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blog Dave Durante - The Cult of Rec Podcast, Episode 12

Dave Durante - The Cult of Rec Podcast, Episode 12

Kolby Seemann

about 1 month ago

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Welcome to Episode 11 of the Cult of Recreationalism podcast, hosted by Nathan Morris and Sean Lake. In this episode, they welcome a special guest, Dave Durante, a remarkable figure in the fitness world and the founder of Power Monkey Fitness. Let’s dive into the highlights of this engaging conversation.

Introducing Dave Durante

Sean Lake begins the episode with a warm introduction, highlighting Dave Durante's impressive credentials. Dave is a husband and proud girl dad, the founder of Power Monkey Fitness, the 2007 United States all-around gymnastics champion, an alternate for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, and fluent in Italian. Dave humorously notes, "There were some tidbits in there I don't even have in my own bio." This sets the tone for a candid and insightful discussion.

From Gymnastics to CrossFit

Nathan and Sean delve into Dave's journey from being a top-tier gymnast to a leading figure in the CrossFit community. Dave explains his role in creating the CrossFit Gymnastics advanced course. Reflecting on the blend of gymnastics and CrossFit, Sean Lake comments: "It was always a fascination. Gymnastics was this missing part of people's fitness. You see someone throw a muscle up down and you're like, 'What the hell is that?' And then you realize, 'I want to learn how to do that.'"

Dave shares his early days in gymnastics, crediting his New Jersey roots and the influence of Surgeon's Elite School of Gymnastics for his foundational skills and community spirit.

The Road to Beijing

Dave's journey to the 2008 Beijing Olympics was filled with highs and lows. He recounts his experience at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs and the emotional roller coaster of being an alternate: "To say it was an emotional roller coaster would be putting it mildly." Despite not competing, Dave praises his teammates' incredible performance, securing a bronze medal for Team USA.

Transition to Coaching and Power Monkey Fitness

After retiring from competitive gymnastics, Dave transitioned to coaching. He moved back to Stanford to help the team win a national championship in 2009. This coaching stint paved the way for founding Power Monkey Fitness. Power Monkey Fitness offers specialized training camps, which Dave describes as his "third child": "Power Monkey Camp is my third child. It's a beautiful thing for us to experience as adults, but for my kids to experience the way adults interact together."

Power Monkey Camp: A Unique Fitness Experience

Nathan, who has attended Power Monkey Camp, shares his experience: "It's awesome because we're working together as a group, trying to level up one another. It's a community where everyone's trying to become just a tiny bit better than they were yesterday." Dave elaborates on the camp's inclusive environment, catering to beginners and seasoned athletes alike. The camp focuses on various fitness disciplines, from gymnastics and weightlifting to rowing and yoga.

The Personal Side of Dave Durante

In a fun rapid-fire segment, Nathan and Sean ask Dave a series of personal questions. His first job was attracting customers at a ski shop by bouncing on a trampoline. His dream job was marine biologist, inspired by his love for the ocean. Dave's favorite sneakers are his collection of Jordan 1s, particularly a shiny silver pair. For hobbies, he enjoys drawing and art, which provided a creative outlet during his athletic career.

Give the Episode a Listen

Dave concludes with a reflection on the importance of shared wins and community: "What is collectively going to be better for all of us? That's how I run Power Monkey. It's how I run my family."

Don’t miss this inspiring episode with Dave Durante on the Cult of Recreationalism. Stay tuned for more episodes of Cult of Recreationalism, where we explore the intersection of fitness, community, and the relentless pursuit of excellence.