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  • Writer's pictureKenneth Flakes, PE

B-Fit Universal Is Making a Difference in the Lives of People with Disabilities

Justin Flakes makes fitness more inclusive and accessible to everyone.

Justin Flakes, the founder of B-Fit Universal, is praising a young child on her achievement after learning to run as fast as possible.
Justin Flakes, the founder of B-Fit Universal, is praising a young child on her achievement after learning to run as fast as possible.

Adaptive fitness is a type of fitness that is tailored to the individual needs and abilities of people with disabilities. It is important because it allows people with disabilities to participate in fitness activities that they might not otherwise be able to do. The importance of this is underscored by the fact that only 24% of children and adolescents with disabilities meet the recommended 60 minutes or more of physical activity per day.

However, adaptive fitness has been neglected for many years. This is because people with disabilities have often been excluded from traditional fitness programs. As a result, many people with disabilities have missed out on the many benefits of fitness, such as improved physical health, mental health, social skills, and overall well-being.

B-Fit Universal: Making Fitness Accessible for Everyone

Justin Flakes is an adaptive fitness instructor working to change how people with disabilities view fitness. He founded B-Fit Universal, an adaptive fitness program that provides a range of services for individuals of all abilities, including those with autism, intellectual disabilities, Down syndrome, or social skills challenges. In addition to traditional fitness classes, B-Fit Universal also offers:

  • Summer extended school year (ESY) services to individual school districts focusing on social skills and physical fitness.

  • Adaptive wellness curriculums for teachers and parents to follow when teaching students at school or home.

  • Special camps that provide wellness and activities for students with disabilities.

  • After-school programs that provide students with activities, support, well-being, and social skills.

What Makes B-Fit Universal Different from Other Adaptive Fitness Programs?

Flakes is a certified personal trainer and a certified special education teacher. He says B-Fit Universal's focus on sport-specific fitness differentiates it from other adaptive fitness programs.

"Our programs are designed to help people develop the physical and social skills they need to participate in sports," Flakes said. "This is important because sports can provide a great way for people with disabilities to stay active and have fun."

young man swinging bat for first time.
Flakes is working with a student who wants to learn how to swing a baseball bat.

Flakes' Passion for Helping People with Disabilities

Flakes is passionate about helping people with disabilities achieve their fitness goals. He enjoys creating customized fitness programs for his students and is happy to work with the physical therapist that any parent has chosen.

"I see the amazing things that adaptive fitness can do for people," Flakes said. "It can help them improve their physical, mental, and overall well-being. It can also help them to increase their independence and self-confidence."

young lady learning to jump up
Flakes holds a young person’s hand to help her balance and give her the confidence to jump without fear of falling.

Flakes has seen the positive impact of adaptive fitness on people's lives. He recalls one student who struggled to do simple tasks, such as hitting a t-ball or dribbling a ball. However, after just two sessions with Flakes, the student had made significant progress and improved his self-esteem.

"It was amazing to see how much this student's confidence grew after just a few sessions," Flakes said. "She was finally able to do things that she had never been able to do before, and it was all because of adaptive fitness."

young girl learning to hold a bat.
Flakes is giving a student with disabilities her first lesson in baseball. He shows her where to hold her hands to handle the bat.

At a recent adaptive youth event, Christy Notareschi, a human resources director, praised Flakes for his work with the kids.

"Just wanted to give a HUGE shout-out to Coach Justin Flakes," Notareschi said. "He was incredible with the kids, made it a very fun, educational environment. We were blessed to have him and really appreciate all his time and energy!"

Flakes’ Vision for a More Inclusive Fitness Industry

B-Fit Universal is growing rapidly. Flakes is currently offering classes and camps in Houston, Texas, but he plans to expand to other cities in the future.

"I want to make adaptive fitness accessible to everyone," Flakes said. "I believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to be healthy and active, regardless of their abilities."

How to Get Started with Adaptive Fitness

If you’re interested in exploring adaptive fitness, here are some steps to help you get started:

  • Conduct research: Many resources are available online and in your community to help you learn more about adaptive fitness.

  • Consult a medical professional: Speak with your doctor or physical therapist to determine if adaptive fitness suits you.

Adaptive fitness is a great way to improve your health and well-being, regardless of your abilities. If you are in the Houston area and are interested in working with Justin Flakes, you can reach him at or visit his website at He would be happy to answer any questions you have and help you get started on your adaptive fitness journey.

Flakes is an inspiration to people with disabilities everywhere. He proves that anything is possible if you set your mind to it. He is also a role model for other fitness instructors who want to make a difference in the lives of people with disabilities.

"I'm just doing what I love," Flakes said. "I'm helping people to live healthier and happier lives, and that's all that matters."

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Disclaimer: The author of this article is the brother of Justin Flakes. He is not affiliated with his business in any way and has not received any compensation for writing this article.


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