In Shape Fitness donates equipment to Southside

Published 7:11 pm Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The friendship between Southside High School girls basketball coach Rand Smith and In Shape Fitness owner David Johnson created the opportunity for the school to receive a generous donation of weight equipment this past Thursday.

“I asked [Smith] if they needed some weight equipment out there, and he told me they did,” Johnson said in an e-mail to the Times Journal. “I’m very passionate about sports and working with athletes, so I thought this would be a good gift.”

In Shape Fitness donated two olympic flat benches, an olympic declined bench, a shoulder press olympic bench, a declined sit-up bench, a seated calf raise, a leg press, a Glute Ham Develper, a smith machine, an adjustable cable crossover, a leg curl machine, a standing arm curl and a lat pull down machine to the school.

“I hope this will help the school by giving their athletes and staff some extra equipment to train on,” Johnson said. “Student athletes should have an opportunity to be their best, and I hope this equipment will help them achieve their goals.”

Smith and Johnson have known each other since sixth grade, and their friendship is why Johnson contacted Smith about his surplus equipment.

“He’s one of my best friends, and he initiated the whole thing,” Smith said. “He contacted me saying that [In Shape Fitness] was getting new weight equipment, and they were getting rid of the others and would like to donate that to [Southside]. I immediately without checking with anybody said we would take it.”

Smith’s automatic acceptance of the gift wasn’t an issue for Southside principal Cedric Brown, who was also pleased to receive the donation. According to Brown, the gift allows Southside to expand their weight room, and provides an additional resource to everyone at the school.

“It gives us an opportunity to expand in the weight room,” he said. “Not just for football or the male athletic sports, but what we’ve done is created a female fitness center for our female athletes… We’ll also open it up to our staff, so that we can create a healthy environment for our staff members.”

Johnson and In Shape Fitness took the initiative and opened up the season of giving before Halloween, Black Friday and the 25 days of Christmas. He gave back to the community and Southside High School was beyond grateful.

“It feels great,” Johnson said. “I love having the opportunity to give back to Selma. I’ve been incredibly blessed with In Shape Fitness, and we are more than happy to do this. Just paying it forward.”