Gateway: Living

Strength, flexibility, mobility the norm at Better gym

Better gym, based in Gig Harbor, is owned by Susan Moore, who helps her daughter, Madison, with an exercise Tuesday morning during an early workout.
Better gym, based in Gig Harbor, is owned by Susan Moore, who helps her daughter, Madison, with an exercise Tuesday morning during an early workout. Staff photographer

When Susan Moore noticed her husband Toby constantly getting injured during physical training in the Army, she wanted to help.

“He loves exercise but was always getting injured,” Moore said. “The guys that were the best during PT were always getting injured. There are more days lost from injuries in PT than from illness and combat.”

Toby Moore had four knee surgeries, two shoulder surgeries, elbow surgery and pinky reconstruction surgery.

“I got tired of putting him back together,” Moore said.

So Moore earned her personal training certificate and began to teach various courses. Currently, she teaches TRX to military members and civilians. TRX is a suspension training program that offers a total-body workout with various exercises and movements.

After living in Lacey while Toby was stationed at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, the couple made the move to Gig Harbor a few years ago.

Now, Moore has taken the lessons she’s learned training her husband and other service members and is applying it to civilian courses. Moore recently opened Better gym at 5125 Olympic Drive NW, in the space of recently opened Pro Sport + Spine.

“If it’s good for the military, it’s good for just about anybody,” Moore said. “It’s portable, durable and works the body on all planes of motion.”

Moore focuses on teaching movements to improve her clients’ well-being.

“I want them to get the strength, flexibility and mobility — everything you need for optimal quality of life,” Moore said. “Most people think they’re stuck where they are. I like to un-stick them. We all have pre-conceived limitations. People assume they’re broken.”

Moore said most exercise classes are simply motivation and choreography classes.

“If you have poor movements, (typical classes) are probably going to compound your issues,” Moore said. “I do small group training, I think everybody should lift; I’m big into strength. Everybody in the room is practicing on the skills they need to work on. My mission statement is training to move well, increase strength, sharpen focus and gain mental toughness that is essential for optimal quality of life.”

Moore’s classes are about skill training, from Russian Kettlebell exercises to proper breathing techniques.

“I’m a big builder about building strength, not testing it,” she said. “So many people are intimidated by the thought of going to the gym. I’m assessing you on how I can effectively aid you. There are so many things to work on with people.”

Moore teaches 12-week programs as well as daily classes at 7, 9 and 11 a.m., as well as beginner Kettleball courses during the evening. Moore said the community has been welcoming so far.

“It’s very patriotic here and feels like a tight-knit and welcoming community,” she said. “I have some fantastic clients.”

Jon Manley: 253-358-4151