Jamie Wagner: Building Community through Group Exercise

In today’s fitness profile, I sit down with Jamie Wagner, personal trainer and group fitness instructor at Retro Fitness in Kenhorst to discuss education, inspiration, and living a healthy lifestyle.

Michael Hartman: How did you get involved in personal training and how long have you been training?

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Jamie Wagner: My involvement in personal training grew out of my passion for dance, in particular ballet. I started taking dance classes in my teens and it quickly became a huge passion in my life. I’ve been teaching ballet for over 20 years. My background in dance led me to fitness through dance using formats like Zumba. Once I began using dance to teach fitness my passion for fitness grew, in turn leading me to study and certify in group exercise. Craving to learn more I took to the books and decided to pursue my personal training certification which I completed roughly eight years ago. The continuing education has not stopped since.

Mike: What are your certifications, education, and specialties?

Jamie: I am currently certified as a personal trainer through AFAA\NASM, Precision Nutrition Coach certified, personal trainer specialization in Senior Fitness, specialization in “Diet free life”, Sliver Sneaker certified, and RIPPED Fitness certified.

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Mike: Where do you train?

Jamie: You can find me personal training, coaching, and leading group exercise classes at Retro Fitness Kenhorst. I’ve been here since the first day doors opened five years ago.

Mike: Who is your target clientele?

Jamie: I would not say I have a target clientele. I have worked with both men and woman from teens to late 80’s. I do have a large number of senior clients whom I most definitely adore but I enjoy all my clients uniqueness! Everyone has very different needs and goals and I find great joy in helping anyone meet their goals no matter how big or small.

Mike: What is the biggest myth in fitness?

Jamie: There are so many myths in fitness. The one myth I find myself always busting is that if women lift heavy weights they are going to look like a muscular man. No ladies you will not. Lifting heavy is so important for women’s health and metabolism especially as we age. Start picking up the weights gals.

Mike: Where do you find motivation?

Jamie: I find my motivation in the success of others. Every small success that any single client obtains is a success for myself as well! Learning new techniques, theory’s, exercises and new ways of helping clients is also motivation for me.

Mike: What does your exercise program consist of?

Jamie: Let’s get honest about my exercise program for a minute… I don’t have myself on a program. My life is fitness and fitness is my life. I don’t always get to exercise for myself for many reasons, the first being my time is taken up helping my clients obtain their goals.

I lead a very active lifestyle being a divorced mom; running a mini farm and all it’s chores, teaching ballet five or more hours a week, and of course teaching group exercise classes multiple times a week. You don’t have to spend hours in a gym every day of the week to maintain health and fitness. That is also a myth. I strive to always maintain good nutrition. Nutrition is 75% of the game.

Mike: Who do you admire or find inspirational in the fitness industry?

Jamie: I wouldn’t say there is any one specific person I admire or find inspirational in the fitness industry. I love learning new things and keep a watchful eye on many different people and genres of fitness, from body builders to CrossFit pros to professional dancers and athletes. There is so much you can learn if you keep your horizons broad.

Mike: What is one of your greatest client success stories?

Jamie: One of my favorite client success stories is a senior gentlemen who was looking to regain balance so he could once again hit the slopes and get back to skiing! Roger came to me when he was in his mid 70s after heart surgery.

He is unsure what happened and changed after his surgery but he was left with very poor balance. After healing from his surgery he decided to go skiing and things went terribly wrong. Roger had lost his balance and fallen on the slopes and could not get back up. He had been an avid skier all his life so this was a punch in the gut for him! He came to me looking for help regaining balance and strength so he could hit the slopes confidently.

With my background in ballet, balance happens to be a specialty of mine.

When I first started working with him he could not walk in a straight line so that’s where we started. We walked lines, balanced on one foot, progressed to balance discs while also working on leg strength and single leg exercises. I even had Roger bring his skis and poles into the gym so we could practice getting up if he would have a fall again. Long story short Roger made it back to the slopes after a few months of personal training. The had a great winter filled with skiing multiple times a week.

Thank you Jamie for your time today. You can find Jamie at Retro Fitness Kenhorst!

Michael Hartmanhttps://formalfitnesstraining.com
Owner of Formal Fitness Training and Healthy Living reporter for Reading Magazine. My education includes a B.S. Kinesiology Penn State, NSCA-CPT and CPR/AED.
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