First Posted: 11/8/2009 3:29:32 PM | Last Updated: 11/8/2009 3:29:47 PM
JACH NEWS SERVICE
WEST LAFAYETTE -- Located at 917 Sagamore Parkway West , Miracles Fitness sells itself on the motto: “ordinary people, extraordinary results.”
Miracles owners Dan Ritchie and Cody Sipe, MET at Purdue University while working on their doctorate degrees.
Ritchie said the two shared a passion for changing the fitness industry beyond the vanity of looks into something that improved the health and quality of life of the average person.
“We developed a passion for older adult fitness,” Ritchie said. “We saw in a lot of health clubs people in the fitness industry who shouldn’t be in it. Often people were working with someone who had no expertise in the field. We really wanted to open a facility that would cater to boomers and seniors and cater to everybody who doesn’t feel comfortable in a health club.”
Ritchie has been training clients for more than 10 years from professionally drafted athletes to people with a wide range of disabling and chronic conditions. He said his staff at Miracles has college degrees in the field. He said that knowledge allows his staff to give proven help and advice to those attending Miracles Fitness. The facility offers personal training and small group training.
Brittney Peterson, the fitness director with Miracles, said the staff works hard to make sure the facility is not intimidating, especially for its older clientele. She said the goal is to make the average person feel comfortable working out. Peterson has been training clients for more than five years.
“We are not high pressure salesmen,” Peterson said. “We are professional, relaxed with a customer service atmosphere. I believe that’s the difference between us and other facilities. We’re not intimidating and I think people immediately feel it. You don’t hear loud crazy music playing and people work out with individualized programs.”
Ritchie said for his customers 50 to 60 years old, his goal is to get them feeling better and get his or her bodies moving again. He said he feels great when Miracles’ work can improve the quality of life for someone older.
“They may have been feeling lousy for a long time, but from the results they get here they can do more things,” Ritchie said. “They can do anything in their lives again, like playing with grandkids, horseback riding or playing golf. They can do those things easier. That’s one of our goals.”
Ritchie said you can see more of a significant life changing results with the older age group but stressed Miracles serves everyone.
“That doesn’t mean we don’t enjoy working with people of all ages and needs,” Ritchie said. “I think we get more excited when we can improve the quality of life of someone older than the average 30 to 40 years old.”
Miracles Fitness is independently owned, but also works with Miracles Rehabilitation, which is partner with Unity Healthcare. Miracles Rehabilitation deals with physical therapy, occupational therapy, sports medicine and workman’s compensation programs. Ritchie said the matching of those needs along with fitness and wellness has made the two a good match.
Ritchie said he would like to see Miracles Fitness expand, possible into the eastside of Lafayette in the future. He said he will take a lot of lessons learned from opening his current facility, which proved a bit of a challenge in the beginning.
“It took us 10 months to a year longer to open,” Ritchie said. “We learned some of the hard knocks of getting your front door open. The good thing was Day 1; we started with 120 members before we opened. We really anticipated opening February of 2006 but instead we opened January of 2007. There haven’t been too many bumps in the road since we’ve opened.
Miracles Fitness has also given back to the community, getting involved in fundraisers from the YWCA Domestic Violence program and hosting a soup and bake sale fundraiser for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation on Oct. 19 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Peterson said anyone interested in Miracles Fitness can call and schedule an appointment and just walk in. She said they will receive a one-hour assessment, health history, and training sessions. She said some older clients may qualify through Medicare for the free Silver Sneakers Fitness program.
“We’ve been trying to get the word out about the program,” Peterson said. “Most people don’t even know they may qualify for it.”