Health

From member to owner: New face in charge at Club Fitness

Mathew Munson is reacquainted with an old stew. Photo / Bevan Conley

A familiar face has the Club Fitness gym on Guyton St.

Mathew Munson has been a long-time member and worked there from 2006 to 2012.

He takes over from Dave and Vaughan Cockburn, who have run Club Fitness in various locations for over 20 years.

“It really is a dream come true,” Munson said.

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“There are still regulars here and some of my old training partners too.

“At the moment I do a little bit of everything, up to and including cleaning. If you have a passion for something, you often go a step further.”

The gym has about 400 members on the books.

People of all shapes and sizes were welcome at Club Fitness, with a focus on pure results.

“That could be people who want to transform into a different body, lose weight, increase muscle, or just be happier,” Munson said.

“Exercise, of course, also plays an important role in improving mental health.

“A key difference here is that we don’t have the judgmental stigma associated with other gyms.”

Munson’s own fitness journey began in 2006 when he studied to become a personal trainer at the New Zealand Institute of Sport in Wellington.

After his first stint with Club Fitness, he moved to Jetts in Palmerston North and brought that franchise to Whanganui.

“Jetts Whanganui reached about 700 members and then I left for London to do the same for about five years at Anytime Fitness in Clapham South.

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“Then it started to feel like it was time to come home. I love being back.”

Outside of personal training, he enjoyed a long stint as a KPW (Kiwi Pro Wrestling) Champion as H-Flame, holding the title from 2006 to late 2009 and the KPW Tag Team Championship with Lazarus Volt from 2011 to 2013.

While in the KPW stable, he rubbed shoulders with another Whanganui wrestler, Chris Delorean, and tried for the WWE in 2008.

Bringing back regular assessments and workout routines was at the top of his to-do list at Club Fitness.

“Purchasing modern equipment is another matter. We want to show that we are putting money back into the business.

“There is definitely a club feeling here. Everyone knows your name and eventually we will have open days and barbecues.”

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