Let’s Get Fit TOGETHER

As winter begins to transition to spring, now is a good time to check the resolve you had at the beginning of the year. And when you’re ready to get healthier, the Wellness & Fitness Center at CVPH will be there to help you meet your goals.

Strictly Business recently sat down with Kara Bordeau, director of the Wellness Center since 2015, along with some of her team members. “To be honest, it’s completely changed since I started here, and all for the better. I started here and I advocated for bringing youth to the Center and it started with the pool. I advocated and implemented the pool programming and that ended up being huge… ,” she began. “Since then we have evolved to so much more. We are truly a community wellness and fitness center now.”

As time went on Bordeau took on a leadership role, working with the rest of the team to add fitness programs, increase community involvement, promote youth exercise and safety, and develop a swim program. The most impactful change took place when a third-party management company was retained by CVPH. Once Power Wellness LLC, based in Lombard, Illinois, was hired things began to happen. According to the company’s website, Power Wellness “provides design, construction and management services for medically integrated, commercial, university, and community fitness facilities.” They are the only such agency that is recognized by the Medical Fitness Association.

Bordeau is enthusiastic about Power Wellness. “They prefer to be in the background, behind the scene but they give their centers a lot of freedom to operate and a lot of support. I can call my boss with an idea and he will connect me with a center in a similar market so I can learn from them. They really are incredible.”

Today the Wellness & Fitness Center is a state-of-the-art facility that offers a variety of services designed for all fitness levels. Health care providers are advocating for more physical activity and prescribing exercise, not just for rehabilitation or physical therapy. The Center accepts referrals from health care providers for its Next Steps Fitness Programs™. Medical integration coordinators Cari Dominic and Greg Johnson oversee the program. According to Johnson, “Next Steps is a great way for individuals who may be managing ailments or living a sedentary lifestyle to join the Center. We prescribe detailed, individual programs to meet each person’s unique abilities and needs.”

Each fitness specialist at the Center has a degree in either exercise science or a related field as well as the American College of Sports Medicine’s fitness personal trainer certification or exercise physiologist certification.

While she is tremendously proud of her trainers, Bordeau is a fierce advocate for everyone who works at the Center. “The trainers couldn’t do what we do without the team of people we have here,” she emphasized. “From the lifeguards who come in at 5 a.m. to the custodian who cleans up and turns out the lights at night, every single person is important to me and I am grateful for them.”

Member Services Supervisor, Tricia Jackson, has been with the Center for four years. “One of my favorite things about my job is watching people get healthier. It’s a cool thing to see day to day.”

After spending time in the Wellness & Fitness Center and meeting various staff members I can attest to the positive energy you will find there. Bordeau recognizes it and is grateful for it. “To be good in this business you need to be really interested in helping people. Our trainers want their clients to do well and they really want each other to do well. It’s a great environment.”

It would seem that the team at the CVPH Wellness & Fitness Center embodies the adage, “Attitude is a reflection of leadership”.

The Medical Fitness Association, a non-profit organization, was formed in 1991 to assist medically integrated health and fitness centers achieve their full potential. The Association is a professional membership organization whose mission is to ascertain and respond to the needs of centers throughout the world. As a resource to the medical fitness industry, Medical Fitness Association is 100% focused on medical fitness, and is the first association to have focused on hospital fitness and wellness.

Wellness and Fitness Center
295 New York Road
Plattsburgh, NY 12903