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March 16, 2022

Making Fitness a Priority for People with I/DD

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People working out in a gym

Valemee Fitness is Empowering Healthy Lifestyles

For those with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), working out and maintaining a healthy lifestyle might be difficult or not a priority. It might also be challenging to find the resources and facilities for those individuals to get the right attention and care. Fitness and health resources can now be more accessible and available to those with I/DD with Valemee Fitness. The programs available through Valemee Fitness are allowing people with I/DD to take control of their fitness, an amazing step towards individuality and independence.

Valemee Fitness, located in Dublin, OH is an inclusive gym and fitness training center that focuses on the needs and wellness of those with neurological, physical, and developmental disabilities. Founded by Peggy Mills, who is passionate about helping individuals with I/DD start and maintain a healthy lifestyle through personalized workout plans. Through Valemee Fitness, individuals with I/DD have the opportunity to take control of their health and can independently learn to make a lifelong commitment to maintaining a healthy workout plan through the help of trainers.

For a healthy lifestyle to stick for those with I/DD, “It has to be a lifelong commitment, having ownership, having it become a routine,” said Peggy. Valemee has given individuals with I/DD the chance to empower themselves by taking control of their own health through a program centered around independence and sustainability.

We introduced the Valemee program earlier this year. Each person has been integrated into fitness, and it's refreshing to see them using the facility independently. The concept for them to be independent in the facility has been realized, and hopefully, they are able to continue to make strides towards a healthier lifestyle,” says Michael Herron, the fitness director at Westerville Community Center.

The benefits that come from working out aren’t unique to people with I/DD, and include improved mental health, sleep benefits, a reduction of negative emotions, lower blood pressure, and more. Regular gym attendance can also serve an important social function. “Going to the gym also becomes a social piece. It becomes a community, so not only are there physical benefits to working out, but you also have social benefits as well” Mills said.

If you are a gym that is interested in partnering with Valemee Fitness, please contact Peggy Mills, information can be found at

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