What clients say??

Heres is just a few words that have come from my clients about me:

“Thea’s coaching made all the difference in my swim stroke!  She explains proper form and purpose in ways that are easy to understand and implement.  I have taken several Total Immersion workshops, and Thea has a knack for explaining the methodology in ways that really makes sense.” 

“Thea is an excellent swim and bike coach.  She helps push you outside of your comfort zone in a way that is empowering … not overwhelming.” 

“I have taken multiple swim clinics specifically designed for triathlon … yet Thea was the first one to simulate open water swimming and offer really useful tips for sighting properly and getting around buoys efficiently!”  Thanks!  See you soon!  Liz


Suffice to say that passionate is not a word I would use to describe anything pertaining to exercise – let alone a triathlon. Lucky for me, Thea has more than enough passion to spare. Her energy  and enthusiasm about the sport may only be exceeded by her willingness to help anyone and everyone to try (tri) and participate in the sport on some level. I have seen her coach and coax the most reluctant of individuals to get in the water, ride a little faster or run just one mile further, more often that not sacrificing her own workout or race time to do so.

Her attitude toward the sport is infectious (and i do mean that in a disease kind of way). As a result I have found myself in some rather unexpected
situations. Swimming in a duck pond in Watchung. Trying to convince myself  NOT(?) to  kick it into granny gear climbing some mountain in Nowhere, New Jersey at 6:00 a.m. And most recently, alone on a highway in Hershey Pennsylvania, 8 miles behind me  – five miles more to go.  Each time I think to myself
“this is Thea’s fault”…….”I have to call and thank her when I get done.”  Marta

“Thea is a very thoughtful and thorough coach. The biomechanics of my swim stroke were causing shoulder pain during all of my free style workouts. With Thea’s knowledge and expertise not only did she help me fix my stroke and make me pain free, but she also improved my swim time! Thank you Thea!!” 
Brady, Doctorate in Physical Therapy, Master of Science in Athletic Training and  CSCS certified


 I am 48 years old and did not know how to swim, which I think is a basic life skill. In eight lessons, Thea took me from not being able to put my face in the water to swimming the crawl stroke. Thea made me feel comfortable in the water and allowed me to proceed at my own pace. She helped me to understand how to “work with” the water which lessened my fears. She is a gifted teacher and I am thankful for the opportunity to have worked with her this year.  Anita


At age 59, I decided to set a challenge for myself: to complete a triathlon for the very first time.  I knew how to swim and bike for pleasure and did quite a bit of walking despite never having run before. Despite all the unknowns and all the fears I forged ahead and registered. From that point on it was a year of learning, growing and gaining exposure to a fantastic network of professionals as well as getting to know many fellow competitors.  

Thea Skanes was a critical person in my training. I took both the beginner and intermediate swim classes for triathletes that she coaches. There is a big difference between being able to swim and really knowing how to swim. She taught me that difference. She also built up my confidence level every step of the way, including the challenging open swim opportunities she offered at the Jersey Shore. I went from struggling to complete 25 yards in a pool to being able to swim a mile over a six month period.

In terms of running, I joined Thea’s weekly runs that she offers pro bono out of the Running Company in Westfield. Initially, I walked most of the 5K distance, but today am up to running 10K and plan to enter a half-marathon in 2011. 

The biking opportunities Thea offers out of High Gear in Stirling are numerous and varied. Once again, I began by not being able to ride up a hill and can now ride comfortably on a hilly ride. The course challenge also inspired me to purchase a road bike in order to expand to the other riding opportunities she offers.  

I am looking forward to the opportunities that will be available through the Central Jersey Tri Group. It will be like one-stop-shopping for quality training!

P.S. My 2011 goals are to complete a half-marathon in April, an olympic triathlon in July and a sprint triathlon in September. Thank you, Thea!     Pam


Thea has made it possible for me to train without injury for 3 triathalons – not only without injury, but in a way that exceeded my wildest expectations!  Having painfully trained for 2 sprint triathalons the previous year on my own, Thea lead me through 2 sprints and 1 Olympic Tri in one season, ready to tacle the world afterward.  She’s the best thing since Gatorade!
Thea helped me plan the intensity of the workouts and the pacing as well as insights into nutrition, stretching and core strengthening.  All in a positive and insightful manor.  She has also helped me develop my swim stroke to make it more effortless and effective. I have taken private swim lessons with her as well as group tri swim classes – both very helpful.
As part of her weekly training package, I have also taken advantage of her running and biking clinics – both great!  She remains cognizant of your current abilities and clearheaded about how to get you to the next level. 
Can’t say enough good things about her professional dedication to the sport and her clients.    Maggie



I signed up for 1-on-1 swim lessons with Thea last January, knowing very little (if anything) on how to swim correctly. My goal was to be able to compete in Sprint distance triathlons, starting in May.   Thea was incredibly detailed and broke down all the mechanics to where I could easily understand.  Lesson after lesson I was having a significantly easier time getting the hang of swimming, and was gaining confidence that I may be able to reach my goal!  After my 1-on-1 lessons, I also signed up for Thea’s Beginner Triathlon Swim clinic at RWJ Fitness and Wellness Center, which I found to be another great learning tool, which not only worked on techniques and open water swim acclamation, but gave me the opportunity to meet other beginner triathletes as well.  I reached my goal, competing in 3 Sprint distance and 1 Olympic distance triathlon this past summer.    I went from not being able to swim 25 yards, to swimming 1 mile 1-2 times per week!   Thea is an amazing teacher/instructor who makes an intimidating goal much easier to tackle!  Jackie



I, for one, am TRULY thankful for all you do for the local tri community and especially for your swimming expertise!  When I registered for my first tri, I didn’t have a clue how to swim and was terrified!  I signed up for your triathlon swimming class at RWJ before I was even able to meet the prerequisite of swimming 50 yards without stopping – during that first class it was all I could do to get to the end of the pool and back!  After taking both the beginner and the intermediate courses, I felt so much more confident and comfortable in the water and put all of that work to good use during the four sprint tri’s I did this past season.  Thanks to you, I’m amazed with where I started versus where I am now in less than a year of swimming – I’m really looking forward to next season!

Thanks again for everything you do – it really is appreciated!!!



“Thea changed my life! Through introducing me to the world of triathlons, she gently pushed me to be my best while making me realize I could do whatever I put my mind to.  Through her kind nurturing and motivational training, she made training for a triathlon fun and extrememly rewarding….I am hooked! Thanks Thea for being a friend and inspiring me to go beyond my comfort zone.”  Jessica