Featured Trainer: Susan Saenger

Susan Saenger
By Hamed Hamad

“I believe that movement is the Fountain of Youth” – Susan Saenger

Susan Saenger grew up in Ohio with influential matriarchs in the family. Her mother cooked dinner every night and if Susan wasn’t there due to extracurricular activities, she would bring the food to her. Besides being an active child and enjoying what nature had to offer, Susan’s grandmother was also quite the influence. Susan says “I had to work to keep up, because she walked so fast. She had exercise equipment in her basement, which as kids, we found hilarious and we just played with it. But she lived to be 98 and was quick as whip up to her last days.”

Susan’s upbringing foreshadowed and shaped the profession she is in today in Durham, North Carolina. As she naturally gravitated towards gyms and being physically active, Susan drew in friends who relied on her to direct their workouts. She started off at Crossfit, which became her first certification, but noticed that she was attracting some of the older clientele. Susan says, “I appreciated the basic exercise cueing that I got from Crossfit, but the programming didn’t seem appropriate for the needs of my older clients. I found older people are often dealing with old injuries, arthritis, knee problems, etc. They want to be able to do their regular activities easily and without pain.”

When Susan left the gym scene, she started her own business and dedicated herself to people over 55. Some of her clients are long-time exercise enthusiasts, while others are starting formal exercise programs for the very first time. Regardless of fitness level, Susan teaches and emphasizes proper ways to stretch and lift, while offering lots of encouragement. She says, “I give them homework to do because the most important thing as we age is consistency and regularity of movement opportunities. You just have to move…and often!”

For her own regimen, Susan enjoys lifting, doing HIIT and agility workouts, while turning to the NCCPT to enhance her education and expertise in personal training. After finding out about the company through word of mouth, she considers NCCPT to have excellent customer service with high quality “educational materials to be.”

If there is one message Susan would like to leave people, it’s the perception of the older generation. Just like any other age group, older people still like to see themselves as young and vibrant, and that they too were once young. Susan passionately says, “They don’t want to be seen only as the old person they are now, but as the whole of what they’ve been. They’ve been successful; they’ve been physically fit and able; they’ve done important things; they’ve done wild and crazy things! That younger version of themselves is still inside them. They want you to know that person as much as the older version, in an older body. I think one thing that I do is work to honor the whole person. I really do like to hear about their experiences because I learn a lot!”

For more information on Susan Saenger or to connect with her personally, email her at ssaenger2@gmail.com.