Get To Know Us

Vivien Symington, BA/BPHE


Vivien has lived rehabilitation and gymnastics all her life.  Her father was a renowned physiatrist (rehabilitation medicine specialist) who practiced in Britain, Canada and the USA.  Vivien was exposed to rehabilitation gyms from her infancy.  She discovered her passion for gymnastics while accompanying her Dad to the rehab gym whenever she had the chance.  An accident left her brother quadriplegic at the age of 19, motivating her to bring her love of gymnastics to all children, including those living with disabilities.  Vivien obtained degrees in Physical and Health Education at Queen’s and Dalhousie Universities, specializing in adapted physical education and gymnastics. 

ESMT Staff

Movement Therapy Staff

ESMT therapists most commonly come from a Kinesiology background. Full time staff members have a degree in a health science program such as Biomedical Physiology or Kinesiology. Simon Fraser University sends three students from their BPK 343 class each semester (usually 9/year) to complete a 35 hour practicum with the ESMT program. ESMT also welcomes student volunteers from other institutions and faculties. The ESMT program typically has 4 to 10 practicum students at any one time. Each volunteer first attends a 2 hour orientation on the ESMT program.

Alison Davidson, BSc Kin, RK


Alison is a Supervisor of both our gym and aquatic streams of the ESMT program. She completed her Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology under the Active Health and Rehabilitation stream and is a Registered Kinesiologist. She has been a member of the team since her practicum placement in May of 2010. Alison participated in gymnastics as a child and swam competitively for 11 years before becoming a coach at the age of 16. Alison loves seeing children enter the building with excitement, and leave with a sense of pride and accomplishment, and now wtinesses this firsthand  with her 2 year old daughter who is enrolled in Club Aviva's parent and tot program. 

Garrick Mah BSc. Kin


Garrick is a supervisor for the ESMT program.  He graduated from SFU with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology in the Active Health and Rehabilitation stream with certificates in Applied Human Nutrition and Health, and Fitness. Garrick came to our program as a practicum student in June 2013 and began his training at the end of July 2013. He is also one of our aqua therapists. Garrick loves meeting all the great people and children that come into the doors of our gym! 

John Oh


John was accepted as our first ever co-op student and began his training in August of 2013. He is a third year at SFU completing his Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology in the Active Health and Rehabilitation stream. Although John has only been with us a short time, he has a great amount of experience from working at Zajac ranch and through volunteering at Royal Columbian Hospital. His favorite part of the position is meeting different children of various abilities and being a helping hand in their life.

Alesia DiCicco


Alesia has finished her B.Sc in Biomedical Physiology from SFU. She started volunteering with the ESMT program in January 2017 and became a staff member in January 2018. Aside from ESMT, Alesia is a dance teacher and a professional tap dancer. She also has valuable experience as a volunteer at St. Paul's hospital. She finds the ESMT program an exciting and rewarding way to combine her physiology education with her love for working with children.

Alison Ikeda


Alison graduated from SFU with a Bachelor of Science in Heath Sciences and Kinesiology. She’s always had a passion for gymnastics, participating in gymnastics, cheerleading and then becoming a certified gymnastics coach in 2016. Alison discovered the ESMT program from her teammates on the SFU Cheer team. She started volunteering in the fall of 2015, and became a staff member in September 2016. Alison loves helping the kids overcome their fears and seeing their smiling faces when they come into the gym.

Ciara McDaniel


Ciara joined the ESMT team in January 2015 while doing a cooperative education placement through Simon Fraser University. After her placement, she stayed on as a therapist while completing her degree in Health Sciences. After graduating in 2017, Ciara continued working in both the ESMT and ESAT programs. Outside of Club Aviva, she works with the Outdoor Recreation Program for the Canucks Autism Network, as well as volunteers with Challenger Baseball. She also spent a summer working as the lead Access Support Worker for the District of West Vancouver’s summer camps.

Dave Cordoviz


Dave is currently studying Kinesiology at SFU. He joined the ESMT program in June 2013 as a volunteer and began his training to be a staff member in January 2014. Aside from ESMT, Dave has volunteer experience in Ecuador where he shadowed doctors in public and private hospitals. He also currently cheers for the SFU Cheerleading team which gives him opportunities to practice his gymnastic skills. He greatly enjoys working with the various children of the program and is proud of all the accomplishments they have achieved.

Ella Steczko


Ella graduated with a degree in Biomedical Physiology and Molecular Biology & Biochemistry from SFU, and sees her future in medicine in the next few years. She trained as a gymnast for 11 years and has been coaching gymnastics and circus at Club Aviva where she was introduced to Movement Therapy. She became interested in volunteering, and soon after joined the ESMT program in January 2014. Ella’s favourite part of ESMT is watching the kids grow, gain confidence, and seeing their excitement as they come into therapy each week.

Copyright © 2008-2018 Symington Teaching Program Inc. • All Rights Reserved