November 2015
website  |  the club  |  membership  |  classes  |  contact

Welcome to the Ballard Health Club Newsletter. We value your membership at BHC and want to keep you informed of what's going on at the club.

We look forward to staying in touch! 

-The BHC Team

Staying Healthy Through the Cold Season

Many of us join a gym in order to live a healthier lifestyle. The gym can be an invigorating and enthusiastic atmosphere, but there are also a lot of germs flying around. It's already challenging to work out regularly when the days are dark, cold, and short, and the last thing any of us needs is an illness to force us off track. Help protect yourself (and others!) with these tips:

Leave your germs at the door: There is a hand sanitizer station located to the left of the door just inside the entrance on 22nd Street in order to help you get a clean, fresh start right when you enter or leave the gym. We have also placed a hand sanitizer station by the front desk, on top on the black filing cabinets on the gym floor, and inside the group exercise studio.

Clean off equipment: Our gym equipment is cleaned on a regular basis, but it's still a good idea to play it safe.  Before and after you use equipment, especially cardio machines and benches, wipe it off with the cleaning supplies provided at 19 different stations throughout the gym. In our class studios we have cleaning supplies to wipe down the provided mats before and after use.  You may, however, want to bring your own mat from home for class. Either way, just make sure you remember to clean it!  For those interested, there are also special mats you can buy that help prevent bacterial growth. 

Wash your gear: Dirty, dark, moist gym bags provide the perfect petri dish for fungi. There are several ways to avoid contaminating your gym bag, like putting your dirty clothes in a plastic bag after changing. If you are not going to throw them in the wash immediately, allow them to dry out before putting them in the laundry hamper. And don't forget about your sneakers! About once a week, wipe them off with a disinfecting wipe (including the bottoms) and let them air dry before using them again.

Buy a better bottle: Since plastic water bottles tend to hold bacteria, try switching over to a metal or glass bottle. To clean it properly, just wash it in hot, soapy water on a regular basis.

Roxy Turner
BHC Trainer

Additional Parking at BHC

Effective immediately, Ballard Health Club has added additional parking at Banner Bank (formerly American West Bank) on 56th Steet.

When our main Ballard Health Club parking lot is full, slots 1-19 are available at the Banner Bank lot across the street. Those spaces are available from 5am to 7pm weekdays.

Take a look at the map above or see a larger version on the training board in the Club.

The wonderful people at Banner Bank have given us this parking as a service to the Ballard community. Please thank them whenever you get the chance and move all your banking there :)

Any questions? Just ask!
BHC Holiday Hours
Thanksgiving Day
Thursday 11/26

Day after Thanksgiving
Friday 11/27
Closing Early for
Staff Christmas Party
Saturday 12/19

Christmas Eve
Thursday 12/24

Christmas Day
Friday 12/25
New Year's Eve
Thursday 12/31

New Year's Day
Friday 1/1

BHC Hoops Club
The BHC Hoops Club offers you the opportunity to play some ball, get some exercise and make new friends.

Hoops Club has moved indoors to the gym at the Crown Hill Center at 4pm on Saturdays for the winter months.

Sign up at the front desk to receive more information and confirmation about each week's meetup.

Attend at least 4 times and receive a free BHC Hoops Club T-shirt.
Member Spotlight
Glenda Chaffin

How long have you been a member at Ballard Health Club?
I've been a member of BHC since 2006.

What is your favorite piece of equipment or exercise to do in the gym?
My favorite exercise in the gym is yoga. Yoga increases my core strength, encourages balance and keeps my muscles and joints well stretched and lubed for any activities I choose to participate in... plus, it makes me super happy. As an avid cyclist, I also spend gym time on the stationary bike which keeps all my bike riding pieces and parts healthy while building my cardio strength.

Why do you work out?
I work out to increase my upper body strength and sustain a healthy whole system. Also, within my workout, I'm able to continue my PT regimen (given to me by my physical therapist) for past injuries that inhabit my body, and need to be managed.

