Jennifer Waller, our March 2019 Trainer of the Month award winner and owner of Prime Fitness Inc. in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada, has been committed to fitness for over two decades. Perhaps what is most impressive about Jennifer is her ability to connect with her clients and create a meaningful, lasting experience. As a testament to Jennifer’s purpose-driven vision and creative thinking, in collaboration with a local physician, she created a medically-supervised weight loss program that was awarded Richmond’s first grant of its kind by the Richmond Hospital Physician Society. With Jennifer’s vision and leadership, she is changing the trajectory of the lives of her clients and the health of her community.
Here is a look at how Jennifer is raising the bar…
Certifications/qualifications: Certified Personal Trainer (BCRPA); Diplomas in Recreational Leadership, Coaching and Instruction, and Exercise Science; Bachelor’s Degree of Human Kinetics (Kinesiology); Master’s Degree of Art in Clinical Counselling (Registered Clinical Counsellor with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors); Certification in Fundamental Movement Patterns, Emotion Focused Therapy, Powell Transformation, Keiser Cycling, Training For Warriors (TWF) II, Youth Fit, Twist Conditioning, TRX, and Pre/Post Natal; Certified Fascial Stretch Therapist (FST) Level I
Studio Name: Prime Fitness Inc.
Year started in business: I started my personal training career as a soccer coach for Delta Girls Soccer in 1997-2000, from there I developed a private clientele within the community and worked with the City of Richmond as the Fitness Program Coordinator. In 2008, I took on a more full-time role with my personal training and developed boot camps, personal training, and group fitness programs. In May 2017, I opened Prime Fitness Studio and continued to develop my personal training programs with private and small group programs. In January 2018, I received a grant to run a co-facilitated Medically Supervised Weight Loss Program.
Recognition & awards:
Todd Durkin Mastermind Fit Pro of the Year, 2018 – This annual award is awarded to the fitness professional chosen amongst the International Mastermind Membership. I was the first Canadian to have been a recipient of the award.
Best-selling Co-author “Mindful Athletic Performance: Winning the game on and off the field,” May 2018.
Richmond Hospital Physician Society Grant funding Richmond’s first Medically Supervised Weight Loss Program developed by me and local physician in collaboration. Grant total $96,400.
What inspired you to start your business?
With my background in sports, counselling and my own personal struggles with health and wellness, it became apparent to me that supporting people to reach their goals goes well beyond exercise. I noticed a lot of people wanted to be better versions of themselves and follow healthier lifestyles, but they felt like they didn’t fit anywhere. I heard countless stories of people feeling intimidated by the gym, or worse yet, being pushed so hard, they hurt themselves. I wanted to develop a studio that was encouraging and empowering no matter what their level of health was in a safe and welcoming environment.
What is one hard lesson you’ve learned in business you believe has been most valuable?
Be yourself! Early on I tried to be someone I wasn’t. I was trying to copy those trainers I looked up to and tried to be what I thought my clients wanted me to be. It was exhausting and stressful. The more I started to develop my own style and my own approach to fitness and exercise the more I realized I brought myself into the sessions. I became real with my clients, shared experiences, and realized I was excited about my clients and their successes. I made connections with clients that were deeper than just the exercise we were working on. With this came confidence and business growth.
If I asked one of your clients why they choose you over other places, what would they likely say?
At Prime Fitness we provide a safe and supportive environment that allows our clients to be themselves. Our group classes are kept small so that individual attention can be provided to each client every day. We focus on where our clients are, help them set goals, and work on both the physical and mental aspects of what is holding them back and what we need to do to get them moving forward. Our clients are accepted unconditionally, we love our clients and help them overcome the limiting beliefs they have about themselves in order for them to be able to realize their potential.
Name one or two ways you are trying to raise the bar in the industry.
We are real and authentic. We want clients to feel accepted for who they are and for what they are able to bring to the studio every day. We created a medically collaborative program called “The Me Project” after listening to clients wants and needs. We serve those that have struggled, have faced barriers, obstacles, and life events that have left them feeling stuck, frustrated, alone, and hopeless. Our goal is to provide opportunity to anyone who is ready to achieve a better lifestyle, without prejudice or barriers, to those that are so desperate they no longer see an end to their weight battle. We have many clients with 100+ pounds to lose, and our goal is to safely facilitate changes in their lifestyle to move towards optimal health through improved self-confidence, self-belief, and the ability to commit to a lifestyle change that is both achievable and maintainable. We help them gain back their self-integrity and dignity slowly and without shame.