Our People


“It’s all about personal trainers. They’re very motivating and they push you to reach your limits. It’s very encouraging.”

– Gabe, IF Athlete

 

It’s All About the Coaches

Having the right place to exercise is important and designing the right programs is crucial, but the most essential element to the success of our athletes is having the right people.

Our team of trainers, in addition to holding accredited personal and group training certifications, are all Autism Fitness Certified Professionals with experience working with both neurodiverse and neurotypical populations.

Many are accomplished amateur athletes in their own right. All are dedicated to helping others create healthy lifestyles.

Most importantly, every Inclusive Fitness coach has a deep and personal focus on working with neurodiverse people and their families. Our team consists of mature, thoughtful, empathetic, and motivating people. Each member of the Inclusive Fitness team brings a unique perspective and set of skills to working with our athletes, neurodiverse and neurotypical alike.

By building trusting relationships, our coaches partner with our athletes to co-create long-term healthy lifestyles. They are what makes our athletes shine and what makes Inclusive Fitness the unique place and experience that it is.

Meet The Team

Greg Austin

Founder, President & Coach

Greg is the proud dad of Lucas, an autistic teenager who ignited Greg’s passion for launching Inclusive Fitness. After a 20-year career as a Chief Marketing Officer for three global consulting firms, Greg founded Inclusive Fitness in 2019. As its founder and one of the Certified Trainers (Level 1 Autism Fitness Certified Pro), he is deeply rooted in all that is Inclusive Fitness.

Before his corporate career, Greg trained clients as the owner of Austin Fitness in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He was a certified personal trainer with ACSM, NSCS (as a CSCS), and ACE. He worked with both top athletes and post-operative patients in collaboration with orthopedic surgeons and physical therapists. During his time in the Southwest, Greg also volunteered with the St. John’s College Search & Rescue Team and served as the team’s training chairman and fitness instructor. Greg has a BA in Psychology, with advanced studies in neuroscience, and holds an MBA. He lives in the Boston area, with his wife Kristina, and son Lucas. Together they enjoy hiking, running, swimming, triathlons, cooking, music, and traveling.

Contact Greg

 

Kristin Abendroth

Director of Client Experience & Head Neurotypical Coach

An energetic and dynamic personal trainer and group exercise instructor, Kristin has over ten years’ experience in the fitness industry. She has taught in both large- and small-group training settings and has been a successful multi-studio leader, manager, and head coach for one of the nation’s leading fitness franchises. She has a passion for building communities that motivate athletes to improve and maintain their health and wellness. She is a NASM Certified Personal Trainer, Autism Fitness Certified Pro, AFAA Group EX instructor, and TRX Instructor. A former music educator and oboist with education and performance degrees from Ithaca College and the Crane School of Music, Kristin taught in the elementary and middle public school setting for ten years. Both of her parents were special educators, which laid the groundwork for Kristin’s rich and rewarding lifelong experiences of working with neurodivergent individuals in a variety of settings, including summer camps, schools, and day programs.

As the Director of Client Experience and Head Neurotypical Coach at Inclusive Fitness, Kristin enjoys coaching both neurodivergent athletes and their neurotypical family members and working together to set realistic, attainable goals that will lead to lifelong health and wellness.

Contact Kristin

 

Eric Chessen

Director of Neuroadaptive Training & Innovation

Eric Chessen has spent nearly two decades developing successful fitness and adapted PE programs for the autism and special needs populations. An exercise physiologist with an educational and clinical background in Applied Behavior Analysis, Eric created Autism Fitness first as his private practice with 1-to-1 and small group programs, building a dedicated team. From there, Autism Fitness evolved into the educational and certification leader in the adaptive fitness industry.

Eric has spent 17+ years as a consultant and fitness program director for Johns Hopkins Medical Institute, and his programs have been featured on Yahoo News and, VICE Media. He also presented at a recent TEDx event.

Eric serves as the Lead Instructor for the Autism Fitness Certification program. Eric has worked with his athletes of all ages and ability levels in nearly every environment, from near closet-sized home spaces to fully-equipped gyms. He resides in Charlotte, NC and is now working with new athletes 1-to-1 and consulting with local families on a limited basis. He is also the Co-Founder of strength equipment company StrongerthanU.com.

 

Shayna Harper

Coach

In 2005, Shayna fell in love with fitness when her personal trainer encouraged her to compete for an INBF Pro Card where she claimed 3rd place. The training, attention to nutrition, and supportive community surrounding the competition allowed her to see fitness as more than just going to the gym. No longer a 3-season athlete, it was just what she needed to create the foundation for her overall health and wellness.

