By Michelle Talsma Everson
Photos Courtesy of Dana Gibbons

Living in North Phoenix has many perks, including being the home of the state’s only Red Effect Infrared Fitness, located at the Shops at Norterra. Whether you’re new to fitness, getting back on track, or an athlete looking to improve your performance, Red Effect offers instructor-led group training classes infused with infrared therapy. It’s basically traditional fitness meets innovative technology to maximize calorie burning results.

“At Red Effect, we offer interval training, yoga, barre, and personal infrared saunas,” explains co-owner Brittany Wise. “It’s like having multiple fitness studios under one roof, all for one great value membership price.”

Wise and her husband Jordan originally were members of a Red Effect gym in Ann Arbor, Michigan, when they fell in love with the concept and the community the gym fostered. When they relocated for work, they asked to switch their membership to the Red Effect location in Phoenix—but there were no locations of the national concept in the Grand Canyon state. With this information in hand, and a leap of faith, they relocated to North Phoenix and launched Red Effect at the Shops at Norterra.
“We absolutely believe in community fitness and love it when members can experience a wide variety of classes and infrared therapy to help them meet their wellness goals,” Wise says.

Gratitude and Growth
While the Wise family had planned to open Red Effect Infrared Fitness in the spring of 2020, their opening was delayed to January 2021 due to COVID-19. Opening a fitness facility in the middle of the pandemic was stressful, but Wise shares that they believe in the concept and becoming business owners during such a turbulent time has provided them with plenty of opportunities for growth.

“I feel like there is even more of a focus on fitness and wellness now more than ever before,” Wise says. “While we may have opened during a rough time in history, reception has been positive, and we are so grateful for each and every one of our members.”

Wise adds that they chose to open a location in the Norterra area because they live here and felt a need to support their own community. With a professional background in industrial engineering combined with an MBA and leadership education, she shares that her previous career has helped prep her for the wild ride that is owning a small business.

“I think us being engineers helps us to look at the bigger picture and set goals accordingly,” Wise shares. “We have a 5,000 square foot space, are open most hours from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m., and offer an average of 60 classes a week. All of this on top of the fact that we have two young children and it all very much feels like controlled chaos. There’s plenty of room for growth, but of course, we are so grateful for our current members—we wouldn’t be here without them.”

The Benefits of Infrared Therapy
“According to studies and infrared experts, infrared saunas help to remove impurities from your cells, specifically cells inside where our fat is and where our body stores waste and harmful toxins such as cholesterol and heavy metals,” Wise explains.

Wise shares that there are many benefits to infrared therapy, including:

Weight Loss
Studies have shown that benefits of an infrared sauna session can burn upward of 500 calories while you relax. As the body works to cool itself, there is a substantial increase in heart rate, cardiac output, and metabolic rate, causing the body to burn calories.

Pain Relief
Infrared heat penetrates tissue, joints, and muscles to relieve anything from minor aches and pains to chronic pain conditions. Pain management professionals incorporate infrared heat therapy into treatment plans to decrease pain and to speed up recovery time.

Sweating is the body’s safe and natural way to heal and stay healthy. Far infrared waves benefit the body by heating it directly, causing a rise in core temperature, resulting in a deep, detoxifying sweat at the level where toxins reside.

Heating the muscles with infrared rays produces an increase in blood flow like that seen during exercise. Regular infrared sauna use, especially in the mid-infrared range, can significantly stimulate blood flow up to twice the normal rate.

Blood Pressure
Infrared therapy induces a deep sweat to make the heart pump faster, which in turn increases blood flow, lowers blood pressure, and helps circulation.

The near-infrared wavelength is the most effective wavelength for healing the epidermis and dermis layers. Near-infrared treatments stimulate collagen production of the skin to improve skin.

Scientific research has concluded that near infrared therapy gently enhances the body’s healing process by promoting faster cell regeneration and human tissue growth, according to Wise.

“Infrared therapy is excellent for recovery; in fact, there are some members who come exclusively for the infrared saunas and also clients who pay per sauna use, especially athletes looking to recover in between workouts,” Wise adds. “Infrared saunas help you to recover from injuries, soreness, and stiffness, too.”

Red Effect Infrared Fitness is located at 2460 W. Happy Valley Road, #1159, in Phoenix at the Shops at Norterra. To learn more, visit or call 480-530-0335. The first fitness class or infrared sauna session is free for potential new members. You can also follow Red Effect’s Norterra location on Facebook @redeffectnorterra.