July 23, 2020, 1:59 p.m.
Influence Kaikohe, a 24hr 7 days a week women-only gym., has just celebrated its 1st Birthday. The owner Rhonda Zielinski was previously the Clinical Operations Manager of a Mobile Clinic run by Te Hā Oranga o Ngāti Whātua. When that ended her daughter suggested she should start a gym.
With five gyms in Kaikohe already, it was important to focus on the people not being reached.
"90% of her clientele is made up of women who were not going to a gym, or not engaged in physical activities or self-care".
The name Influence came from a brand/movement 'Influence Crew' started by Doug Healey a motivational trainer who was once committed to a life in a wheelchair after breaking his spine in three places when saving the life of a co-worker. His determination led him to run the New York Marathon and now encourages others to take up the challenge. Influence crew is the biggest foreign contingency to participate in the globally renowned event.
"The kaupapa of Influence is simple it's that 'No one gets left behind'. It's not just in a marathon or at the gym, it's in all aspects of life from budgeting to family support to housing"
When looking to join the kaupapa, Doug says they are "Looking for those that are bent, broken and beat up by life."
Members of Influence Kaikohe have participated globally in marathons from New York to Myanmar and Hawaii with new ones being added to the calendar, such as, Petra Desert in Jordan and The Great Wall of China.