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Entries in IHRSA 2016 International Convention and Trade Show (98)


IHRSA's 10 Most Popular Blog Posts of 2016

2016 has been an eventful year for IHRSA and the fitness industry. We opened a European office to better serve our members, launched our Club Business Exchange, held yet another successful IHRSA International Convention & Trade Show, and published a number of in-depth research reports.

So it comes as no surprise that much of those ongoings—and more—are reflected in our most-read blog posts from the past 12 months. See for yourself...

10. Personal Trainer Packs Big Fitness Design Into Tiny House

Our tenth most-read blog post of 2016 made a big splash by featuring a tiny home. We spoke to Mike De Vivo, a Corporate Fitness Works personal trainer, whose a fitness-themed, 330-square-foot house was featured on HGTV.    

Continue reading "IHRSA's 10 Most Popular Blog Posts of 2016."

Click to read more ...


IHRSA 2016 Convention Videos Now Available

Videos from 70 IHRSA 2016 convention sessions are now available on the IHRSA Store.

Choose from titles such as: 

  • Raising Capital in the New World of Crowdfunding;
  • Future-Proofing Your Club: Innovation of Technology and Your Business;
  • Grow Your Business With Small Group Training;
  • Recruiting, Career Tracking, and Retaining Top Personal Trainers;
  • Keys to Successful Nutrition Programming in the Health Club Setting;
  • And dozens more! 

See the full selection. Each was recorded in March in Orlando, FL, during IHRSA 2016, and is available on either DVD ($49.95 each plus shipping) or as a downloadable file ($37.46 each) sent to you immediately via e-mail upon purchase. 

Questions? Please contact or call Healthy Learning at +1 (888) 229-5745.


5 Videos That Showcase Fitness Industry's Diverse Offerings

From 3D body imaging software to the gamification of fitness, the health and fitness industry offers a wide array of programs and services to help people live happier, healthier livesand nowhere is this more evident than on IHRSA's Club Business Exchange.

In case you forgot, Club Business Exchange is our newly enhanced industry-specific search engine, member directory, and content website, which connects health club operators with IHRSA associate members in order to help users discover and learn more about products and services from the industry’s top companiesmany of which have uploaded informative, dynamic videos. 

To give you an idea of what's out there, we compiled five videos that show the breadth of what our industry has to offer.

1. STYKU Extracts 3D Body Composition, Shape, and Measurement
Raj Sareen, co-founder of STYKU, stopped by the IHRSA 2016 live studio to talk about how his company leverages body measurements to calculate body fat percentage. 

2. MyZone Uses Gamification to Deliver Results 
Emmett Williams of MyZone visited the IHRSA 2016 Live Studio to explain how the software's point system motivates members. 

3. Frog Fitness at IHRSA 2016 in 30 Seconds
Attendees loved testing the products in the Frog Fitness booth at IHRSA 2016, March 21-24 in Orlando, FL. 

4. IHRSA 2016: An Infusion of Energy, Ideas, and Motivation 
Bill McBride of BMC3 and Active Wellness shares why he never misses the IHRSA convention. 

5. IHRSA 2016 Trade Show in 90 Seconds
If you missed it or just want to re-live it all over again, watch our 2016 Trade Show recap. 


IHRSA 2016 Session Recordings Available Now for Download

This feature is brought to you by the IHRSA Store spring sale. Now through June 30, save 25% on reports, webinars, and all other resources in the IHRSA Store by using promo code 2016SALE at checkout. 

There’s nothing worse than the dreaded commute to work—especially for fitness professionals. You’re excited to get to the club and start another day of doing what you love, but first you have to sit in traffic or deal with crowds on public transit. 

It’s an unavoidable waste of time. But it doesn’t have to be.   

All IHRSA 2016 session MP3 audio recordings are now available for download in the IHRSA Store

Thousands of fitness industry leaders celebrated IHRSA 2016 in Orlando, March 21-24. The event showcased the newest and most innovative equipment, programs, and technology from over 400 exhibitors, reinforced the industry’s commitment to increase physical activity levels across the globe, and provided an unparalleled venue to learn, network, and exchange ideas. 

The Convention featured dozens of educational sessions on several topics, including:  

  • Customer Service & Retention
  • Fitness & Personal Training
  • Health Promotion & Wellness
  • Leadership
  • Management & Operations
  • Membership Sales & Marketing
  • Programming
  • Research & Industry Trends
  • Technology & Social Media  

Whether you attended the event or not, there are a multitude of learning opportunities to be had by listening to the session recordings. 

