As an undergraduate with a fitness-oriented major at the University of Georgia (UGA), John seized a rare opportunity to work on UGA’s Olympic strength and conditioning staff. Admittedly, John wanted something more, especially in the movement arena. With personal training degree offerings evolving, a move to Savannah was the next step in his academic ascent. While pursuing a Masters in Sports Medicine at Savannah’s Armstrong University—now an extension of Georgia Southern University—he was able to build on his method of personal training with a human movement focus. Soon after graduate school, John did a stint working with a wide range of adult clients at another nearby property before being offered the position of Fitness Manager at The Ford Plantation.
From Olympic hopefuls to senior citizens, the range of clients John has trained has enabled him to develop a unique style and approach to personal training. Using techniques honed over time, he has an uncanny ability to assess the current state of a person’s fitness and then tailor a program to help achieve the individual’s fitness goals. This very philosophy in fitness and human movement is a special component of what John offers as a path to overall wellness.
“I had a dream at one point to open my own gym, but this opportunity [at The Ford Plantation] is pretty close,” John said. His self-proclaimed obsession with movement improvements and the be-all-you-can-be passion for personal fitness, John seeks continuing education in every way, both to improve his own fitness and to discover new trends to help others achieve their personal goals. “I look forward to building on the current program offerings. I especially encourage those who are not into fitness to come get involved.”
THE FORD 100
The Ford 100 is not a racing event but rather a 100-day activity program developed to encourage members to move as much as they can. Through bicycling, running, speed-walking, rowing, Barre, Body Sculpt, Body Bar, Interval Training, Pilates, Spin, Stretch, Tabata, Tennis Clinic, Tennis Play, TRX, and yoga—or any combination thereof—John encourages people to start the year by moving. And with this extensive list of certified activities, he hopes the motivation to complete the Ford 100 and “get the t-shirt,” will inspire members to adopt a fitness-oriented lifestyle that continues throughout the year by forming good (and fun) exercise routines that become second nature.
With a nod to taking fitness outdoors to enjoy the beauty of Coastal Georgia and the Lowcountry, John leads bike rides around The Ford Plantation property and longer rides in-season, including trips to Daufuskie, Cumberland, and Jekyll Islands. The rides are geared for a full spectrum of fitness levels and are always a lot of fun. The Ford Plantation also offers fat tire beach cruiser style bikes for use on the property—their version of a bike-share—and has clinic days where on-site bike technicians are available for tune-ups. Georgia Game Changers, conveniently located just 3.7 miles from the Plantation gate, offers anything and everything necessary for cycling, swimming, running enthusiasts or who catch the fitness bug and want to gear up for success.
John’s staff at the fitness center invested heavily of their time to become certified as instructors in a variety of movement programs. This commitment ensures there is something that appeals to everybody who has the desire to move and improve his or her level of fitness. Programs like Barre, Body Sculpt, Body Bar, interval training, Pilates, spin, stretch, Tabata, tennis clinic, tennis play, TRX, and yoga are offered with one-on-one instruction and curated fitness sessions.
Since the enjoyment of golf is a common theme among members at The Ford Plantation, John became a certified Titleist Performance Institute (TPI) Golf Fitness Instructor, helping members with their golf game. He has crafted a custom program with TPI fundamentals and his time-proven exercises both improve a member’s golf game and also increases overall fitness and movement. Because John believes, “If your golf swing is great, that means you’re a better mover and everything in life will be easier.”
John offers a fresh and comfortable approach to fitness and movement, a program that can be fun, tailored to fit each individual, and most importantly, deliver measurable results. Feeling better, moving better and embracing a lifestyle of wellness is part of John’s core mission and his belief system that he lives to share—something that is obvious in the testimonials of members who work with him. Now, drop and give me twenty.