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Power Women’s Fitness Center
By Annette Langenstein, Staff Writer 
Published in the November 24, 2017 edition

For nine years, Sierra Kerlee could be found working at EZ Thai, a great restaurant in Coos Bay.  Flash forward to today, and she’s proudly celebrating being the owner of Power Women’s Fitness Center for over a year now.

I asked Sierra how many employees work at Power Women’s Fitness Center.  “We actually use a volunteer program here” Sierra replied, “which is really nice, being a small business.  I have some people who volunteer a few hours a week to get their dues paid for.  It’s a win-win situation… they bring fresh minds and perspectives, I save money, and it helps this gym be more connected to the community.”

Sierra has lived in Coos Bay most of her life, graduating from Marshfield High School in 2008.  “My inspiration for starting this gym is rooted in sports, mostly basketball, which I played while in high school,” said Sierra.  “I attended SWOCC, pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in physical education, while taking on being a mom, wife and manager at EZ Thai.  I eventually obtained my personal trainer certification.  And I’ve always wanted to own my own gym, so here I am!”

The southern Oregon coastal community has given Sierra a lot of much-appreciated support in her endeavors.  “This community has been great to work in,” said Sierra.  “We try to stay involved…we’re on the Wine Walk, we do lots of events like donating money for every new membership in October to support breast cancer, we have monthly games to promote local businesses…our new members get gift certificates and other little goodies from local business when they join…and we always give free tours of our facility to anyone who is interested.”

Although Power Women’s Fitness Center is a women-only gym, Sierra says men also visit to see if her facility is a good place for their wives or daughters to attend.  “It’s good to get men in here to see our place, see that it’s safe for their wives and daughters to work out and get fit,” Sierra explained.

Sierra Kerlee owner of Power Women’s Fitness Center for over a year now.

“We try and integrate the social interaction of belonging to a gym with physical exercise,” said Sierra. “It’s important for us to get to personally know each of our members. I let them test our fitness equipment, do demonstrations for them, etc.  We have circuit equipment ranging from strength to cardio training, free weights, balls, a steam room, shower facilities, and a dressing room, where there is a clothing exchange. The members can bring clothing, nonperishable food items and toiletries for the local ARK project (At Risk Kids and families).

How about classes at Power Women’s Fitness Center?  “One of more popular classes is a belly-fit class, which is a belly dance-inspired cardio class.  It burns calories and is a lot of fun!” Sierra replied.  “We also have yoga classes on Wednesdays, which my mom teaches.  This is really a family-run business.  The yoga class caters to mostly seniors; it’s comprised of chair and floor yoga, which alternate every other week.  And we’re always on the lookout for instructors who are certified in Zumba, aerobics or cardio classes.”

I asked Sierra to describe her typical customer. “We get a lot of women who want to work out in a less competitive, more relaxed place,” Sierra replied. “We welcome women of all ages, but I would say that more than half my clients are seniors.  But we get a lot of younger women, too.  All my customers are very respectful and mindful of the other clients.  I really try to make this place a good experience for people, and it must work, because they keep coming back!”

As for future plans for Power Women’s Fitness, starting in the winter term of 2017 they will be taking interns pursuing a career in business, physical education, and/or administrative services. “This will bring additional support and cohesiveness within the community,” said Sierra.

Sierra says that she enjoys advertising her gym in the South Coast Shopper because “They have very reasonable rates, and great overall exposure…everybody reads the Shopper - it’s free – which makes it very accessible.”

Power Women’s Fitness Center is a place where women can work out, get more in tune with their health and physical wellness, and feel better about themselves.  “I like to think that I’m helping both our community and the women in it thrive,” said Sierra. “We need to work together for the health of both our community and ourselves.”

Sierra’s gym is located at 383 Anderson Avenue in Coos Bay.  They’re open Monday – Friday from 6am to 7pm, Saturday from 9am to 3pm, and closed Sundays.  On Monday nights their belly-fit class is held from 7-8pm.  Their phone number is 541-267-1628.

“I believe that being healthy shouldn’t have to be expensive,” Sierra finished. “My gym is a positive outlet, and I like to keep things inexpensive.  This place is a good way to stay healthy when it’s raining cats and dogs outside, and it won’t break your budget!”

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