And if you’re an IHRSA member, we have even more good news: all IHRSA Convention recordings from 2013 and earlier are available to you for free.   

So, check out the available recordings at the IHRSA Store and make your next commute a motivational learning experience. And don't forget to use promo code 2016SALE to save 25% on purchases through June 30.


Attention Members: Videos of IHRSA 2016 Keynotes Now Available for Purchase

Back in March, four dynamic keynote speakers captivated the IHRSA 2016 audience in Orlando, sharing their insights on marketing, strategy, social media, and consumer psychology. Their presentations lit up social media, with many attendees sharing quotes, photos, and takeaways. 

If you’re an IHRSA member and you weren’t able to attend the keynote presentations, or if you just want to watch them again, we have good news—MP4s of all four IHRSA 2016 keynote presentations are now available for purchase. 

It’s Dot Complicated: Exciting Trends Impacting Your Business Right Now
Randi Zuckerberg, Author, and Founder & CEO, Zuckerberg Media 

Sponsored by Matrix Fitness 

In this entertaining, engaging talk, which feels as much as a one-woman show (complete with musical performance and audience interaction), Randi Zuckerberg takes you through ten of the most exciting trends in tech / business / leadership / entrepreneurship that you just can’t ignore, if you want to build successful, sustainable businesses. 

Learn more about Randi Zuckerberg’s IHRSA 2016 keynote address. 

Youtility: Smart Marketing is About Help, not Hype
Jay Baer, Author, and Founder, Convince & Convert 

Sponsored by SPRI 

If you’re wondering how to make your company seem more exciting, you’re asking the wrong question. You’re not competing for attention only against other similar products. You’re competing against your customers’ friends and family and viral videos and cute puppies. To win attention these days you must ask a different question: “How can we help?” 

In his presentation, Jay Baer will deliver a new approach that cuts through the clutter: marketing that is truly, inherently useful. If you sell something, you make a customer today, but if you genuinely help someone, you create a customer for life. Filled with dozens of real-world examples, this hilarious and powerful presentation will fundamentally change the way you think about your business. 

Learn more about Jay Baer’s IHRSA 2016 keynote address. 

Leadership Essentials
Greg McKeown, Author, and CEO, THIS, Inc. 

Sponsored by Technogym® 

In his keynote presentation, Greg McKeown will demonstrate why leading as an essentialist is critical for taking teams to the next level and producing breakthroughs in results and innovation. He will teach five principles, providing examples on how teams and companies can be killed by their own success—and what to do instead. Using evocative stories, hard questions and thought-provoking exercises, this will be an interactive keynote session. 

Learn more about Greg McKeown’s IHRSA 2016 keynote address. 

Consumer Behavior: Creating Habit Forming Products
Nir Eyal, Author, and Entrepreneur, Habit-Forming Products 

Sponsored by MYZONE® 

Why do some products capture widespread attention while others flop? What makes us engage with certain products out of sheer habit? Is there a pattern underlying how technologies hook us? Nir Eyal answers these questions and many more by explaining the Hook Model—a four-step process embedded into the products of many successful companies to subtly encourage customer behavior. Through consecutive “hook cycles,” these products reach their ultimate goal of bringing users back again and again without depending on costly advertising or aggressive messaging. 

Learn more about Nir Eyal’s IHRSA 2016 keynote address. 

MP4 videos of the keynote presentations are available for purchase individually ($69 each) or as a set of all four ($249). 


Watch Our Periscope Interviews from IHRSA 2016

Back in March, we covered IHRSA 2016 on a variety of media, including this blog, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and—for the first time—Periscope. 

We used Twitter’s live-streaming video platform to broadcast exclusive interviews with VIPs and IHRSA members. In the video below, you’ll find IHRSA’s Meredith Poppler talking with MarketingProfs’ Chief Content Officer Ann Handley, IHRSA’s Carolynn Jordan chatting with Timothy Donald from Temple Builder Fitness Center and PJ Ragone from Inspira Health Network Fitness Connection, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at Newtown Athletic Club President Jim Worthington's IHRSA Live studio interview.


