Daniel Stein, an exercise enthusiast, began working out at a young age as a means of coping with his learning disability.
“When I was four years old, I was diagnosed with ADHD,” Stein says. “I had a really difficult time in school, and one of the things that I used to help me with my behavioral challenges was exercise. I’ve always been drawn to exercise. I can’t really tell you why, but I’ve just always had this inclination to work out.”
After graduating from high school, a mentor of Stein’s encouraged him to become a certified personal trainer. One of Stein’s first clients was Dakota, a young man became paralyzed after a drug overdose.
“When I started working with Dakota, I knew that helping people with special needs was a calling for me,” Stein recalls. It’s more than just a job, more than just a career. It’s a calling for me to work with this population.”
Stein later became certified to train people with special needs and founded Special Strong in McKinney in 2016. He has since helped train people with special needs from all over the DFW metroplex.
Special Strong was designed specifically for people with special needs. Through customized health and fitness training programs, Special Strong can offer one-on-one private training, boot camps and virtual nutrition courses.
“There aren’t a lot of places where people with special needs can go and feel accepted,” Stein says. “And even if they do feel accepted, some trainers just don’t know how to work with people with special needs; and it’s not their fault.”
Since opening Special Strong, Stein’s services have been in high demand. To accommodate the need for fitness and exercise programs for people with special needs, Stein has launched Certify Strong, an intensive program designed to teach trainers how to work with people with special needs and how to transform their lives through health and fitness.
In his three years in business, Stein believes the most important lesson he’s learned is humility.
“We all need help,” Stein says. “It doesn’t matter who you are. We, as able-bodied and neurotypical people, need to learn interdependence. Everyone has a purpose. I love helping my clients unlock their potential and seeing them thrive as they were created. I see so many of their strengths and talents.”
To learn more about Special Strong and the Certify Strong program, visit specialstrong.com