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IHRSA Members Will Be Well Represented at Club Industry Show

For industry suppliers, it’s an important opportunity to display their wares in an important market. And a number of well-known IHRSA associate-member companies will be doing just that during the 29th annual Club Industry Show, taking place this month, October 22 to 24, at the McCormick Center in Chicago.

Approximately 70 of IHRSA’s 622 associate members will be exhibiting at the show’s expo, taking advantage of the chance to catch up with their current clients, court the interest of prospective customers, network with business partners, and, of course, check out the competition.

Many of them also will be congratulating and socializing with John McCarthy, IHRSA’s executive director emeritus, who’s being honored with Club Industry’s lifetime achievement award during the proceedings.

McCarthy, who served as IHRSA’s executive director from 1981 until he retired in 2006, is looking forward to the event.

“It’s a pleasure and a privilege for me to join the ranks of the previous recipients of this award, each of whom I greatly respect,” says McCarthy. “I continue to admire Club Industry as I always have. Their constantly refreshed Website has become exceptionally valuable, and their fourth-quarter trade show is in the midst of an impressive renaissance.”

In addition to looking at and trying out suppliers’ newest and most exciting offerings, show attendees also will be able to choose from a wide variety of educational sessions that are designed to help improve their businesses, facilitate professional growth, and provide a clear sense of where the industry is heading.

The show also boasts a number of brand-new features. For the first time this year, Club Industry has partnered with the Association of Fitness Studios, which is sponsoring educational sessions focused on the business of running a fitness studio. It’s also launched a Fitness Leadership Forum, providing a setting for top-level club owners and senior executives to share their experiences and learn about issues and opportunities affecting both their businesses and the industry.

“Club Industry 2014 is bound to be booming with energy,” promises Club Industry Show Manager Pamela Skaggs. “The show offers many exciting opportunities to meet the needs of all members of the fitness industry. Club owners, operators, and trainers can try out the newest fitness equipment, and learn about the latest trends.”

The trade show exhibit hall will be open on Thursday, October 23, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and on Friday, October 24, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

What will IHRSA’s associate members be doing there? What’s in the works? What products will they spotlight? Well, here’s a little look at what eight of them have planned.

Brock HansenParamount Acceptance, the provider of iClub Manage, a fully integrated software platform, will be showcasing the recently added benefits of its unique prospecting tool. “We’re really looking forward to the Club Industry Show,” says Brock Hansen, the firm’s sales director. “We’ll be meeting with our current clients in the area to strengthen our relationships with them. We’ll also make good use of the time to introduce them to many of our new and enhanced software features and services. This year, we’re especially looking forward to demonstrating iClub Manage’s functionality and ease of use for entering in prospects, gathering information, following up, and tracking metrics.”

The company, Hansen notes, also has made improvements to the software’s personal training management, tanning management, and reporting tool capabilities. “We focus on helping our clients with all of the services they offer by making it possible for them to track these areas effectively,” he says.

Jason WestonASF Payment Solutions will be introducing new releases to its scheduling and personal training billing software, explains Jason Weston, the vice president of sales and business development. “Mindful of our clients’ interest in layered memberships and in generating more personal training revenue, we’ve incorporated more flexibility for selling PT memberships, with enhanced follow-up on PT membership processing.”

ASF’s clients can now accept multiple methods of payment for different revenue streams; and multilocation organizations can offer personal training reciprocity so that sessions purchased at one club can be used at another. “Responding to the need for mobile solutions, we’ve enhanced our point-of-sale iPad app with credit card swipe and barcode scanner, enabling clubs to sell goods, memberships, PT sessions, etc., remotely or on the go,” notes Weston

Andy WigdersonCSI Software will be cosponsoring the show’s Top 100 reception, which will be held Thursday, October 23, to celebrate the Club Industry Top 100, an annual listing of the 100 largest health club companies (by revenue). “It’s kind of like the Fortune 500 of our industry,” observes Andy Wigderson, CSI’s vice president.