Fitness Reimbursement Programs Create Membership Opportunities for Health Clubs

Over the last few years, insurance reimbursement programs have gained traction across the fitness industry, with many health clubs partnering with insurance providers to reward their members for being regular visitors. But, because this marketplace is still emerging, there are a number of questions that remain unanswered, and navigating this new landscape has proven to be difficult. 

Last month at IHRSA 2016 in Orlando, FL, a panel of experts, including Vince Pozinski of Optum, Heidi Holliday of Healthy Contributions, and Ray O'Connor of the Wisconsin Athletic Club, answered questions and provided the following advice to attendees during the session, “Healthy Benefits: Fitness Reimbursements in the Insurance Marketplace.” 

These programs create new membership opportunities. 

Internal data from Optum was conducted over the course of a two-year period and yielded the following results:  

  • About 20% of people who enrolled in one of these fitness reimbursement programs had not had a gym membership before they enrolled.
  • 50% of participants said that being part of a program played a large role in them having a gym membership.
  • 50-60% of participants said that having to meet a certain threshold (e.g. days in a month, number of times per week, etc.) meant that they went to the gym more frequently than they would’ve had they not been enrolled in the program.    

Insurance reimbursement programs have health benefits for those who participate, but members will not enroll in a program unless they are aware of all the options that are available to them. 

Most often, direct marketing is used to educate prospective members on the proven benefits of joining an insurance reimbursement program, and this channel of open and consistent communication holds the key to gaining new members and retaining old ones. 

It is important to note that if changes are ever made to specific insurance packages, make sure that your insurance provider clearly communicates these changes to your staff. Having this system in place will avoid confusion and potential frustration from program participants who were not informed of updates. 

There are still challenges that must be met and overcome. 

Keeping records is still a manual process, and even though this is true, insurers and information processors have been working to make this system as stream-lined as possible to accurately monitor how many times participants are visiting clubs. And as technology has progressed, processors have done their best to keep up with it to ensure that club operators stay out of back rooms and remain out on club floors. 

Finding program information can be difficult. Accessing program information has been a large hurdle for clubs looking to partner and work with insurance providers. So, if you don’t know where to begin, you are not alone.   

Start by finding out who administers theses programs and contact them for more information. Additionally, companies such as Vanco and Healthy Contributions are able to share eligibility data and member enrollment based on the location of specific programs. And as always, IHRSA is available to answer any questions you may have, so do not hesitate to contact us at about programs that are being offered in your community. 

 “These challenges create a moving target, but the target is moving in the right direction,” Holliday said.


Create Successful Community Programming by Answering 3 Simple Questions

Connecting with your community to offer programs that interest them is a great way to demonstrate that your club genuinely cares about fulfilling the fitness aspirations of community members, but it is often challenging to determine what type of program is best suited to your club and your members. 

To help club owners and staff overcome this obstacle, Cathleen Garner, childcare and camp director at The Claremont Club, led a discussion at IHRSA 2016 on building “Programs with a Purpose: Implementing Successful Programs for Your Club & Community.” Throughout the presentation, attendees were able to share their innovative ideas on community outreach programs, learn from suggestions made by their peers, and gain insight on how to successfully implement these types of programs. 

During the session, attendees were tasked with answering three questions to help them determine the best community program offerings for their individual clubs: 

1. What is the best class offering for my community and my club? 

Consider your community. What are their needs? Would they rather work out in a group setting or participate in a more intimate personal training session? How many times a week or month would be best for them? 

Now consider your club. What are you hoping to accomplish by creating a new program? Are you looking to increase revenue, retention, or member satisfaction? Does your club have the necessary amenities to implement the program that you are considering? These are all questions that should be answered before you commit to a program.  

2. What is the purpose of the program I want to create? What do I want the end results to be? 

The purpose of your program defines the components of your program and informs who your participants will be. That being said, all programs have varying goals that appeal to different members, so there are many options to consider. 

For example, are you looking to help participants lose weight? Increase quality of life? Be less sedentary? Feel less stressed? Overcome chronic disease?  Try something outside of their comfort zone? All of the above? The possibilities are endless. 

3. What are opportunities that I can create from the crises that I’ve faced? 

Running a health club can be challenging. There are many crises that must be averted and properly handled on a daily basis. The best way to come up with new programming ideas is to think about which problems or complaints that could’ve been more easily addressed if you had a program that helped you solve them.


