Madison Healthplex eyes winter opening

MADISON, Miss. (AP) — When the new, $16 million Madison Healthplex Performance Training Center opens late this year or early in 2014, there is going to be more than a little something for everyone.

There will be everything you would find in an upscale fitness facility, or even most college sports performance training complexes and medical office clinics, as well. The facility will be designed to help people who need rehabilitation, including athletes, but will also provide opportunities for sports and fitness activities for the entire family from children to elders and for amateur, high school, college and even professional athletes.

The 96,000-square-foot facility currently under construction is a partnership and joint project of Mississippi Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Center and Baptist Health Systems.

“A partnership like this between Baptist and Mississippi Sports Medicine will create a facility offering services unlike any other offered in this market,” said Baptist Health Systems president and CEO Mark Slyter.

About 20,000 of the 96,000 square feet will be for medical office clinics for the Mississippi Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Center and the Eye Group of Mississippi.

Mayor Mary Hawkins Butler couldn’t be more excited about the new offering coming to Madison.

“This is an exciting time in the history of Madison,” Butler said. “This is only the beginning. Madison will one day be the area of specialized medicine for the state of Mississippi.”

“We at Mississippi Sports Medicine are excited about this project,” said Mississippi Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Center Administrator Robert Lodes.

“This facility is unique to the state of Mississippi and supports our community outreach programs.”

The facility follows a new concept for medical offices combined with fitness and sports facilities.

About 20,000 square feet of the space will be for medical office clinics for the Mississippi Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Center, and the Eye Group of Mississippi.

The rest will be for exercise and sports activities including the Healthplex Performance Training Center with facilities similar to existing Baptist Healthplex in Clinton and Jackson.

Amenities include locker rooms, exercise rooms, weight training rooms, steam room, sauna and indoor aquatic therapy with warm water therapy pool, a hot tub and cold plunge therapy pool and a HydroRX therapy pool that includes an underwater camera to monitor exercise of athletes or other persons using the pool, which is primarily designed for rehabilitation purposes.

From a construction standpoint, the project is progressing well, said David Carpenter, who is director of the two existing Baptist Healthplex facilities, and is going to be director of The Madison Healthplex Performance Training Center. The general contractor is Brasfield & Gorrie, based out of Birmingham, Ala.

Carpenter said most of the performance side of the building is dried in, and workers are beginning some inside detail work.

“A portion of our parking has been paved,” he said. “We are continuing to do work on the outdoor and indoor turf field. The indoor field house will have a turf surface of approximately 22 yards by 40 yards. This turf field will be used for the training of athletes in speed, agility and balance. It will be used for other various group exercise classes such as cross fit or boot camp programs.”

The outside turf field is 45 yards by 55 yards, with an outdoor sprint track that is 70 yards long. Carpenter said the beauty of indoor and outdoor facilities is being able to utilize both. While most of the year athletes can train outside, if the weather is extremely wet and cold, athletic training can continue inside.

There will be a performance weight training area containing more advanced weight training equipment specific for training athletes of all ages from middle school to the professional athlete.

Carpenter said the fitness facility will have everything those seeking a healthier lifestyle could ask for including all the cardio equipment such as treadmills, bikes, stair steppers, rowers, elliptical trainees and adaptive motion trainers. There will be a traditional fitness center with weight training equipment, and a functional training area for body weight training and working with kettle bells and medicine balls. There will be an indoor track around the general fitness area that will be about a twelfth of a mile long.

Another component they feel will be popular is an area for after-hours fitness — a big trend especially helpful for people who do shift work. A portion of the facility will be available to members after normal operational hours.

Still another innovation is a wellness type clinic integrated into The Madison Healthplex Performance Training Center. The center will be staffed by a nurse practitioner offering help with preventive medicine, nutritional advice including help with weight loss, and developing an exercise program.

Group exercise classes will include Zumba dance, yoga, body sculpt and boot camp type classes. There will be group water exercise classes in the aquatic facility, which includes a warm water pool with programs for arthritis patients.

Various programming will be available such as tri-athlete training. The facility will have the ability to host NFL combine, as well as high school combine.

The facility will be a one-stop fitness shop for the entire family. “If someone has a family, the mom and the dad can be in healthplex fitness area participating in a class or doing cardio training, and the children can be on sports side doing sports performance training,” Carpenter said.

They are looking forward to a soft opening in December, hopefully to coincide with the Christmas on the Ice program that Baptist is putting on for the second year. The grand opening is planned in January at the facility located just a few hundred feet north of the present Baptist Madison medical office building.




Information from: Mississippi Business Journal,

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