This month, we’d like to shine a spotlight on ZOOZ Fitness, an amazing fitness program based in LA designed specifically for young adults with special needs. Fitness is of the utmost importance in any child’s life but for a child on the autism spectrum, leading a healthy, active life can often be a challenge. This is partly due to the lack of exercise spaces that can welcome and accommodate children with special needs.
This is why we are so impressed with ZOOZ Fitness and how it tailors its classes to meet the unique needs of its athletes. We spoke to ZOOZ Fitness founder, Jake Weiner, to learn all about what inspired him to start the program, his journey with the special needs community, and the amazing things that he’s seen ZOOZ Fitness inspire in his special athletes.
Jake Weiner first became involved with the special needs community through a mentorship program at his school, the University of Arizona. Jake always loved working with people, especially in a setting where he could teach and lead. After he graduated, he took on a similar role at a summer camp where he helped guide young adults through acquiring the necessary life skills to live independently.
“I absolutely loved every minute of it,” Jake recalls. “And it was that summer that I knew that this was my calling — this is what I’m meant to do.”
That was roughly 5 years ago. Since then, Jake’s been involved with the special needs community through various non-profit organizations, public and private schools, respite work, vocational programs, you name it!
ZOOZ Fitness got its start when Jake noticed that the special needs community severely lacked exercise opportunities and fitness programs that catered to their abilities. Jake had been an athlete all his life so when he saw that the special needs population that he loved so much, did not have the same fitness resources, he decided that he would do his part to provide it for them.
ZOOZ Fitness offers classes to athletes as young as 4 years old going all the way up to their oldest athlete of 90. They segment their classes by age range from kids to teens to young adults and incorporate age-appropriate themes into each class. What we love most about ZOOZ Fitness classes is that despite it being a group workout, the staff is ready to give one on one attention to an individual who may need more support. This way, nobody feels like they’re falling behind and everyone’s needs and abilities are met on an individual level.
ZOOZ Fitness is currently offering classes of many varying age groups and workout types throughout the LA area. To learn more, visit ZOOZFitness.com