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This bungee workout is easier on joints and knees

There’s a new place to work out in Pahrump that requires newcomers to fall face forward. Co-owner and coach of Fitlife Bungee, Kayla Murphy wants to ensure the military-grade bungee cords that are anchored to structural beams from the 14-foot ceilings won’t let customers hit the ground while they’re largely suspended and bouncing around.

After their introduction course, patrons run and jump in the air. At times they appear to be flying before their bungees snap them back to the center.

Bungee fitness allows anyone between 90 and 300 pounds to partake in full-body exercise classes without heavy impact on their knees and joints. This allows people post-retirement to get back into exercising without injuring themselves.

“There’s very little impact,” Christine Murphy said. “That was good for me because I have really bad knees, so for me to be able to do this, at 59, it really helped me.”

This is a small independent business venture owned by husband and wife team Eric and Christine Murphy, along with their daughter-in-law, Kayla Murphy. The mother and daughter-in-law are both certified coaches in the venture while the husband was the “muscle” in putting the fitness studio together with his son.

From social media video to small business

One night Eric Murphy sat at home while he was browsing on Instagram when he saw people working out while in the bungee harness. He turned to his wife, who has bad knees, and asked what she thought about it.

After that, Christine and Kayla Murphy began to research the idea and before they knew it they were on the path to starting a business in Pahrump.

One of their biggest hurdles was finding an appropriate location.

The family required a building with 14-foot tall ceilings in order to use the bungee equipment. They landed a fitness studio located near Oxbow and Wahkiakum avenues.

When the family first got the keys to the building it was a shell with concrete floors and bare walls, but it was up to Eric Murphy and his son to get the place up and running by the soft opening in April.

Despite suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, Eric worked with his son every day until their backs hurt.

“Are we ever going to get to this goal?” Eric thought as he was laying down the floor. “The floor was our biggest nemesis.”

After the soft opening in April, he has become more of a silent investor and is happy to see the labor that went into the fitness studio and turning a dream into a reality.

There’s no competition.

Since the doors opened in April, members are excited to come back to their next workout class where they increase their heart rate and sweat.

Anissa McClain, a member of the Fitlife Bungee, says she tried a local gym in the area with a trainer, but it was not the right fit. Then she found bungee fitness.

Her workout friend, Shayna Henkel, who is also a member of the Fitlife Bungee, tried indoor cycling but wasn’t able to stay interested enough to stay consistent. But she says bungee fitness is different.

“I love it,” said Henkel, who has tried many workout routines. “It’s the one thing I’ve actually stayed committed to regularly.”

“It’s become quite the social activity for everybody,” Christine Murphy said. “People become friends, they’ve met people and join classes together with them, without even knowing each other.”

With Pahrump’s growing retirement population, Christine Murphy says the studio will soon offer a seniors class with a tailored session for strengthening and conditioning older and aging bodies.

For McClain, she’s working on lowering her weight to support her knees and the bungee fitness classes help her get her workout without having sore knees the next day. She has heard skepticism about bungee fitness, but she points to her gradual weight-loss results and sore muscles after every workout. And she’s doing it with her friends.

“[The class is] only an hour, but you don’t realize in that hour the way you meet everybody, the way you laugh, the way you challenge each other,” McClain said. “It’s just a great group of girls.”

To Henkel, everyone is on the same boat and there’s no judging and a lot of uplifting. Kayla Murphy came from cross-fit, then the gym, but was bored with it and now with bungee fitness every class has something different.

“We made our dream come true,” Kayla Murphy said.

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