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Crossfit Aficionados Have A New Place To Turn

Millwood resident and former weightlifter Steve Swistak recently opened Downstate Crossfit. Photo Credit: Sam Barron
Swistak said crossfit is a multidimensional workout that improves all aspects of a person's life. Photo Credit: Sam Barron

BRIARCLIFF MANOR, N.Y. -- Crossfit aficionados and people just looking to get in shape have a new gym in Briarcliff.

Downstate Crossfit recently opened at 430 North State Road in Briarcliff. The gym was started by a group of student athletes from Westchester, including Millwood resident Steve Swistak.

Swistak is hoping to build a community at his gym. Crossfit works the entire body and is something that beginners and fitness buffs can learn.

"It caters to a vast community of bodies," Swistak said. "All shapes and sizes."

Crossfit is all about getting a person in better shape and giving them more energy. Swistak said crossfit can make a person happier and improve their personal and professional lives.

Swistak has been certified in crossfit for two years and before that worked with USA Weightlifting as a certified coach in the snatch and clean and jerk.

Swistak competed in weightlifting and lived at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, where he befriended weightlifter and future WWE Heavyweight Champion Mark Henry.

"He was a great guy," Swistak said. "He was very jovial."

Crossfit helps focus on day to day movements and Swistak said it makes movement in every day life easier as a result.

"Your workout changes," Swistak said. "We try to work every muscle when you come here. A typical workout, you'll just do biceps one day and then your back. It's one intense workout."

Swisrak believes when doing crossfit you build a sense of community with your fellow workout buddies.

"You start to root on people as they begin to progress," Swistak said.  "You see people become stronger and more confident. They become fun to watch."

Swistak said crossfit works for people playing all sports, from football to hockey.

"It's so multidimensional," Swistak said. "It's probably one of the best workouts you're ever going to get. It fosters such a positive environment."

Swistak said a workout like crossfit will ensure people who join January won't quit in a couple weeks like at other gyms.

"You don't see this in crossfit," Swistak said. "You're part of a family. You don't want to leave. You meet people and have so many positive changes in your body.

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