Get help getting into shape

Curves Exeter introduces computer system to help members optimize workouts

By Casey Lessard

The women at Curves in Exeter are about to get an even better workout, says owner Ann Barteaux, thanks to a $15,000 computer and equipment upgrade. The new system, called CurvesSmart, determines each member’s individual optimal workout and guides the member when she (Curves is designed especially for women) is not optimizing her exercise. It will be operational as of October 29.
“When someone comes in to register,” Barteaux says, “we do a health profile, see if they’re on medications, do blood pressure and heart rate tests. This is all entered into the system, we take the person to each machine, do a range of motion test and maximum power test, and this gives the computer a basis to work from. The person takes their personal key tag and touches it to the machine reader, and it monitors the range of motion and power, and you are aiming for the lights to turn green.
“It enhances the quality of the workouts,” she adds. “It’s fairly easy to get distracted when you’re working out. Now, with the light sensor, you have to focus on your workout. All of our hydraulics are hooked up to a sensor and if you need to increase the intensity of your workout, it will do that.”
Not only will it increase the intensity, it will also keep track to make sure you’re not overdoing it.
“If you’re working past your safe heart rate zone, the stepper will automatically reduce the intensity it will allow you to work at for the machines following it.”
The stepper and a unit for stretching are the new equipment purchases that come with the CurvesSmart computer monitoring system.
“We’ve had a lot of great feedback about this machine, even from die-hard stretchers.”
“Your body doesn’t get as much out of a workout if you don’t stretch properly afterward,” says trainer Sid Reaburn. As one of the test subjects for setting up the computer, she’s also impressed with the new system.
“This is so user-friendly. All you look for is the green light.”
“Curves is the only fitness facility with this technology,” Barteaux says. “We are the only one in Huron County and north to have this system. Sarnia and Stratford are getting it, and London has it, but in this area, we are the only one with it.”
She was convinced by the technology even before she bought the club.
“I had committed to the purchase of the CurvesSmart prior to becoming an owner of a club because I believe it’s that important to women’s health.”
CurvesSmart is just one more attribute the Exeter location has to its credit. The club has earned the Shining Star quality standard, which signifies it is an elite Curves club.
“The members’ commitment to the club and to using the facility properly is a huge part of that,” Reaburn says.
Curves members will soon be helping women at the chain’s 10,000 clubs around the world get into better shape. Baylor University will use the (anonymous) data gathered from the CurvesSmart system to research women’s health.
“Obesity is a huge problem for all age groups in North America,” Barteaux says. “Women are the only demographic for whom obesity is not increasing. Men and children continue to rise, and Curves believes it must have a small part in that success.”