Why Empower?

At CrossFit Empower we are committed to helping you reach your health and fitness goals.  CrossFit is a results based fitness program adaptable to all ages and ability levels. You can do it! At CrossFit Empower our mean membership age is 45 with members ranging in age from 10 to 85.  Our community is comprised of couples and families pursuing fitness together. Don’t be surprised to find three generations of family working out together!

Getting Started: Safety-Efficacy-Efficiency

At Empower we are committed to your athletic success.  To this end we prioritize mastering correct movement mechanics before adding speed and load.  Our 1-on-1 and small group Beginner programs follow a carefully crafted progression from basic through more complex movements designed to help you develop confidence and competence before advancing into the larger CrossFit group classes.  If you are new to CrossFit our beginner classes will reduce your risk of injury and help you build the foundation you need for long term progress.

Aging Better!

Strength loss is the number one factor putting our elderly in nursing homes.  Athletes enjoy protection from the ravages of age and disease unavailable to non-athletes.  An 80-year old athlete is stronger than a 25-year old non-athlete and enjoys greater bone density, immune system function, less coronary heart disease, reduced cancer risk, fewer strokes and less depression.Your needs and those of an Olympian differ by degree, not kind.  General physical preparedness is as important to the elite athlete as it is to your Grandmother.

CrossFit workouts, like art, are remarkable in composition, symmetry, balance, theme and character.  The choreography of exertion draws from our knowledge of physiological response and the limits of human performance.  CrossFit Empower is the only Vancouver CrossFit gym that exclusively follows the official CrossFit programming.

World Class Fitness in 100 Words:

Eat meat, vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar.  Eat enough to support exercise but not body fat. Practice and train the major lifts: deadlift, squat, presses, clean and jerk and snatch.  Master basic gymnastics: pull ups, dips, rope climbs, push ups, sit ups, handstands, holds.  Bike, run, row, swim hard and fast. Five to six days per week mix these elements in as many combinations and patterns as possible.  Routine is the enemy. Regularly learn and play new sports.

We are proud of our reputation as the top quality gym on Vancouver’s West Side providing our members the brightest gym facility, the best training equipment, the highest safety standards, the best coach to athlete ratio, the most class time selections and the most comprehensive beginner training program.  We make no apology for our rates which are set to reflect our high quality standards.



Corey “WOD Father” Lapell
Corey “WOD Father” Lapell
Christmas 2002. In the grips of terrible back pain, I lay face down on the carpet unable to rise, unable to lift my 4-month old son. It was perhaps my darkest moment. I was 30 years old. It was the day that I decided I would no longer be a victim to my body, that I must take responsibility for learning what I needed to learn and doing what I needed to do so that I would not spend the rest of my adult life in pain and suffering.
It was a long road from there to discovering CrossFit in 2005 but from that moment there was no looking back. Not only did I rehab with CrossFit, I quickly exceeded the fitness levels of my youth. CrossFit Empower is the embodiment of my dream of bringing the same level of fitness breakthroughs to others like me struggling to reach their health and performance goals.

Training, Certifications & Experience

CrossFit Training
2019 CrossFit Level 3 trainer certification
2014 CrossFit Level 2 trainer certificate
2008 + 2011 CrossFit Level 1 trainer certificate

2008 Affiliated CrossFit Empower as CrossFit affiliate #586worldwide
2009-2012 Apprenticed at CrossFit Vancouver (now Madlab School of Fitness) Canada’s first CrossFit affiliate, underCrossFit Games competitor and coach, Andrew Swartz

Sport Specialty Training

    • AKC Kettlebell Coach Certification
      2008 World Kettlebell sport champion Valery Federenko
    • Coach Development
      2019 CrossFit Spot the Flaw certificate
      2019 CrossFit Scaling certificate
      2019 Lesson Planning certificate
      2010 CrossFit Kids trainer certification
    • Gymnastics
      2014, 2015, 2016, 2018 gymnastics coach and CrossFit Games competitor Jennifer Dober
      2011 Phoenix Gymnastics
      2009 CrossFit Gymnastics certification with coachJeff Tucker
    • Olympic Weightlifting
      2019 Masters champion and coach Mike Cartwright
      2012, 2015, 2016, 2017 Olympic gold medalist Christine Girard
      2010 Author and strength coach Charles Staley
      2009 Regional Weightlifting competitor Kelly Frankson
    • Power Lifting
      2018 Starting Strength Coach Craig Bearss
      2014 former Canadian Powerlifting champion Joel Klassen
      2009 CrossFit Barbell certification with strength coach and Starting Strength author Mark Rippetoe
    • Rowing
      2018, 2019 Olympic Rower Will Dean
      2015 collegiate athlete, coach and world championship outrigger competitor Patti Lawson
      2011 collegiate athlete and CrossFit Games athlete Emily Beers
    • Running
      2019 CrossFit Running certificate
      2014 National Track and Field Team athlete & coach Michaela Colluney
      2009 CrossFit Endurance certificate with ultra-marathon competitor and coach Brian MacKenzie
    • Swimming
      2016 Professional Swimming Coach Lucien Zucchi
    • Sports Science
      2019 CrossFit Anatomy certificate
      2010 Professor Tony Leyland of Simon Fraser University
      2003 BCRPA Theory and Weight Training Modules
    • Nutrition
      2011 Paleo Solution author Robb Wolf

