I’ve been working full time in the fitness industry, as a powerlifting event promoter and muscle magazine journalist, since 2001 and my travels and projects have taken me to gyms all over The USA and as far away as SE Europe. So I’ve seen the best of the best and the worst of the worst (think abandoned highway rest area with some weights laying around.) I’m happy to report that Industrial Strength Gym in Portland is on the far end of the “Good” side of the scale. Their equipment is competition grade (Ivanko, Texas Strength, Rogue, ect) and they have 4 power racks, 2 bench / squat combo racks and 3 Olympic Weightlifting / deadlifting platforms so there’s plenty of space for barbell based training. In addition, they’ve got a double wide astro turf track for sleds and conditioning drills and enough kettlebells to make a Russian strongman smile. And if you like a full arsenal of barbells, they have almost every model available; from trap bars to safety squat bars to Texas deadlifting bars. If that’s not enough to lure you in to check this facility out, I can confirm that it’s SPOTLESS (even the bathrooms are shining like a nice hotel lobby’s) and the trainers are collegiately educated (i.e. bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology) + they all compete in various gym sports (powerlifting, Oly lifting, kettlebell, grappling, ect.) and they’re an affiliate with Impact Jiu Jitsu, the largest submission grappling school in Oregon. And, when we come to train in the late afternoons, we can always find free parking within 2 blocks of their location which is a nice change to the normal downtown Portland parking situation. Industrial Strength Gym is my location of choice for all of my squat, deadlift and conditioning sessions.
I’m in town on vacation and always like to train Brazilian jiujitsu (BJJ) in a new city when possible. I contacted Tony Gracia and he was very welcoming. I took the noon class (a beginner level), and I enjoyed it very much. He ran us through some great BJJ specific warmups and taught an excellent fundamentals class focusing on passing the half guard and transitioning into head and arm chokes. I was impressed with his detail oriented, fundamental focused and inviting teaching style. The gym itself was very clean and offered some great private instruction on fitness. Tony and I had some great matches. While he is a larger opponent I never felt that he relied on his size or strength. He is a very technical player. If you’re in the Portland area, I highly recommend as I believe he’s a solid instructor and a new or seasoned student can learn something.
Industrial Strength gym is a fantastic place to train! I have been at IS since December of 2013 and a competitive athlete most of my life and I couldn’t be happier with the trainers, classes and the quality of this facility. IS is an extremely welcoming community, the coaches and clients have created a supportive and positive environment. We also challenge each other daily to get the most out of our training time. Attention to detail and form are stressed in every class, so each athlete gets the most out of their workouts…sweating, training hard and having a blast in the process. Whether it’s strength and conditioning, kettlebells, BJJ or Olympic lifting, each class is excellently programmed and coached. As if the above is not enough, IS has the best physical therapist I have ever worked with. Josh Kidd is a rock star! He has worked closely with my surgeon and trainers at IS, so that I get the most out of my recovery. (I had knee surgery in February). Josh practices out of IS two days a week and the value of having him work so closely with the IS trainers is immeasurable. I have been able to successfully train, pre and post surgery, due to the expertise and knowledge of the trainers and Josh. The goal of lifting again and competing in Olympic lifting is around the corner and I can’t wait!! I know Mira will have me ready to compete and reach my goals. Industrial Strength has so many resources and options in one place…and a large, flat screen TV for chill time. Gotta love those little extras!
I’ve been working out here since November. Great small group strength training classes. The workouts are awesome. The staff and Tony, the owner have been amazing! I highly recommend this gym.
Strength and Conditioning classes and Kettlebell classes are my fav – all trainers and members are sooo supportive and they make the classes super fun! IS trainers give challenging workouts while focusing on form & safety – doing it right first! They also tailor it to your personal ability & level of strength as they encourage you to reach your individual goals. If you have any injuries, they would like to know them to help you still get a great workout without causing any pain or issues. They also offer PT! We are encouraged to keep journals to track our progress and challenge ourselves further for the following workouts. If you want a positive atmosphere to get strong & fit and to learn how to lift safely, Industrial Strength is for you 🙂
I have known Tony since 2012, where I met him at an HKC workshop. What struck me that day was his level of professionalism and genuine commitment to helping people improve. Fast forward a few years, my sentiments have not changed. I had the opportunity to work with Tony in a one-on-one setting in February of 2015. I came to him with torn up hands, a supposed grip strength problem, a sore back and cranky SI joint, and a kettlebell snatch technique that I knew was the root of these problems, yet didn’t know how to fix on my own.
In just a few short minutes he was able to dissect my technique and we broke down the exercise in to chunks I could understand. We began to re-groove the movement from the ground up. By the end of the session, my technique had achieved success to a point where my hands were no longer tired, my back no longer hurt, and I felt the correct muscles engaging 100 percent of the time! It was a great feeling. I also realized how exhausting it was to snatch correctly. I could barely do 10 correctly with one hand with the 24kg before I was winded. It’s been almost four weeks since that day, and all I can say is that Tony’s patience and technical suggestions made all the difference. I have been slowly increasing my volume and weight and have had no problems so far. I have now done over 20 in a row on one arm with the 24kg without setting the bell down, which is an amazing accomplishment for me.
I know it is not long before I feel “snatch test ready” all of the time.
Thank you, Tony!