Biz Buzz

Stretch Zone practitioner assists clients with range of motion

By Jodi Werner Greenwald | Photos courtesy of Justin Bradley

Posted on April 14, 2020

Justin Bradley, lead practitioner and marketing director at Stretch Zone in the Promenade at Providence, shares insights about assisted stretching. Also, when should we stretch – before or after exercise? How should we be stretching while staying at home? He explains below. We have lightly edited Justin’s responses for brevity and clarity.

Justin stretches a participant during an event at CKO Kickboxing South Charlotte in January.
Justin describes Stretch Zone as an uplifting, positive environment.
Justin worked with the Vance High School State Champions Football Team at an event in February.
After an initial assessment to identify trouble areas, practitioners like Justin position clients on a table like these at the Promenade location, and get to work.
Justin and the crew at Rockbox Fitness Steele Creek showed their guns during an event in February.
Hamstring stretches are ideal to do at home, Justin says, because they involve several muscle groups and don't require assistance.
Pure Barre Ballantyne hosted Justin for an event in February.

How did you get into this field? 

I have a background in personal training and MMA fighting and a passion for helping people. I came across Stretch Zone when my wife and I lived in Charleston, South Carolina. I fell in love with the concept, met the company owner and trained in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to receive my certification. Finding your purpose and loving what you do is an incredible feeling. I felt like I should have been doing this a long time ago.

Describe a session at Stretch Zone. For how long does it last? 

A typical session at Stretch Zone works like this: The client comes in, we conduct an assessment to address trouble areas. We then position the client on the table. As a practitioner, I do the work, and the client gets the benefits. It is in an open environment with some visual entertainment, good music and an uplifting and positive environment.

Sessions can last from 30 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the client’s needs and schedule. We have different protocols for different issues and can stretch everything from your neck down to your feet.

What are the benefits of assisted stretching?

Practitioner-assisted stretching can accelerate recovery from workouts or competition, increase work capacity and enhance physical performance.

Our goal is not to make you more flexible or elastic, but to increase one’s active range of motion, so that you can move further before you even feel a stretch.  Stretch Zone works through the nervous system to achieve lasting flexibility gains.

How often do most clients visit with you?

Every client is different and has varying goals. Some come in as often as four times a week or once a week, or on an as-needed basis.

How much does it cost? 

The initial 60-minute stretch session is complimentary. Prices are grouped in packages of four, eight and 12. Four sessions are once a week at $50 per session. With the purchase of eight sessions, you come in twice a week, priced at $40. Twelve sessions are three times a week, priced at $35 a session.

Are most clients athletes? 

We have a huge variety of athletic clients, from NFL players to golfers, tennis players, runners and pro cheerleaders. However, we also have a good mix of nine to fivers and clients who have jobs that require them to be on their feet for long periods. All our clients vary, and we work with anyone and everyone.

Should we be stretching before exercise or after? 

Both to avoid any injury or cramping.

How does stretching fit in with other fitness routines or goals? 

It fits in perfectly since stretching is essential to avoid injury. Stretching before engaging in the activity is good preparation for your body. When stretching after, you prevent cramping and soreness, and muscle recovery is an added benefit.

Why is stretching important now more than ever?

Stretching is important during these times because people are more stationary. Sitting also raises your risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Moving throughout the day can help even more than exercise to help lower your risk with these health problems.

Do you have any stretches to recommend?

I recommend hamstring stretches. They tie into a few muscle groups. It’s a simple stretch that everyone is familiar with and can do without assistance.

It wasn’t long ago that Stretch Zone opened in the Promenade, and then all this happened. How has what you do changed? How is the business adapting? Can readers help somehow? 

Our location opened in July 2018. We are still gaining momentum and clients through media and good old word of mouth. Since the pandemic, a lot has changed, and I miss working with clients in person. Yet, this is where my marketing skills have come in handy, and I still communicate with clients daily. I also have been posting on our social media platforms, and I continue to reach out to new clients.

Readers can help us by connecting us with golf clubs, tennis clubs, running clubs or any other businesses or events. Once this storm passes, we will be coming together and supporting one another like never before.

How are you and your wife doing? 

We are quite blessed. We have enjoyed more time together, relishing in the little things and making the best of staying at home. Thankfully, we are both able to work from home. I keep my clients in step, and my wife assists her deans and department at UNCC.

What brought you back to Charlotte from Charleston?  

Charlotte has always been home for my wife and me. With the city growing, my skills and passion will go a long way here. Ballantyne has turned into another world, and I am glad to be back in the area. Being a newlywed, I wanted a good spot to settle. My wife loves her job, and we are now looking to start our family.

What’s next on the horizon for you? For work?  

Professionally, I anticipate opening our second location for Stretch Zone soon. I want to expand my interests in the company and continue to grow our client base and educate others on how important stretching is. Personally, I want to continue being the best husband, son, brother and friend I can be. I’m excited about growing my family and other ventures I am passionate about, and I look forward to a great future.

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