Elevate Performance Gym is an inclusive gym in town that builds on Elevate Performance Coaching's Training philosophies for Triathletes
Elevate Performance Gym founder Arthur Tong (right) guides a gym participant. PHOTO: CHERYL TAY, SPORTPLUS.SG
It didn’t seem too long ago when I was having a conversation with Elevate Performance founder Arthur Tong, about his dream of starting his own multisport coaching business. He had a great vision of building a community that is inclusive, where he could impart his knowledge and have that safe space.
However, it wasn’t just about resigning from a job. Yes, there is always a risk when you leave something stable to start your own thing, but this was Arthur having to make a decision to leave a career he was very passionate about. He was serving his country in the military and was a respected soldier and leader in the force.
Elevate Performance Gym founder Nigel (right) guides a gym participant. PHOTO: CHERYL TAY, SPORTPLUS.SG
The Hong Kong-born Arthur moved to Singapore when he was a toddler and got into competitive swimming. He moved again, to Vancouver, when he was of secondary school age and returned when he had to do his National Service.
That was when he fell in love with “the purpose of being in uniform”; hence he chose to sign on to the army. Awarded the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) scholarship, he then headed to Australia for his engineering degree.
Elevate Performance Gym is an inclusive gym. PHOTO: CHERYL TAY, SPORTPLUS.SG
Back in the force, Arthur was preparing soldiers to be operationally ready and he saw the similarities between a soldier and an athlete. Thus, in his own time, he did lots of reading on training methodologies and coaching philosophies, as well as took up courses in sports science.
Together with his wife Elaine Young – whom he encouraged to pick up the sport of triathlon – they experimented and explored different programming and training approaches for her Ironman pursuits over several years.
The Elevate Performance Gym is located at 3 Neil Road and ready to receive fitness enthusiasts and triathletes. PHOTO: CHERYL TAY, SPORTPLUS.SG
When Elaine qualified for the prestigious Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, for the first time in 2017, the realisation that he could become a coach to help others became real.
In a similar vein of how he used to “mould young men into fighting fit soldiers and responsible citizens”, Arthur enjoys working with athletes to understand their needs and equip them for their races or build their fitness.
Elevate Performance Gym goers at a workout session. PHOTO: CHERYL TAY, SPORTPLUS.SG
Eventually, Arthur chose to take that leap of faith in March 2019 to set up Elevate Performance Coaching. This was not a rash moment – he had spent months, years even, building his knowledge, taking courses, integrating into the community, exploring his options, before he made the calculated move.
Elevate Performance Coaching got off the ground quickly – not without its challenges of course – and he got a system going. I’ve joined some sessions at his track squad and swim squad before, and the people are great. Friendly and non-intimidating, encouraging and positive.
Elevate Performance Gym founder Arthur Tong (right) with wife Elaine Young and daughter. PHOTO: CHERYL TAY, SPORTPLUS.SG
Then COVID-19 hit us and the world came to a screeching halt. But now that we are opening up again, Arthur has hit the ground running with his latest initiative – Elevate Performance Gym – with three other co-founders.
Before you shrug it off as just another gym, this is a little different. Focusing on inclusivity, the functional fitness classes here are designed to work as part of a bigger ecosystem.
While Elevate Performance Gym does offer HIIT workouts, what sets it apart are its different program offerings catered for different training days, designed around a Triathlete's schedule. PHOTO: CHERYL TAY, SPORTPLUS.SG
There are different types of classes on different days; for example Monday is for strength, Tuesday for cardio and Wednesday for power. These work in tandem with his track and swim squad sessions as well, so you get the best of many worlds.
They also have in-house sports therapy and physiotherapy, Sunday boot camps by the beach, and workout sessions in Hard Rock Café.
While Elevate Performance might sound like it’s primarily a triathlon coaching programme for competitive people, you don’t have to be a triathlete to join his sessions. Neither do you need to be actively taking part in races.
Perhaps you want to learn how to swim, maybe you want to run faster, or you just want to get stronger. Surely there is something that can help you.
SportPlus.sg was invited to try out the Elevate Performance Gym last weekend. PHOTO: CHERYL TAY, SPORTPLUS.SG
The best part though, is how Arthur is truly making this an inclusive gym. Other than the regular classes for people like you and me, he also has classes for seniors and those with special needs. In fact, he is also providing employment opportunities at his front desk for those with special needs.
This is not something new for him and his team of coaches – Arthur has been actively involved in leading Runninghour, an inclusive running club for people with special needs.
I really love how this is truly a gym for everyone, so if you’re wanting to swim or run better, or just get fit, give this place a chance.
P.S. Comes with rain showers and carefully handpicked body soap so you leave the gym smelling awesome.
Elevate Performance Gym is open at 3 Neil Road (S)088805. More at www.elevateperformancegym.com