Student athletic trainers are improving lives – for free!

Megan Elrick, a student athletic trainer offering free personal training to students, competed in the NYC Half Marthon on Sunday.

Have you ever found yourself aimlessly walking around the gym, trying to figure out which piece of equipment is supposed to be used for what, all while feeling everyone’s judgmental glares on you?

If you have, now there’s a solution right here on campus – personal training sessions!

Exercise science majors and seniors Megan Elrick and Tayler Larmie sent out e-mails in the beginning of the semester offering their time and knowledge to students and faculty, and they both said the response was overwhelming.

Unfortunately, Elrick and Larmie are now both fully booked, but many are hopeful that students who have more time here at Castleton will pick up what they have started.

I think what Meg has done is shown the need and demonstrated the need, so hopefully it will continue to grow that way,” said Kathleen Culpo, Health Education Program coordinator.

Culpo, who was a key component in starting CU Move for 60 last year, said when the Health, Human Movement, and Sport department was doing research last year for what students would like to see more of on campus, fitness-related activities were always number one.

“Opportunities to go to the fitness center and learn how to lift weights, how to do it properly, what to do in there to be comfortable, always filter to the top,” Culpo said.

So, this is where Elrick decided to step in.

When asked why she wanted to offer this, Elrick simply said, “I think it’s so important for people to be physically active.”

If you’ve always wanted to try personal training, but are nervous about your lack of experience, don’t be.

I wanted to target the clientele that goes into the gym, gets on the treadmill, and leaves because they don’t know how to use the equipment,” Elrick said.

She is all about making sure her clients feel as though they’re actually gaining skills and knowledge, not just going through the motions.

“I want it to be like tutorials so people get more comfortable in the gym so they’re more apt to go,” she said.

And here’s the best part – Elrick’s sessions are completely free!

And Larmie, who was recently certified by the International Sports Sciences Association, only charges $25 per session.

“The biggest thing for personal training for me, it’s not the money, it’s just helping people get a better quality of life,” Larmie said.

Larmie has a wide range of clientele, from people who just want “general fitness” to another who is in the Air Force.

Larmie goes through a series of tests with his clients during the first session and discusses their goals to make personalized workout programs tailored to them.

“I want people to come and I want people to experience the changes in their body,” Larmie said.

Both Elrick and Larmie are extremely passionate about their chosen career path, each having a separate personal training job at fitness centers in Rutland.

“I love what I do so I know that I’m doing the right thing,” Elrick said with a smile that stretched ear to ear.

Elrick has already been a “guiding force” for one of her clients, part-time faculty member Mary Droege.

Droege said she loves to go for bike rides, and frequently attends indoor spin classes here on campus, but going to the gym to work out is just, “not something I would normally do.”

“I’m pretty active, but… do I like going to the gym normally? Like that’s a whole different question,” Droege said with a laugh.

Although Droege usually burns her calories by more leisurely methods, she said she has been “thoroughly enjoying” her sessions with Elrick.

“You learn an exercise here, an exercise there, but just someone putting it together in a package is really valuable,” Droege said.

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