Whitney VanRuyven

Adapted Physical Education Specialist




(949) 478-4484



Whitney VanRuyven stands as an accomplished Adapted Physical Education Specialist, boasting an impressive 12-year tenure within the California public school system. Her educational journey commenced in 2006 during a volunteer initiative in Chico, CA, where she embarked on her journey by assisting students who were facing challenges with gross motor impairments. It was during this time that she forged a profound connection with a swimmer challenged by cerebral palsy, igniting a fervent dedication to promoting inclusive sports participation for children of diverse abilities.

Navigating the dynamic realm of physical education with neurodiverse populations has become Whitney’s hallmark, offering both intricate challenges and deeply rewarding experiences. Beyond her professional pursuits, her love for travel and camping harmonizes perfectly with her life alongside her husband, a Canadian expatriate, and educator, along with their two spirited daughters. Community-driven at heart, Whitney adeptly leads a Girl Scout troop and provides guidance as a coach for AYSO youth soccer.

Whitney’s educational path has woven through the landscapes of Northern California, Belgium, Ireland, and Virginia, endowing her with a panoramic perspective that enriches her assessment and intervention strategies. From influential roles in Adapted PE across the Bay Area, San Diego, and Orange County, she has cultivated an intricate tapestry of interactions with children with disabilities, families, and school support networks.

At the core of Whitney’s mission lies the empowerment of families, equipping them with a nuanced comprehension of gross motor development. This mission, in turn, opens doors for children of all abilities to access top-tier physical education and movement opportunities. Whitney’s unwavering commitment has indelibly shaped the landscape of adaptive physical education, establishing her as a pioneering force in nurturing comprehensive growth for every child. 


  • BSc in Kinesiology and Exercise Science from California State University Chico
  • M.S. in Adapted Physical Activity from KU Leuven, Belgium (year 1) Erasmus Mundus
  • M.S. in Adapted Physical Activity from University of Limerick, Ireland (year 2) Erasmus Mundus

Professional Memberships and Affiliations

CAHPERD member (California Alliance for Health Physical Education Recreation and Dance) AAHPERD member (American Alliance for Health Physical Education Recreation and Dance) NAPEC attendee and presenter (National Adapted Physical Education Conference)

Community Involvement

  • Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce
  • Troop Leader – Girl Scouts Brownie Troop #9378
  • ASYO Coach

Previous Professional Experience

  • Irvine Unified School District (current)
  • San Diego Unified School District
  • San Mateo Office of Education

Licensing and Credentialing

  • Adapted PE Authorization (#170044091)
  • Single subject credential (#190077954)