Defiance’s offerings go beyond CrossFit training
Ryan Summerlin May 18, 2014
How did your business start?
We originally started off working out at a CrossFit gym, and really enjoyed the sense of community, and the positive physical and mental changes we all experienced. Beyond being a great workout, going to the gym became fun and something that we really looked forward to. All three of us have been youth sports coaches since we were young, so coaching was already a huge part of who we were, and what we loved to do. Because of our passion for coaching, and our new love for what we were doing, it was a natural progression to become certified trainers, and begin training. We decided to open Glenwood Springs CrossFit in 2010, because we wanted to help other people experience the positive life changes that we all had gained from our experiences. Through education and continued growth, we have expanded to offer more than just CrossFit classes alone. We changed our name to Defiance Strength and Conditioning as it better describes the type of facility that we run, and doesn’t limit us to one type of class offering.
What do you sell?
We aren’t really in the business of “selling” anything. Every day we work with people who want to become a better version of themselves. A membership at Defiance Strength and Conditioning is making an investment in yourself and committing to live a better, more active, and healthier life. We offer group CrossFit classes, personal training and personalized training programs based on your individual needs. We have mobility classes, yoga, endurance classes, sports specific training, kids classes, weight lifting, power lifting, and nutritional coaching. We offer various paths for you to choose from and help guide you along the way toward achieving your individual goals.
What positive lessons did you learn during the recession?
The lesson that we learned during the recession, was that people still wanted to make an investment in themselves. The people who are truly committed to changing their life, will find a way to make their health their number one priority. Even if that means disconnecting their cable, or cutting back on their Starbucks trips, the people who are committed to change will find a way. We never want finances to keep anyone out of the gym, so for people who really want to be a part of this community, we will always help them find a way to make it work.
What strategy do you use to hire good people?
Our trainers are crucial to our entire business. We pride ourselves on having high quality training, coaches who truly care about our clients, and the most well-educated training staff in the valley. Each of our trainers holds various certifications in courses such as nutrition, power lifting, endurance, yoga, kids specific training, gymnastics, and numerous other certifications. Our trainers are required to invest a large amount of time in continuing education in order to stay current with the latest practices in the fitness world. Also every trainer at our gym has been a part of the Defiance Strength and Conditioning community for at least one year prior to beginning their training internship, which makes them an integral part of the gym community. And because of the community aspect of our business our trainers treat everyone, not only as a gym member, but as a family member.
What is your strategy for growth in the next year?
Our strategy for growth in the next year is to get our new name out into the community. We have been growing continuously for the past four years, and have a good reputation in town. We have brought on several new coaches, and recently purchased a new 9,000-square-foot facility, that has allowed us to expand our class times and offerings. We want people to know that Defiance Strength and Conditioning is the place to go if they are serious about changing the direction of their lives, and they just need a little help in finding their way.
What is the best thing about running a business here?
The best part about running a business in Glenwood Springs, is of course, the people. People here truly care about each other, and are fiercely loyal; we see it in our little microcosm every day. Our members check in on each other and hold each other accountable if someone has been missing class. They cheer each other on during workouts, and encourage one another both in and out of the gym. The community supports us on a larger scale every winter and summer, when we host our annual Team Challenges, which bring 200-500 athletes and spectators into town. Proceeds from these challenges allow us to fund our Roaring Fork Athletic Scholarship Fund, which helps local youth afford to play the sports that they love. Local businesses help out through sponsorships and donating prizes. Every event we’ve had, more and more businesses have stepped up and supported us. Our gym and our events wouldn’t be the same without the support of the people and businesses in Glenwood Springs.