The Ark School of Fitness

The Ark School of Fitness is a strength and conditioning facility located in Gainesville, Florida. We are a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. Our mission is to make healthy lifestyle choices accessible to individuals of any socioeconomic background. We provide, health, athletic, and nutritional education at a reduced, low, or no-cost structure.

Inside the Gym:

We specialize in Olympic Weightlifting and Conditioning. We believe that the Olympic Lifts (The Snatch, The Clean, and The Jerk), are crucial for athletic development, and that they should be an integral part of physical education.

Often times, being “in good shape” is correlated to a person’s aesthetics, to their appearance.  At The Ark, we focus on athletics, on having a deep understanding of how to move our bodies efficiently and safely, and to do everything possible to increase the length and quality of our lives. Achieving an aesthetic ideal is a byproduct of becoming a more capable person. Set attainable performance goals in the gym, and the physical transformation you desire will be realized.

Apart from being strong, we also want our athletes to be well conditioned physically. Our Weightlifting Program is coupled with a Conditioning Program that employs a plethora of movements, including but not limited to, running, rope work, calisthenics, power lifting, and plyometrics.

Outside the Gym:

The Ark is also working on projects to help increase quality of life in our larger community, by building outdoor gyms, and by providing free spaces to perform workouts and get coaching; this is our Athletic Community Project at work. Whether you are following our calisthenics program (our free on-line bodyweight workout blog), or something you threw together yourself, we hope that having access to infrastructure will encourage movement and healthy living in our community, as well as provide a cultural space which is safe, constructive, and encouraging.

We’ve built our first prototype adult fitness park on our property. This space is available free of charge to all visitors, and you can join us every Tuesday night at 7PM for our FREE community class. You’ll learn how to use the equipment and implements we provide in our fitness playground, and you’ll be better prepared to use this equipment independently with confidence. You can look to our calisthenics blog for ideas, or just check out the workout we have written up on our chalkboard outside.

Furthermore, The Ark is currently seeking motivated teens to participate in our Youth Weightlifting Program. Students who receive free or reduced lunch and attend either middle or high school may train with us free of charge. The mission of the Youth Weightlifting Program is to provide a constructive outlet for energy, and to produce incredible young athletes poised for success in life and sport.

If you would like to help us on our mission, while also achieving your own fitness goals, e-mail to schedule your free introductory session.

Here are some of the services that you can take part in right now:

FREE Community Fitness Class, every Tuesday at 7PM. Just show up a little before 7, we’ll be ready to receive you. This class focuses mostly on conditioning, calisthenics, basic gymnastics and track work.

FREE Yoga every Saturday morning at North East Park, at 8:30AM. Meet us behind the softball fields, next to the children’s playground, underneath the lone loblolly pine. CLICK HERE to link to the Facebook page. CLICK HERE for a map.

Sign-up for a FREE INTRODUCTORY SESSION. Join us for class and see what it’s like to train at The Ark. Regardless of your experience level or age, we have the tools to help you realize your athletic potential, and we will help you get into the best shape of your life!

Community Class


The Ark Facility

Workout of the Day:

141031: Happy Halloween (No 6PM Class)

Michael : 2014/10/31 08:20 : WOD

***No 6PM class this evening. A group of us will be meeting in costume at the gym at 6:15 to ride to Pleasant Cyclery for “Critical Mask,” which takes off from there at 6:30.***


1A) 5X3 Touch-and-go Axle bar deadlift, AHAP, R90 STRICT (Do not drop bar, especially if loaded with metal plates)

1B) 5X5 Bench Press, AHAP


For time:

20 HSPU or 30 Push-ups
40 KBS
20 Over-head Walking Lunge Steps with KB, left arm (lunge in place, R+L=1)
800m run
20 Over-head Walking Lunge Steps with KB, right arm (lunge in place, R+L=1)
40 KBS
20 HSPU or 30 Push-ups


3RM CJ, -5, -10
4X5 Hang Clean Pull, AHAP
4X5 Clean Deadlift w/ long three count at the knee (hang position)
3X5 Bent-over-row @ -10% of best from Tuesday
3X10 Strict Pull-up
3X10 Strict Toes-to-bar


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