For more than a decade, Mike Knight has been known as the Michigan personal trainer to turn to when you’re serious about getting in shape. His no nonsense, “training camp” style keeps clients on track, but it’s his personal triumph over obesity that keeps them coming back. When personal trainer Mike Knight coaches a client, he does it with his heart and soul – with a complete understanding of how the right diet and exercise plan can alter the way one sees the world and the way the world sees them.
Today, Knight is co-owner and head trainer of Art of Strength West Bloomfield and only one of 64 certified Art of Strength Kettlebell instructors in the country. As a protégé of the country’s foremost expert on Kettlebell training, Anthony Dilugio, Knight combines his passion and sensitivity with knowledge of the most cutting edge forms of fitness training, from circuit training to high intensity rope workouts and of course, Kettlebells, which are often referred to as “a gym in one hand” and the most effective fitness tool in the industry.
While one might watch Mike Knight in the gym, behaving like a drill sergeant, and wonder about his sensitive side, a few minutes alone with him reveals where that determination, to not let any client fail, comes from. At the age of 36, he was more than 100 pounds overweight, his heart was clouded with fat, his blood pressure was soaring and he was on the brink of diabetes. While he’d been fit as a young adult and even managed to score a sports scholarship, eventually his bad eating habits began to catch up with him. Hiding behind his football player physique and baggy clothes that he was having specially designed, Knight lived in denial, until one day he could hardly crawl out of bed. It was a doctor’s wake-up call, giving him two years to live, and a friend’s compassion that forced him to take back control.
That friend was a personal trainer, who took Mike Knight under his wing and worked out with him every day for 16 months until he was back at his fighting weight. His new lease on life, brought with it, a renewed interest in fitness and it wasn’t long before Knight was taking on students of his own. He quickly became certified as a personal trainer, spin instructor and yoga teacher, becoming one of the most sought after trainers in the state and a Hollywood favorite – providing personal training for actors shooting films in Michigan.
Yet for personal trainer Mike Knight, something still seemed to be missing. He saw too many people being injured, when they weren’t on his watch. He was determined to find a safer and more effective way to achieve a total body workout. That search is what led him to Art of Strength, a metabolic form of training that when practiced properly, burns fat in less time, has been proven to reduce the possibility of workout injuries and is suited for everyone from the mom who wants to lose baby weight to professional athletes. Combined with the circuit training Mike Knight has become known for, his gym, Art of Strength West Bloomfield has become the center of fitness for adults and kids alike.
Knight’s next step – to build a foundation around Art of Strength’s kid’s program, Play Out Loud – so that every child in the country grows up thinking fitness is fun. It’s a tall order, but if there’s anyone who can get America’s kids back on their toes, it’s this man, who got his second wind, a second chance and what some might call, a second shot at childhood, at the age of 36.