What do you do to work out?
Most weeks I'm at BHC six days, alternating gym workouts and yoga classes. My gym workout mainly consists of free weights, ball exercises and intentional cardio. As far as yoga, I prefer the basic classes and I can't wait for the upstairs addition to open for more space. YAY!  

What in the gym has worked for you in attaining your goals?
Knowledgeable friendly staff/trainers, skilled and responsive yoga instructors and a comfortable environment filled with friendly people that choose to take care of themselves.

Why do you choose to work out at BHC? (instead of another gym)
BHC rocks... it's my kind of people, engaging brilliant and playful - a 'healthy' community.
New Night Crew Coming on Board

Beginning the middle of November, our new "Night Crew" will be doing the overnight cleaning of the Club instead of the cleaning company BHC has been using.

Our Facilities Manager, Matt Anderson, has headed up the search and selection of our night crew that we will have in place soon. This special staff will wear a gray uniform shirt with our logo on the front with the word STAFF on the back.

24 Hour Access Getting Closer

We are whittling down our task list of items needed to get 24 hour access in place. One of those was the opening of Studio Y and the completion of the stairway going up to it. Another item is getting our new night crew in place which will happen later this month.

We still have technical tasks to complete including the controls to open the 24 hour door, the actual electronic door lock and few other items to get accomplished.

We are getting closer and plan to soon announce the date 24 hour access will be available
Men's Shower Remodel

The Men's shower remodel project will begin at noon on Friday, November 20th and continue through the following week of Thanksgiving. Completion is slated to be Monday, November 30th. The current men's locker room will be closed during that time.


We will be establishing a temporary men's locker room where the women's restroom is located behind the breezeway entrance stairs in the front lobby area.

We plan the same remodeling schedule for the women's showers beginning the Friday before Christmas week.

We are looking forward to starting the new year with completely new men's and women's shower facilities! 
Posture During Workouts

Every day at BHC, I observe poor posture in a variety of forms, and the one that most concerns me is poor posture during workouts. Poor posture is always detrimental, applying undue stresses to your bones, muscles and joints. During a workout, these negative effects are compounded. When you combine a rounded back and slumped shoulders with the repetitive movements of cardio training or the weight of resistance training, you ingrain patterns of compromised physical mechanics and court injury with every movement.

Beware of poor workout posture, especially while:
   >using elliptical trainers or walking on treadmills. 
   >performing machine rows. 
   >doing stiff-leg deadlifts or goblet squats. 
   >moving weights to and from shelves and racks. 

Keys to great workout posture include: 
   >Scapular retraction. Your shoulder blades should always (even when you're standing still) be pulled slightly back and down. As you move your arms during cardio or maneuver weight while resistance training, scapular retraction requires a conscious effort. 
   >Taut abs. Pull your belly button towards your spine and tighten your stomach as though you are preparing to receive a punch. 
   >Respecting your limitations. It's easy to compromise workout posture by lifting a weight that's too heavy. If you can't maintain great form, lighten the load. 
   >Improving your flexibility. If your form collapses while you move through a particular range of motion, you may be compensating for tight muscles. Move only through a range of motion that doesn't require postural sacrifice, and invest some effort in flexibility training. 

To assess or correct your workout posture, ask a trainer! Approach us at the desk if you have a single exercise in mind or, even better, schedule a fitness training session and ask the trainer to observe your form for every exercise in your workout. At best, poor posture during a workout is counterproductive; at worst it's dangerous. You come to the gym to improve your health and physical condition, but if your workout posture is sloppy, you will accomplish the opposite. It's a bit early for 2016 resolutions but not too late to adopt new habits in 2015. Do your body a favor starting today by making great posture the foundation of every workout.

Lese Kobernuss
BHC Trainer


Nutritional 'Did You Know'?

Did you know...