CrossFit Competition Experience

  • CrossFit Judges Course
    2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019
  • CanWest Games Qualifier
    2016, 2018, 2019
  • CanWest Games Red Suit Challenge
    2018 3rd place, Masters Men 45-49
  • CrossFit Lift Off
    2017 1st place in BC, Masters Men 45-49
  • CrossFit Open competitor
    2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019
  • CrossFit Team Series
    2018 1st place Western Canada, 5th place Worldwide, Masters Men 45-49
    2017 1st place in BC, Masters Men 40-44

    Other Training and Education

Blauer Tactical Systems
2009 Advanced Weapons Defense Certification
2008 Advanced Multiple Assailants Certification
2008 PDR Coach certification

2nd Degree Black Belt
NCCP Level 2 coach
2005-2012 owner/instructor Delta Kaigan Judo
2003-2005 assistant instructor North Delta Judo
1998-2001assistant instructor UBC Judo

Occupational First Aid
2018 Level 1

1998 Bachelor of Education (elementary)
1997 Bachelor of Arts, Anthropology

Leon “The Touch” Bayer
Leon “The Touch” Bayer
I found as a young father working night shifts I did not have the energy level I needed to keep up with my daughter when I was home with her during the day. So we spent a lot of time watching Treehouse. I realized that as she gets older I don’t want her to see her dad as a couch potato and I really want to be the cool dad that is able to play sports with her and that takes her to the park, on hikes and to gymnastics. Also at that time I was looking at pursuing a career in law enforcement. But I kept putting off this goal because my fitness was not at the level it would need to be at for my daily duties as a police officer. Crossfit keeps me motivated to come in everyday. I love that every day is a new set of challenges, in the Crossfit gym, just like in life. I could never get the same push or drive from a regular gym.

Why do I coach Crossfit?
Because I want to be able to give other people what my coaches have given me. I really enjoy being there as one of my clients or training partners is able to perform a task that they originally believed impossible.

My Certifications and Training

  • Crossfit Level One Trainer Certification Vancouver, BC 2012.
  • CrossFit Level Two Trainer Certification Vancouver, BC 2017
  • CrossFit Gymnastics Certification Langley, BC 2013
  • CrossFit Olympic Lifting Vancouver, BC 2014
  • Olympic Lifting, CrossFit Empower, Christine Girard 2015, 2016, 2017
  • Gymnastics, CrossFit Empower, Jen Dober 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018
  • Power Lifting, CrossFit Empower, Joel Klassen 2014
  • Rowing CrossFit Empower, William Dean 2018
  • Sprinting, CrossFit Empower, Michaela Colluney 2014
  • CrossFit Judges Course 2013/2014/2015/2016/2017/2018
  • Assistant Instructor at Delta Kaigan Judo since 2007
  • BC’s second certified Personal Defense Readiness Coach with Blauer Tactical Systems 2008
  • Basic Security Training 2011
  • Advanced Security Training 2011
  • Occupational First Aid 2018
Sunghee “HeeHee” Lapell
Sunghee “HeeHee” Lapell
CrossFit changed my life! Not only physically but emotionally and mentally. It helped me be like a kid again. When I was 29 years old hiking Lynn Canyon with Corey (my dear husband now) I was panting and gasping while climbing the stairs. He thought I had an illness back then but look at me now 18 years later! I’m fitter, look and feel younger and I have no more back pain! I didn’t know It was possible to live without pain…

…and I tried all the methods I could find, spent lots of money and then I found CrossFit. I also have more energy! No more afternoon naps! I used to nap after playing with my son when he was little. After I began Crossfitting my energy levels increased and naps were no longer necessary. This extra energy allowed me to do thing outside of the box (CrossFit Gym) such as boxing, dodgeball, and traveling around the world.


No more mood swings! The intensity of the workouts helped stabilize my mood and it’s great to know that when I do my workout in the morning, the rest of the day will be easy compared to that! CrossFit challenges me.  Every achievement builds my confidence and I apply those challenges and successes to my daily life


I’m stronger mentally as well. The workout can be challenging and sometimes I think “Can I finish this workout?” With the support of my coach and the rest of the community working out with me, I’m able to complete things I didn’t think I could and probably never would have on my own. Because of what I do at Crossfit I’m fulfilling many of my life dreams and trying new things that I always wanted to do! Able-Body, Able-Mind! You only live once! I’d love to share my experience with you.

