“Mens sana in corpore sano.”
That’s how Katie Allen strives to live her life – a sound mind in a sound body. It’s the example she works to set. It’s the end result of the passion that drives her. And it’s the lesson she teaches her clients.Katie joined Tidewater Physical Therapy in 2013 as its Director of Performance Services, overseeing the programs and operations of the independent company’s three Performance Centers located in Suffolk, Newport News and Gloucester, Va. The Performance Centers work with athletes (youth, high school, college, professional and adult) and fitness enthusiasts to help them reach their performance goals on the field, at home and in work.Clients can work with personal and sports performance coaches one on one, in a semi-private setting or in small classes for groups and teams.
“It’s not just about the exercise,” she said. “People can go anywhere and exercise. But what they need and what they get from training here is a relationship from someone that’s truly invested in helping them be stronger and achieve their goals.”
Katie earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia, where she was recruited to play volleyball. She went on to earn a Master’s Degree in Exercise Science from the California University of Pennsylvania, where she also played volleyball and basketball.
Katie, like all Tidewater Performance Coaches, is certified through one of the highest level certifying agencies in the field – the National Strength and Conditioning Association as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach. She does not just supervise the Tidewater team; she is a performance coach herself. While she works with a wide variety of clients, her main passion is for weight loss clients, and volleyball players.Katie doesn’t just lead the other certified and degreed trainers on the Tidewater team (and they are all certified and degreed). She digs in and works with clients herself, mainly with weight loss clients and volleyball players.
Her formula for helping clients develop strong minds and strong bodies? Developing a relationship with them.Katie begins each new relationship with a client by assessing their baseline physical abilities, the habits that helped lead them to their current condition, their goals and capacity for meeting her to work out. She then develops a plan and introduces clients to fitness or performance training in a comfortable way. As she works with clients, she pushes them out of their comfort zones. “The more they learn to trust you and the more rapport you build with them, the more they’ll allow you to push them,” Katie said. She said it’s all about asking the right questions in the relationship. “It’s figuring out what kind of motivation they need and how often they need that motivation,” she said. “People and have all sorts of needs, and I love listening to them, getting to know them and helping them see results.” Results come in all different forms for Katie’s clients, and usually they don’t just stop with one goal. “The more that you train with people, the more they come to rely on you and develop new goals,” she said.
When she’s not helping people transform and achieve their goals, Katie enjoys fitness herself and can be found running, lifting weights, playing beach volleyball, or doing her favorite activity of playing sports with her son at their Virginia Beach home.