Whitehorse Daily Star

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Photo by Dustin Cook

NEW DIGS – Cliff Shultz (pictured) owns Avalanche Athletics with his wife Erin, a new CrossFit gym down town taking over the old Arctic Star Printing space. The 3,800 square foot gym officially opened Saturday.

CrossFit moves into new downtown home

A new CrossFit gym is officially open downtown after making the move from Riverdale to take over the old Arctic Star Printing space.

By Dustin Cook on December 6, 2017

A new CrossFit gym is officially open downtown after making the move from Riverdale to take over the old Arctic Star Printing space.

The new gym owned by Cliff and Erin Schultz who also own Avalanche MMA and Peak Fitness, opened its doors to the public on Saturday.

Still without any signage on the outside of the building at the intersection of Second Avenue and Strickland Street, Cliff Schultz said the building will be called Avalanche Athletics to keep with the Avalanche theme of their gyms but will house CrossFit 86Seven which is the main focus of the new space.

“We knew we had to get out of the space we were in only because the location of it and we were kind of maxed out in moving forward with more members,” Schultz said, who now works out of the new downtown location teaching about six CrossFit classes each day.

The moving process began in August, Schultz said, with a couple of visits to the space trying to envision the printing setup as a CrossFit gym. Eventually they made the decision to take the 3,800 square foot, two-level space.

“It’s a more usable space,” Schultz said. “We wanted a box with a garage door, more industrial than a fancy weightlifting gym. The other gym was an awkward space to use as well, pretty much used half of it.”

Only being open for a few days, but having current members getting an early start to continue their training through the move, Schultz said the response from the membership community has been very positive and they even put a number of hours into helping the transition.

“Our members are very pumped,” he said. “A couple members were awesome people and they came in and they were here pretty much almost every hour that we were here putting it together too.”

Schultz said they have also already received new interest from people to attend CrossFit classes in the new digs.

“We’ve already seen an increase in members and memberships, nothing huge but every week there’s more and more,” he said.

The club has almost doubled their equipment, Schultz said, with about half of the gear from the old space.

They also bought a lot of new equipment including an entirely new CrossFit rig as well as more bars, weights and matting.

The building still has an industrial feel to it, a vision Schultz wanted to keep, with pipes visible along the walls and a large garage door at the back of the gym.

“It was kind of hard to vision CrossFit being in here at the beginning but then we knew we kind of wanted the garage door, the industrial look and it really had the industrial look in here but we also wanted to put some fancy in it,” Schultz said.

The fancy Schultz speaks of is located upstairs with a lounge area featuring two couches and a flat screen TV for people to relax before or after their workouts. The upstairs also includes 10 stationary bikes along clear glass windows for a full view of the gym below.

Even more than the CrossFit classes, Schultz said they saw a need for a sport-specific training space for teams to rent out and use for dryland training purposes.

The gym has times each day for groups to rent out the entire space to allow their own trainer and coaches to run their private sessions.

With the high number of sports teams in Whitehorse, Schultz said they were approached by groups looking for this type of space to hold their dryland training sessions without interrupting other gym sessions or workouts .

“We have the swimmers here, hockey players,” Schultz said. “When we opened up CrossFit to begin with, we didn’t even think about renting it out to sports-specific people. As we moved on we realized there really is nothing around Whitehorse for it.”

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