Clearly, we are all living in a stressful, difficult time. It is alarming that according to the Public Health Department, every year the number of mental health cases are growing.

This is not surprising because we experience the constant stress of prices going up, while our wages stay the same. Also, every day from national and international media we hear lots of negative, sad, scary news about crimes, natural disasters such as tornadoes, pandemics, earthquakes, different wars, economic crises and so on. 

As a result, because we get so much negative information, we lose the very important balance between positive and negative events in our lives. Many people look exhausted and unhappy.

Fortunately, in San Benito County we have extraordinary, amazing, kind people like Rosa Jimenez-Mercado, Kathy Sheridan and Linda Long, who work very hard every day to have a positive influence on those they teach, so they can make a nice, big difference in their lives.

Rosa Jimenez-Mercado

Rosa is a Zumba and Enhance Fitness instructor and she works at YMCA, GOLD’S GYM and Anytime Fitness. 

Kathy is a yoga instructor and she works at YMCA. 

Linda is a volunteer yoga instructor at Hazel Hawkins Memorial Hospital.

While they teach Zumba, yoga and other exercises in order to improve our physical health, they are improving our mental health too. They make people happier!!! They fill our hearts with warmth and joy like a breath of fresh air, like a new hope. Even when we see them outside of our workout room, at the grocery stores or parking lot, anywhere—our mood immediately changes for the better. 

Kathy Sheridan

It is amazing that by simply seeing them they can arouse positive feelings in us. They are like a ray of light at the end of a tunnel. Without a doubt, they teach us with open hearts. Their incredible dedication to their jobs is outstanding.

Only a great teacher can capture everyone’s attention, make any subject interesting, guide their students to success and make them happy. I would say the same thing about all great coaches. Rosa, Kathy and Linda are not only super professional instructors; they have remarkable human characteristics and inexhaustible love for people. Never mind how they might feel before or during our classes, or what is going on in their families, they always keep smiling, make jokes and generate enormous energy around us.

Linda Long

There was a time when I did not like Zumba, yoga, belly dance, Tai Chi and other exercises until I met these really great instructors, who completely changed my mind for good. I am very grateful that fate led me to them. 

If you are sad, or lonely, or have some problems and do not know how to solve them, come to YMCA, Gold’s Gym, Anytime Fitness or other sport clubs and a miracle will happen to you! You can be happier and healthier, and you can be mentally stronger.

Do not wait for an invitation—just do it!

Sometimes life is not easy, and it is difficult to find the courage to let go of what we cannot change. It is a big challenge. Please do not wait till your life does not hurt you anymore before you decide to be happy.

We need more amazing people like Rosa, Kathy and Linda, who love their jobs with all their hearts and bring nice, positive changes to people’s lives. 

Rosa, Kathy, Linda—you are Awesome!

Thank you for everything you do for the people. Thank you for the unbelievable love and unique knowledge you share with us. Thank you for making our lives healthier and happier. A fantastic, magnificent energy surrounds YOU! Thank you.

Natalya Gallion


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