Being able to turn my passion into my career has been such an amazing experience. Everyday I get the chance to help people better their health. The friendships made and the bonds formed while working out together, motivating one another, teaching and learning from one another, is something special…and I get to be a part of it every single day. My passion for health and fitness stemmed from when I was younger. I was a 5 sport athlete in high school, and a 2 sport athlete in college. I knew I would always be in the fitness industry. Competing and challenging myself has always been in my blood….maybe a bit too competitive if you ask my parents. Seeing myself grow stronger is rewarding, but seeing those I have the opportunity to work with , and train with, get stronger and healthier is something very special.
CrossFit Level 1 Trainer.
I look back on my life and it’s easy to recognize that I was always drawn to sports. From the time I was very young I was involved in a number of sports but football was my favorite. I was a 2 year starting running back racking up 27 touchdowns and 2700 rushing yards. I received all city and all conference awards during my junior and senior seasons in high school. I also had a brief career playing college football at Albion College. I graduated from Ferris State University in 2010 with a degree in Construction Management. I played numerous intermural sports and was an active member of the Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity where I was nominated Chapter President during my final year. It wasn’t until 2013 that I heard about Crossfit and after that first WOD I was officially hooked. I have been a member at 12 Crossfit facilities. The information I gained from the many coaches and training programs was priceless. I love helping others become healthier. It is tremendously rewarding and fun. My goal is for my athletes to adopt a mindset that this is a lifestyle.
MIKE VAN DER LAAN
PHYSICAL THERAPIST & CROSSFIT COACH
Mike van Der Laan is a licensed Doctor of Physical Therapy from Hudsonville, Michigan. He grew up playing soccer and snowboarding, and had the privilege to play soccer throughout his college career. Through various soccer injuries, he developed a passion for physiotherapy, and now wants to share his passion with CrossFit athletes. Mike has extensive training in mobility and exercise prescription, and practices full time at Heartside Health Center in Grand Rapids.
Certifications Include: Functional Dry Needling, Astym, FMS, SFMA, Mobility WOD, Certified Speed & Agility Coach, CFL-1.
I was born and raised in Grand Rapids, MI. Athletics have always been a part of my life. I began playing tennis in 2nd grade. Being healthy and fit was always a part of my family’s lifestyle. I started working out at the age of 14, played tennis and ran track in high school. I went to GRCC and graduated with a business degree. I found my nitch while working at a health club for 10 years being supervisor, event planner, marketing and membership coordinator. I left there, needing a break from the fitness atmosphere. But still worked out attending group ex classes, doing triathlons, traditional lifting, etc. July 2011 I found CrossFit. This is my passion that I know will last!
I absolutely love it! The Olympic lifts are my favorite. Gymnasticsky things… well I need to work on those…. But that’s the beauty of this sport, always something to strive for! See you in the gym!
I have been coaching the kids and junior CrossFit classes at ARMR CrossFit since the summer of 2019. I am also NASM Personal Training Certified and hope to get my CrossFit L1 Certification very soon. I have competed in Powerlifting for two years through USAPL and received awards in 1st place in the Junior division and 3rd place in the 63kg division. I am now competing in weightlifting through USAW and hope to win some awards competing in my division. I love to compete in CrossFit competitions, coach CrossFit, and love joining in the community at ARMR CrossFit.
I have lived in the Grand Rapids area my whole life and have spent the last 12 years in Hudsonville with my wife Ashley and our twin boys. I work as a Regional Sales Manager for a small company based out of Dallas, TX.
As a kid, I found my passion for competition through sports, specifically hockey, which I fell in love with at a young age and continued to play at the collegiate level for Grand Valley State University. During my college years, I coached multiple youth hockey programs and upon graduating I coached at the high school level for several years until our twins were born. I have been coaching my sons’ teams in baseball and hockey for the last 9 years.
In 2017, I decided to try a CrossFit class. The comradery and competition was just what I was looking for and quickly became a staple in my weekly routine. In 2019, I was able to combine my two passions, competing and coaching, at ARMR CrossFit. Similar to hockey, I enjoy helping others improve and discover their fitness abilities and reach their personal goals.