Curtis of Rock Star Boot Camp talks training his programs progress away from the typical gym format.

Peter: This is Peter from Fringe here again. I've got Curtis Hoekstra of Rock Star Boot Camp in Phoenix, Arizona on the line. Curtis, tell us a little bit about yourself and what you guys are building out there.

Curtis: Well, I am the primary owner of Rock Star Boot Camp. We started Rock Star in 2006. Our primary goal in the whole Rock Star Boot Camp program is to bring people in and help them progress their movements and their fitness and their motivation to become better. In a nutshell, that's the whole program. We're just continually trying to work each day to help all of our members become better movers.

Peter: I love it. I was checking out your website a little bit before I gave you a call. One thing I want to point out is I love your homepage. It's kind of like a long form sales letter essentially, where you talk a lot about what the Boot Camp is, what kind of results you've gotten for clients and just a ton of other things. Did you guys do that yourselves or did you farm that out to a third party?

Curtis: No, we designed that ourselves.

Peter: Awesome. I really think that you're on the right course. Have you found that to be really helpful when people come to you to just, on the homepage, have everything there?

Curtis: I think it is. I think that setting examples of what could be, for the average person out there looking to make improvements and start a fitness program could identify with.

Peter: Awesome. 2006 and that's great, you're going into your 11th year. That's really impressive. Tell us a little bit about what you were doing before you started the Boot Camp.

Curtis: Well, before I officially began Rock Star Boot Camp I was a one-on-one personal trainer in a corporate gym setting for a large big-box gym, shall we say.

Peter: Got it. What led to you wanting to do the Boot Camp?

Curtis: The more I realized working one-on-one in a typical gym setting, I realized that I had the potential to reach a larger group in a shorter amount of time. At the same time, I realized that what the average person was doing in a regular gym really wasn't as much as they could be doing in the best case scenarios for their end results, their goals that they're trying to achieve. That's when I decided that I needed to reach larger groups and needed to do things a little differently.

Peter: That's pretty interesting. Can you talk to me a little bit about why do a Boot Camp format? You had mentioned before about larger groups. What do you think you can accomplish in larger groups versus more like a one-on-one setting in a commercial gym?

Curtis: When I have large groups I think what we have ... What we do at Rock Star is build a mindset and a mentality. If we can gather people into a group with similar mindsets, not similar bodies, per se, but similar mindsets and ambitions and motivations. That's going to feed off of one another. That fuels the fire, so to speak. I think that's more powerful for a lot of folks than just a one-on-one environment or just being by yourself.

Peter: I love it. When we say boot camps, are you doing these in parks? I'm familiar, I'm here in Austin, Texas and that's the headquarters of Camp Gladiator. A lot of times, although Camp Gladiator does have some facilities of their own, they do go around and go to this park or that park to target different geographical areas. What is your format? How are you doing it?

Curtis: When we started in 2006, I did start in a very dark and cold parking lot, by myself with three people. Two of us were family members. That changed over the years dramatically to the point now where we have our own training warehouse and facility. In a public park, that was a good place for us to start, but it definitely led to other issues. Weather issues, safety issues, liability issues. A lot of areas that became problematic very quick. That's when we went to the private warehouse format.

Peter: Got it. I also noticed that you're a official host facility for TRX with obstacle course race training.

Curtis: Yes sir.

Peter: Where did that part come in?

Curtis: TRX is a phenomenal training modality where we can use suspension training to help a lot of people with the movements progressions that I had mentioned before, that we're really interested in. We spent a lot of time and energy learning and improving our TRX teachings. TRX actually approached us to host several of their events starting well over two years ago. Over the past two years, we are their go-to host facility, one of their go-to host facility in the Phoenix area when they want to train other trainers and expand their off points. They came to us and we said we'd be more than happy to help out and learn ourselves. That's how that came to be.

Peter: I love it. Let's transition a little bit. What are a few things that you'd like to share with our audience that are working really well from a business standpoint? Like, how do you guys set yourselves apart and what is really killing it for you guys right now?

