REGISTRATION SITE OFFLINE 2/14-2/15: For details, check our Bulletin Board post, below


REGISTRATION SITE OFFLINE 2/14-2/15: For details, check our Bulletin Board post, below


Spotlight on Center Fitness Club

Spotlight on the Center Fitness Club

We’re bringing Center Fitness Club (CFC) into focus with a feature on our friendly, neighborhood gym and all the reasons we love it.

CFC has come a long way since the COVID-19 Pandemic, when members pre-registered for a masked-up time block, or dedicated group fitness warriors trained outdoors rain or shine. Starting with essentially a clean slate can be a daunting task, but since Fitness Manager Liz Antman’s start in November 2020, CFC has grown in amenities, offerings, staff and membership – and we’re not looking back!

Let’s start with the straight data. Prior to the nationwide shutdown in early 2020, CFC maintained 1,342 active members. Understandably, membership plummeted over the next year, as the entire world struggled to understand how to stay safe and healthy (mentally & physically) while living in a world of uncertainty. By January 2021, a faithful crew of 412 members had cautiously tiptoed back into CFC. One year later, the member base had more than doubled to 934, and it was time to move forward.

Facing a new normal, and complete shift in both the focus of our own health & wellness as well as the value of community and social connection, the CFC embraced the opportunity to play a pivotal role in the daily routines of our members. Open gym hours resumed, masks became optional, group fitness classes charged back into Studio A, towel service returned, and a general vibe of endurance, determination and togetherness rejuvenated the air. We’d learned a lot from the adjustments made under COVID-19 restrictions.

  • For instance, space to move and breathe is important – not just for the purpose of keeping six feet apart. Having adequate room for your workout lets you relax and focus on “you time.”
  • Outdoor and virtual fitness classes are a fantastic break from the ordinary. “There was a huge push for virtual and outdoor classes due to the COVID pandemic,” said Fitness Manager Liz Antman. “Members would brave the coldest temps just to attend their favorite fitness class!”
  • Fresh and modern equipment keeps motivation high and plateaus in the rear-view mirror. Liz explains, “members wanted something new! The fitness industry is constantly evolving and we have to stay ahead in order to provide the best for our members.”

Summer 2022 expanded group fitness class options indoors, outdoors and virtually. “As we navigated our way through and restrictions eased, we brought in new formats that the members wanted, including Barre, Pilates Mat, Strength and Stretch, Yoga Level 1 and Iyengar Yoga,” Liz commented.

Fall 2022 marked a time for indoor upgrades. Initiated by member feedback, Liz summarized three big changes made at the CFC:

1)    “We were able to expand our footprint by consolidating two underutilized rooms (the old spin studio + the small training room) into a new Functional Training Studio with all new functional training equipment and turf flooring.”

2)    “We improved our main floor layout by rearranging the strength training and free-weight areas to create more space and maximize the floorplan.”

3)    “We installed new rubberized flooring in our strength training space, which provides additional joint support and is more hygienic.”

The upgrades were extremely well received, and members were grateful to see their gym being made a priority.

“Great job expanding the free weight area and rearranging the floor layout. I also like the new/bigger exercise room and equipment added there. Awesome!” ~Anonymous Member Feedback, January 2023 Member Survey

Membership has risen to 1,256 currently, and it’s only a matter of time until we reach and exceed pre-pandemic numbers. But it’s not just about the data. A solid membership base is a valuable gauge for the CFC’s success, but equally important is the Club’s culture and perception.

Liz describes CFC as “a small, community gym where we connect with our members and get to know them on a personal level. Our front desk staff, group fitness instructors and personal trainers all take the extra step to create a relationship with visitors. They’re more than just visitors – they’re members of the community.” CFC staff are a team, and they work together to create an environment where people of all backgrounds, shapes, sizes, abilities and ages are welcome, safe and encouraged to seek their better selves.

Fitness is a journey of mind, body and spirit, and everyone’s experience is unique. “Our goal is that your visit to CFC is the best part of your day,” says Liz. Whether you’re seeking a gentle yoga class to quietly reconnect your mind and body, or a sweaty cleanse on our strength training equipment – we’ve got you. This goal and all the effort that CFC is putting in to meet it seems to be resonating with members:

“I always look forward to working out at the Center Fitness Club - the staff is very friendly and helpful.” ~Anonymous Member Feedback, January 2023 Member Survey

“The fitness classes are welcoming to everyone regardless of fitness level. Instructors go out of their way to encourage participants to modify the exercises as needed and they demonstrate the modifications. It's truly a very supportive fitness environment.” ~Anonymous Member Feedback, January 2023 Member Survey

“The Wilmette Center Fitness Club is great for meeting my fitness goals and living a healthy life. The convenience, range of equipment and track, and amenities are excellent!” ~Anonymous Member Feedback, January 2023 Member Survey

For a small, community gym, CFC doesn’t sell itself short, or hold back on its goals. With the help of a dedicated manager, talented instructors/trainers and passionate staff, the CFC continues to rise to the occasion and give members what they want – a clean and safe environment, modern amenities, challenging and unique classes, and a place to feel welcome. From the initial greeting of friendly staff to the encouragement and support of instructors and trainers, patrons can depend on the CFC to be a place where they can leave their troubles at the door and participate in that ever-so-important time of self-care.

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