Meet the Team

Altitude Fitness Armidale (AFA) & Vera Vidya Yoga Studio would like to introduce our remarkable team. What a privilege to have so much knowledge, skill and experience in one local small business.

Ali Flynn
Founder and Director

Ali established AFA in 2009 to empower men and women to achieve a lifetime of fitness, health and self-worth. Ali has a long list of experience and qualifications, ranging from 10 years in counselling and therapy to training in Pilates, Boxing, Pre and Post Natal Fitness, Strength and Conditioning, Biomechanics, Mobility Functional Training and Vinyasa Flow Yoga. Ali acts as a Fitness Coach, Leader and Mentor for every person that enters the world of AFA. She is extremely hands on, designing every workout and class with 100% dedication and expertise. This means that you’ll never do the same program twice and she is constantly striving to improve the results and your experience with AFA.

Eilish Chalmers

Eilish is our new AFA Admin - the newest addition to the crew!

Eilish is an Armidale local, with diverse career experience and a taste for challenges. She enjoys walking (the Pine Forest is her favourite), reading, and, of course, training at AFA!

Nancy Howarth
Accounts Manager and Class Instructor

Nancy is our ‘go to lady’. She has played multiple roles since the establishment of AFA, from personal assistant to Ali through to manager and class instructor. Nancy now spends her time interacting with clients face to face, helping them to reach their goals and dreams. Nancy is trained in Thump Boxing, Pilates, Fitness and Women’s Health.

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Tilly Brauer

Tilly has worked in the fitness industry for the last 10 years, between having 3 children. She has a Certificate 3 and 4 in Fitness and particularly loves training in strength, high intensity interval training and pre and post natal training. Tilly is passionate about being active and living a balanced and healthy lifestyle. She has also spent over 12 years in AgriBusiness in finance and operations.

Ali Perry
PT, Class Instructor & Yoga Teacher

…AKA Ali the pocket rocket. 

Ali has always had a love for sport, fitness & yoga. She played hockey nearly her whole life & has played in the space of boxing, powerlifting, rock climbing and triathlons. 

Ali is a dynamic trainer who wants to know her clients individually and challenge them to the very best of their own capabilities. 

She will find your own personal limit and push past it with you. 

She wants to see you grow, challenge yourself and have fun - don’t be fooled by how little she is - she can be tough and she sure will make you work! 

She’ll train you to be strong, inside and out - Her motto: if you’re not adapting, you’re not evolving


Willow Noakes
Class instructor

Willow is a machine. She has worked in the fitness industry for over 10 years and specialises in cardio and whole body fitness. She has a passion for helping clients attain an avenue they enjoy and find challenging. She is tough but caring.

Em Ryan
PT & Class Instructor

Em has been involved in fitness and sports for the past 8 years, and has worked in the industry for the past 2 years. She is an Armidale local, who is studying psychology with a passion for neuroscience. She is trained in body pump, HIIT, strength & conditioning; and has a special interest in form and mobility. Em is passionate about optimising mental and physical wellbeing, and values brain health, positivity and confidence in her training.

Justin Shaw
PT & Class Instructor

Justin has studied a Bachelor of Science majoring in physiology and psychology. Originally from Narrabri, Justin comes to us with 6 years experience training sprinters. Justin has a long training history, extending to all edges of the fitness world. He is passionate about health, fitness and equipping others with the tools and confidence to reach their goals!

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Benji Dutaillis
Exercise Scientist & PT

Benji has completed a Masters of High Performance Sport, a Bachelor of Exercise & Sports Science, an Advanced Diploma in Circus Arts and has a L1 Australian Strength and Conditioning Certificate.He has extensive experience working with school aged children and emerging athletes.


Hayden Freeman
Ironman Coach

Born and bred right here in Armidale, Hayden has been racing in triathlons  since the age of 15 which has lead him to all parts of this state chasing his passion. he has been lucky enough to have trained to be in elite squads around the North West area and has represented NIAS at the Academy Games.

Brittany Freeman
Swimming Coach

Brittany has been a swimming coach for over 6 years. Starting swimming at 2 years old, Brittany went on to compete at state levels all throughout high school. She is passionate about teaching people from all walks of life about swimming. Her training philosophy is; to never give up even when it gets hard, encouragement is key and always make sure you have fun.

Trudy Page
Yoga Teacher

Trudy’s journey into Yoga began with a search to help her chronic back pain, autoimmune disorders and arthritis. She found that not only did she love the way yoga helped her feel it also assisted her to feel grounded and ready to tackle the word and motherhood. Trudy found yoga has had a profound impact on her pain levels which has resulted in her wanting to share her passion and love of yoga. She works within her limits teaching others how to do the exact same. Trudy specialises in Yin, Vinyasa & Remedial.

