Anthony Byers is the Director of The Becoming Center at Artman. As the director, Anthony oversees the gym, pool, classes, training, and other services at the Becoming Center, which has five rooms for providing professional Chiropractic and Massage Therapy services.
Finding The Becoming Center
When asked how he first learned about The Becoming Center, Anthony explained that his mother-in-law had lived close by, periodically heard about openings, and suggested that it would be a terrific place to work. “I have been in Fitness for more than 20 years, and I formerly worked at City Fitness in Center City Philadelphia for about four years. Unfortunately, we were so involved in our lives downtown and overwhelmed with raising little kids that we didn’t act on her initial suggestions.”
I knew immediately that this was a wonderful, caring community that was so different than the for-profit world of fitness.Anthony Byers, Director of The Becoming Center
Sadly, Anthony’s mother-in-law passed away unexpectedly, so he and his family moved out to Ambler from Philadelphia to be closer to his father-in-law. Then, the commute into town became exhausting, and happily, a few months later, there was an opening at The Becoming Center. Anthony explains, “When I had an interview with the Executive Director, I knew immediately that this was a wonderful, caring community that was so different than the for-profit world of fitness. That was five and a half years ago, and it was a terrific move for my family and me.”
A Dedicated Team Brings Out The Best in Members
When asked what makes The Becoming Center such a unique fitness center and wonderful place to work, Anthony discusses the dedicated team; a professional community of three exercise physiologists, three lifeguards, and 12 instructors who enjoy making a difference in the members’ physical health, as well as in their social and emotional lives.
He elaborates, “many of our members are retired, and we want to help them maximize their ability to enjoy retirement and life through improved physical well-being. Some people are dealing with chronic pain or other conditions, so we try to remain aware of that and help them enjoy their time here. This is a very holistic place that offers organic social benefits which don’t exist at other fitness centers.”
Anthony explains, “members are very friendly; they introduce themselves to new members and invite them to join various classes and activities that the new person might be hesitant to do. Friendships are formed that extend beyond members meeting to get fit at the Becoming Center. Several ladies who swim together in the mornings, for example, frequently make dates to meet for lunch or dinner in local restaurants. A couple of women are artists and they compare notes about art exhibits when they are exercising in the pool. Periodically, I overhear members giving one another gardening advice and making plans to meet at a horticultural center. If members don’t see someone for awhile, they ask me if that person is alright, or why hasn’t he or she been working out. It is very heartwarming to see these social interactions and they are a key part of the motivation and support that keep members coming back.”
Helping People Stay Healthy
How do he and the staff know they are making an impact?
“One of the ways we make an impact is in helping people stay as healthy as possible, for as long as possible. It’s exciting to see people growing in comfort level when they start coming here to swim or exercise in the fitness center. Watching members become more confident in their physical abilities and seeing them become an active member of the community is rewarding.”
Many of our members are retired, and we want to help them maximize their ability to enjoy retirement and life through improved physical well-being. Some people are dealing with chronic pain or other conditions, so we try to remain aware of that and help them enjoy their time here. This is a very holistic place that offers organic social benefits which don’t exist at other fitness centersAnthony Byers, Director of The Becoming Center at Artman
Anthony went on to describe how the exercises recently helped a member get into better shape. “One member told me how pleasantly surprised he was when he was confronted with having to walk up three flights of steps and was able to do so with ease. His condition had greatly improved from exercising—knowing that we helped him improve his life and physical well-being gave me a good feeling,” he explains.
What is on the horizon at The Becoming Center? “One of my goals is to increase the number of people we can help by offering additional options like Thai Chi or specialized classes specifically for people with Parkinson’s or Diabetes. We provided these in the past but stopped offering them during the pandemic. COVID also impacted the organic social aspects of life at The Becoming Center. I hope to get back to where we were before COVID, like reviving our member appreciation parties, barbecues, and other special events to bring people together.”
Anthony’s upbeat, positive, can-do attitude is a wonderful example of how compassionate care can truly uplift and improve the lives of The Becoming Center members.