Ex-Cardinal opens Gilbert’s 2nd D1 gym | News

By Zach Alvira, GSN Sports Editor
6 Min Read

Kylie Fitts is no stranger to hard work and dedication.

It helped him land a scholarship to play football at the University of Utah out of high school in California. It helped him become a sixth-round draft pick of the Chicago Bears in 2018 and eventually sign with the Arizona Cardinals.

Now, he’s aiming to help both athletes and everyday gym goers fulfill their dreams, whatever they may be.

“I’m a family guy and I know this area is very family-oriented,” Fitts said. “This community is allowing everyone to workout. Adults and their children aspiring to be athletes and even if they don’t reach the professional level, they’re learning all the characteristics we preach here.”

D1 Val Vista, the latest location for the franchise in Gilbert, is on the southwest corner of Val Vista Drive and Elliot Road.

Fitts already knew the benefits of a facility like D1 from his days with the Cardinals when he trained at the Scottsdale location. As an owner of a D1 facility, he has a different perspective.

Among football players from nearby Highland and Gilbert high schools as well as parents, home-schooled kids and other athletes of all ages, D1 Val Vista is quickly becoming a training destination that is a first for that part of the growing city.

When Fitts retired from the NFL in 2021, he had envisioned opening some sort of training business in the Valley.

Despite his ties to California, he and his wife knew Arizona was where they wanted to raise their kids. He settled in Queen Creek, which has become home to several former NFL stars including Vontaze Burfict, Brian Urlacher and current Cardinals’ kicker Matt Prater, among others.

He met with the owners of D1 training in Nashville, where the company is headquartered. He knew they were looking for more franchises, so he jumped on the opportunity to align himself with a brand that fit his own personal core values.

The process to open lasted a year and a half but Fitts found it rewarding.

“It’s been such a long process with ups and downs and not really getting to where I wanted to be in my career,” Fitts said. “But now, seeing God’s vision with this and seeing us open, it’s remarkable.”

Every person who walks through the doors is there for a workout class or personal training sessions. The early morning classes typically cater to adults and high school athletes looking to train before school. Throughout the day they welcome kids of all ages, including a class for homeschooled kids.

The afternoon opens for kids after regular school hours. The evening classes often involve adults who bring their kids to workout with them.

Fitts said those are his favorite to watch.

Each program is catered to specific goals.

From plyometrics on the large artificial turf area to treadmills and state of the art weightlifting racks, D1 Val Vista offers something for everyone. The trainers are not only knowledgeable but find ways to make the workout enjoyable.

“Passion for what they do is one of our core values,” Fitts said. “Our entire team comes in with a smile and they are truly doing what they love. Everyone sees the passion in our coaches and I think that separates us from other training facilities.”

Some parts of the D1 program at the Val Vista location were inspired by Buddy Morris, the Cardinals’ senior reconditioning coordinator.

While many parents believe training should take a timeout while high school and youth athletes are in season for their respective sports, Morris believed that is the best time to train to avoid injuries.

Exercises also stem from Fitts’ childhood, when his father, Matt, would put him through some of the workouts he did during his time in the NFL.

Fitts said he believes that helped him stand out among other players. Now he hopes to do the same for his clients.

“I want to give them that same opportunity and inspire them to be great in their favorite sport,” Fitts said. “That was one of my goals with opening this up.”

D1 Val Vista will hold its official grand opening on Saturday, Aug. 26, beginning at 11 a.m. People can tour the facility and meet the training staff. Food trucks and a DJ will be on site to make it an inviting atmosphere.

Fitts said seeing his vision come to life has been rewarding. His goal has always been to make a difference in the lives of people hoping to achieve a goal in the gym.

“Just providing the opportunity is the biggest thing,” Fitts said. “Especially with adults getting tired, getting in here and seeing what is going to benefit them. We want to provide the best experience they could possibly imagine.”

By Zach Alvira, GSN Sports Editor www.gilbertsunnews.com

2023-08-24 07:00:00 , www.gilbertsunnews.com – Vivrr Local Results in news of type article

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