NEWINGTON - Finding a personal trainer who has experienced similar struggles to you can be a feat in itself.
The staff at Horizon Personal Training each has personal stories of body transformation, making their relationship with clients a unique one.
General manager Dan Fischman is a certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) and an advanced certified personal trainer. He also brings to the 64 Market Square facility a personal tale of loss - more specifically, weight loss.
“I was always an overweight youth and both of my brothers were extremely accomplished athletes,” Fischman said. “I could never compete with them.”
That all changed in high school when he transformed his body and his life, losing weight and incorporating regular exercise into his daily routine. After going away to college in South Carolina, fitness became a healthy diversion.
“Every time I was homesick I’d go to the gym,” Fischman remembered.
He graduated with a business degree and returned to school to chase his passion. Four years of his career were spent at a strength and conditioning facility, helping athletes like his brothers build strength and muscle.
Now his focus is on people who aren’t necessarily starting from a high level of fitness ability.
“I like to say that everyone is an athlete,” Fischman pointed out. “Your sport is your daily life and I want to improve it.”
Horizon’s flagship facility is located in Cheshire. Founder Bill Yeager went from being an overweight, unhappy adult to EAS Sports Nutrition’s 2001 Body-for-Life champion. To date, he has helped over a half-million people undertake their own body transformations.
The company specializes in one-on-one training. Initial visits begin with a Functional Movement Screen to test seven movement patterns, identifying asymmetries and dysfunctions in the body.
“Every trainer here has experienced their own personal transformation and that sets us apart from other gyms,” Fischman said. “If you can’t relate to those struggles, you will never be able to relate to your clients.”
Making connections drives their mission, so Newington staff has already introduced themselves to neighboring businesses downtown.
Just upstairs from the gym are the Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine Centers. After completing therapy, clients are offered a consultation and three complementary personal training sessions at Horizon.
“That’s something we encourage our patients to do,” PTSMC director Joe Allen explained. “It’s just an extension of their health and improving their quality of life so they’re able to reach their goals.”
His and Horizon’s staff offer their clients a wide range of services - from an injury evaluation at PTSMC to a supervised workout downstairs.
“There’s a bridge we’re actively working to build,” Fischman said. “We want to help get their clients back to the point where they feel as though there was never any injury at all.”
He’s also training a group of women cyclists at nearby Newington Cycle.
Horizon Personal Training is open Monday through Friday, from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday, from 6 a.m. to noon, by appointment only. Call 860-808-7590.
Erica Schmitt can be reached at 860-801-5097, or firstname.lastname@example.org.