After having 3 children and raising her family, Shayna decided to make fitness her full-time career. With a background in biology, she became an ACE Certified Group Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer, Orthopedic Exercise Specialist, and Weight Management Specialist. She recently added Autism Fitness Pro to her credentials. She has enjoyed helping many clients reach their goals and is looking forward to bringing that same energy to IF.

Shayna loves burpees and box jumps, but also backpacking, mountain biking, paddleboarding, snowboarding, rock climbing and surfing. When she’s not working, she’s off adventuring with her 3 children.

 

Lauren Ferraiuolo

Coach

Lauren is a motivated student athlete who is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science at Endicott College. She has a robust background in the fitness field that she has acquired from her classes at Endicott including, exercise physiology, anatomy, strength and conditioning, psychology of sport, and special population. She has also completed a 200-hour summer internship at a physical therapy practice, has two years experience coaching at a sports performance gym, and ten years of volunteer experience coaching with the Special Olympics. She is currently working on obtaining her Level 1 Autism Fitness Pro Certification. Lauren has an older sister Lindsay, who has Down Syndrome, which drives her intense passion for the health and well-being of the neurodiverse community. Growing up with a sister who has Down Syndrome, Lauren has experienced the ups and downs her family has gone through, especially the struggles of staying healthy. Lauren shares the dedication of increasing the quality of life for neurodiverse people and their families, just like Inclusive Fitness.

Lauren is a member of the Endicott College Women’s Ice Hockey Team, where she practices and strength trains on a daily basis. On days off, she likes to hike, kayak, run, and weight lift. She also enjoys playing basketball, dancing, and cooking with her sister Lindsay.

 

Jay Thebado

Coach

Jay Thebado has been a personal trainer in the Boston area for the last ten years. He has been running his own business since 2015 in Stoughton, MA. Jay has worked with several neurodiverse athletes during his time as a trainer and has developed a passion to work with this population, which is why he wanted to join the team at Inclusive Fitness.
 
Jay has been coaching high school hockey and baseball since 2013. He also educates corporations on various fitness-related topics such as how to take care of our bodies when sitting for long periods at work.
 
Jay graduated in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from UMASS-Lowell. He knew early in his professional career that fitness was his true calling, and began training in 2011. After a year of hard work, he had a full schedule of clients and was able to make it his career. In addition to working out, Jay plays both hockey and tennis weekly. He enjoys traveling with his wife and spending his free time with his dogs.

Kim Smith

Coach

Kim has been teaching group fitness and personal training since 2019, after pursuing her passion for fitness and how it can bring people together. She is always excited and ready to work with athletes of any skill level, because everyone can benefit from incorporating fitness into their lifestyle. She is an Autism Fitness Level 1 Certified Pro, a Certified Functional Strength Coach, NASM Personal Trainer, ACE Group Fitness Instructor, TRX Instructor, and ProNatal Specialist. Functional fitness is most important to her, understanding how to adapt what we do at Inclusive Fitness to the real world outside, wherever that might take us!

Kim has spent most of her life as a runner, biker, and kayaker thanks to her family always encouraging an active lifestyle. She has two cats named Papaya and Clove who she adores, and she is a big fan of dogs. When not helping other athletes, she loves working out with her friends – her favorite exercises are farmer carries and sled pushes.

Jennifer Drohan

MEd., RD, LDN

Jenn found her passion for nutrition, and obtained a degree in the field, when studying at the University of New Hampshire. Jenn worked at Children’s Hospital in Boston before going on to complete a Master’s in Nutrition Education at Framingham State College, where she also completed her dietetic internship.

Jenn gained extensive experience in Nutrition Support while working at Massachusetts General Hospital as a member of their Nutrition Support Team. She went on to work with several infusion therapy companies as a Home Nutrition Support Dietitian.

After becoming a mom to two children with autism, ADHD and related GI issues, Jenn fell in love with helping other families on the same path. She began consulting for Early Intervention (EI). At EI, she collaborated on a multidisciplinary team to create nutritional goals for children and their families. Jenn has also spent the last few years working with clients at Metrowest Nutrition.  Jenn tries to empower parents, children, teens and adults to become curious of different types of eating behaviors, while promoting pleasure in food and all that it provides to our amazing bodies. Jenn has given numerous professional parent talks on Nutrition and Autism and continues to be intrigued by the role of the Gut Biome in GI issues.

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