FITNESS TRAINER PUTS WEIGHT BEHIND SIMPLE APPROACH
By Josh Francis / Orange County Register / January 10, 2014
Stephen Yale believes in a more traditional approach to fitness training.
He opened EPE Training Systems in his hometown, Laguna Niguel, in 2011 and recently expanded the gym in a larger space in the same building.
Yale started training in his garage as a personal activity while working as a district manager for Sleep Number bed stores.
After training a couple of people in the garage, he decided to make it a more permanent business. So he opened EPE, which stands for “exercise performance enhancement.”
He doesn’t want his gym to be intimidating, he said.
“The key to getting better in any fitness environment is to be in a progressive environment,” Yale said.
The system is his selling point. He said there aren’t many workout facilities in Orange County that offer as well-rounded a method.
Yale’s gym is not “one size fits all,” he said.
Emphasizing power lifting and strength training among the several methods offered, Yale says his gym is more individualized, as opposed to the CrossFit approach, which often trains clients in large groups.
“I have no interest in training a group above six clients,” he said. “Otherwise, we lose too many of the elements that maintain the integrity of an individualized process.”
But why not get into the increasingly popular CrossFit market?
Yale believes his system is more effective.
CrossFit is a full-body workout combining cardio, weight lifting, gymnastics, core training and more. EPE has a lot of barbells – Yale believes simpler is better, that nothing can surpass the barbell’s effectiveness, including many fitness machines.
He also provides programs for injury prevention, aerobic conditioning, athletic training, diet and supplement guidance and more.
Yale said he developed his philosophy through years of reading and experimenting. His goal, he said, is to teach people the right way to exercise and train.
Training clients is only half of Yale’s job.
He doesn’t have employees, and he has to take care of the marketing side of the business, which can be challenging, he said.
Much of his strategy entails going door to door, posting ads on Craigslist and handing out fliers. “People aren’t just going to walk in the door,” he said.
Yale said he hopes to expand the gym even more as he gets more people to believe in his training approach.
He also plans to coach other trainers in his system so they can spread it to more clients.
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EPE Training Systems
Address: 28052 Camino Capistrano, Laguna Niguel
Hours: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays