Testimonials

Allan Houston
NBA All-Star and Olympic gold medalist

I’ve worked with Charles DeFrancesco and his team at THE ARENA over the last 2 years. The student-athletes that have participated in our foundation’s activities enjoy the direct feedback and measurement tools that The Arena provides.

The staff is engaging, qualified and knowledgeable with a high level of education and training in the field. The workouts are based on data and performance with set goals in mind.

The strength and conditioning program staff at THE ARENA is highly capable of helping you gather adequate information for your potential development.


Jenna Wolfe
Television Personality and Celebrity Trainer

As the Lifestyle and Fitness expert on NBC’s Today Show, I had worked with countless fitness professionals over the years. Very few compare to Charlie Defrancesco in experience and knowledge and even fewer in drive and spirit.

The training program he has built at the Arena is incredible. There is less concern for making a dollar and more concern for changing a life. They insist on the client always knowing why they are doing a certain exercise as opposed to blindly agreeing to the workout. The trainers there are as qualified as any I have ever worked with. It’s a different experience when you walk in there. They aren’t looking to sell you shiny equipment and the latest trends and fitness feds. They just want you to get healthier and stronger and thus happier.


Michael Marzonie
Boston College Class of 2020

Due to an elbow injury I sustained during the summer of 2015 I began training with Pure in September of the same year. My goals for training were injury prevention, increase strength and to learn how to train properly. I committed to play baseball at division 1 Boston College at the end of my junior year of high school and knew I had a lot of work ahead of me if I wanted to compete at that level. After I began training with Steve I quickly realized the importance of resistance training and I gained an appreciation for the work ethic and knowledge professional baseball players need to succeed.


Trevor Johnson
Dartmouth College Class of 2020

I first starting training with Pure November 2014 looking to get stronger, faster and increase my exercise knowledge and form. I came in weighing 150 pounds and squatting 245 pounds for a 1 repetition max. After one year of training with Steve, I now weigh 171 pounds and my one repetition squat has increased to 385 pounds. Due to my training I feel my swing speed has increased and my total confidence level has increased as well. As a junior I was nominated Honorable mention All American and will be looking to become All American my senior year. I will be attending Dartmouth College, a division 1 baseball program, in the fall of 2016 as a freshman to play Center Field and Relief Pitcher.


Matt Otteman
Former MLB player for Seattle Mariners

My name is Matt Otteman, and I was a personal trainer at Pure Fit Club for a little over three years. Before becoming a trainer, I played professional baseball for the Seattle Mariners. As a professional athlete, I had many different trainers and various workout programs. When I first started working for Pure Fit Club, I couldn’t believe their advanced knowledge and experience, and I was impressed at how they surpassed the standards of the mainstream training world. We trained many baseball players of various ages, and every kid, if they put the time in, got better! The best thing about the Pure Fit Club programs are they are individualized to the players to prevent injuries and improve form and function. They take the time and effort to not only get kids back to playing after an injury, but to formulate a training program to stop injuries before they happen. Baseball players are more predisposed to injury than other sports, so this was extremely valuable to me as a trainer. It is so rare today for a public training staff to have the knowledge and program design of a professional baseball team’s staff. Any kid that works out at Pure Fit Club will get better. I have seen it with my own eyes. They are the real deal.


Jon Lewis
2012 16th round draft pick Florida Marlins

The team at Pure Fit Club and Next Level Speed has helped me to improve my overall baseball skills in my off seasons from professional baseball. My training has even made me a stronger and faster player. I would recommend them to anyone who is serious about taking their sports skills to the next level. I’ve worked out with many pro coaches and athletes, and I still pick Next Level Speed over all of them.”


John Wallace
Former New York Knick

Pure Fit Club has a tremendous staff of personal trainers who impressively worked with my son, Joey. In all my years of playing in the NBA and working with the industry’s highest level of trainers, I have never seen such a thorough evaluation or training program.They were able to pinpoint Joey’s movement deficiencies and correct them, and this enhanced my son’s performance on the court immediately. Joey had a lot of ankle pain, which hindered his ability to jump. After he started training at Pure Fit Club,his jumping mechanics improved, and his vertical jump increased, which both improved his performance on the court. Joey now has a full scholarship to play basketball at Southern Connecticut State University.


Ted Forst

Pure Fit Club helped me work around my pre-existing injury, and my athletic performance on the field improved due to their training regimen. After working with them for one summer, I was able to add 440 points to my ASI score. Additionally, I was able to add ten pounds of lean body mass, while increasing my vertical jump by 4 inches. I thank Pure Fit Club so much for their knowledge and personal attention, and I would like to especially thank my trainer, Gio.


JR Schuck

I have been training with Pure Fit Club for over 4 years, and I have seen my in-game performance increase dramatically. The Pure Fit Club team has integrated a well-rounded strength and conditioning program along with their injury prevention protocols, which has allowed me to become the #3 player at the Williams College squash team. The athletic testing program they offer provided me with hard data to see my progress, and it was a great indicator of my improved athleticism, which I owe to my training at Pure.


Paul Heyman

During the summer of 2015, my son and daughter participated in squash fitness camps with Pure Fit Club.My children were educated on how to train properly while they enjoyed the positive role models employed by Pure Fit Club. The staff did a phenomenal job. It was a great experience for my children, and I recommend it to anyone looking for a good program.


Sue Sheindlin

My daughter Mia has been training with Pure Fit Club for over two years. The trainers at Pure helped her attain the skills she needed to perform better while playing basketball and lacrosse. The ASI testing showed us her strengths and weaknesses, and it gave us the information we needed to focus on her athletic weak points. Although Mia is only in Middle School, she passed the High School teams physical because of the expert training she has received at Pure Fit Club.


Caroline Blake
Rye, NY
GA 09′

I have worked with Dan to prepare for both my lacrosse and soccer seasons and have noticeably improved in speed and strength. He has me do lots of exercises that work on fast twitch muscles, which help with my quickness and my first-step. He also incorporates lots of strength training into the sessions in a way that gives me the muscle mass that I need to compete at a high level without inhibiting my speed or agility. Overall, my ability to perform on the field has been greatly improved after working with Dan and I feel faster, stronger, and more ready to compete.


Cliff & Laurel Asness
Greenwich, CT
Managing and Founding Principal  AQR Capital Management

Dan is a fantastic trainer and we are happy to recommend him without reservation. We’ve both worked with several personal trainers over the course of the years and we know that Dan is top notch. He is exceptionally professional, extremely knowledgeable about his field, and has a friendly easy going manner, important when you’re getting up at 5 something AM to exercise with someone!

We have very different goals and Dan has the flexibility and knowledge to cater to each of us and our individual needs. Our workouts are varied and fun. We both have met our initial goals with Dan and have moved on to set new goals. Finally, and perhaps most important, Dan has been very sensitive to working around injury and he places our safety as his highest priority. Cliff has had a chronic back problem for 15 years and Dan has the knowledge to design Cliff’s workouts so that further injury doesn’t happy. Having worked with many trainers, we know that too many trainers have a “no pain, no gain” attitude and have their clients doing things that can cause injury. One of the things we appreciate most about Dan is that has the knowledge, and is always taking continuing education classes to learn more, so that he can design programs for his clients so that no injuries occur.


Jon Sheindlin, MD
Scarsdale, NY

I have been training with Charlie for over 2 years and enjoy my increased flexibility and strength. Charlie has an in-depth understanding of training that he uses to tailor an excellent individual work-out plan. He listens and creates a unique regimen that has variety to maintain interest while continuing to focus on the overall plan. I recommend him highly and look forward to many years of keeping fit and staying healthy.


Natasha Kingshott
Rye, NY
GA 09′ – US Junior National Squash Team Member

Training with Dan has taken my game to the next level. He combines speedwork, strength training, conditioning, and stretching to create a program that maximizes your body’s potential. I have worked with Dan for about a year and each session he introduces new exercises to target different muscle groups. I am constantly challenged both mentally and physically. Dan motivates you to push your body to the limit, while his enthusiasm makes workouts enjoyable. Working with Dan is an integral part of my training and has dramatically improved my performance on the squash court. I couldn’t ask for a better trainer!


Renee Sayegh
White Plains, NY
Chubb Insurance

Chris Petraglia has been training me for a year now. I came to him when I was at my low. At the time I had been struggling with my weight and felt down about myself. I was extremely depressed and trapped. Before him my exercise routine consisted of only cardio, thinking that was the proper way to stay fit and boy was I wrong. Chris challenged me from day one. I knew immediately that I have been training myself incorrectly and learned how out of shape I was. With his education and experience, he taught me the proper way to train. Within a month I had already seen a difference in my body. Throughout the year, I have seen a difference in my self esteem. Not only has Chris trained me physically, he trained me mentally. He taught me how to focus and gave me confidence to reach my goal. I gained confidence in the gym, I was also confident outside the gym. I felt my personality blossom. Today, I am 33 years old and feel I am in the best shape ever. I feel great; feel stronger and very happy with my body. I am truly grateful for having the pleasure to meet and train with Chris. They always say certain people will come in your life and make a significant change. He’s that person to me. No words can ever express my gratitude towards him.


Rob Ivanhoe
White Plains, NY
Real Estate Practice Chair  Greenberg & Traurig, LLP

I have been training with Dan for nearly two years. I can say that I am in much better physical shape, with more flexibility and strength. More important, certain activities that used to cause discomfort I find greatly improved performance and reduced discomfort. Dan is also extremely reliable and pleasant to spend time with each week. I highly recommend his services.


Stan Rosenstock
Rye Brook, NY

Dan has a complete understanding of the areas of that body that need to be strengthened to improve the golf swing. By combining strengthening, core training and flexibility he has helped me increase distance and improve my balance and develop a more far more stable base. Dan is reliable and easy and fun to work with.


Susanne Vasquez
Larchmont, NY

It has been 10 years that I have been training with Charlie. He has gotten me back to my original weight after two pregnancies. He helped me to maintain my weight throughout the years with diet and exercise. I am very active I many sports and he has helped me through strength training to build my core as well as work on muscle weakness to prevent injuries. I plan to be very active for a long time and happy I have Charlie to help keep me fit.


Vincent Gelardi
Bronxville, NY

I have been training with Charles for over 4 years. His program has allowed me to stay fit and continue running pain free. I had many trainers in the past and tried various programs over the years which usually ended in injury or poor results. Charles is an expert and I highly recommend him to anyone looking for a professional trainer.


Rachel Stern
Purchase, NY

Charles has been my trainer for over 7 years. Since I have been working with him my marathon times have improved and I feel great. He was able to rehabilitate my chronic IT Band and greatly improved my flexibility. His workouts have helped me stay focused on my goals and stay injury free.


David Kleinhandler
Rye Brook, NY

When we first started I had a low back and hip injury that prevented me from playing basketball. I had many trainers and not one of them could help me. His knowledge was beyond that of any trainer I ever worked with. After just 6 months I lost 40lbs and no longer had back or hip pain. I was able to play basketball at a Syracuse charity event for 3 days and continue to play three times a week pain free.


John Wallace
Fairfield, CT

I met Charlie while working at Coach Boeheim’s Syracuse camp. He was able to help my injured foot and explained ways I could stop it from reoccurring. His program has helped me play pain free and stay in basketball shape. In all my years playing in the NBA I have never worked with such a knowledgeable team of professionals.


Mike Petrick
Greenwich, CT

Charlie has been training me for squash for the last 3 years. Working with him has allowed me to play at a high level for the Williams Varsity team. Charlie wrote me detailed programs to do on my own while I was traveling and away at school.


Kyle Martino
Harrison, NY

I originally saw Charlie for my knee and low back issues caused by tennis and squash. After he eliminated my pain he focused on strength and endurance for squash. His workouts helped me play my best and make the US squash team.


Lee Witham
Rye, NY

As a head squash pro I understand the importance of training correctly. Over the last 5 years Charlie has helped me manage my chronic back injury and has educated me on many ways to add fitness to my clinics. He has helped my athletes manage injuries and perform at the highest level.


Gary Ash
White Plains, NY

Before I met Charlie I was severely injured by another trainer. After multiple back and neck surgeries I gained over 100lbs and was completely debilitated. Charlie was able to work around my injuries and go from 300lbs to 175lbs in one year without intense workouts. He has really improved my quality of life and given me another chance to be active.