Who should you trust with your fitness?
I am consistently being asked about this “new place” or that “new system.” The fitness industry is an ever growing, ever-changing world filled with an interesting combination of people. Some professionals are truly concerned with improving your well-being and helping you live your best life. However, we must be mindful because there are others who are simply looking to capitalize on individuals with limited knowledge seeking help with improving their health.
One of our senior clients recently left an article on my desk detailing the opening of a new fitness business in Atlanta. It is a franchise, and they are seeking to open a minimum of four locations in and around our area. The article first discusses the owners of this business being in the automotive industry for the past 31 years. This immediately caught my attention. Would you put your health in the hands of someone who had 31 years worth of knowledge about the auto-body business rather than the human body business? Their new found interest in opening a gym franchise was not a desire to see change in the health of people in our area, or a passion for physical fitness and living a healthy lifestyle. It is stated simply that they were seeking a new opportunity and a good business model outside of the field they were currently working in. At no point does the article mention any of the proprietors having an education in the field of physical fitness, or any personal experience working in this arena.
The premise of this “gym,” or gym-like facility rather, is that the busy working adult can achieve improved physical health in less time, spending less money than in a traditional program, using their new system. They boldly advertise that all a person needs is two 20 minute workouts per week in order to become their best self. Both on the website and in the article they proudly state that this is not a gimmick or a fad. Promising the same type of results for any individual of any age, no matter their current fitness level, is the definition of a gimmick in my opinion. In addition, your progress and program are not determined by a certified personal trainer, but rather by an “amazing” new computer program. Yes, a computer program decides if you have worked hard enough and completed appropriate exercises in order to achieve maximum results.
The owners take on other fitness businesses by stating that “Atlanta personal trainers cost between $600 and $1,000 (false!)a month, but we are a third of that.” Clearly the cost will be less! You are being monitored by computers and you are only in the facility 40 minutes per week. Less than one hour of exercise in a seven day period! They say that you will always be with a “personal trainer,” but what is that individual really doing if the machine is responsible for determining your results?
This brings me to the next piece of this program that frightens me. Machines. The gym, though I hesitate to give it this definition, is made up of only machines. There are no dumbbells or free weights of any kind. There is not a kettle bell, a bosu, a piece of stability equipment, and certainly no Purmotion system. There is not one piece of equipment designed to dynamically train the body or focus on functional movements that will improve the longevity of your joints and your range of motion. Your body will quickly adapt to the machines, and soon change will cease to take place. With over 648 muscles in the body that create thousands of movements, how can a few pieces of machinery possibly help you become your best self? In a sedentary nation filled with individuals who need to get up and get moving, they are creating a program based on SITTING on machines that do not offer the opportunity for increased mobility and stability! I personally went through an introductory session there. I sat on three different machines and did four different exercises, all while sitting! Then I sat in my car to get home. I needed to get up and move after that workout just to get my blood flowing!
This type of system also offers very little individualization. What experience, capabilities or tools will be made available to you to help relieve tension in your gluteus medius or periformis? Can they help decrease restrictions in your joints and add range of motion and or mobility through soft tissue manipulations or corrective exercise modalities? With this limited equipment, how can the program help those who are experiencing chronic pain or injury, or help older clients looking to improve mobility?
The very premise of this program and others like it takes advantage of our society’s need to “dumb it down” in our conversations about health. If it is supposedly simple and easy, then society loves it, thrives on it! However, fitness, health and nutrition are not so simple, other than to say everyone needs it! There are many modalities, programs and nuances that take years of experience to understand. I will spend all the time I need to get each person (client or trainer) to understand the importance of being mobile, of working on strength through the proper range of motion, and on the ultimate result… balance!
When it comes to our health, we have to make more informed decisions. We must take responsibility for our fitness and realize that if something seems too good to be true, it probably is! Improving your well-being does not have to be intimidating or overwhelming. If you are seeking knowledge on how to help yourself achieve personal goals, lose weight, deal with pain or an injury, check out our website, and or call us. BodyFitz has been providing the Atlanta area with highly educated, certified professionals whose life’s passions are not to build a franchise, but to improve the quality of life for each individual we serve! Our credentials speak for themselves; no matter your current fitness level, we have a trainer who can meet your needs with an individualized program, created for you and only you! Our purpose is to create an environment where our clients are given the most current, applicable, beneficial knowledge, and programming for creating a change in themselves that will last a lifetime.
Who can you trust with your fitness?
Dan FitzSimons & your BodyFitz Team