Are you desperate to improve your health and fitness but you’re a gym scaredy-cat? The idea of buff twenty-somethings in crop tops, pumping music, and those damn mirrors everywhere just a little more than you can bear? Well, I’ve found the place for you. Joint Effort, in Old Saybrook, Guilford and Branford is geared to the over 50 set, and especially suited to those who have finished physical therapy or haven’t exercised in a while (or ever!) They provide an interesting concept, sort of in-between a personal trainer and a gym, and there’s nothing quite like it around here.
I stopped into the Old Saybrook location and had a talk with the owner, George Norden, who is passionate about his business and clientele. Here’s how it works: an evaluation comes first; he’ll get your health history, and evaluate your strength, cardiovascular fitness, blood pressure and resting heart rate to get a baseline. You’ll also discuss your limitations and goals. Next, he prescribes a personal program combining cardio activities on state-of-the-art seated ellipticals and recumbent bikes (for less stress on the joints), and a variety of weight training. He’ll walk you through the program two to four times until you’re comfortable. Your “card” with your plan for the session is set out for you when you arrive, and an exercise physiologist is on the floor at all times to make sure you’re performing the exercises correctly.
If you’ve been trying to figure out how to improve your fitness level, or not quite sure where to go or what to do after finishing up with physical therapy after surgery, this is your answer. It’s welcoming, not at all intimidating, and spotless, with brand new equipment. The personalized evaluation, guided sessions, and a holistic approach will have you hooked and on your way to a healthier future in no time, regardless of your current level of fitness. Plus, there’s a committed bunch of regulars who provide encouragement, fun, and community.
George has found a niche on the Shoreline, with Joint Effort locations in Old Saybrook, Guilford, and Branford. And it’s easy to see why; not only is it a brilliant idea, he’s chosen his team carefully, and all are well trained and highly educated in exercise physiology.
Good to know: prices range from $6 to $12 a visit depending on how often you go. One month to one-year packages available. Wear whatever is comfortable, yoga pants are not required! Expect the evaluation at the first visit (by appointment only) to take about 45 minutes. Must be over 50!