The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association is the fitness industry's only global trade association representing over 10,000 for profit health and fitness facilities and over 600 supplier companies in 75 countries.



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Entries in CEO Panel (2)


Martin Seibold Joins Congress CEO Panel

Martin Seibold, Managing Director of Fitness First, United Kingdom, will join three other distinguished leaders for the IHRSA European Congress panel discussion on “The Future of the Industry: Embracing & Understanding the Changing Consumer Marketplace”.

Register by 25 September and Save! 

Rounding out the panel will be:

Franck Hedin
Chairman & CEO, CMG Sports Club, France
Andy Caddy
Group CIO, Virgin Active, United Kingdom
Sponsored by Exerp
Brent Darden (panel moderator)
CEO, Brent Darden Consulting, USA

More than 500 industry professionals will be attending the event, which will feature 17 additional seminars* on a range of topics aimed at helping you grow your business, a Sponsor Showcase, tours of some of the area’s premier clubs, the launch of the UFit Conference, and one of the best networking opportunities in Europe.

The Congress will be held at the Palais du Pharo, located in the heart of Marseille – at the entrance to the Vieux Port (Old Port) – with several hotels, restaurants, museums and attractions nearby.

Visit for full programme details.

Download the Brochure 



European Club CEOs Weigh in on Trends 

Three leading club company CEOs discussed the trends they are seeing in a panel discussion moderated by Jay Ablondi, IHRSA’s Executive Vice President of Global Products, today at the 14th annual IHRSA European Congress in Amsterdam. Here is a sampling of the insights they shared:

Valerie Bonnstrom, Mrs. Sporty:  We see McFit (budget club chain) doing an amazing job. The competition is increasing on the low-cost side, with more companies opening smaller, low-cost clubs. There is an opportunity on the higher end to provide a greater brand with strong positioning. Otherwise it becomes more difficult in a market that is increasingly price sensitive.

Olav Thorstad, Health & Fitness Nordic:  Functional training is a trend. Instructors are really important in driving profit. We also have to look at outdoor opportunities – people don’t necessarily want to go to the club. How do we serve them? This market is growing more rapidly than the club market. We have a big opportunity here, but we have to do more to catch the potential members interested in exercising outside of our clubs.

Irina Kutina, Russian Fitness Group: We continue to work closely with our personal training because it’s a good indication at how well the clubs are doing in engaging members. We are also looking at small group training – yoga, cycling – because it’s putting people together.

All three panelists agreed that the boutique model is an important trend. Bonstrom is operating some small, functional fitness training studios and notes that participants are very different from the target group that goes to a club. Thorstad said, “There is a market for it, and we should be in it. The margins and profits are bigger, and it will be positive for members.”