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.



From educational tools and events to promotional programs and public policy initiatives, IHRSA brings you success... by association!

Join | Renew
Pledge Your Support

Search IHRSA Blog

Welcome to the IHRSA Blog

The Online Home of news.

Blog Home |  Subscribe to our RSS Feed

Entries in IHRSA European Congress (7)


IHRSA’s 5 Top Fitness Tech Posts of 2016

Back in December, we looked at our overall most-read blog posts of 2016, which provided some interesting insights about the news and topics that dominated the past year.

One common thread that seemed to be present in most of the stories was technology. So we decided to dig a little deeper into our analytics and pull out our five most-read tech-related blog posts from the past 12 months. 

Continue reading "IHRSA’s 5 Top Fitness Tech Posts of 2016."

Click to read more ...


Learn How IHRSA's Global Industry Research Supports Health Clubs and Fuels Industry Growth

Nathalie Smeeman, EuropeActive Executive Director with Joe Moore in Seville, Spain on October 18, 2016.Savvy business owners know they need credible information in order to make wise business decisions. That is why IHRSA has always been dedicated to conducting valuable fitness industry research in order to help health club operators, suppliers, and industry stakeholders better understand health club markets around the globe. 

Below are a few of the research projects IHRSA has initiated or supported this year and next in order to help fuel industry growth.

The European Health and Fitness Market Report

For the second consecutive year, IHRSA will lend its support to the European Health and Fitness Market Report. This in-depth report is published by EuropeActive in cooperation with Deloitte, and will be released in April 2017.

Joe Moore, IHRSA’s president and CEO, stated, “IHRSA has a long history of initiating and supporting industry research. IHRSA is happy to collaborate once again with EuropeActive and Deloitte on this important research.”

The 2017 European Health and Fitness Market Report will include profiles of the largest national markets, in-depth analyses on merger and acquisition activities, European Union policy implications and the global equipment market, and interviews with selected market experts and industry leaders.

Market Report on Spanish Health Clubs

Maria Angeles de Santiago Restoy and Mónica Garrido from MAS present the Market Report on Spanish Health Clubs in Seville.Moore noted that IHRSA also provided funding for the English language translation and design of the Market Report on Spanish Health Clubs, published in September by Management Around Sports (MAS) and sponsored by Precor. MAS's Maria Angeles de Santiago Restoy and Mónica Garrido presented the findings last month at the 16th Annual IHRSA European Congress in Seville.

IHRSA Mexican Health Club Report

Last month, IHRSA announced the completion of the first-ever IHRSA Mexican Health Club Report, sponsored by Movement. The Spanish-language edition of the report was given to attendees of the IHRSA Mecardo Fitness Mexico City Conference and Trade Show in October. The English-language edition of the report will be available in December. IHRSA will also be updating its popular IHRSA Latin American Report in March 2017.

2017 IHRSA Global Report

The IHRSA Mexican Health Club Report, sponsored by Movement.In January 2017, IHRSA will launch its annual global club operator survey for the 2017 IHRSA Global Report. The report, to be published in June 2017, details the market size and scope of the Americas, Europe, Middle East & North Africa, and Asia-Pacific markets, and highlights more than 300 leading club companies from around the world, including financial and membership information. The IHRSA Global Report is the most comprehensive publication on the global fitness business available.

Access additional research on global health club markets, club operational metrics, and consumer trends.


This Week in the Fitness Industry: Rasmus Ingerslev Featured on Fitness Business Podcast

Rasmus Ingerslev Featured on Fitness Business Podcast
IHRSA Board Chair Rasmus Ingerslev was the featured guest on the latest Fitness Business Podcast in an episode called, “Club Landscape for The Future and Understanding Millennials.” Ingerslev, who also serves as the chair of REPEAT and the executive vice chairman of Wexer Virtual, spoke on a range of topics from hurdles on his road to success to three tips to strengthen your health club business. “The life of an entrepreneur and a pioneer is never an easy one, but for the true entrepreneur it’s the life you have to lead," Ingerslev said. “You simply can’t help exploring what you believe strongly in.” 

