Personal trainers build programs around clients' appeals
Yoga and Pilates may be the latest rage, but they’re by no means the only fitness games in town. Industry workout tastes stretch beyond these popular workouts to trends gone by (spinning), old-school exercises (calisthenics) or simply old favorites.
Fitness coaches try to steer industry clients toward a healthy blend of cardio, strength and stretching exercises that’ll never go out of date.
“I don’t care what you do, as long as you do it,” says Kathy Kaehler, a longtime personal trainer who works with Julia Roberts and Penelope Ann Miller.
Gary Kobat prods clients to discover what type of exercise appeals to them and then builds a program around it. For Jim Carrey, that meant ice hockey harkening back to his Canadian childhood, for comedian Will Ferrell, training for a marathon, and David Duchovny, a triathlon.
Kobat also leads demanding spinning sessions at Revolution Fitness in Santa Monica, where Calista Flockhart and Jimmy Gold, Ferrell and Carrey’s manager, can be spotted hunkered over a stationary bike climbing imaginary hills.
Former “Dallas” thesp Jack Scalia remains so dedicated to spinning he drove 100 miles a recent Saturday afternoon to sweat through a Kobat session. Scalia’s been a fan of the workout ever since his then-trainer, spinning creator Johnny G., introduced him to it in the 1980s. After the session fellow spinners flocked around Scalia in an L.A. exercise that never falls out of style — the post-workout shmooze. The ritual occurs daily from the further reaches of the Valley to trendier workout joints like Crunch, where it might be Amanda Peet or Tobey Maguire buffing up for “Spider-Man.”
Maguire relied on core strength training to build his wall climbing agility and fitness watchers have their eye on these workouts, which are built around spring-loaded balance boards.
“People always want the latest trend,” says Nike marketing alum Karla Huff, who tracks these vagaries for Artisan Home Entertainment as executive brand director for its growing line of fitness videos. Says Kaehler: “The positive side is they’re just bringing other ways of being active into the limelight and maybe it’ll snag someone.”