Low Impact EXERCISE CLASSES for Older Adults & Seniors in Owen Sound – Seated & Active Exercise Classes for Men & Women – Lively Classes for Women 50+ ALL CLASSES improve Core Strength – Balance – Flexibility – Stamina – Endurance – Strength – Circulation – Coordination

Do YOU Exercise at home?  We now have 12 Sally Sunshine Senior’s Exercise VIDEOS!
Click the VIDEOS TAB along top of page, to view!

December 26, 2020 – COVID-19 UPDATE & ANNOUNCEMENT:

Sally Sunshine Gentle Fitness Exercise Classes
for Older Adults & Seniors, men & women! 


Mon to Fri @ 10:30-11:30 am & Mon 2-3 pm 

*MOBILE PHONES:  First CHOOSE MENU at top of page.
Choose CLASSES – CLICK on each class title to display ALL: price, location, description & contact information.  

  • Ladies 50+ Low Impact, Active Cardio, Abs & Core Strength on floor, small Weight/Bands full body Strength, Balance & Flexibility Exercise Classes
  • ACTIVE Seniors Low Impact Active Cardio balance & strength for Men & Women – SIT or STAND behind chairs
  • Yoga for Seniors  Core strengthening, Flexibility & Stretch using Chairs Yoga Classes for Men & Women – SIT or STAND behind chairs
    Demonstrations: Exercising with PolesALL AGES, ALL ABILITIES Poles are an excellent choice: for those recovering from hip/knee surgery, to improve strength & help with balance; as mobility aids for people with mobility issues such as Parkinson’s or M.S; for improving posture, balance, upper back & core strength; boosting your cardiovascular health; to aid in weight loss.
  • Arthritis Workshops for Seniors (can be provided as a weekly or monthly series to cover a variety of joints)

Description and Benefits of Gentle Fit Exercise Classes

These low impact classes will benefit the participants’ overall health and functionality in their daily lives by:

Improving your Strength, Stamina, Balance, Circulation, Flexibility and your Cardiovascular & Respiratory Health.  Other benefits may include:  improved sleep and enhanced coordination skills.  The social aspect of gathering together in a group provides the ‘FUN’ factor, giving us a feeling of community spirit, as we meet new people and make new friends!

Click Here to view Class Schedules.

Each 60 minute Seated Senior’s Class is comprised of gentle seated exercises to improve cardiovascular health, overall flexibility and strength.  We stand for a total of 5 minutes for leg and core Strengthening exercises, to improve Balance, followed by 20 minutes of seated Strengthening exercises using therapy bands and balls, and end with a 10 minute Flexibility Stretch to help prevent pain due to stiffness. All the exercises are performed at the appropriate level of intensity for the participants involved. 

Each 60 minute Active Seniors Class for Men & Women is comprised of 30 minutes of Low Impact Cardiovascular & Balance Exercises performed to lively upbeat music, 20 minutes of SEATED Strengthening Exercises using resistance bands or therapy balls, and ends with a 10 minute Flexibility Stretch to help prevent pain due to stiffness.

Each 60 minute Women’s Fitness Fun Gentle Fit Exercise Class is comprised of a Low Impact fast-paced, Cardio workout with lots of variety, performed to upbeat, lively music; plus strength training & abdominal work using a variety of equipment, and ending with a full body stretch to improve flexibility.  Please bring a mat or blanket for floor work.

Class Format:

  • A gentle warming up of all the joints & muscles
  • Moderate to vigorous cardio/aerobic endurance-style exercise (at the appropriate level for the participants involved)
  • Muscle & bone strengthening & exercises, utilizing small soft balls, resistance bands and, on occasion, light hand-held weights
  • Balance training
  • A cooling down period of relaxing & gently stretching out the major muscles

If you are unable to attend classes, other options are available.  We offer ‘One-on-One’ functional fitness training with Sally MacDonald, in your home or in our studio (when scheduling permits).  You may also purchase our 20 minute DVD of a Seated Senior’s Strengthening workout using a small soft therapy ball and a resistance band.  Balls, bands & DVD’s sell for $6.00 each. (see VIDEOS tab to view video).  This way you do your own workout at home without the worry that you may perform an exercise incorrectly.  For more information, please Click Here to send Sally a message.

It’s advisable, before starting any new physical activity program, to consult with your doctor or health care professional before you begin.

Click Here to view Class Schedules.

Description and Benefits of Private Fitness Training ‘One-on-One’

An Exercise program that is designed specifically for you can be highly beneficial to your health & well-being. What do YOU wish to achieve?

