Business Spotlight

Community is Key at Copper Moose Fitness

Joseph Hawthorne Copper Moose Fitness

After rehabilitating his body after years of grueling work as a landscaper, Joseph Hawthorne launched Copper Moose Fitness to help others bridge the gap between physical setbacks and achieving a healthy lifestyle. – Courtesy photo / Copper Moose Fitness

By Emily G. Peters

Copper Moose Fitness has positioned itself as Pasadena’s “Family Gym,” with a pretty refreshing philosophy to match. According to its owners, Joseph and April Hawthorne, fitness doesn’t require youth, special equipment or complex routines—it just requires you.

“So many people have an injury, ache or pain and need guidance to know what’s best to help them still live an active and healthy life,” said Joseph Hawthorne, head coach. “Copper Moose Fitness was born out of a necessity to fill this void and give people a safe and fun environment to become the strongest and best version of themselves.”

Hawthorne himself grappled with injuries. Long hours in the Arizona sun running his landscaping business deteriorated his body and relationships—and when he finally took a year off for physical therapy, he discovered his calling.

“I fell in love with the human body and committed to going back to school. I knew there were so many other people out there who were just like me—people who wanted to feel better, to feel human again,” he said. “I decided that I wanted to bridge the gap from where physical therapy left off and life began. After more school, too many certifications to count, a long internship at a renowned gym in Arizona and becoming the head trainer, it was time to start my own gym in Pasadena and impact more lives.”

Copper Moose Fitness Pasadena

Community is key at Copper Moose Fitness, where small and large group training sessions help members stay motivated without fear of judgment. – Courtesy photo / Copper Moose Fitness

Copper Moose Fitness (named affectionately after its owner’s two Labrador rescues) offers three training programs: Custom Fit, RAWFIT and PACFIT. Custom Fit assesses the whole body and creates a strength and conditioning program with an edge.

“It’s very similar to one-to-one training, but with a few others in the room to keep the energy and motivation alive,” Hawthorne explained.

RAWFIT focuses on lifting, taking in no more than nine people per session, while PACFIT opens up sessions to larger groups.

“RAWFIT is ideal for the busy executive, nurse, mom or teacher who wants to learn how to lift and feel strong,” said Hawthorne. “PACFIT is our large group metabolic strength and conditioning program. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, increase your strength, or fit working out back into your schedule and life, PACFIT is the perfect program.”

As the highest-rated studio in Pasadena, Copper Moose Fitness has a lot of evangelists out there, some even sharing their fitness testimonials on YouTube to motivate others. What begins with one person joining the gym often results in entire families becoming members—demonstrating the power of family in helping others get healthy.

“I get pleasure out of meeting so many of our members’ kids who are now living active lives, eating better and aware of things that they weren’t before their parents started coming,” said Hawthorne. And for those who doubt their ability to keep up, Hawthorne still emphasizes community as the antidote to fear.

“The reality is that everyone is focused on doing their best and celebrating that along the way. We can’t help you get in the door, but once you’re in you’ll be greeted with a smile, high fives and we will figure out what’s best for you, together,” he said. “We have the most supportive fitness community in Pasadena.”

Copper Moose Fitness is located at 2982 E. Colorado Blvd. in Pasadena. For more information, contact Copper Moose Fitness at | (626) 344-7375 | and follow along on Instagram @coppermoose_fitness and Facebook @coppermoosefitness.

August 22, 2018

About Author

Emily G. Peters Compulsive writer and champion of all things San Gabriel Valley. I especially love spotlighting local businesses, nonprofits and neighborhood game changers. Got one in mind? Drop me a line at

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