SHEILA WATKINS, MLSci. E-RYT, RPYT (Founder and National Program Director) is a is a perinatal fitness specialist with over 25 years of experience training 2000+ pregnant and new moms, and educating hundreds of fitness instructors, health professionals, and childbirth educators on the rapidly changing field of perinatal fitness. In 1987, she created Healthy Moms® Fitness Programs to provide safe and effective group exercise classes and personal training for new and expectant moms as well as education and training in the field of perinatal exercise for fitness professionals, childbirth educators and other health professionals.
Sheila holds a Master of Life Sciences degree in Human Physiology and Nutrition and is a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT 200) with Yoga Alliance. She has been certified as a perinatal fitness instructor by Moms on the Move®, Positive Pregnancy and Parenting Fitness®, Dancing Thru Pregnancy® (Basic), Maternity Fitness, Inc®. and Moms in Motion®. She holds prenatal and postpartum yoga certifications through Baby Om®, Yoga for Two®, Janice Clarfield’s Prenatal Yoga and YogaFit®. She is a former instructor in the Division of Nursing at Winston-Salem State University (University of North Carolina System) and the Department of Nutrition at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Sheila holds “Gold” Group Fitness Instructor and “Gold” Personal Trainer certifications from the American Council on Exercise (ACE), and a Personal Trainer certification from the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA). She is also certified by the Aquatic Exercise Association (AEA) as an aquatic fitness instructor and is a Resist-A-Ball CORE “Circle of Excellence” Master Trainer. Additionally, Sheila holds a Certificate in Exercise and Pregnancy from The Cooper Institute for Aerobics Research and is an “ASPO-Lamaze Breastfeeding Support Specialist.”
Her Healthy Moms® perinatal fitness instructor training courses have trained hundreds of instructors throughout the United States and abroad. Sheila’s articles on prenatal fitness have been published in “The International Journal of Childbirth Education,” “Running and FitNews,” AEA’s “AKWA Matters,” Melpomene Institute’s “Pregnancy and Exercise” educational materials and “ePregnancy Magazine.” She is also a frequent speaker at various national fitness conventions (ICEA, DCAC Virginia and Houston, AEA, IHRSA, MFA, etc.) and is a member of the International Childbirth Educator’s Association (ICEA). In 2000, Sheila joined forces with Resistaball, the industry leader in stability ball education, to develop the first formal training program for pregnant women and new moms utilizing the Resistaball. “Prenatal Training with Resistaball” launched in 2002. Her biggest accomplishments are her two children, Rebecca Danielle (“Dani”) and Austin.