Kamsack couple to open all-purpose fitness centre

A Kamsack couple is opening a 24-hour, allpurpose fitness centre on August 8.

Adam Bates and his fiancée Natalie Rauckman, who acquired the former Peace Lutheran Church building last year and have been working at renovating and equipping it since the beginning of the year, plan to inaugurate Average Joe’s Fitness Center (sic) with an open house beginning on August 8.

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The open house weekend is an ideal opportunity for everyone to come and see the building, what was done to it, how it is being equipped and “we’ll show you how to use the equipment,” Rauckman said last week during a tour of the two-floor facility.

“We will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week for our clients,” Bates said, explaining how some people, arriving home in the middle of the night might want to spend an hour or two winding down in the gym, and at Average Joe’s they can do exactly that.

Customers, after paying a start-up fee and deciding to sign up for a month, three months, six months or a year, will be provided with their own key fobs which will provide them access to the building whenever they choose, Bates explained. Each fob is attached to a customer’s name and the use of the facility is recorded.

In fact, everything is recorded because the building is equipped with several security cameras, and a back-up power source assures that the cameras keep rolling in case of a power disruption.

“We’re young and motivated,” Bates said when asked what provides them with the assurance that they can conduct such a business.

“Natalie used to go to Dawson Ramsay’s Health and Fitness gym in Pelly,” he said, adding that Ramsay now operates similar gyms in Preeceville, Canora, Roblin and Dauphin.

“Health and fitness are booming,” he said. “Everyone knows how important it is to be healthy, and with that trend, we think the business will do well.”

“This gym is a community thing,” he said. “We want to help get everyone in shape.”

On a tour of the gym, Rauckman and Bates talk about all of the equipment that they’ve acquired for the acility. They point out the several York free benches, the York Olympic bench, the rack of dumbbells, ranging in weight from three pounds to 120 pounds and the collection of barbells that range in weight from 20 pounds to 100 pounds.

This is a Smith half cage which allows one to do squats safely and keeps the body in the correct position, he said, moving on to four full commercial treadmills which can handle 24 hour usage.

The facility has two elliptical devices, which are easy on bones and joints; two recumbent bikes which are good for people with leg issues, and “selectorize” equipment, which allows one to easily select the correct weights one wants to use.

A lot of the new equipment was purchased with the help of Shari Hagen, a sales manager at Flaman
Fitness in Yorkton, while Dawson Ramsay sold them other pieces.

“We are operating with top line equipment,” Bates said, adding that the Tuff company makes some of the best gym equipment on the market.

Rauckman explained how the main floor contains most of the cardio and strength training equipment, while downstairs are kept the free weights and heavy weight training equipment.

The son of Garth and Deb Bates of Veregin, Adam, a graduate of the Kamsack Comprehensive Institute in 2005, has owned and operated Bates Specialty Construction for the past four years, doing such jobs as custom bathrooms and kitchen renovations, basically jobs that can be completed by one person. He used his construction expertise to renovate the building.

He and Natalie, who are engaged to be married, are the parents of Liam Bates, who is 20 months. Natalie, who works at Nykolaishen Farm Equipment, is a 2008 graduate of the KCI and the daughter of Howard Rauckman of Kamsack.

Estimating the building to be about 30 feet by 90 feet, Bates explained how he renovated the basement, which was formerly a kitchen and banquet facility, re-insulated it and installed three-eighths inch thick rubber flooring.

Rubber flooring was also laid on the main floor in order to increase grip and traction.

“It saves the floor and it’s nice to walk on,” he said.

Upstairs Bates and Rauckman had to deal with furnishings and materials that had been left behind when the Lutheran congregation evacuated. The walls of both floors have been painted using an attractive colour scheme arranged by Rauckman, who says that plans are to install several mirrors along the walls.

Sound equipment is installed, allowing clients to play their own types of music while working out.

“At Average Joe’s, if a customer asks for a personal trainer, we will be able to accommodate,” Bates said, adding that he and Rauckman will be able to provide direction to clients wanting help with their fi tness programs.

The walls will soon hold a variety of posters that will inform customers of the correct ways to use the various pieces of equipment.

Both Rauckman and Bates will continue to work at their other jobs, stopping into the gym only periodically.

As far as future plans are concerned, Bates said in time he’d like to upgrade some of the older pieces of equipment and they are thinking about the possibility of hosting an outdoor fitness event like a tough man competition that would attract athletes from a wide area.