Physical Activity Specialist, YMCA Teen Mind Fit

YMCA of Greater Vancouver - Vancouver, BC (30+ days ago)

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Date: July 10, 2019

Position Title: Physical Activity Specialist, YMCA Teen Mind Fit

Location: Langara Family YMCA, Vancouver

Terms: Casual

Salary: $19 per hour

Reports To: Supervisor, Y Mind


The YMCA of Greater Vancouver is a charity dedicated to strengthening the foundations of community, by nurturing the potential of children, teens & young adults, promoting healthy lifestyles, fostering a sense of social responsibility and delivering lasting personal & social change. We are building a community in which a generation of children and families reach their full potential. Our values guide our decision-making and behavior—we do the right thing, put people first, keep our promises and lead by example.

For over 130 years, we have been part of the community, a place where people of every age and background find the support they need to grow in spirit, mind and body. One of the Lower Mainland’s leading charities, the YMCA of Greater Vancouver provides services in health & fitness, child care, camping, employment & community services to over 120,000 participants annually.

Mental health issues such as low mood and depression can be treated through various modalities including using physical activity. Physical activity has a significant potential for reducing depressive symptoms in people who experience mental health difficulties.

The Mind Fit program aims to support teens 13-19 years of age with mild to moderate symptoms of depression and anxiety. Mind Fit uses group wellness visits facilitated by Mental Health Professionals followed by group fitness classes lead by a YMCA Physical Activity Specialist.

Nature and Scope:

Participants in Mind Fit meet for a total of 120 minutes in a group setting with 10-12 other teens. The first part of the program involves a Group Wellness Visit in which the Physical Activity Specialist will attend but the Mental Health Professional will lead. The Group Wellness Visit focuses on discussion and learning on mental health topics and motivation to increase physical activity. Following the Group Wellness Visit, the Physical Activity Specialist leads a 60 minute group fitness class to support participants to increase their physical activity and build social connections. The Physical Activity Specialist will support participants in trying new exercises (such as indoor soccer, circuit training, and cycle fit) and will tailor sessions to meet group and individual needs.

The Physical Activity Specialist position involves creating awareness and integration around being active and the preventive measures that can be taken when faced with depression and anxiety. By providing support, encouragement, and education, the Physical Activity Specialist is responsible for developing a healthy physical activity training/coaching relationship with clients and assisting them through the process of moving towards better health and a more active life.

The Physical Activity Specialist will have a passion for working with teens and youth, physical activity promotion, coaching, and prevention, and will bring an expertise in physical activity promotion, behavioral change strategies, group facilitation, and the promotion of healthy lifestyles in general.

Major Responsibilities:

  • Attend Mind Fit Facilitator Training (August or September 2019)
  • When Physical Activity Specialist is absent
  • Read over pre-determined Mind Fit Session for the required evening
  • Make arrangements to confirm equipment required for the physical activity session
  • Support and participate in the Mental Wellness session
  • Lead pre-determined physical activity as outlined in the Training
  • Complete all necessary session preparation and takedown for 2 hour weekly session.
  • Other relevant duties as required.
  • These sessions will:
  • further physical activity uptake and patient activation amongst teens, dealing with depression, who may have one or more co-morbidities;
  • further the promotion of physical activity and long-term physical activity adherence amongst teen program participants.


  • Current group fitness certificate or qualifications
  • Minimum of 2 years working with teenagers (13-17 years of age) experiencing mild to moderate depression and anxiety
  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent level of experience and education
  • Superior facilitation, coaching, group management, interpersonal, and communication skills with teens.
  • Demonstrable expertise in supporting teens with positive behavioral change strategies. This includes knowledge of latest trends and approaches in working with teens
  • Knowledge and understanding of physical activity promotion for teens and of the management and prevention of depression and/or chronic diseases in general and of specific related disease conditions.
  • Training or direct experience in health/physical activity promotion for teens, coaching for teens, teen group facilitation, teen health education, athletic training for teens, nutrition, other health related fields, marketing, and/or demonstrable transferable skills.
  • Successful candidates will be required to provide a current and satisfactory Criminal Reference Check/Vulnerable Sector Search issued no later than six (6) months preceding your start date
  • Mental Health First Aid Certificate an asset
  • Current Standard First Aid and CPR-C & AED certificate


In addition to bringing a commitment to YMCA vision and values, the candidate should possess the following competencies:

Leading Self

  • Evolve in Professional Capability – Commit to being better
  • Achieve Excellence and Authenticity – Show up with the best version of you

Leading Others

  • Develop the Potential in Others – Help people grow and lead
  • Create a Culture of Connection – Build bridges between people and partners

Leading Mission

  • Think and Act Strategically – Make good decisions and act on them
  • Make an Intentional Impact – Advance the strength and cause of the Y

External Applicants: Please apply using the link below:

Application Deadline: Until filled

Job Types: Temporary, Casual