IHRSA 2016 by the Numbers

Thousands of fitness industry leaders celebrated IHRSA 2016 in Orlando, March 21-24. The event showcased the newest and most innovative equipment, programs, and technology from over 400 exhibitors, reinforced the industry’s commitment to increase physical activity levels across the globe, and provided an unparalleled venue to learn, network, and exchange ideas.

“You are all doing magnificent work,” said Joe Moore, IHRSA president and CEO in his State of the Industry presentation to kick off IHRSA 2016. “The number of health club visits is going up again—this is a great trend. And everyone at this Convention—whether from clubs or companies exhibiting at the Trade Show—had a hand in making this happen. You are all helping more people get active.”

Here are some of the stand-out statistics from the four-day Convention.

Convention and Trade Show Stats 

  • Convening for IHRSA 2016 were over 10,700 industry professionals, including approximately 6,500 Convention and Trade Show attendees.
  • 81 countries were represented by this year’s Convention and Trade Show attendees.
  • The exhibit hall, with 415 exhibitors filling the 470,000 sq. ft. hall—IHRSA’s largest ever Trade Show—was alive with activity during the two-day Trade Show and early morning workouts. 

New Location, New Attendees

IHRSA 2016’s new destination of Orlando, Florida attracted many new attendees. Attendance from the Southeast increased by 380%. Attendance also increased from New England by 68%, New York and New Jersey (44%) and the Mid-Atlantic (35%), while attendance was lower from California and the Southwest. The new location also influenced travel on a global level, as attendance was up from Latin America by 19%.

Who attended: 

  • 57% of all attendees were first-time attendees
  • 30% of attendees answered that they were a facility owner
  • 37% of attendees answered that they make the final decision on equipment purchases 

IHRSA 2016 Multi-Media 

  • Audio MP3 recordings of approximately 70 IHRSA convention sessions will be available for sale later this month at Video recordings of select sessions will be added in May 2016.
  • The IHRSA Live team provided thorough coverage of the Convention through the IHRSA blog and social media accounts, including experimenting with live-streaming video on Periscope. The event hashtag—#IHRSA2016 —trended several times on Twitter throughout the Convention.   

Read the full press release recapping IHRSA 2016.


6 Best Practices to Enhance Your Business with Health Promotion Programs 

Well-executed health promotion programs can drive business to your health club and enhance member engagement, but for many club operators it is difficult to know where to start. 

To solve this pain point, three experts provided a health promotion program road map at the IHRSA 2016 session, “Boost Your Business & Enhance Your Brand with Health Promotion Programs.” During the hour-long presentation, Mike Alpert of the Claremont Club, Janet Cranston of Reh-fit Centre, and Bill Gvoich of Spectrum Fitness & Medical Wellness Center spoke to the benefits and challenges impacting clubs looking to offer health promotion programs. 

The panel offered the following best practices for establishing top-notch health promotion programs:  

  1. Use successful health promotion programs as models for creating your own. Spend some time researching programs that are currently being offered by other clubs to determine if it would be feasible to adapt one of these programs for your facility. 
  2. Create programs that are closely aligned with your club culture and brand. Tailor your programming to fit the needs of the members that you service and make sure that this programming is reflective of the mission of your business. 
  3. Ensure that your club environment is welcoming. As a club owner or operator, engaging those who are sedentary can prove to be quite challenging. Thus, marketing your club as a safe place, where people of all ability levels can come to workout is important. Training your front desk personnel on how to make people feel comfortable using your facilities is just as critical as ensuring that the proper equipment and amenities are always available.
  4. Employ staff who are champions for the programs that you offer. Staff members who believe they are making a difference in the lives of the people that they serve will act as the best promoters for your programs.
  5. Share success stories to create opportunities for greater member engagement and business expansion. Showcasing the success stories of your members is a great way to personalize the member experience and brand your business as one that cares about the goals and aspirations of your members.
  6. Determine the best method to measure the success of your programs. There are a number of different methods that can be used to evaluate the success of your program. Outcome measurements do not have to be elaborate. Looking for improvements in quality of life, comparing pre- and post-program health data, requesting participant feedback, and tracking member retention are just a few strategies that have proven to be effective.   

“Clubs are the perfect environment for offering health promotion programs because we have an opportunity to improve and save lives and we have a societal obligation to do so,” Alpert said.