Jan Spaticchia, founder and Chairman, énergie Fitness passed away on May 9th, 2021 following a short battle with cancer.
Jan and I were connected through family and business — Jan’s son Luc is my first cousin, once removed.
Jan’s early career
For more than 30 years I watched Jan’s career flourish. When we first met, he was lecturing at a college and Jan could see that students were struggling to find jobs in the health and fitness industry because they lacked experience. He set out to solve this problem by creating an on-campus commercial gym with paying members that prepared these young students for the world of work. It was in these hybrid academic/commercial gyms that he could already see how lives could be changed and enriched through exercise. On leaving academia, Jan entered the commercial health and fitness industry and I felt privileged to initially mentor him as he worked enthusiastically to understand the long-term role and contribution he was going to play. Very soon, it was clear he had found his feet and calling and from that point on his mission was to bring inclusive physical activity experiences to a mass audience.
Yes we can
We worked together for a while and, at times, we had heated discussions — I was the cautious one wanting to move slowly whereas Jan was in a hurry to get on with the mission. While I would say, ‘Jan, I’m not sure we can achieve this’, he would enthusiastically reply, ‘Yes we can.’
Carry on with the mission
Jan’s optimism was necessary then and urgent now because we are facing a physical inactivity crisis and so he wouldn’t want his franchisees to slow down now and mourn for too long, but to double down and focus on the mission. This is how we celebrate Jan’s remarkable life, harness his energy, and ensure his legacy.
I am going to miss Jan and I know all those who share his mission will too. All my love to his wife Claire and their four sons, Luc, Mason, Josh and Dakota. Jan and Claire also had a daughter, Robyn, who died of cancer on September 11th, 2010 and her life is celebrated each year through the Spirit of énergie award.