Training Basket: Frank Deer


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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 27/09/2014 (2987 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.


Assistant professor at the University of Manitoba in the Faculty of Education


JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Frank Deer, 39, University of Manitoba professor in the education faculty and former U of M wrestling athlete. Frank keeps fit by working out at Elite Performance but also by participating recreational wrestling with members of the U of M Wrestling Club. He enjoys the opportunity to remain active in the sport that brought him to Manitoba 20 years ago as a member of the Bisons wrestling team.

ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Deer tweeted (@Frank_Deer) last month that it was 20 years ago that, at age 19, he moved to Winnipeg to become a student athlete in the sport of wrestling and to pursue a degree in education. “What a great decision,” he tweeted. Looks that way as Deer has gone from a U of M graduate to educator and made Winnipeg his home.

Deer, who grew up at Kahnawake, Que., was recruited by the U of M wrestling program in 1994 after he placed sixth in the 81-kg class at the world championships in Colombia. Deer went on to be selected as an all-Canadian in 1996.

He earned a bachelor of education degree (1999) and masters degree in education (2003) from the U of Manitoba and became Dr. Deer after completing a PhD in educational administration (2008) from the University of Saskatchewan. In Manitoba, he taught elementary school in the Frontier School Division and the Winnipeg School Division.

Deer lives by “Mino-pimatisiwin,” Cree/Ojibway/Oji-Cree for the achievement of a healthy balance in life. Married to his wife Dionne for 11 years, the couple works hard to keep up with their active seven-year-old son, Adrian. Frank and Adrian participated together in the 4.2-kilometre Super Run at the 2014 Manitoba Marathon on Father’s Day.

“I’ve had the opportunity to experience life in on-reserve and urban contexts… The transition to university life truly highlighted the notion that I was living on the border between two worlds, and I have been fortunate to be well-situated in both. My career has been predicated by the notion that such balance is achievable,” Deer said in his profile at

Deer, who wrestled at U of M from 1994 to 1999, tries to work out six days per week at Elite Performance.

“I’m not looking to be rejuvenated (from working out), I’m the exact opposite,” Deer said. “Maybe that’s a little barbaric but it’s from the culture of wrestling. The litmus test for me for how hard I’ve worked is the sweat indicator.”


1. Favourite workout?

I currently work out at a fitness centre called Elite Performance alongside proper athletes involved in a variety of professional and amateur sports. Each day is a different workout that occurs with staff shouting encouragement. I was an amateur wrestler for most of my life and I do enjoy the occasional opportunity to engage in combative sports.


2. Favourite workout song?

Anything from Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Holding Back the Years by Simply Red, adult contemporary stuff from the late 1970s and early ’80s. I believe I work out harder when I’m “Caught between the moon and New York City!” (Arthur’s Theme — The Best That You Can Do by Christopher Cross).


3. Fitness tip?

Try to discover a physical activity that you’d enjoy. Working out can be frustrating with no results in sight. With amateur wrestling, I found an activity that kept me focused.


4.What’s in your fridge?

Chicken, yogurt, broccoli.


5.What’s your guilty pleasure?

Poutine, hamburgers and pizza.

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