Curtis: I think the biggest thing for Rock Star Boot Camp is the fact that we're going to, number one, encourage all fitness levels to come into the program. Number two, encourage all of our members to focus on improving their movement and moving pain free, and moving through full ranges of motion in controlled fashion. Not so much focusing just on one modality or one strategy of improving their fitness. We want to really encourage the average person to have pain free movement, to have better muscular development, cardiovascular development. I think a lot of people identify with that, so when they come to Rock Star it, more often than not, is exactly what they're looking for.

Peter: Let me dig into that a little bit. When you say you're encouraging all fitness levels to come in, in one class would you have that range of fitness levels? From maybe a couch potato or someone who's coming off the couch, who's really trying to get back into a fitness program at the same time as someone who's approaching elite level or something like that?

Curtis: Absolutely. What we've done and this is where our campers really appreciate and gravitate to is that we explain everything that we're doing from a day-to-day basis on a progression scale. When Jane Smith comes in and she just had a baby six months ago and she's trying to get her body back, so to speak, then we have a very skilled athletic person standing right next to them that wants to take things to the next level. We explain easy to understand progressions so that every fitness level, regardless of where you are, will be able to shine. Everybody standing in line went through all the gamuts, levels of fitness will be able to achieve what they're trying to achieve at Rock Star.

Peter: Yeah, I love it. Now, talk to me a little bit about boot camp. Why do a boot camp format versus something in the functional fitness with barbells and things like that? I'm curious.

Curtis: I think that was part of why I developed our program, getting away from the big box gym, a lot of machines, a lot of equipment. That's where I realized that that was fine for some and it works for some, but I think it's very limiting for a lot of folks. I wanted to go and offer and create a program that was a little bit more variety filled, variation filled and also had plenty of options for every skill level. That maybe they're not ready to throw 145 pounds on a barbell on their back and start squatting. That might not be the best case for them. I definitely wanted to make sure that I created something that folks could, all folks could benefit from. That's really where the Rock Star program progresses away from the typical gym format.

Peter: Got it. I love it. Tell me a little bit about the culture at Rock Star. What type of feel do clients have? Do they do things together outside of the boot camp? Tell me a little bit about that?

Curtis: Absolutely. The folks that come into the program are friends. They become friends in the program. They become very close acquaintances where we have outside of camp events. Picnics and gatherings and dinner celebrations throughout the year, so that folks get to know each other on a personal level outside of the workout itself. That becomes a very inviting and exciting experience for our campers, knowing that they're not only getting a great physical experience, but they're also gaining many friendships on a lot of different levels. I think that is a powerful factor for a lot of people.

Peter: I love it. Let's dig into just one more thing here. What is something that you guys have done in the past year that you're particularly proud of?

Curtis: I think fine tuning our obstacle race. You had asked about that before. The obstacle course racing items, that's a big part of our program, where we have walls and nets and ropes and things that you might see inside of a Spartan race or a Tough Mudder event, where we have our campers try their skills and improve their skills. Not just doing a bunch of push ups and pull ups, but we actually have them moving through obstacles, carrying things, jumping over, working their way over walls. Doing a lot of different things that ... Spartan races and Tough Mudder races and other obstacle course type events are growing in popularity every year. A big part of the Rock Star program is having that aspect at our disposal. That's something that we're building every year as well. I think that has been a real game changer too.

Peter: I love it. Cool. Well, if somebody is listening to this and they say, "Hey, I'm in that Phoenix area and I'm interested." What's the best way for them to get a hold of you?

Curtis: Our website is www.rockstarbootcamp.net. My direct email is curtis@rockstarbootcamp.net. Folks are welcome to reach out with any questions that they have.

Peter: Awesome. I love it. Anything else you'd like to say?

Curtis: I just really appreciate this opportunity to work with Fringe. We have a lot of Fringe products in our arsenal and we love every one of them.

Peter: Wow. Of course I always love to hear that. Awesome. Well, this has been Peter from Fringe with Curtis from Rock Star Boot Camp signing off. Cheers.


Peter Keller
Peter Keller

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