In this edition of instructor spotlight, we are highlighting Irene Barnett, one of our longest running instructors at the Downtown YMCA! If you’ve ever taken one of Irene’s classes, you know her spunk and energy and it is contagious! Her motto is that she just likes to have fun, and every class it just that, fun! Of course, don’t let that fool you, her classes are a great challenge too!
Irene has been with the Downtown YMCA for 23 years, both as an instructor and as a trainer. Irene got her start in fitness in the early 80s instructing at a lady’s fitness franchise (yep, she wore the headband and leg warmers!) while still in high school. Later while attending Ohio State, she auditioned to become a Buck-I-Robics (what a great name!) Instructor for Ohio State students, faculty and staff. Irene got the gig and instructed there until her graduation. Later, she joined the YMCA Instructor family and the rest is history!
Irene currently teaches Cardio Blast with Vivian on Mondays and 12:30, and Cycling at Noon on Thursdays, as well as always being willing to help sub wherever she can. Irene is certified to teach just about everything including Yoga, Pilates, HIIT, TurboKick, Cardio Kickboxing and Zumba just to name a few.
Little known fact, Irene was born in Hong Kong, speaks Cantonese and immigrated to the US at age 9. We sure are grateful she is here with our Downton Fitness Family and are grateful for her two decades plus of service to the YMCA!