My Certifications and Training

  • Crossfit Level 1 Coach, CrossFit Vancouver, Vancouver, BC  2010
  • CrossFit Level 2 Trainer’s Certification, CrossFit Belltown, Seattle, August 2014
  • CrossFit Gymnastics Certification, Langley, BC, 2013
  • Gymnastics, CrossFit Empower, Jen Dober 2014, 2018
  • Power Lifting, CrossFit Empower, Joel Klassen 2014
  • Sprinting, CrossFit Empower, Michaela Colluney 2014
  • Olympic Lifting, CrossFit Empower, Christine Girard 2015, 2016, 2017
  • Rowing, CrossFit Empower, William Dean 2018
  • CrossFit Judges’ Course, 2014/2016/2017/2018
  • 1st Place BC 2017 CrossFit Team Series Masters 45-49
  • Certified 500 Hour Hatha Yoga teacher   Vancouver, BC 2008
  • Certified Laughter Yoga Leader Vancouver, BC 2008
  • Certified Kids Yoga Teacher Vancouver, BC   2009
  • Certified Prenatal Yoga Teacher Vancouver, BC   2009
  • Occupational First Aid 2018
Amy “Shades” Freeman
Amy “Shades” Freeman
A personalized approach:
Want to learn how CrossFit methodology can be utilized to help you reach your fitness goals? I believe there is no one size fits all path to achieving optimal wellness. We can all benefit from a CrossFit program tailored to our unique needs. What works for one, may not be best for another. The question is, what is the best way FOR YOU to achieve the results YOU WANT?

Different strokes for different folks:

Maybe the accountability of attending CrossFit Group classes multiple times a week is what you need.  Or you might benefit from personal training coupled with group classes. Perhaps you want to develop of your own CrossFit program to complete at home, in another gym, or our Open Gym hours.   Many people I work with use CrossFit classes and personal training to complement their marathon, triathlon or other sports specific endeavours. Let’s start by talking about your goals. From there we can map out the ideal plan to reach them.

My training and credentials:

In additional to my fitness training I received my Master of Social Work degree from UBC in 1998,  have worked in the health care field since then and am also employed at UBC’s Center for Brain Health.  I have witnessed first-hand the difference a fit body can make in helping one prevent or recover from illness.  My work in the health care field has heightened my awareness of the difficulties people face when trying to make fitness a priority while juggling multiple other life commitments. Making time for fitness can feel like an uphill battle but with planning and small but steady steps your health and fitness goals can be achieved.

Read this link to find out more about my fitness journey and favourite health and fitness hacks


CrossFit Level Two Trainer September 2018

CrossFit Level One Trainer March 2017

CFES Certified Personal Trainer December 2016 to present

Master of Social Work, UBC 1998

Understanding Addiction, CMHA Certification 2016

Motivational Interviewing, Change Talk Associates January 2016

First Aid September 2017

Additional CrossFit Courses:


Spot the Flaw

Lesson Planning




Recent Training Workshops:

Weightlifting, Starting Strength Craig Bearss 2018

Rowing, Will Dean 2018

Olympic Lifting Christine Girard 2016, 2017

Taking the next step:

If you are looking for assistance defining, developing and attaining your wellness goals and think we might be a match please contact me to set up a no-cost 30 minute consultation at: 604-809-5805 or [email protected]

Yours in fitness and health

 Morgan “Sprite” Ley
Morgan “Sprite” Ley
I started my CrossFit journey as the youngest Empower member, knowing nothing about the Crossfit community or methodology. My background in fitness came from a mixture of activities including Taekwondo for 3 years, soccer for 13+ years and dance for about 14+ years. However much I loved these sports I was never an incredibly gifted athlete especially when I started having issues with my knees.

Consequently after the regrettable decision to quit my exercise activities my knees were left weak and unconditioned. All that changed in July of 2014 when I became a member of the Empower community. I bring to my coaching practice the same persistence and passion that has allowed me to progress as a CrossFit athlete.
If you are interested in personal training or small group classes, have any questions or would like to schedule a free trial class, please contact me at [email protected] .


– CrossFit Level 1 trainer, April 2018, CrossFit New West

– Basic CPR February 2018

– Starting Strength, Crossfit Empower, Craig Bearss, October 2018

Olympic Lifting, CrossFit Empower, Christine Gerard. September 2017

– Olympic Lifting, Crossfit Empower, Mike Cartwright. November 17th 2018

– Crossfit.com Spot the flaw online course

Achieve Your Fitness Goals

Flexible membership packages to suit all levels of training to help achieve your fitness goals