Editor, The Caledonia Argus
It’s a new year with new resolutions, and for residents and visitors to Spring Grove, a new workout space with new exercise options.
Spring Grove Fitness, LLC welcomes every body of any size and at any level of fitness. It’s located in the former Spring Grove Fitness Center, in the rear and top floor of the Spring Grove Communications building.
The communications company closed the fitness center when the pandemic started. Through their long history of helping the Spring Grove community and bolstering amenities, they began the search for someone to lease the space.
Enter Jana Elton and Jessi Strinmoen, who both felt Spring Grove needed its fitness center to return, for the benefit of the community.
“Everyone wanted it,” Elton said. “We love our little town. We want to see it thrive and grow.”
The new business owners went to work. Painting, remodeling and re-arranging equipment brought a fresh look. They purchased two new elliptical machines and a new spin bike. Much of the familiar equipment is still there.
They called on Summit Fitness of Wisconsin to help identify missing pieces of equipment that are popular in fitness centers today. Strinmoen said they’ll likely swap out and replace equipment in the future. The goal is to have good quality and functional equipment.
They installed smart TVs equipped with Spring Grove Communications cable channels, and the ability to log into one’s streaming accounts, such as Netflix or Hulu.
The spin bike has taken over the former office space and is available for anyone to use. What’s more, patrons can log onto YouTube and find spin workout programs and virtual rides through the Alps. Maybe one day, a spin bike rider can take a virtual ride through Spring Grove or around the backroads in the Driftless Region.
Perhaps the newest feature is not in the equipment itself, but a painted sign, “Every. Body.”
“We want to make it comfortable for every body. Any size, any level of fitness, anyone who is new to fitness,” Elton said. “This is new to me. It was intimidating to come here before. It doesn’t matter the level. Just show up and take care of yourself and the rest falls into place.”
Strinmoen agreed and said fitness comes in all sizes and shapes. She and Elton found an unexpected friendship in the business as well. While they have worked together on the Spring Grove Area Chamber of Commerce previously, they never really knew each other. But when the fitness center needed a driving force behind it, they both turned their heads.
“The wheels started turning. We’d be at the farmers market, chatting…” Elton said. When a place for fitness was identified in the Spring Grove 2030 study, and those participating in that study wondered what to do about a fitness center, Elton and Strinmoen finally announced they would be opening Spring Grove Fitness.
“Everyone was excited,” Elton said.
“We had an interesting mix of people who talked to us. People who want to get physically fit, those who wanted a rehab element, people coming off a knee injury or hip replacement,” Strinmoen added.
While both specify they’re not the “fitness types,” they can see the need and importance of having a local fitness center, and how happy it’s made other people. It has helped with their own goals too, as both are at the gym at 5:30 in the morning.
Spring Grove Fitness is open 24/7, via keycard. Many have signed up already, and some have purchased a foundation membership, which got them early access in December.
The fitness center will follow current CDC guidelines for gyms and has disposable wipes available to wipe down equipment. There is a regular cleaning schedule as well.
For the future, they hope to work with Winneshiek Medical Center Sports Rehabilitation and other organizations that can find ways to help people reach fitness goals and recover. They would also like to work with Big Raven Yoga, Syttende Mai’s Running with My Gnomies 5K and play a role as a community partner.
A full-time trainer is not on staff, but patrons can work with independent trainers of their choosing. Strinmoen and Elton are available on Wednesdays from 6 to 7:30 p.m. to answer questions and show how the equipment works.
They also participate in the Silver Sneakers program, and can work with insurance programs to provide door records and receipts so membership costs can be covered, according to the person’s insurance.
Membership options include a day pass for $10, 6-month for $39/month, 12-month for $35/month and senior memberships are $25/month for a year, for those 65 and older. Foundation memberships are available at $395 for the whole year, plus a free T-shirt.