IHRSA Announces Fourth IHRSA 2017 Keynote Speaker
Soraya Darabi, co-founder of Zady, a clothing and consumer goods e-commerce company, will be joining three other dynamic keynote speakers at IHRSA 2017, March 8-11 in Los Angeles. Darabi has her finger firmly on the pulse of today’s constantly-changing media landscape. As a leader in next-generation digital communications and e-commerce over the past decade, Darabi has helped numerous brands and companies of all sizes anticipate, understand, and maximize emerging digital trends. Read our full announcement about Soraya Darabi and her keynote presentation.

Boston, San Francisco, and Chicago Ranked Most Active Cities in U.S.
Boston—home of IHRSA headquarters—nabbed the top spot in a new report’s list of the most active cities in America, according to CNN. San Francisco and Chicago landed the second and third spots, respectively. The report, which is part of the Gallup-Healthways State of American Well-Being Series, assigned 48 medium and large cities an "Active Living" score based on factors such as walkability, bike-ability, the quality of the public transit system, and availability of well-maintained parks. According to CNN, “the residents of the top five cities have significantly lower rates, on average, of a handful of diseases (from diabetes to high cholesterol to depression) compared to people living in cities with low scores. They also have higher rates of exercise and eat more fresh produce.”

IHRSA European Congress Wraps Up in Seville

Hundreds of fitness industry professionals from dozens of countries attended the IHRSA European Congress in Seville, Spain, this week. The four-day event was packed with education sessions, networking events, leading equipment and service providers, and, of course, an A-list crowd. For those who couldn't join us, we compiled some photo highlights from the event.  Stay tuned for more information on the 2017 IHRSA European Congress in London!


German Fitness Studio Uses Data to Drive Innovation and Membership

To those of us who aren’t mathematically inclined, the prospect of working with data isn’t exactly appealing. But, when done strategically, data collection and analysis will begin to tell a valuable story for health club owners and operators. 

When Mrs. Sporty, a fitness studio chain in Germany, took a hard look at its membership data a few years back they noticed a striking change. 

“The previously homogenous target group of plus-50 women, which had been a niche for decades, changed to a diverse mass market,” says Mrs. Sporty CEO Valerie Bönström. “We understood from the data that we have to change and adapt our product—otherwise our target group would choose something else. The needs of our target group changed and so we did. When you focus on the needs of your customers you will constantly innovate—if you don’t, you die.” 

To adapt to its new target group, Mrs. Sporty transitioned from hydraulic machines to pixformance, which offers a fully individual functional workout for each woman. 

“Exercises are shown on a screen and feedback is given from the machine,” Bönström says. “It allows 100% goal focus.” 

Bönström will share her expert advice in her IHRSA European Congress session, “Innovation by Collecting & Analysing Data to Win Members Long-Term.” Her presentation, held Thursday, October 18, in Seville, Spain, will help attendees:  

  • Determine which data you have and what you will need to obtain.
  • Discover whether you know the patterns of behavior and needs of your customers.
  • Learn how to deliver what they want to have by innovation.
  • Identify controlling numbers to avoid missing when customer needs or behaviors change.
  • Gain insight on why to never stop questioning your business model.  

“An easy example of how to use data in a simple way is, if you know when members change their pattern of how frequently they visit the gym, you can already predict three months ahead when they will potentially cancel,” she says. “So data allows you to act before the member even knows them self that they might cancel. That is proven statistics and really a big win for the fitness industry.” 

Learn more about the IHRSA European Congress, October 17-20 in Seville, Spain. 


5 Reasons You Can’t Miss the 2016 IHRSA European Congress

It’s hard to quantify the true value of the IHRSA European Congress. The benefits—from networking and education to career inspiration—are immeasurable. The event’s content-rich education agenda and A-list crowd allow for numerous chances to catapult your club to success. 