• Assistance with your physio therapy exercises, while you recover from surgery, injury or illness
• To improve your balance (which is proven to help prevent falls)
• To improve your bone strength & muscle strength (to help maintain your current level of independence)
• To improve or maintain your current Heart health
• To improve the circulation of your blood & lymphatic system (beneficial to diabetics & cancer survivors)
• To maintain & improve flexibility in your arthritic joints

Physical Activity Should be Enjoyable for YOU! Choose activities that YOU prefer. Choose to perform them seated or standing. Choose ½ hr. sessions to avoid fatigue or over-exertion, or choose 1 hr. sessions and combine activities such as those below. Equipment will be provided, such as small soft balls, resistance bands or hand-held weights.

• Gentle & Safe Stretching exercises for Arthritis and Relaxation
• Bone & Muscle Strengthening exercises using Resistance Bands or Hand Weights
• Walking for a Healthy Heart (or for Bone Health with added weight-bearing)
• Walking with Poles for improved balance, full body strengthening and optimal health

It’s advisable, before starting any physical activity program, to consult with your doctor or health care professional first.

Current Pricing in effect January 1, 2019 

Classes 1/2 hour = $30.00                                                                          Classes 1 hour = $35.00
Individual Fee to participate in classes, varies from class to class depending on rental fees = $6.00 – $8.00 per class


Sally is an Older Adult Fitness Specialist.

She holds her S.F.I.C.  certificate from the C.C.A.A. (Canadian Centre for Activity & Aging at Western University).  This is one of the most widely-acknowledged Seniors’ Fitness Instructor Certificates.  She also holds numerous certificates from various Senior’s Fitness courses, programs & workshops; and continues to further her education on a regular basis.

Sally is fully insured to instruct Senior’s group exercise classes as an F.P.A.O. Registered Fitness and Health Professional with the Fitness Practitioners Association of Ontario and is certified in First Aid & CPR.


Currently Sally has 13 years of experience instructing Group Exercise Classes in various fitness facilities in Owen Sound.  To gain experience working with the older adult population; she originally became a V.O.N. volunteer instructor.  After completing several of their training programs; she was also mentored by some excellent, highly-experienced Seniors fitness instructors, in leading the S.M.A.R.T. (Seniors Maintaining Active Roles Together) Group Exercise Classes in our Community.  Then she furthered her credentials, obtaining her S.F.I.C. Certification from Western University’s Canadian Centre for Activity and Aging; and then became employed by the Grey Bruce V.O.N. as a paid instructor.  Her V.O.N. certifications include:  Level 1, Level 2 & Parkinson’s


Sally is on staff as a Senior’s Fitness Instructor for the Grey Bruce V.O.N. and at times she instructs several classes weekly, both in the Community and our local Retirement Homes.  Currently Sally is instructing only the Parkinson’s Thursday classes.  Please contact Grey Bruce V.O.N. at 519-371-5331 for more information on the S.M.A.R.T. Exercise & Fall Prevention Program!

Aside from the V.O.N. classes, Sally also instructs many different types, of Seniors’ exercise classes in Owen Sound, for all levels of fitness ability.  Offering morning and afternoon classes for older adults & seniors; she also runs classes later in the afternoon for the 50+ women who are often busy working or volunteering.

These are LIVELY & FUN, cardio and core strengthening classes. Class descriptions, times & locations, can be found under the CLASSES tab.



Like everyone, I worked at various jobs throughout my life & found that many of them caused me injuries, problems & subsequent pain, some of it at that time, some later in life……delivery driver: neck & hips…..dance teacher: knees & hips…..desk job: neck, back & knees.  I didn’t know what type of work I should be doing that would prevent further problems. 

The answer came to me when I read an ad in the paper by the V.O.N., inviting ‘me’ to become a volunteer senior’s fitness instructor!  They were offering 8 weeks of ‘1 day’ FREE training, to become a certified VON Fall Prevention Senior’s fitness instructor; if I agreed to volunteer 1 hour per week, teaching a class, for 1 year, following my certification.  This sounded like a perfect way to launch myself into a new career that would benefit my body, instead of harming it!  And, one that I could possibly do forever!  I became very excited at this prospect & registered for the program, booked off those 8 Mondays from my desk job & proceeded with great gusto to try something new!

As life would have it, after completing most of the course, I applied for a position as a Health & Wellness Coach, at a new health & wellness facility, soon to be opening up, & was hired!  

Deborah Dempsey & I were the first employees to be hired.  Our training lasted for 4 weeks, 5 days a week, staying in Barrie, where we soon became friends!  The training was extensive, we learned so much about vitamins, nutrition, diet & exercise.  My skill set was organizational, clerical & enthusiasm for sales; Deb was our exercise guru!  She taught me so much about fitness, cardiovascular & strength training exercises, yoga & the importance of stretching.   This program was fantastic & our clients thrived, lost weight, became happier & healthier; many became friends for life!

