CARY — The first thing Robert Cooney wants you to know about All Sport Muscle Therapy is that this is not a spa.
The music isn’t meant to be soothing, the lights aren’t dimmed, and massage tables aren’t hidden away.
“We serve athletes and active individuals,” Cooney said. “They get more progress out of what we do. It is a more aggressive style.”
With that aggressive style comes a more time-efficient model. Because treatments target a particular problem area, rather than the whole-body massage offered at spas, a session typically lasts 15 to 30 minutes.
“We are piece work,” Cooney said. “A runner may want his calves and legs worked on. We get a lot of CrossFit people.”
Cooney’s experience as a cyclist and body builder played into his decision to change the usual model for massage therapy.
“As an athlete, I needed more massage than one session a month. I don’t have to spend an hour and a half a day. I can do it in 15 minutes.”
To make the experience more cost-effective for clients, Cooney made All Sport membership-only when he opened in October in Olde Cary Commons on West Chatham Street. For a flat monthly rate with no sign-up or contract fees, a member can get unlimited sessions.
“Think gym membership,” he said. “We do not charge by the hour. We like members because we can see progress.”
Cooney said All Sport is the only facility of its kind in North Carolina.
Members often come in during their lunch hour or before a workout.
“We have members who come in without an appointment just to stretch out on the yoga mat,” Cooney said.
An online appointment system allows them to choose a therapist for a particular session.
An added benefit for members is the on-site availability of therapists at sporting events.
“We had several members participating in a competition recently, and we went and were able to work on them between events as needed,” Cooney said.
Cooney relocated to the Triangle from Massachusetts, where he owned the first All Sport Muscle Therapy. He praises Cary for the warm welcome he has received.
“Cary has been very friendly to a new business,” he said.
Next up, Cooney said, are facilities in Raleigh and Research Triangle Park.
If he can get people in the door, he said, they are hooked.
“Right now we have a 100 percent conversion rate,” Cooney said. “Every person who has come in and spent 15 minutes finding out what we are doing has signed up on the spot.
“Once they see it in action, it’s a no-brainer.”