Meet the Coaches


Ashley Cotler, General Manager/
Personal Trainer/ Coach

Crossfire Level 1, ACE
Crossfire Coach’s Prep
CrossFit Kids
Pre/Post Natal, AED/CPR

Ashley is living proof that small people can lift heavy things…multiple times… aaaand quick! With her energetic and positive coaching techniques, she will make small accomplishments turn into glorious victories. Whether she is programming athletes, training pre/post natal mothers, stretching specialty problem spots, or making movements more efficient through gymnastic work, Ashley welcomes any and all! Go Packers…or go home!.

Justin Cotler, Head Coach, Owner


“I am on a quest to create super-humans out of mere mortals. You say impossible, I say possible. You say you can’t, I say you will. You only think you can’t because you never have before. As your coach it is my job, my responsibility to make you better than you ever imagined. And I will.”

Michelle Vlahakis, MS, L.AC

Coach, NYS Licensed Acupuncturist

“After 3 years of climbing walls, furniture (including the refrigerator), Michelle’s parents finally agreed to enroll her in a safe place where she could leap to her hearts’ desire. She began her athletic career as a gymnast and quickly built the foundation for the rest of her life.
Michelle participated in a myriad of sports through her junior high and high school years but it was Pole Vaulting that stole her heart from gymnastics. After being approached by the Track & Field coaches in her freshman year, she decided to try the Pole Vault.
Michelle quickly and earned herself an All-American status her first year. Ironically, girls’ Pole Vault was not a sanctioned event at that time so Michelle filed a class-action Title IX lawsuit against the NYS Education Department and they sanctioned HS Girls Pole Vault on her 16th birthday! It was a victory not only for her, but also for all girls who follow in her footsteps to pursue this event, today. This is the greatest accomplishment of her life.
She went on to a very successful Pole Vaulting career, earning State and All-American titles and set the HS Indoor National Record and in her senior year, she was the top ranked U.S. HS girls’ pole-vaulter, earning her rankings on the worldwide charts.
She was recruited by several Division I athletic programs and chose Columbia University where unfortunately, her pole-vaulting career was prematurely stunted due to inexplicable neck pain. Michelle then focused on completing her degree in Neuroscience & Behavior. After taking some time off athletically, Michelle discovered boxing & kickboxing, which is what ultimately led her to Dynamix.
Michelle quickly excelled at CrossFit, earning her way on to Team Dynamix within 3 (hard-working) months. Team Dynamix earned back-to-back Northeast Regional Championships and placed 5th /16th at the CrossFit Games in 2013/2014, respectively. Michelle went on to try out for the NPGL and was a 4th round draft pick for the Philadelphia Founders.
Today, after her own experiences with the woes of injury, as well as those of her fellow athletes, Michelle returned to student life to earn a degree in Acupuncture. She graduated with honors after studying with world renowned Master practitioners. She treats a variety of everyday ailments and conditions, but specializes in sports injuries for both athletes and non. She is the co-founder of the Sports Acupuncture Alliance and owns her own practice, Armor Wellness.


Garen McRoberts


Born and Raised in Kenosha, WI and educated at the University of Michigan, Garen is a proud Mid-Westerner. He has a background in almost all competitive sports including baseball, wrestling and golf and has been a member of CrossFit Dynamix since March 2013. I addition to coaching, Garen is also a professional actor who has performed throughout the USA and Canada and in New York City. You can alos be in touch with him @ GO PACK GO! GO BLUE and GO DYNAMIX!!!

Ryan Brown

CFL2 / Level 1 Gymnastics / Sports & Fitness Nutrition / CPR, AED.

Ryan grew up in Kansas City, MO in a small river town called Parkville. Ryan spent most of his days either on a skateboard or helping his mom and grandma in the kitchen.  Over the years he developed a passion for cooking and decided to pursue a career in culinary arts.

He attended California School of Culinary Arts located in South Pasadena California.  Over the years Ryan has worked with some great chefs and a very diverse range of foods and styles of cooking.

About 4 years ago he got involved with functional fitness, which got him interested in the world of nutrition.  His food focus today is more on nutrition, health, wellness and fitness that follows the primal lifestyle of eating.

Be sure to visit Ryans food blog named which offers everyday Paleo recipes.

Hugo Rivera

COACH/ Personal Trainer

CrossFit Level 2
CrossFit Gymnastics
CrossFit Mobility

Born and raised in the Bronx, Hugo never fails to leave people slack-jawed at his God-granted, hard-earned fitness. He is the epitome of a diehard lover and practitioner of CrossFit. His approach is simple… “Maintain the proper form, add more weight, finish strong and keep challenging yourself. Increase weight with every rep, track your progress and under no circumstance should you give up! Your body can stand almost anything; it’s your mind tat you have to convince.”

Hugo began his journey at the young age of 15, where he self educated himself on body mechanics, fitness and nutrition. He once aspired to become a Navy Seal and developed a passion for physical fitness as he embarked on a journey of studying Muai Thai and then shortly after, pursuing a career in CrossFit.

Hugo has proven himself to be one of the most energetic, highly motivated and humorous coaches Dynamix has encountered. Tell him you can’t and he’ll say, “Stronger doesn’t happen unless you push yourself!”


Maria Barklie


Maria has been a part of the Dynamix family since its inception in 2010. She is a “loud” supporter for everyone in the box. When she is not cheering or working out, Maria trains the kids and teens in the CF Kids classes.

Maria graduated in 2008 from the American Academy of Personal Training and was NASM and NSCA certified from 2008-2011. In 2012, Maria obtained her Crossfit Level I certification, then went on to receive her Crossfit Kids certification later that year. In 2013, she completed the CF Movement and Mobility with Kelly Starrett and the Freestyle Connection Movement with Carl Paoli.

Maria enjoys working with the kids and teens. She feels Crossfit helps them develop a strong sense of pride and accomplishment, which is important for their self-confidence and success, both in and outside the box.

Nick Robyn


Nick Robyn is an innovative athlete and trainer, whose focus on combat fitness is among the most intense that you will find.  Whether your target is fitness or greatness, Nick is interested in helping push you to your goals. Step into Nick’s class to give 110%, let's get combat fit!.

Nick has been training in combat sports since the age of 5. He has studied many styles of martial arts including Boxing, Kickboxing, Muay Thai, and fencing. He holds a black belt in Tang Soo Do, and is currently training with Ray Longo (coach for UFC fighters Chris Wiedman (current middle weight Champion) Matt Serra, Al Iaquinta and others).

Jonathan McDaniel


A Southern boy living in the city, he’s proud to call Astoria his home now. With a background in group fitness and competitive athletics, there’s little Jonathan loves more than coaching people up to their full potential. Whether it’s the spotlight on stage, or the thrill of competition, he gets a rush out of putting on a show and helping others bring out their best too. Jonathan’s expertise in strength training and circuit conditioning keep the energy and excitement high in the box. In the gym and in all areas of life, his motto is, “Get better or get beat.” Roll Tide!!!