At the trade show, the firm is excited to be showing, for the very first time, its Vanguard platform. “We’re taking everything in our application that’s customer-facing, and, through the Vanguard platform, extending it to other devices - tablets, smartphones, and kiosks,” Wigderson explains. “The first iteration of Vanguard will be a customer-facing, white-labeled mobile app and a sales walk-through iPad app. Both of these will be unveiled at the Club Industry Show.”

Lenny SnydermanThe Helix Company, the inventors of the lateral trainer - an elliptical-like machine that facilitates movement in a number of planes - regards the show as an ideal opportunity to reach prospective clients in the Midwest. “Our experience with the Club Industry show has been excellent,” reports Lenny Snyderman, the president of Helix. “Many customers have the ability to make a daytrip, along with their management and staff, allowing them to update their team on the latest innovations.”

Snyderman says Helix will be spotlighting the new features on its 3500 lateral trainer, including wider pedals and handles for greater comfort, and a new double-drive transmission system for smoother movement. “At Helix, we’ve invented a completely new exercise modality, so the ability for us to spend time with visitors at the show is incredibly valuable.”

Kristan ProkopecJonas Fitness Club Management Software will be doubling its presence at the show this year, moving from a 200-square-foot booth to a 400-square-foot unit strategically located on the show floor just inside the main entrance. In March 2013, Jonas Software, based in Toronto, Canada, acquired the assets of Club Solutions from Fiserv, Inc., to form Jonas Fitness, Inc. Jonas Fitness now maintains the Compete and i4 software brands, as well as billing, payment processing, and member-facing services.

“We’ll be showing new additions to Compete, our flagship CMS product,” says Kristan Prokopec, the firm’s marketing manager. “Compete has really grown over the past year, and we’ll be highlighting our new executive dashboards, a new re-skin for all of our online portals, and a few other key additions.”

Leo KrashanoffDigilock, a leading provider of keypad locks for lockers, will be introducing its newest product, SOLA, at the trade show. “A prototype of this lock was shown at IHRSA 2014 in San Diego, but SOLA will be making its official debut at Club Industry,” reports Leo Krashanoff, the firm’s sales director. The SOLA, he points out with pride, has a host of innovative features: It has a sealed, moisture-resistant keypad; it is adaptable, permitting either assigned or shared use; and it is easy to install or retrofit over existing key locks.

Digilock, which has been exhibiting at Club Industry for more than a decade, will also be showcasing its Advanced Series Keypad and RFID-operated locks, as well as its beautiful Celáre lockers.

“This show offers a unique opportunity for us to present our products to qualified buyers in the health and fitness industry,” observes Krashanoff.

Tiffany HoeyeMatrix Fitness first exhibited at Club Industry in 2001, when it introduced tubular-constructed, single-station strength equipment, and, this year, will have even more sophisticated products to share with attendees. Among them, the impressive, feature-packed 7xi cardio console, which provides club members with access to social media, workout tracking, and other innovative applications; and the IC7, a remarkably accurate, power-based indoor cycle that features Coach by Color.

“We look forward to exciting and captivating everyone who visits our booth,” says Tiffany Hoeye, the global commercial marketing manager for Johnson Health Tech, the corporate parent of Matrix Fitness.

“With our North American offices located approximately 150 miles north of Chicago, this event is very cost-effective, allowing us to bring additional staff who, otherwise, might not be able to experience an industry trade show,” she explains. “This provides us with valuable firsthand feedback for our tech support, service, logistics, and finance teams.”

Nerio AlessandriTechnogym, the fitness equipment manufacturer that’s highly regarded for its technological expertise, will be showcasing the mywellness cloud, as well as seven apps that are designed to assist club operators, explains a company spokesperson. “When members create mywellness accounts and log in during their training session, all of the training data and preferences they’ve set for the UNITY cardio interface are stored in the mywellness cloud. The information in the mywellness cloud can then be accessed with a smartphone, a computer, a tablet, or the exercise equipment,” she explains. “This allows members to take their workout data with them whenever/wherever they train.

“We’re looking forward to exhibiting at the Club Industry Show,” she adds, “as it’s the premier fitness industry event in Chicago and the Midwest.

For a full list of IHRSA associate members in the trade show, visit CBI magazine online.

Jean Suffin can be reached at







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