty. 

My overall goals for our classes are to help people connect with exercise in ways that are healthy, sustainable, safe and fun. I want our classes to be widely accessible while still allowing room for more experienced athletes to continue to grow. I also want to make good use of athletes’ time with exercise aimed at getting results. Finally I aim to make the work we do in the gym relevant to our lives outside of the gym. This means building strength, functional capacity and metabolic capacity alongside things like stability, endurance and mobility. 

Here are just a few things I plan to prioritize, ongoing:

  • Progressive Overload (increasing resistance to build strength)
  • Strong, stable and safe form for all movements
  • Variety, it’s the spice of life
  • Tools for self-assessment and self-guided improvement of form and range of motion
  • Challenges that help us stay engaged and motivated
  • Scaling, offering the right modifications so that everyone can be where they are

I’m looking forward to creating and doing workouts with all of you. I want to hear as many of your thoughts as you care to share and I will reach out from time to time for feedback.

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