Laurie NuyensI grew up going to the local YMCA.   Everyone I knew went to the Y.  In fact I thought that if you lived in Grand Haven you automatically had membership to the Y.  I had no idea that my parents had to pay a fee for the family to belong there.  I grew up with a very health minded family around me.  In high school I developed an appreciation for biology and anatomy as it related to sports and fitness.  This led me to study Sports Medicine and Health Promotion at Central Michigan University.


With my double major in Sports Medicine and Health Promotion, I started working at a physical therapy clinic and taking care of high school athletes at their practices and games. In the clinic I managed the aquatic therapy program.  I enjoyed working with aqua therapy patients because I could only work with 1- 2 patients at time because of the size our therapy pool. Other therapists had to juggle 2 to 3 patients at a time.  I really enjoyed being able to spend one on one time and personalizing each workout.


Then, in 2001, I traveled to Hawaii to support my dad as he competed in the Ironman World Championship.  It was on this trip that I realized I did not love my job.  I was tired of standing on muddy fields and working long tournaments on the weekends waiting for injuries to occur.   Could I use my schooling to work with people who wanted to get healthy and get in shape?  It was not long after that I left the clinic / high school setting and was personal training full time.


With my rehab experience I found I was attracting clientele that had suffered from chronic back, neck and shoulder injuries. These clients were very motivated to feel better, to learn, and to work hard.  Many had been through physical therapy but still had work to do.   Clients would tell me how they were shown certain exercises or given a home exercise programs but only did it a few times before they were discharged from therapy. They were unsure about the exercises and did not fully grasp what they were supposed to feel or why a particular exercise was important. Or sometimes the client would be stuck in the gray area where they knew the exercises they did in therapy were now too easy but did not know what to do to progress.  I found that my clients really benefited from one on one instruction and regular progression.  The one on one instruction brought motivation, confidence, and success.


There were times though that I could not fix it all. Some of my clients needed more than I could provide in a gym setting. When I thought my clients needed other therapy modalities I referred them Total Health Systems of Macomb County.  I had been a patient at Total Health Systems when I developed tendonitis in my big toe and could not run. The staff physical therapist, Piotr Kasprzyk fixed the problem.  I returned a year or so later when work and stress were taking a toll on my back, receiving chiropractic care.  This concept of have all services under one roof was really appealing to me.


I began teaching a stretching and core class at Total Health Systems, and then in June 2009 I began working here full time.  As an Athletic Trainer/Personal Trainer I am able to personalize each workout to each of my patients/clients.  Everybody is different and each person needs different coaching or techniques to reach their goals.  Everyone comes in with a different level of experience and I am happy to customize a program based on your needs.  Whether you have worked out for years or never worked out, I am sure there are new ways to challenge you and improve how your body functions.   In this non-intimidating environment you can get one on one attention and support to help you reach your potential.