Stenia Health and High Performance
It’s obvious when you step inside Stenia Health and High Performance that you aren’t in a traditional fitness centre. Gone is the sterile, cold environment, the impersonal and hushed climate and the intimidating hard bodies that scare off most of us. This isn’t unintentional. Owners Kelsey Andries and Nathan Bodewitz have always envisioned Stenia as a comfortable, organic and social space with highly trained staff that promotes health and wellness with a personal connection to their clients.
Kelsey, a decorated Muay Thai fighter, completed a Kinesiology degree at the U of C in 2006. In 2005, she was self-employed working on contract with a private gym, doing personal and team training (with various varsity and national teams on her resume) at the Olympic Oval and Canadian Sports Centre Canada. Nathan, who found success in sport at a young age, completed the same degree a few years later and met Kelsey through the U of C program. The two hit it off and they haven’t looked back since. In 2008, Stenia was fully incorporated and with their business growing steadily it was becoming obvious that they had outgrown using someone else’s gym space. They found their current location on Centre Street, just north of Fairview, in 2009 and opened up their facility in 2010. They happily welcomed Cardinal Jiujitsu & MMA and Team Smandych Muay Thai Kickboxing into their facility when the June 2013 flood debilitated their facility downtown. With their business still continuing to grow, they jumped at the opportunity to expand into the vacated neighbouring bay in early 2014 and double their floor space. The expansion allowed them to put in a large matted area for classes, a boxing ring and provided much-needed breathing room.
Stenia offers a variety of fitness options. Their bread and butter is private personal training – meeting individuals, assessing their fitness level and needs, discussing their fitness goals and setting up a personal one-on-one training program. For clients who are self-motivated, Stenia offers memberships that include gym access, fitness assessments, creation of a training program for the individual and personal training sessions to learn the program.
The gym has everything you need: cardio equipment, free weights, cable systems, squat racks and a plethora of functional fitness tools like medicine balls, TRX straps, ropes and boxes. If group fitness is your thing, there is an extensive array of fitness classes available (circuit classes, kickboxing, boot camps, Jiujitsu to name a few). They are also the only gym in Canada that offers in-house Ki-Hara resistance stretching for improving flexibility. There is a smoothie and coffee bar for refreshment and replenishment as well as a retail area with protein bars and supplements, electrolyte replacements and gear for fitness classes. You don’t have to be an Olympic athlete or hardcore fitness buff to train here – many of Stenia’s clients are working class Calgarians, families or referrals from a doctor or physiotherapist for health reasons.
All of their personal trainers have Kinesiology degrees, a rare feat in this industry. They are all pursuing or have completed higher fitness and health training through various programs. And they only hire trainers who are passionate about fitness and helping people reach their goals and who are invested in customer service. It shows in both their client retention rate, which is much higher than the industry average, and their clientele – many of their clients drive from all over the city to come to Stenia.
Kelsey and Nathan also love giving back to their community. They want to be part of a healthy community and for the community to get to know them so that they can become a staple in their local area. They also work with the Juno House for girls with various personal problems such as mental health issues and eating disorders. As a result result of this work, they have seen how fitness training and martial arts can turn a meek and mild individual into someone with confidence and self-respect.
Their passion is impressive and infectious and the sense of community at Stenia is refreshing (during our one-hour interview, Kelsey and Nathan must have said hello or goodbye to 15 clients… by name). Their goal is for each and every client to leave Stenia feeling better than when they came in, regardless of the type of day their client is having. It’s easy to see why Stenia is successful – they are excited about what they do, they make a personal connection to their clients and the place is abuzz with positive energy.
Need some help with your fitness goals? Check out Stenia Health and High Performance at 6029 Centre Street SW, call them at 403-238-0001 or check out their website: www.steniahealth.ca.
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