A little bit of investment goes a long way
Many people are familiar with the classic short falls of big chain gyms. You walk into a front desk to someone who, is nice enough but, doesn’t really know you. You look around and there is a bunch of machines. Maybe some free weight squat racks. A group of treadmill and elliptical equipment, that for some reason always seems to be taken. If you are someone who is happy walking in and just doing your own thing, this is great for you. As someone who likes to decompress at the gym, I like the anonymity of this atmosphere at times. But what if you’re looking for more? Is there another option, or are we content to be just another membership number flowing in and out of the door?
I wondered that question until I started working out at Charleston Kettlebell Club. Immediately when I came into the door I realized this was a different kind of gym. There was no reception desk, there were no ellipticals or treadmills, and there was a bunch of kettlebells. The reason for not having a reception desk is simple, the owners, Mike Fickling and Brett Bracken, are right there. The gym is set up as one large room, so as people walk in, they are met, not by a receptionist, but by the actual owners and professionals. Both owners, with a combined experience of over 25 years, are incredibly knowledgeable at what they do. They are constantly trying to learn and grow not only as coaches but as practitioners of strength.
Too many times have I walked into a gym and seen a “trainer”, who looks like they have never lifted a weight, instructing a client on how to “work out”. Brett, Mike, and the entire CKC staff are not concerned with “working out” as they are training. The difference between those two things is training is working out with a purpose and goal. CKC wants people to improve their strength and movement patterns, which in turn will inevitably help all the other aspects of life.
Now CKC is not for everyone. If you are someone who wants to be treated with little kid gloves and have your ego inflated, you may want to go somewhere else. At CKC they are not really concerned with stroking peoples egos. But if you want your gym atmosphere to be similar to your favorite local bar or restaurant, the CKC would fit perfectly. The trainers not only know their own clients names, but they know almost everyone’s name. They care about who you are and what’s going on in your life. They want to see you succeeded not only in the gym but outside these walls as well. I can speak to this personally because I started off as a client in the gym and Mike and Brett pushed me to become one of the trainers at CKC. They gave me a shot and took a chance on me that they didn’t have to take.
If you’re looking to just have a place to work out, to be a membership number, go to your local chain and have at it. There is nothing wrong with that if that is what you want. But if you want to train with professionals and work to improve not only your life inside the gym, but outside the gym walls as well, CKC might be a great place for you. The people there run it as a family. They care about each person that walks through the door, not as a membership, but as a person. They invest in you so you want to invest in yourself.