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Up close and personal: Trainer opening downtown business to help with fitness goals

By Paris Goodnight
pgoodnight@salisburypost.com
Whether you’re a guy looking to bulk up or a woman trying to slim down, a new personal fitness training service is opening to help you meet your goals.
Stephen McKnight is putting “A Better You” in at 208 S. Main St.
The Catawba graduate and Kannapolis native has been involved with personal training for about seven years. He played football for coach Bruce Hardin’s Wonders and then for David Bennett at Catawba College, where he was a linebacker until he graduated in 1999.
His years of weight training and working out are evident, and he looks like he could easily walk onto the football field now and be ready to take on any lineman. But he wants to pass on what he’s learned to others trying to improve their health and appearance.
“It’s more acceptable,” he said of choosing a personal trainer instead of just going to the YMCA or a group gym setting. “I’ve had clients want me to work with their kids.”
But he said he probably wouldn’t work with anyone younger than 15 or 16.
He is moving from Charlotte to Kannapolis, where he is building a house for his family: wife, Stephanie and 4-year-old daughter, Morgan.
McKnight has moved most of the equipment his clients will use into the new location across the street from the Meroney Theatre. He said the final pieces, like a treadmill and elliptical machine, should be in place by the end of the month. He will incorporate exercises and cardiovascular training in with weights and stretching.
He already has a number of clients lined up for one-on-one training, usually in sessions that last 45 minutes or an hour. He said he’s worked in group settings at gyms that try 30-minute routines, but McKnight said that’s not really long enough, especially if you do things right.
“I feel you can’t get everything done in 30 minutes. You can’t get warmed up,” he said.
He’s helped athletes, some of whom have moved from the college ranks into the pros, including former Catawba teammate Devonte Peterson.
His strategies for getting the most out of a workout ó for men or women ó aren’t set in stone.
“It depends on the client. No two are the same,” he said.
He has two certifications that boosted not only his expertise on the machinery he has installed, but also added to his knowledge of anatomy and psychology ó both necessary parts of getting the most out of a workout.
He worked with the Department of Social Services until October, when he decided to strike out with his own business. And he said he plans to add a line of dietary supplements to the offerings at “A Better You,” where he will monitor a client’s diet and nutrition plans along with charting weight gain/loss and body mass changes.
He says people who are interested in having a personal trainer can come in for a demonstration, then hear the prices when they sign up for six, 12 or 24 sessions. Contact “A Better You” at 704-562-8641.

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