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“The idea of the ‘BodyWorksBand’ was born the way so many good ideas are—out of a need—a need to make exercise accessible and possible for busy people on the go.”

A former gymnast throughout high school and college, Estelle Underwood has always had a passion for exercise and health. She holds certifications as a Group Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer/Fitness Counselor through the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA), and continues her involvement in fitness education on an ongoing basis.

Her clients, both male and female, cover a broad range of ages–from teenagers to the elderly. Estelle’s approach to exercise is a gentle one, taking into consideration her clients’ strengths and limitations, lifestyle, and attitudes and feelings associated with body image.


BusinessInterviews.com: You were formerly a teacher and also invented and marketed a product aimed at children. Can you talk about the turning point where you decided that you wanted to shift your career focus to health and fitness?

Estelle: My decision to shift my career focus was actually a decision of practicality. I wanted to be home with my two young daughters, but I still wanted to be involved in educating and helping people. So I began teaching fitness as a volunteer at my local YMCA, as I had always had a passion for fitness and health. I loved it, and began my studies to become certified. Shortly thereafter, I began my own business where I could decide how much I could work based on my own children’s needs. As they grew and spent more time in school, I allowed my business to grow as well. The business blossomed over the years as I build my reputation in the community. It has been good to me and became a full time job serving many wonderful, dedicated, long time clients.

BusinessInterviews.com: You’ve also designed the “BodyWorksBand”, a unique, illustrated resistance strength training band designed to facilitate exercise on the go. Can you share a bit about the development process from having the initial idea for the band and then getting it to market?

Estelle: The idea of the “BodyWorksBand” was born the way so many good ideas are—out of a need—a need to make exercise accessible and possible for busy people on the go. I have many clients who, like so many people, live very busy lives and many of them travel quite a bit. A close friend and celebrity client traveled overseas to entertain the troops each holiday season, and because carrying a practically weightless resistance band made the most sense to continue her exercise program while on the go, I taught her exercises using only the band. A few years ago, she finally admitted to me that she could never remember the exercises once she got to her destination. Thus the idea was born to print a complete workout directly on the band itself. Coming up with the idea was easy—the process of getting it to market was not quite as easy. But with the help and support of a great team of individuals and “picking the brains” of others who have gone before me, after 2 years we managed to get it produced and brought it to market. We are still working very hard to expand the marketing as consumer response has been very good.

BusinessInterviews.com: What are some health and fitness trends that you’re excited about?

Estelle: Interval training comes to mind immediately. I have used this format with many of my clients over the past two years, and it has proven to be so effective. To simplify, it is based on the idea of creating “EPOC”—excess post oxygen consumption. Using alternating high/low intensity segments of exercise, we create heat in the body so as to continue burning calories for as much as 48 hours after the workout! Clients’ love it because the hard parts don’t last that long, and the workout is constantly changing throughout the hour.

I’m also excited about the fact that the trend is moving away from crunches as a method to strengthen abdominals. We are now focusing more on working the entire core simultaneously—the way our bodies actually function in real life. We do this with exercises such as planks, which are less stressful on the spine because many more muscles can be worked with the spine in a neutral position. These types of exercises are safer and more effective and can build real core strength which influences overall useable body strength.

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