DICKINSON – When someone is anticipating a vacation or a wedding, hoping to build their body for the summer or adapt to those old clothes, regular exercise is key. Many people have clung to gym memberships to stay consistent in these activities – even after the initial goals have been achieved – and they seek places with more individualized methods of instruction to be consistent with their energies. and their efforts.

From left, Iron Chapel trainers Karen Boswell, Wyatt Hegler, and co-owner Daniel Kerr — along with friend and co-owner Colby Wartman — run the gym, located at 121 1st Street E. in Dickinson

Gaylon Wm. Parker / The Dickinson Press

“A gym is a place where you can not only get physically stronger and all that, but it’s a big mental health boost because you can’t go outside and there’s no lots of sunshine and people struggle with anxiety and depression,” said co-owner Daniel Kerr. “I think that’s a big part of that as well.”

The gym is co-owned by Kerr and his friend, Colby Wartmen, and the two have been running the gym since 2020. They have made it through the covid pandemic and now they foresee a day when they could outgrow their comfortable downtown location and need to grow.

At the start of the winter season, gyms like Iron Chapel will see an almost immediate influx of people, but in the end, Kerr said they couldn’t keep up and their phones were ringing nonstop.

“Our classes are bigger than they’ve ever been, and I don’t know if that’s residual COVID or what. Once the weather starts to improve as well, they want to come out and pick on them and that’s on both the athlete side and the general population side,” Wartman said. “Additionally, this winter has been the most brutal we have had. never had. But it has also been the busiest.

The two have been in business for six years, having started in a 25 x 25 square foot space above Bell Chiropractic, “super humble beginnings,” as Wartman described them, and they have grown into a central operation that encourages people like Haley Hargrave all the time.

“They have great coaches here, and it’s great to have somewhere to come and it’s not a ton of people here; you can just do it and go home,” Hargrave said.

Word of mouth being the best advertising, Kerr and Wartman saw the best possible improvements and took things slowly, but deliberately. “People liked what we were doing and we had more requests, so we moved here and we got to the point where we had no more space,” Kerr said.

“This new location is perfect, it’s worked well,” Wartman said. “It’s been great for us – the location is great – but in the future, one day, we’ll need more space. It would be difficult to leave here, but we will need a larger facility at some point.

Staff members include trainers Wyatt Hegler and Karen Boswell, and both say they appreciate the personal style The Iron Chapel offers.

“There aren’t too many people here and it’s more of an individual environment with real personal training as opposed to group training where everyone is doing the same kind of stuff,” Boswell said, who has been a trainer and involved in fitness for 35 years. . “We work with people based on what they want and where they are in fitness and program something that fits them and their lifestyle.”

Hegler agreed, saying, “I really like it here, I’m a big fan. I love the vibe here and it’s a fun environment that everyone enjoys.

However, it’s the personal, one-on-one instruction and attention that people appreciate, and Kerr works with Wartman to provide a level of mentorship to gym members, as well as Boswell and Karey. They maintain strong member relationships and value all of their customers.

“I think it’s multifaceted,” Kerr said. “And while I’m biased, I think the technical skills – like the actual training part – we’re very good at it, and knowledgeable about moving and getting people in shape; and we get permanent results.

Kerr added, “But I think perhaps what sets us apart from everyone else is how we connect with customers. Our retention is good and if they walk through that door they usually stay, and we have great clients.

Wartman seconded this motion saying, “Our retention is better than maybe 90% of gyms, I think these people become friends and we go out on the town with them…we do great things that connect with people at a friendly level rather than just a transactional level.

“And we train these athletes and the mostly athletic training is just connecting with the kids and honestly from my upbringing is being the mentor I needed when I was that age.”

For more information on the Iron Chapel, located at 121 1st Street E. in Dickinson, please visit


or call 701-290-2064 or email [email protected].

Gaylon Wm.Parker

Gaylon is a sportswriter from Jensen Beach, Florida, but has lived all over the world. Growing up with a sports background gave him a love of sports that led him to a career as a journalist in places like Enid, Okla., Alamogordo, NM, Pascagoula, Miss. and Viera, Fla. since 1998. His main passion is small town community sports, especially baseball and soccer.

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