Chloe Zilliac, Musician, Riekes Center Instructor and Former Student

“When I first came to the Riekes Center I thought it was the coolest thing ever. So much warmth and happiness and joy with the employees and the people at the Riekes Center. However, I also thought it was a little intimidating because there was so much going on and so many people and new faces. I was introduced to everyone and thrown into all these things that I had never done before which was pushing me out of my comfort zone!”

Susan Zaro, Oak Creek Apartments Alumni & Sport Pyscologist

“Gary would often ask me to sing along to a song he was singing even when I didn’t know the words. It was awkward since I am a poor singer. But he would encourage me to make up the words as I went along. It’s kind of a Albert Ellis technique. Albert Ellis was a therapist who would encourage his clients to do things that were harmless but potentially embarrassing to demonstrate to themselves that they can look silly and out of place and nothing really terrible is going to happen. It’s useful to practice that in life at times we are going to be out of our comfort zones and it’s okay, things are going to be just fine.”

“I think each student that comes through the Riekes Center has the opportunity to develop their passions. There are a lot of intangibles that students will walk away with if they embrace the experience.”

Hugo Vliegen, Piano Student, Father & Businessman

“There are multiple ways of teaching. The piano lessons I got when I was young were more of the traditional way of teaching. The aspect of improvisation compared to executing a piece in the way it was written are two different skills. Bennett is teaching it in a way where most of it is practice, but there is also a solid theory behind it which helps me since I am more of a logical than intuitive person. Understanding the theory helps with my execution. It also helps with my development of intuition and gives me a framework to work with. I have had a great experience and would definitely recommend the Riekes Center to others.” 

Patty Porter, Current Student & mother of Fernside Alumni

“I thought that since I had been doing pilates and yoga I was in pretty good shape. Gary hooked me up with Tim Dempsey and that first workout was when I realized that I couldn’t even do basic lifts. That was when I decided I would like to workout here. Over the course of time I’ve had a knee replacement so I’ve used the Riekes Center to get one side of my body as strong as the other. Between Tim and Robbie I think I’m doing great and am now pretty balanced with my body. I think that as you get older you need to sweat everyday, workout, and be agile and balanced. All those things are important to staying healthy. So the Riekes Center has become a part of my life.”

“One of the things that I like about working with the trainers here is they physically watch you the whole time. They make sure you are always in the proper form and working the correct muscle. If you are ever doing it wrong they stop you and make corrections. Whereas when I used trainers at the other gyms they would just tell me to do my reps, but didn’t really focus on my form. So that’s one of the big things I think is wonderful here.”

Taylor Morrow, Business Major, Menlo College

“I was only able to be a marketing communications intern at the Riekes Center for a little over two months. But in that time I learned an incredible amount. I learned skills that will not only help me in my future marketing endeavors, but also in life. I could not thank the Riekes Center enough for the amazing opportunity to grow!”

“I will never forget coming to help out with the recital in July and being told an hour beforehand that I would be doing the interviews that night. That was something that would completely take me outside of my comfort zone. The first couple interviews were a little hard because I was so nervous. However, after I got into the swing of things I actually began to enjoy it. By the end I was so happy I was able to accomplish the task. The cherry on top was hearing people congratulate me on a job well done.”

Kat Douglas – Santa Clara Volleyball

“I began training at the Riekes Center in 8th grade, and continued throughout my high school volleyball career. I feel so fortunate to have had the opportunity to train so closely with such experienced trainers. The Riekes Center provides a training environment that is unequal to any other. Each and every trainer is welcoming, which provides a fun, and motivational learning environment. Riekes not only helped prevent injuries, but also developed me as an athlete in speed, strength and agility. Riekes did an outstanding job of preparing me for the workload of a D1 collegiate athlete.”

Ryan Le – Tufts University

“Well, after going to Riekes I can definitely tell a difference in my overall athleticism. When working out with the team, I was able to lift more weight than people similar to me and do more reps on things such as push ups and pull ups. In regards to my speed, I was not very fast when coming into the Riekes Center, but once I left I felt more comfortable as I was able to improve on all facets of my running. My explosiveness increased after lifting and running as well as my overall speed, due to all the different forms of training we did. It helped a lot, as I saw a major increase in my 40 time and long distance running. It was definitely worth every second.”

Clay Jones – Colorado Football

“When I started with Sione, I was not even close to being in college football shape. With his help I got bigger, stronger, faster and am in the best shape I have ever been in. Sione couldn’t have prepared me any better to compete at the college level. The workouts are fun, and everything you do is tailored to your specific sport. After training with Sione at The Riekes Center, I wouldn’t train anywhere else."