Easter Seals opens new fitness center in North Austin

Clients and board members surround Easter Seals Central Texas President and CEO Tod Marvin as he cuts the ribbon on a new fitness center off Dessau Road.

Clients and board members surround Easter Seals Central Texas President and CEO Tod Marvin as he cuts the ribbon on a new fitness center off Dessau Road.

A new fitness center in North Austin promises to help disabled adults and children maintain a healthy lifestyle and work toward independence.

Easter Seals Central Texas celebrated the opening of its new Lifelong Improvement through Fitness and Education, or LIFE, Center on Nov. 18. The center offers fitness equipment for wheelchair-bound individuals as well as outpatient rehabilitation and certified fitness specialists.

In addition to achieving strength and fitness goals, the LIFE Center can connect attendees to work placement and housing services, making it a one-stop shop for many of Easter Seals’ clients who face transportation barriers, said President and CEO Tod Marvin at a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“We’re excited about the concept,” Marvin said.

Dr. Juan Latorre, medical director of the spinal cord injury program at St. David’s Rehabilitation Hospital, which partnered with Easter Seals to open the LIFE Center, told the crowd of about 60 that maintaining patient wellness outside of inpatient and outpatient therapy is challenging.

He said the LIFE Center’s Fit Ability Program offers a larger space than its predecessor, the St. David’s Wheelchair Fitness Center, and continues to foster the same social relationships that aid clients’ psychological well-being.

“I’m thrilled to see this program evolve and grow in the years to come,” Latorre said.

Adrian Moreno, a client at the former wheelchair fitness center and now the LIFE Center, said the organization provides him with access to services as well as access to other clients who, like him, suffered a major spinal injury.

Another client, Adam Ganci, said he has been in a wheelchair for 33 years, and he was excited about using the new facility to keep his strength up.

Programs at the LIFE Center include a spinal and neuro recovery program, which is exercise-based; an outpatient rehabilitation facility that offers occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech therapy and audiology; and the Fit Ability program, which includes wheelchair-accessible fitness equipment and a certified fitness specialist.

The LIFE Center is located at 8505 Cross Park Dr., Ste. 120. For more information, visit www.easterseals.com/centraltx/lifecenter.


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