I soon began teaching classes myself & never looked back!  Having previously taught dance for 10 years, I was a natural & found this to be highly enjoyable & rewarding.  I became very fit & knowledgeable, and eventually became the manager! 

I loved my job but, sadly, after several years, the business closed up….so Deborah opened her own studio, including a fully stocked gym, called A Woman’s Journey – Women’s Fitness & Wellness Facility, where we continued working together for the next 6 years. 

I worked very hard learning more specifics about fitness, including weight-training with machines & free weights, yoga & Pilates, & so much more!  Basically Deb gave me a free education in fitness, while I worked as the office manager who taught a few classes in the evenings. 

During one of our slow periods when my hours were reduced, I decided to reconnect with the VON again.  After all, without that first course, I would never have gotten into fitness!  I now had time to volunteer a few hours & was eager to reconnect.  I spoke with Dorothy Embacher at the VON & she was pleasantly shocked when I told her I ‘owed her 1 year of teaching’…..she said no one had ever called to say that before! 

We soon became friends but more importantly, she was willing to mentor me!  She opened my eyes to the world of older adults & the aging process, including the changes that our bodies go through. She made me realize that exercising helps the older generation stay vital & healthy!  I continuing working for & mentoring under Deborah, while Dorothy continued to inspire, teach & encourage me to ‘want to work with older adults’!  I was now in my early 60’s, still very fit & full of energy & teaching high level classes.  However, learning so much about the aging body, was re-shaping my thinking.  I began to wonder if I should be exercising at this high level.  I became a VON certified Fall Prevention Instructor of both levels, seated & standing classes.  I began volunteer teaching finally!  Working both jobs was completely fulfilling, but Dorothy kept working with me & encouraging me to continue my education!  She was the facilitator who mentored & tested me, while I achieved several more certifications through Western University’s S.F.I.C. program. 

The next few years saw many changes to the world of Seniors’ Fitness.  The government jumped aboard & VON was chosen to deliver their Fall Prevention classes, now known as the S.M.A.R.T. Program, in the community & now also in the Retirement Homes!  This meant that they needed MANY more instructors & that some of us would be PAID instructors!  I was SO glad that Dorothy had encouraged me to obtain all of the certifications necessary to be hired!  Within a few short months, I found myself teaching 18 classes per week!  I had given up my position as office manager, but continued teaching 3 evening Gentle Fit classes at the gym, that I had designed specifically for the ‘50+ women.’  In fact, Dorothy Embacher was a participant in some of these classes! 

Over time, I found my life becoming repetitive, so I made a few changes & started my own small business ‘Sally Sunshine Gentle Fitness.’  I opened a few classes in condos & apt. buildings which became very successful.  This project has been so much fun, not to mention rewarding; from getting it off the ground, to watching it grow to 12 classes including: Men’s Weight Training, Chair Yoga, Women’s Fitness Fun for 50+, Active Seniors & Seated Seniors.  For the past few years I went from teaching 20 per week for V.O.N. to teaching 11 per week for myself!  I was happy to have variety, with several weekly classes in local retirement homes, more of my own classes in church halls, a community room in a local condo & several at a local seniors’ centre &  more for the V.O.N..

Now that I am 68, I’m comfortable with 7 classes per week!  After the 2020 – 6 month pandemic layoff, I finally got my business up & running again in a much smaller way at a local church meeting hall.  To spread the masked, socially-distanced ladies apart even more, I ran 6 weekly classes for 4 months.  Since the new year & tighter restrictions now as the second wave of the pandemic runs it course, I am happy to say I have launched another new chapter of classes…..ONLINE with ZOOM!

All former Sally Sunshine Gentle Fit classes are on hold & are now being held online!

YES! Seniors & older adults in our community are learning how to use technology to keep fit & active! We all need to be strong to remain as healthy as possible during this pandemic! Many of my former ‘live’ class participants are now successfully attending top-notch fitness training designed specifically for older adults & seniors, at my online classes using Zoom! Many suffer from diabetes, arthritis, back conditions but find regular exercise helps them to feel better & achieve more out of their lives! They are using a variety of devices: desktop computers some with webcams some without, laptops, tablets, Ipads & even cell phones & Smart TV’s! There are numerous ways for YOU to access Zoom classes & workout safely in your home! No risk of germs, no risk of winter falls, no snow to clean off the car! 🙂
The knowledgeable staff at both the Source & Stapes are available to help you by phone & give you information & possibly sell you cables or devices, to get YOU set up to join in this FUN & worthwhile adventure!

Thanks again for your many years of encouragement, wisdom & inspiration: Deborah Dempsey & Dorothy Embacher! 

Being a Senior’s Fitness Instructor is a fabulously rewarding job that you can do for the rest of your life & I PLAN TO DO JUST THATWho knows, maybe I’ll make history & will still be teaching at 90!  Fingers crossed!