It’s a kick
9Round in Grafton offers new approach to fitness

By Laurie Arendt - News Graphic Correspondent

Nov. 18, 2014

 Sara Modahl is one of the trainers at 9Round in Grafton. The facility, which opened this summer,
is one of 11 located in Wisconsin.

Photo by Mark Justesen


GRAFTON - Grafton’s newest fitness business breaks it down by the numbers: Nine sets of three-minute workouts, separated by 30 seconds of active rest.

“In other words, it’s a 30-minute workout,” said Ryan Thomson, club manager for 9Round. “Our members get in, get out and go on with their day.”

But 9Round puts a bit of a unique spin - well, more of a kick - on the way it approaches fitness. Founded by Shannon Hudson, the current IKF Light Middleweight Kickboxing Champion, the program utilizes a circuit training approach that incorporates the training used by kickboxers.

“But it’s not just kicking and punching, not at all,” he said. “We include a lot of body weight work. Plus, we don’t offer classes; it’s an individualized workout that serves people of all shapes, sizes and ability levels.”

 Participants perform three minutes of work at each station at the facility that opened this summer on Port Washington Road in Grafton.
Photo by Mark Justesen

9Round also uses a unique approach to avoid workout fatigue and boredom. Each day, trainers at Grafton’s 9Round, which is located in Schmidt’s Pavilion on Grafton’s east side, create a fresh workout. During each three-minute station, members do as much of the workout as possible.

“Someone who is more physically fit may cycle through the workout a few times,” Thomson said. “And someone who is just starting out may only do it once or complete part of it, and still get the right workout for them.”

Thomson first heard about the 9Round franchise from a former personal training client of his. He liked the concept, plus the fact that it stressed overall, general fitness. It also provides a quick, effective workout.

“Grafton was my first choice for a franchise, but at the time, the right location just wasn’t available so we opened our first in Whitefish Bay a year and a half ago,” he said. “The funny thing is that when we looked at Grafton, we thought the (former) Mr. Shoe location would be perfect É and then six months later, it became vacant and that’s exactly where we’ve ended up.”

 Entrance to 9Round in Grafton.
Photo by Mark Justesen

Grafton’s 9Round location, one of 11 in Wisconsin, opened on June 30 and now has almost 200 members. Thomson says that a number of the members maintain concurrent club memberships elsewhere and are using 9Round’s approach to supplement their fitness routine.

Though the concept, décor and equipment is clearly that of kickboxing - think kettlebells, weights, boxing bags and gloves, which are issued to everyone as part of their memberships - the average member is less of an MMA fighter and more of a soccer mom.

“We have tons of couples, but actually our membership runs about 60/40 with more women than men,” admits Thomson, who notes that he specifically looks for trainers who are personable and friendly with the clientele.

A membership at 9Round works similarly to those found at other fitness clubs, with members paying a monthly fee for unlimited access. Members can belong on a month-to-month basis, but receive discounts based on longer terms.

“Response to this location has been quite good, and we’ll be extending our hours soon,” says Thomson. “Ideally, we suggest coming in for a workout three times a week, but the more active you are, the better. We have some members who come in every single day for their workout.”

Grafton’s 9Round offers a free first workout. For more information, stop in or call (262) 293-2219.