From hip op to walking safari with serial entrepreneur, Ian Fuhr

From hip op to walking safari with serial entrepreneur, Ian Fuhr

Discover how this serial entrepreneur pushed past his hip operation with outdoor activities and BODYTEC EMS training.


Ian is the CEO of the Hatch Institute, a coaching and consulting business based on the concept of “Cultureneering”. The concept has been described as building a strong culture in a diverse workforce that lays the platform for obsessive customer service.

He is also passionate about business culture, leadership, personal development, race relations, and customer service and has been described as a “serial entrepreneur”. From the age of 22, Ian started and sold several businesses, including a retail chain of discount stores, a record company, a race relations consultancy and, most famously, a national chain of beauty salons called Sorbet.

Ian was born in Vanderbijlpark but moved to Johannesburg when he was four years old. He now lives with my wife, Sandy, in Johannesburg.


Like with his businesses, Ian takes an active approach to his health and fitness. He tries to watch his food intake and does regular exercise including BODYTEC EMS training, indoor walking/cycling, some weight training and hiking.

Physical activities

Ian’s favourite physical activity is hiking which, at age 69, he has now been doing for the past 12 years. He loves hiking because it gets him outdoors and combines exercise with his other great passions; nature and wildlife. Before the hiking passion, Ian used to take part in general aerobic and weight training. As he grew older he felt that aerobic and weight training was becoming increasingly difficult, so he focused increasingly on hiking – and more recently BODYTEC strength training.

Hip operation

During and after his hikes over the last year or so, Ian often felt significant pain in his groin which caused him to limp and have difficulties walking. After having x-rays done, it was discovered that he had arthritis in his right hip and needed a hip replacement.

The operation was a success, but during the initial recovery period, Ian lost a lot of muscle strength in his right leg. Regular BODTYEC EMS training has helped him strengthen his hip muscles and upper thighs again in a short space of time. The training also helped him correct the muscle imbalances that resulted from the surgery, and speed up his recovery, enabling him to return to his exercise routine and most importantly his beloved hiking within just a few short months. “My life has changed significantly, post-op. I’m pain-free and my posture has greatly improved”, says Ian.

A walking safari

As the go-getter that he has been all his life, it’s not surprising that Ian set himself the rather ambitious goal of a walking safari only 3 months after his hip replacement. His love for those hikes gave him the motivation he needed, even though he was a bit worried that he would start experiencing pain in his hip again and not be able to complete the hike. He wasn’t concerned so much by the distance of the hike, but rather by the time he would spend on his feet during the walking safari so soon after his recovery.

In preparation for the Safari walk, Ian and his wife Sandy only did some general walking and incorporated BODYTEC EMS strength training into their weekly routine. He wasn’t sure that his hip would be OK for a four-hour walk, but he managed to complete two mornings of walking in the bush on the safari, covering 8 km the first morning and 6 km the second. Ian is thrilled that he managed to complete the walk with no discomfort in his hip.

BODYTEC EMS training

As he approaches his 70s, Ian believes it is important for him to maintain a healthy lifestyle. He has seen too many people his age slowly deteriorate through a lack of exercise and strength training. Since he started BODYTEC EMS training, he has seen a very clear improvement in his body’s overall strength and flexibility.

“At my age (69) it is really important to keep my strength up. Regular BODYTEC EMS training helps me to do just that. Since I started my weekly full-body strength training with BODYTEC, I now find it easier to walk upstairs and pick things up, like my grandchildren. It has also helped reduce my lower back pain, which has bothered me from time to time”, says Ian.

Ian still has a very busy schedule, filled with work, family, and social commitments, which makes the 20-minute-a-week BODYTEC sessions ideal for him. BODYTEC EMS training is different from other conventional gyms he has experienced because it allows him to focus on his full-body workout in a single weekly session without taking up huge chunks of his time. His wife, Sandy, also enjoys EMS training for pretty much the same reasons he does. She has derived similar benefits regarding body strength, and posture correction.

Training with a partner

Ian and Sandy enjoy sharing their life experiences together. Sandy joins Ian on all his hikes and bush walks, and they enjoy their weekly BODYTEC EMS training sessions together, keeping not just their bodies, but also their relationship going strong.

Hiking goal

With a new hip and renewed strength, Ian has set himself a goal for the next 5 years, during which he wants to be able to do local hikes at least two Sundays a month and a longer bush walk twice a year.

“I have seen a very clear improvement in my body strength since doing regular BODYTEC EMS training, my physiotherapist also encouraged me to try it, so I will definitely continue to attend my session and I always strongly recommend BOYTEC to friends and family”.

One word to describe BODYTEC EMS training

When asked what’s the one word he’d use to describe his feelings after BODYTEC EMS training, Ian simply said, “Stronger!!”.

To find out more about what Ian does at the Hatch Institute, take a look at their website: https://www.hatchinstitute.co.za/

For more inspiring stories and reasons our members love BODYTEC, see our Member Testimonials here.

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