You can tailgate healthfully? Between the burgers, beer, and all the excitement it's easy to overindulge. However, with a little planning and some mindfulness, tailgating can be super fun without the guilt later on. Here are some tips to help you at your next tailgate:

>Contribute or host. Contributing allows you to bring something healthy that you can eat if healthy options look sparse. Hosting gives you full control of the menu.

>Eat a balanced meal before you head out. If you're starving when you get to the party it's extremely challenging to make sensible food choices and especially not to overeat.

>Be careful not to graze. Eat from a plate versus picking foods individually. That way you can gauge how much you are actually eating. 

>Fix your plate and move to an area away from the buffet line. Setting up your lawn chair away from the table is also helpful. The saying "out of sight, out of mind" does wonders. 

>Slow down. Take your time and enjoy the foods and beverages. Eating and drinking slower will allow you to tune in to your fullness signals better. Drinking slowly will help you to minimize how many calories you drink. 

>Remember alcohol provides 7 calories per gram. That's nearly as much as what fat provides. Choose simple cocktails made with low calorie mixers like a vodka tonic with extra lime or light beers. Red and white wines are also good choices. Super sweet cocktails and high alcohol craft beers contain more calories. 

>Fill up on veggies first if possible. Getting in a minimum of 1-2 fist sized portions before you start eating other foods will help control calories. 

>You can also portion control your carb dense foods by allotting only 1-2 leveled cupped hand sized portions.

Healthy Tailgating Recipes:

Eating Well

Stephanie Gray
BHC Nutritional Coach

Thrill the World 

Ballard Health Club Zombies took over the Ballard Commons Park on the afternoon of October 24th to dance to Michael Jackson's Thriller! This served as a culmination to several months of fundraising for the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.

With about 25 practiced zombies and an army of spectators, the park was alive with Halloween spirit supporting the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.

Ballard Health Club would like to thank all those who participated in this event, learned the choreography over several months and showed up in full zombie costume, makeup and exuberance.

We hope more spirited folks will join us next year!

INSANITY Instructor Training

BHC's instructor Jeff Onorato will be leading an Insanity Live Workshop at Ballard Health Club on December 12th from 1-8pm.

Have you ever wanted to be an Insanity instructor? Or just wanted to learn more about the style? Or even just how to program your own workout? This is the workshop for you!

Register online at

Intro to Yoga Workshop Series
This six week course led by Bayeshan Cooper will teach basic yoga poses, sequences, breath exercises and touch upon the philosophy of yoga. Suitable for all levels, this class will help build a foundation for a healthy yoga routine.

This 6-week class series begins on November 7th and will be held Saturdays through December 19th from 4-5:15pm. There will be no class on November 28th. Sign up online at our website under the 'My BHC' page or at the front desk. The Intro to Yoga six week course will be $60.
Club Improvements

Water Fountain
The water filler unit has been working fine but the lower / right side unit that houses the cooler is going to be replaced with a new unit. Our goal is to have one of the 2 fountains with chilled water and the other with un-chilled water since our members like it both ways.

Women's Sauna
A completely new sauna element is being installed on Friday, Nov 6th and we will have our Women's Sauna back in working order.

Men's Locker Room Expansion
With the men's shower remodel happening soon, we will be waiting until that is completed before working on the planned expansion. It seems to make sense to do both items at once, but we don't want to risk expanding the time the men's locker room will be closed.

SoundBath Concert
Saturday, November 14th 7-8:15pm
with MJ Daniels and Megan Costello Sloan
Cost: $25 

Join Megan and MJ for a powerful evening of sound and vibration. Using crystal singing bowls, metal Tibetan bowls, chimes, bells and other sound instruments, Megan and MJ will create a symphony of sound to open energetic channels, inviting practitioners to release negative energies and welcome a balanced flow of energy to the body. Join them for a unique opportunity to welcome the fall season and enjoy an expansive evening of sound that will provide opportunities for relaxation, rejuvenation and release. 

