By David Bagdon, Publisher
Shrewsbury – Darline Thorp Yatim is a woman on a mission. That mission is to share her passion for fitness with as many people as possible. As the owner of Shrewsbury Health & Racquet Club (SHARC), she's in a good position to do just that.
From the moment she begins speaking, Yatim's enthusiasm comes through loud and clear.
“I was a high school athlete but, over time, I allowed myself to get out of shape. Since buying the club in June of 2009, I have lost over 50 pounds. I made a decision to make myself a priority, I needed to lead by example and show my kids that fitness and a healthy lifestyle are everyone's personal responsibility.”
This realization has shaped the way Yatim modeled the mission at SHARC. Upon joining the club, every member will receive a complimentary wellness consultation and one-hour personal training session to help determine their goals and the best way to achieve them.
“Everyone has a different definition of what wellness means,” she said. “Our goal is to provide the best facility and the right amount of support to help people attain their goals. If we notice someone has been out for a few days, we will place a call just to check in. People like to know someone is in their corner rooting them on.”
With 70 people on staff, there is never a shortage of support or knowledge. The team features seven certified personal trainers as well as nutritional counseling. With a focus on education, the team regularly provides educational classes and training demonstrations. According to Yatim, it all comes back to each person's individual needs.
“I guess our slogan says it all – “What is your definition of wellness?””
In terms of the facility, Yatim and her husband have invested hundreds of thousands of dollars to create her vision of the perfect family fitness facility. From the new heated indoor and outdoor pools to the updated weight room and the cardio facility to the indoor tennis courts, the facility has received a complete makeover.
Taking tennis to the next level
True to its name, SHARC also places a large emphasis on racquet sports. In fact, the tennis program has taken a big step forward with the hiring of certified tennis pro Dave Ndinya as the company's new tennis director. A native of Kenya, Ndinya began playing tennis at 8 years old, and rose to represent his country internationally, playing in the ITF/ATP World Tour.
According to Yatim, Ndinya's passion and experience are a perfect fit for SHARC.
“Dave is just the guy to bring our tennis program to an even higher level, Yatim said. “In addition to his vast experience, he also holds an MBA and is well schooled in sports management. Dave is a tremendous role model and inspiration to all our students, regardless of age.”
Despite the sluggish economy, Yatim said SHARC continues to grow because more and more people are turning toward self-improvement. “There isn's much people can do to turn the economy around, but they can definitely turn around their own fitness level. That's what SHARC is here for. Whether it's strength, cardio, swimming or prowess on the court, we give them the tools to succeed.”
Shrewsbury Health & Racquet Club – SHARC – is located at 3 Tennis Drive in Shrewsbury. More information can be found online at www.shrewsburyclub.com.