Youth Program Coaches
The backbone of our youth and team programs are great coaches and role models who care deeply about our participants. They are focused individuals who keep things fun, while ensuring youth are safe and progressing in the sport!
Daniel Alacoque (he/him) is the director of the Youth Program and head coach of both the Performance Team and Development Team. He has been climbing for over a decade and has been coaching climbing, swimming, and other sports for over 14 years. Daniel is also at the forefront of Newfoundland rock climbing. In 2016, he was a member of the first Newfoundland team to climb El Capitan in Yosemite. He spends his free time playing piano, climbing outdoors, and volunteering to develop local outdoor climbing areas. His passion for climbing comes from embracing the mental, technical, and physical challenges of the sport. Daniel is committed to coaching the athletes to progress their climbing in a fun and healthy way.
Sarah Spurrell (she/her) started climbing at Wallnuts in 2010. Her first coaching job was in the summer of 2013 and she has coached every group and team at Wallnuts! She has a BA in English and Geography and is working on a Masters in Community Development. Sarah is an ACMG TRCI and part time forest school teacher. Her favourite things about climbing are playing, exploring, and growing with friends.
Michael (he/him) began coaching in 2016 and currently coaches the Performance team, Jr. Development team, Climbing Club, and Fundamentals groups. He started climbing in 2009 and climbed with the Wallnuts youth program and performance team. Michael is in his final year of Kinesiology at MUN. Michael is an Association of Canadian Mountain Guides TRCI and a Scout leader with 1st Topsail. During his free time, he enjoys climbing, canoeing, hiking, and camping. Michael believes that climbing can help people explore themselves both physically and mentally. He enjoys seeing people develop both their skills as a climber and their identity as an individual while exploring their passion of rock climbing.
Evan Walsh (he/him) a Performance Team coach with a strong background in teaching technical skills and is certified by both The Association of Canadian Mountain Guides and the Climbing Wall Association. Evan started climbing over a decade ago right here at Wallnuts. He began coaching, route-setting, and instructing in Toronto at the Rock Oasis before moving back home to join the team at Wallnuts as a coach, route-setter, and instructor.
Trevor Harris (he/him) coaches the Senior Development Team. Trevor started climbing 15 years ago and considers coaching the most rewarding part. He brings a multi-disciplinary perspective to the coaching staff through his experience with triathlons, mountain biking, and sailing. He’s beginning a new chapter and becoming a certified yoga instructor this fall and looks forward to incorporating this into his lessons.
Su Alteen (they/them-elle) coaches the Junior Development Team and is on the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion committee for Wallnuts. Su holds a Bachelor of Education through the University of Ottawa and a Bachelor of Arts through Memorial Univeristy, as well as a Climbing Wall Association Instructor certification. They have been climbing since 2006, including with the Junior Program, the NL Provincial Team, and as a core member of the uOttawa Climbing Club. Their favourite climbing activities include climbing outdoors, competing, and cultivating a thriving climbing community. Su’s goals for climbing coaching are to foster youth mentorship opportunities for all athletes to learn and grow from one another. Su volunteers with the Memorial University Climbing Club as well as with Climbing Access & Development of Eastern Newfoundland (CADEN), and is a member of the local Alpine Club of Canada Section. In their spare time they sell their original art climbing stickers, enjoy choral singing with Spectrum Queer Choir, playing the guitar & the ukulele, hiking, yoga, art, and baking cookies.
Joshua Halleran (he/him) coaches the Climbing Club. He is a computer science student at MUN and has been coaching swimming lessons for the past 6 years. Josh has been climbing since July of 2021 and within that time, climbing has become one of his passions. He has a love for coaching and helping people progress is the biggest reward for him. Josh also enjoys music, playing guitar, chess, and Dungeons and Dragons. He is excited to share his passion with young climbers and to help them along their climbing journey!
Alida Zedel (they/them) I have been climbing since 2008, that’s 13 years! I started outside my dad at the age of 6 and eventually climbed with the youth performance team for 9 years. During that time competing in competitions across Canada. I love to coach, watching students learn and play and most importantly crush their projects! Climbing is a sport that brings me so much joy and sharing this joy is near and dear to my heart.
Sam Jensen (he/him) is a young climber who has been a member of the junior team for 2 years. He is also an assistant coach for FUNdamentals 2 and offers an enthusiastic approach to learning to climb. He also enjoys cross country running alongside frequent trips to Wallnuts. Sam loves to meet new people and work the sick proj!
Samantha Norman (she/her) is an energetic and punny climber. She has been a member of the wallnuts youth performance team for 3 years, and has been climbing for 5. She is an assistant coach for FUNdamentals 2 and is excited to help new young climbers start their climbing adventure!
Connor Hynes (they/he) is an assistant coach for the FUNdamentals groups. He has been climbing since 2013 and has gone through the youth program nearly start to finish. He was a member of the youth performance team, and loves climbing. He is extremely psyched to be coaching and helping new climbers discover their passion for the sport!
Claire Winsor (she/her) is a bubbly and energetic youth program coach. She’s been climbing for 8 years and was previously a member of our youth performance team. Outside of climbing she plays soccer with the MUN Seahawks and is a big music lover. As a coach she wants to help youth climbers develop fundamental techniques and skills so they can grow and discover what it is that they love about climbing.
Hutson Myles (he/him) is coaching a FUNdamentals class in addition to his role as part of the Board of Directors. Hutson started climbing when he was 21 (not counting a few birthday parties at Wallnuts back in 1995-1996) and has been hooked ever since. He joined the Wallnuts team after a previous life in the IT industry. He is certified as a Climbing Wall Instructor Certification Course Provider with the Climbing Wall Association and as an outdoor Top Rope Climbing Instructor by the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides. When he isn’t working at the gym or climbing, Hutson enjoys cooking delicious food, enjoying single malt whisky, and playing board games with friends.
Michelle Wight (she/her) has been climbing since 2018, but has been involved with coaching and teaching kids of all levels and abilities for many years. She coaches the ASNL group at Wallnuts and is a huge advocate for inclusivity and accessibility. She takes any opportunity to be outside in the sun, whether for hiking, climbing, swimming, or anything else!