Both Megan and MJ have spent years exploring and studying the healing qualities of sound. Through their individual paths they have come to understand the power of sound to move us out of the thinking mind and into the body so that powerful transformation can take place. Yoga teachers and practitioners of sound, they have collaborated before and are excited to join together again for another sound bath concert.

Sign up online or at the front desk.

Studio Y is Now OPEN!

We are very excited to announce the first ever expansion of BHC with our new Studio Y! It's only been in operation a few days and already there have been hundreds of people taking part in the classes that moved from Studio X to Studio Y in addition to the several new classes now being offered.

Studio Y is our more quiet, low props studio designed to facilitate Yoga, Pilates and Barre classes.

Studio Y contains cubbies (20) for shoes, purses, etc., yoga mats, yoga blocks, yoga straps and yoga blankets. The studio also has fitness mats, thera bands, 9" exercise balls and 1, 3 and 5 pound weights.

We have some finishing touches to do, such as more wood trim and custom cabinets for the weights and yoga blankets. The fresh air circulation in the space will also be enhanced along with providing warm air from the main gym in the cooler months. All these things will be in place soon.

As with everything at BHC, we are open to enhancements that improve our members' enjoyment of the space. Now that we have members using this new space, we have been getting great feedback.

For those that do not know the location of Studio Y - it's physical location, from Market Street, is behind the Kick It Boutique. In relation to the main club area, it is in the Northwest corner, directly above the elliptical trainers.  We have established access to the space through a doorway in our cardio area that used to be a fire escape.

Feel free to check out the new Studio Y on your own - it is open for use and to tour between classes. The Studio Y class schedule is posted at the doorway in the cardio area, at the front desk and on the BHC website.                                                                           
The new studio schedules can be found online:

What is Barre?

If you've checked out our new studio schedule, you've likely seen a new class named "Barre". 

What is Barre? Barre classes have been around since the '50s, when former ballet dancer Lotte Burke opened her first studio in London. Fast forward to now and Barre is a popular form of exercise. Think quality over quantity, Barre classes focus on precision and proper form; you'll do smaller, slower movements to isolate specific muscle groups you're not used to using. If you're doing it right, you're going to shake or feel a burn.

You don't need dance experience and you don't have to be familiar with the ballet barre to take a class. The barre itself runs along the side of a mirrored wall, as a prop for stretching and strengthening: You'll work your glutes and your legs in standing positions, and you'll also get on the floor, underneath the barre, to work your upper body and isolate your core. Some classes will also use additional props, like mats, balls, and light hand weights.

Studio Y is open and we are offering Barre along with more Pilates Based Mat and Yoga classes. If you're willing to try something new I think Barre class is for you. We have found great instructors with dance and Barre backgrounds who can't wait to offer their own personal style to you. We are really excited for you to try these new classes.

Karen Gamble
BHC Class Director

From the Owner

Now that Studio Y has been opened, we are now able to focus on improving Studio X.                     

Besides cosmetic improvements like new paint and refinishing the floor - other ideas we have been mulling over include:                     
  • Opening up the ceiling at the east wall for wall ball. Turns out, that wall is actually quite high above the false ceiling. This area could perhaps also be used for rope climbing.
  • Replace the wall with the large one-way glass window with a glass garage door that can be opened when classes are not in session, inviting more use of the space.
  • Making the pull up bars more versatile, perhaps by mounting them horizontally rather than vertically, "monkey bar" style.
  • Upgrade the sound system. Perhaps use the same new system we have in Studio Y that sounds pretty awesome
  • Replace the weighted bars with adjustable barbells that offer a broader range of weights.
We look forward to your advice and input on what you would like to see us do in Studio X now that you know we are focused on making improvements.

You can email me directly with your ideas and comments, fill out a comment card and/or catch me at the club and let me know what you think.  

Pat Gilbrough
Owner and General Manager

Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter  Find us on Yelp