• Three Utah Schools Awarded Free Fitness Centers

    by Andy Berg May 2018

    Three schools in Utah are getting new fitness centers courtesy of a new program aimed at promoting healthy habits and fighting obesity in school-aged kids. 

  • What to Look for in Strength Equipment From one of the Strongest Coaches on Earth (Sponsored)

    by Matrix Fitness May 2018

    Vernon Smith is regarded as one of the strongest coaches in the world. The head strength and conditioning coach at Marian University in Indianapolis can deadlift and squat more than 900 pounds. Now he’s taking on a new challenge as his school opens a new training facility. Athletic Business caught up with him to find out how he picked the right equipment for the job.

    Did you have any challenges to overcome as you went about setting up this new facility?

    Since Marian is a private school, it’s all about boosters and donations. About three years ago, we had a donation given to us to redo our facilities. It was about $50,000. I went to Matrix and they outfitted me with what I needed. Recently, however, we had a donor donate $14 million to our new [facility] project, and about two and a half years ago, they gave me permission to start outfitting that new facility, and we now have everything ordered. For me being a strength coach, being able to get this funding and be trusted to outfit this facility, it’s been a blessing.

    How will the new facility help you and your student-athletes?

    There’s 17 hours a day where you have to work with 24 programs. We now have the support to get the job done but before, as a strength program, we were really behind. We were to the point where we had 60 football players in a weight room, we had to break it up. We'd have three sessions just for the football team. I’ve done it with the least amount of equipment, with the least amount of funding, and we didn’t have a strength and conditioning budget. Now, we’re getting pretty much everything we need.

    What did you look for when shopping for new equipment?

    Right now, we have 24 programs. So we need equipment that is quality and is going to last. With Matrix, that’s what I seem to find. Their products are durable. I know they’re going to last. And their customer service is second to none.

    What was your goal when outfitting the new facility?

    I’m doing my best to make sure we have enough square footage per athlete, and we have enough room to train efficiently. We want to ensure we have space with everything that we do in that facility, which includes group training and those kinds of things. We’re going from a 2,200-square-foot facility to our new facility which will be 7,000 square feet. So, I’m going from six power racks to 15.

    I have to say that Matrix is kind of underrated when it comes down to it. I mean, you have all these companies and for the most part a rack is a rack. But Matrix's customer service, their loyalty, their ability to give me what I need, I feel like other companies can't do that.

    That's why I continue to work with Matrix. They let me explore. They let me be able to say, ‘Hey, let’s try this with this rack,’ or, ‘This might be more efficient for my program.’

    Vernon Smith

    What motivates you?

    The thing that motivates me is that God has given me a power to help others. That's my calling. My thing is to not only make these kids better athletes but better students and better in life. I think that's why I have so much passion for this industry, so much passion to help this individual realize, ‘Hey, I’m going to be a college graduate, first and foremost, and I’m going to be able to support my family beyond what makes me do what I do every day.’

    For more information on Matrix Fitness' strength equipment offerings, visit

  • New Projects: Gordie Howe Sports Complex | University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Master Plan and More

    by Courtney Cameron May 2018

    Breaking Ground

  • New Product Roundup: Ninja Equipment | Indoor Surfaces | Fitness Equipment

    by Courtney Cameron May 2018

    Check out the newest products as seen in the May 2018 issue.

  • Facility Cleaning and Sanitizing Tips and Products

    by Andy Berg May 2018

    In January 2017, a Nevada woman died after an infection in her leg proved resistant to 26 different antibiotics. According to Dr. James Johnson, professor of infectious diseases medicine at the University of Minnesota, the type of drug-resistant "superbug" found in the woman's leg was just the beginning of what could become a global health crisis. "We're off the cliff," Johnson told NPR at the time. "It's already happening. People are dying. It's right here, right now. Sure, it's going to get worse. But we're already there."

  • Esports Training Facility Brings Legitimacy

    by Noah Smith May 2018

    The opening of Team Liquid's new training facility is a recent example of how esports organizations in North America are increasingly putting themselves on par with professional and collegiate teams in traditional sports, providing organized environments and structure to support their players and staff.

  • MLB Teams Request $100M Upgrade to Spring Training Park

    by Jennifer Sorentrue May 2018

    The Miami Marlins and the St. Louis Cardinals want Palm Beach County to help pay for a $100 million upgrade of their spring training stadium in Jupiter.

  • Inside the Modern High School Weight Room

    by Paul Steinbach May 2018

    Underneath the seating of a new $22 million basketball arena at LaPorte High School in football-crazed Texas is a 4,600-square-foot weight room, two walls of which are lined by multiple sets of dumbbells weighing up to 100 pounds in 5-pound increments. In the middle of the room are seven double-sided, multipurpose racks that can accommodate both squats and cable exercises simultaneously. The space, which opened last August in time for the 2017-18 academic year, accommodates nearly 100 athletes at a time with training techniques both traditional (leg-extension and curl machines) and trendy (plyo boxes), and the LaPorte Bulldog logo is literally everywhere.

  • Bouldering Gym Set to Open in Norfolk

    by Robyn Sidersky May 2018

    Instead of traveling around the world to get in some rock climbing, Marisa and Matt Beck will soon be able to tackle boulders right here in Norfolk. The pair, along with their business partner Jason McKenzie, plan to open a climbing gym in Norfolk in June. Other gyms in the area have climbing walls, but Latitude Climbing and Fitness will be different, the Becks said.

  • Life Time Fitness Brings Co-Working Concept to Minneapolis

    by Nicole Norfleet May 2018

    Life Time is extending its "healthy way of life" philosophy into the office. The Chanhassen-based fitness center giant announced Monday that it will open several co-working offices in the Twin Cities.