FORMER bodybuilder Winston Christian, who has been a personal trainer for over 17 years, decided earlier this year to give life to the dream of bringing his massage services to the homes of his clients.
His Elysian Mobile Massage Service, is a massage therapy unit that travels to the client to deliver at-home spa care.
As a trained massage therapist Christian enjoys working with the human body and improving its potential in all forms.
He told Newsday he decided on this type of business because training as hard as he did at a competitive level, massages helped with recovery and pain management. “Indeed, getting someone to assist you with stretching and reaching into the smaller knotted areas is crucial to surviving crazy training days! Massage has helped me personally to get out of bed after a session that had really pushed my limits. Massage therapy is a recovery technique I recommend on a regular basis.”
He explained that massage affects the underlying biochemistry of the body including the central nervous and endocrine systems. He said one byproduct of fat metabolisation is water. If that system is sluggish, the water pools between muscles and the client will feel puffy. In that case, he said massage helps in getting the lymphatic system to drain that excess fluid.
He said, touch therapy also goes into the sphere of treating insomnia, depression and other mental blocks.
Speaking of what the actual service entails, Christian said: “My team and I bring the spa experience to the client as we're mobile. When we set up, Elysian Mobile Massage is all about meditative background music and letting it all go on the massage table. Massages we offer include deep tissue, aromatherapy and the very popular Swedish relaxation.”
Christian was born, raised and has been living in St James all of his life. The eldest of three said it was his dad who introduced him to weightlifting at age 13.
“With the way I trained, by the time I was in my 20s, there were a number of persons who encouraged me to get into bodybuilding. My first show was back in 2006 where I won not only the novice category and the middleweight category, I even beat the reigning champion at the time.”
From there Christian took part in shows in Bermuda, Venezuela, El Salvador, Bahamas, Grenada and Aruba, successfully competing and winning at international level.
He said, the people he’s met and connected with during his competitive years really shaped him into the man he is today.
He added: “Personal training was a natural segue based on all the time and effort I spent at the gym. Whilst training myself and developing my own expertise, I am always approached for advice and tips. It was simple enough to become certified as a personal trainer. I have since supplemented this with certifications in TRX (Total Resistance exercises) and spin.”
Christian said his Winstrong Fitness Solutions engages in a wide variety of clientele exposing them to more than just resistance training. “Circuit training and functional training are the basics whilst supported by significant cardio. I encourage my clients not to treat their investment as seasonal. We're invested in improving body tone, capability and creating a lifestyle of fitness. Diet and mindset are other areas I counsel my clients on to achieve their goals and manage their setbacks.”
Once on board, he says his clients are exposed to different training styles and techniques.
Their goals are discussed as well as current habits, with a view to establishing an individualised programme. This may mean choosing a certain number of days, deciding on mornings or evenings to train and committing to diarising their eating habits.
After those discussions Christian creates a nutrition plan with sleeping/rest times as these are key to supporting the clients’ fitness goals.
He says: “At Elysian Mobile Massage, we provide deep tissue, aromatherapy and Swedish massages for over an hour and more.”
His clients range from the housewife who wants to lose weight and get stronger, the young professional interested in building muscle mass to athletes intent on improving their form and stamina.
Christian added, the building blocks are the same regardless of which personal trainer is used. “What's important is that rapport that keeps you coming back for more and better. It's what keeps me up reading, learning and researching the fundamentals as well as the latest scientific developments in my field.”
Christian also said massage and personal training go hand in hand for his clients. Because they have the advantage of training with him three to four days a week and still having the relief of a massage at least twice a month. He said it's a win-win crossover.
Also, being certified in both areas also allows him to better understand the body's potential and how to push his clients beyond their own limitations.
Christian said it's a way of reaching out to new people, essentially two diverse groups that meet in the middle on the importance of self-care. “From the gym being the workshop where we create better bodies, to us heading out all over Trinidad and occasionally Tobago, to provide massage and spa treatments, I'm building awareness of our services and brand.”
Ultimately, he said his team meets people who want to live life to the fullest by being fit, healthy and happy. “Our mission is to build on our expertise and experience so we're the experts with whom you're comfortable creating your journey to a better you.”