Kate Pattison
Yoga Teacher

Kate has a natural capacity for creating community around her. She is all heart and it shines through in everything she does. She first found Yoga after going through some life challenges. After spending years of working with others in youth work, she has found a home where she can teach and help others without burning herself out in the process. 

Kate is passionate about teaching people how to listen to their bodies and still their minds. She believes there is something in yoga for everyone, it’s about finding what works for you and discovering your full potential. Come and experience her amazing energy.

Kate specialises in Yin, Restorative  and Kids Yoga.

Bec Passey
Yoga Teacher

Bec has been playing in the yoga space for a number of years and teaches a range of styles. Outside the yoga world, she has a broad background including from the government, legal, community and higher education sectors. Bec is passionate about making a difference in the world and works with a deep empathy for the human experience in all its flavours.Her classes are an experience – the invitation is to be present in the moment, connect to yourself through your body, and to deepen self awareness and self care.  

Bec specialises in Embody Yoga, vinyasa, power yoga and yin.

Alex Cook
Pilates Instructor

Alex is a former dancer who trained full time at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts. After becoming injured and undergoing various forms of physical rehabilitation treatments, Alex started to progress towards a different form of movement outside the dance studio. She found a love for Pilates where she trained up in Barre Body and Polestar Pilates. Alex provides a unique setting to her classes. They are creative, explorative and dynamic. She aims to inspire and challenge students to explore their potential whilst maintaining structural and anatomical stability through a respectful approach to their bodies and minds.

Amelia Griffiths
Pilates Instructor

Amelia grew up in Brisbane as a classically trained competitive dancer. As many dancers do, while searching for amicable cross-training aimed at maintenance and rehabilitation, Amelia fell in love with Pilates. While currently studying a Bachelor of Clinical Exercise Physiology at UNE, she completed her Mat Pilates certification through Barre Body. She aims to teach holistic classes that work through all axis and planes of the body, while educating on the bodily responsibilities and anatomy behind movement. Amelia also enjoys testing her own limits through HIIT and Strength & Conditioning workouts.

Chanel Leaudais
Meditation and Yoga Teacher

Chanel is a Dance Educator with over 15 years of practice in Vinyasa, Yin, Hatha Yoga; Yoga Nidra, Deep Breathe Work and Meditation. 

Throughout her career, Chanel has specialised in Dance Education, Special Needs Education and Learning Support – discovering that through each venture, yoga and meditation were both an anchor and sanctuary for the mind and body.

Chanel worked in Integrated Dance as a dancer, choreographer and teacher. Experiences in this field took her to Sydney, Melbourne and Europe. She has been involved with projects at Sydney Dance Company, the Sydney Opera House, the Museum of Contemporary Art, CarriageWorks and Bundanoon Trust.


Tanya Howard
Yoga Teacher

Tanya is a Level 1 hatha yoga teacher who has been practising for over 20 years, with a strong background in the Iyengar tradition. Living in Armidale since 2012, Tanya is a mother of 3 and an advocate for mindfulness. She combines a focus on alignment with an integrated breath and movement practice, to help you unlock your natural energy and focus. Tanya believes in accessible yoga and welcomes all levels of experience to join her class. 

Matt Pine
Consultant: Exercise Scientist

After completing an Exercise Science Degree, Matt has gone on to work with many elite athletes and clubs. The most notable of these are working at Sydney’s Academy of Sport, followed by 8 years at the Sydney Swans as a Strength and Conditioning coach. His particular areas of expertise include; Strength and Conditioning for athletes of team sports, fitness testing, injury prevention, exercise rehabilitation, training load management, and use of sports technology for training.

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Anna Hicks
Consultant: Dietitian & Yoga Teacher

Anna loves life and people. Anna has a Masters in Dietetics specialising in gut health. She believes movement is just as important as the fuel we eat. They both work in conjunction with each other. Anna has practiced yoga for over a decade and the moment she got the phone call to see if she would be interested in completing her teachers training, she was all over it. She believes yoga shouldn’t be taken too seriously (a little like life) and wants to create pathways for everyone to find an environment that suits their personality and lifestyle.

Morgan Rowbottom
Consultant: Exercise Physiologist

Morgan is a qualified Exercise Physiologist and has further qualifications in Austswim and Thump Boxing.She is an Armidale local with a sporting background in swimming and water polo and lives travelling. 

Team Mascot

Alfie is our youngest team member, joining us from his pack in July, 2018. He has come to the AFA team to help educate clients and staff on running techniques, wilderness survival and plyometric training. Alfie is much loved in the community and will be seen out and about at numerous sporting events…you may even catch a glimpse of him down the street.