Kettlebells Champion Lorna Kleidman Responds to the Success of Fitness Clubs Targeting Obesity

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In light of the success of Downsize Fitness, a fitness institution for people suffering from obesity, Lorna Kleidman, kettlebells fitness instructor and creator of the popular KettleX program, offers advice to those still struggling to get fit.

On March 5, 2013, fitness expert and kettlebells advocate Lorna Kleidman responds to the recent success of Downsize Fitness, a growing chain of health clubs for the severely obese.

According to a recent article in Reuters, Francis Wisniewski, who founded Downsize Fitness in 2011, decided to create a fitness institution that was exclusively for the severely obese “when he was struggling to lose weight and found himself intimidated by one-size-fits-all gyms.” Wisniewski has established centers in Dallas and Chicago, says the article.

“I figured if I was uncomfortable, a lot of people must be. Overweight people feel like they're on display,” said Wisniewski, who says he was also inspired by the reality show “The Biggest Loser.”

“We wanted to make it the 'Biggest Loser' in real life,” commented Wisniewski. “Most people would be successful if they could spend 15 weeks just exercising. In real life we have jobs. You go to the gym one hour, five times a week and change your diet.”

Wisniewski adds that while a lot of conventional exercise equipment only supports a maximum of 350 pounds, he stocks his centers with machines that can take over 600 pounds, and includes other amenities such as wider treadmills. He also hires trainers who are weight-loss veterans, says the article. “[Our] personal trainers are used to working with overweight people. Two of our head trainers have lost over 100 pounds on their own,” comments Wisniewski. According to Reuters, Wisniewski said people can lose 50 pounds in six to twelve months of training.

Kettlebells fitness instructor Lorna Kleidman applauds Wisniewski’s vision as a great starting path for those who are unhappy and unsure how to begin the daunting task of extreme weight loss. Kleidman sees the hardships of losing weight with many of her clients and encourages those struggling to lose unwanted weight to push forward, and most importantly, to stay motivated.

“The key is not to be intimidated, which is why a place like Downsize might provide a great safe haven for some people who can't see themselves at a regular gym. Many of us are familiar with that feeling: you feel that the room is staring at you, which makes it impossible to concentrate,” says Kleidman. “It's important to find your comfort zone, and work with it, and then set goals so you can exceed your own expectations. Then you'll be in a place where you can leave your comfort zone behind. You can be your own motivation, and your own solution.”

Kleidman adds that once you have settled into exercising regularly, which is a crucial first step, “then you can find ways to add variety and really own your workout. You just have to believe in yourself! For those who feel shy about attending public classes, you can get some pretty fantastic weight-loss results from a comfortable, at-home kettlebell routine, once you've been taught a few basic techniques.”

Lorna Kleidman is a three-time World Champion and World Record holder in kettlebell sport and the most decorated kettlebell athlete in the country. She developed the innovative methods used in KettleX as a way to bring the benefits of the bells to everyone in an easy-to-use, comprehensive and fun format. Lorna has been teaching individuals and group classes for the past six years.

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