Yet, while there are many reasons to attend the IHRSA European Congress, there are five you can always count on: 

1. Ample Opportunities to Network with the Right People

With daily networking sessions, receptions, and lunches, you’re guaranteed to build relationships with passionate, like-minded fitness professionals eager to collaborate and expand their professional networks. 

2. Education that Will Strengthen Your Business Acumen

Take your club or company to the next level by attending seminars taught by the industry’s most successful individuals. Topics cover everything from sales and marketing to retention. You will leave the Congress full of ideas you can immediately implement in your club.

3. Gain a Competitive Edge

The European Congress is a perfect opportunity to get up to speed on today’s top fitness market trends and discover how they apply to your club or company. Check out the forward-looking sessions in the full event schedule. 

4. Must-see Keynote Speakers

Speaking of trends, the health club industry continues to be reshaped by innovation and technology. IHRSA has lined up two exceptional keynote speakers to share their expertise on these exciting topics. David Robertson, professor and author of “Brick by Brick: How LEGO Reinvented its Innovation System and Conquered the Toy Industry,” will illustrate how companies can make true innovation happen (Sponsored by Technogym)

Marcos Eguillor, professor at Spain’s IE Business School and managing partner of BinaryKnowledge_, will discuss developing digital trends in the fitness market and how to use them to your club’s advantage (Sponsored by Keiser Corporation)

5. The Chance to Visit One of Europe’s Finest Cities

This year’s Congress will take place in the beautiful, modern Hotel Barceló Sevilla Renacimiento in Seville, Spain. The hotel is minutes from the city’s best restaurants, shops, and historic monuments. The hotel will be the location of all European Congress activities. IHRSA’s discounted room rates (Single €145 per night; Double €165 per night) will be available until Friday, 30 September 2016. 

Don’t miss this one-of-a-kind event, 17-20 October 2016. Register for the European Congress today.


There's Still Time to Apply for the IHRSA European Club Leadership Award

The deadline to apply for the 2016 IHRSA European Club Leadership Award is less than one month away!

Don't wait to apply for the award, which annually recognizes a leader in the European fitness club industry who has done the most to advance their company and the industry through strong leadership and performance.

“This award not only honors the recipient, but it also introduces the individual to club operators who want to learn from themwhether in person or by following and connecting with them through social media. It’s one more way in which IHRSA fosters 'Success by Association,'" says Alison O'Kane, associate vice president of international development.

This year’s award will be presented during the 16th Annual IHRSA European Congress, October 17-20, in Seville, Spain. The deadline to apply is September 9th. 

The IHRSA Awards Program seeks to “recognize, celebrate, and inspire.” Learn about applying for the European Club Leadership Award and more information about IHRSA’s industry awards, including prior recipients and open applications.


Apply for the 2016 IHRSA European Club Leadership Award

Calling all European health club industry leaders! 

We’re currently accepting applications for the 2016 IHRSA European Club Leadership Award, which annually recognizes a leader in the European fitness club industry who has done the most to advance their company and the industry through strong leadership and performance. 

This year’s award will be presented during the 16th Annual IHRSA European Congress, October 17-20, in Seville, Spain. The deadline to apply is September 9th. 

Martin Seibold, managing director of Fitness First UK in Dorset, England, received the 2015 European Club Leadership Award last October in Marseille, France.  After joining Fitness First Germany in 1998, Seibold helped grow the company's number of clubs from seven to 99 in just eight years. 

"I am truly honored to receive IHRSA's European Club Leadership Award,” he says. “It's amazing to look through the list of previous winners and be part of this history." 

The IHRSA Awards Program seeks to “recognize, celebrate, and inspire.” Learn about applying for the European Club Leadership Award and more information about IHRSA’s industry awards, including prior recipients and open applications.