Ask an expert - Business profile - SPARK FITNESS

There are nearly as many reasons to work out as there are ways to work out. As owner of Spark Fitness in Hinsdale, Ted Dres makes it his job to match up the two for everyone who walks through his doors.

After a decade or more offering personal training at clients' homes, Dres purchased Spark Fitness 10 years ago and celebrated the business' 10th anniversary in August. His experience in helping people get fit and stay that way measures more than 20 years.

Even before earning his master's degree in business administration, Dres said he wanted to follow the lead of his father and grandfather and become a business owner.

"I've wanted to be an entrepreneur since I was a little kid," Dres said.

Spark Fitness combines his love of fitness, his entrepreneurial spirit and his desire to do something that benefits other people.

"It's always been important to me to help others as much as I can," Dres said.

A native of La Grange, Dres moved to Hinsdale when he purchased Spark. He said he enjoys the community - and his short commute. He also enjoys sharing his knowledge and experience to help his neighbors improve their health and fitness.

Dres said Spark trainers work with each client to design a workout that will help them to reach their individual goals. Whether the client wants to lose weight, gain strength or improve cardio health, Dres said the movements incorporated into each person's workout are things they need to be able to do in their day-to-day lives. Squatting, bending, pushing and pulling are among the motions that Dres calls "functional movements."

Each client is assigned a personalized 60-minute workout that they perform on their own, but under the direction and supervision of one of Spark's trainers. That one-on-one attention encourages and ensures proper form and maximum benefit, Dres said.

Along with goals, Spark trainers consider variables such as muscle imbalances, previous injuries and physical limitations when designing a client's workout routine. Each workout includes exercises for cardiovascular health, strength and flexibility.

"There are plenty of cardio bursts throughout the workout," Dres said.

Clients reserve their workout times online, with workouts starting every half hour. Dres said most clients work out three or four times a week. Monthly assessments gauge progress and let the client and trainer know what's working and what might need to be changed.

"There is no quick fix," Dres said.

It takes time and commitment to see results, and working out alone isn't enough. He also helps clients with suggestions for how better sleep and nutrition can help them toward their fitness goals.

Dres said Spark draws a diverse group of men, women and children, each of whom has a unique starting point. But all Spark clients share a desire to improve themselves in one way or another. Dres said his goal is to provide an encouraging, welcoming place where everyone can feel comfortable as they work toward better health and fitness.

- by Sandy Illian Bosch

Author Bio

Sandy Illian Bosch is a contributing writer to The Hinsdalean