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CHESTERTOWN, MD -- A truly unique, family vision for the health and wellness of our community has come to fruition and opened its doors this week under the name of AquaFit, in the new, environmentally-conscious, 23,000 square foot Brian E. Bainbridge Health Building on upper High Street in Chestertown.

AquaFit is a world-class, membership-based health and fitness club which has been in planning for more than five years. The Club is the combined vision of family members Julia H. Bainbridge, her daughter Joanna Bainbridge-Blackburn, and her son-in-law Bruce Blackburn, all physical therapists and owners of Chestertown Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation.

“The concept for our health and fitness club is partly the result of many of our patients wanting to continue or expand their exercise program after completing their prescribed physical and occupational therapies,” said Joanna Bainbridge-Blackburn, DScPT. “But they wanted to do this under our supervision.  Additionally, science and our early professional training proved that the best possible way to be happy and healthy as we get older is through proper exercise and nutrition.”

AquaFit’s mission encompasses a vision of fitness regardless of age or ability, a significant investment in innovative and environmentally-friendly technology, and the provision of a supportive and luxurious environment that encourages each person to embrace the aging process through physical fitness and nutrition education.

“Our creative team of Dunning Associates Architects of Pennsylvania and Wilson-Taylor Builders of Chestertown were able to take our vision and produce an incredibly well-designed, energy conscious structure,”  Dr. Blackburn continued. “The building is situated among the trees and has been tailored to retain the integrity and architecture of the downtown Chestertown area. At the same time, we have incorporated state-of-the-art amenities and construction standards.”

The building is named in memory of Julia Bainbridge’s son, Brian, who contracted Meningitis and passed away in 1997 during his first weeks at Physical Therapy School in Scotland.

“Naming the building for Brian is our way to keep him very much in the forefront of our family’s values,” said Bainbridge, who founded Chestertown Physical Therapy in 1985, which has relocated to the first floor of the new building.

"Construction of the building began with drilling down an average of 200 feet to install 70 geo-thermal wells under the parking lot,” said Bainbridge. “These wells work by capturing and moving heat that naturally exists in the earth at a constant temperature, (approximately 57 degrees), rather than by burning fossil fuels such as oil or coal. Our system is designed in a loop so that water returns to the ground to be warmed in winter and cooled during the summer. It’s naturally renewable and therefore, very friendly to our environment.

“The building’s geo-thermal wells are being used to heat the Club’s pool and spa water as well as to help heat, cool and naturally humidify the entire building,” Bainbridge continued.“ According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a well-designed and properly installed geo-thermal system produces less environmental harm and emits less CO2 into the air and operates more efficiently than any other technology currently available.

“It is a very “green” building, which ultimately is healthier for the occupants and healthier for the environment. We incorporated many of the components necessary for LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) certification.  The building will consume approximately 15 to 20 percent less energy therefore helping to conserve our natural resources for the future and at the same time, will be more cost-effective to operate compared to a conventionally constructed building,” Bainbridge said.

AquaFit’s programs and services mirror the ingenuity and care that the Bainbridge-Blackburn family put into the building’s design.

The Fitness Center includes  state-of-the-art gyms featuring free weights and circuit equipment, an aerobics studio, a cardiovascular exercise studio, a massage therapy suite, and a stationary bike SPINNING© studio.

“After extensive research AquaFit purchased the top-of-the-line Precor® and FreeMotion™ Fitness equipment because it is engineered to help achieve a highly effective workout in less time while reducing joint impact and burning more fat,” Dr. Bainbridge-Blackburn said.  “This investment is part of our absolute commitment to preventing injuries and offering programs for people of all abilities.”



AquaFit | 818 High Street | Suite 1 | Chestertown, MD 21620 | phone: 410.778.6555 | fax: 410.778.6536 | email: emoore@ctownaquafit.com
Hours of Operation: Mon-Thurs - 5:30am - 8:30pm | Fri - 5:30am - 7:30pm | Sat & Sun - 7:00am - 1:00pm
AquaFit is a wholly owned subsidiary of Chestertown Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation, located in the Brian E. Bainbridge Health Building in Chestertown.
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