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 IHRSA.org news.

Blog Home |  Subscribe to our RSS Feed

Entries in IHRSA featured post (30)

Tuesday
Feb142017

Transform Your Gym’s Group Training into a Revenue Engine 

This is an IHRSA featured post, brought to you by EXOS.

How to introduce individualization to a class setting for greater results

According to the 2015 IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report, about 43% (two out of five) health club members participate in group training. That equals about 22.1 million members, and that number keeps growing for several reasons...

Continue reading "Transform Your Gym’s Group Training into a Revenue Engine."

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Feb012017

To Thrive in an On-demand Culture, Your Health Club Needs a Mobile App

This is an IHRSA featured post, bought to you by ASF Payment Solutions.

We have the world at our fingertips, able to satisfy any whim that suits us. Music, video games, movies, magazines, television shows—they’re all one or two finger swipes or key strokes away. With this newfound power for instant gratification, we’ve become less patient, more demanding. We program our DVRs obsessively to avoid watching commercials. Buffering is suffering. And when did waiting through a 15-second pre-roll on YouTube become so excruciating? 

Technology has trained us to expect immediate satisfaction, and not just in our entertainment choices. Services that once required us to set aside an afternoon for errands are now done in minutes from your smartphone or computer. 

While this is great for consumers, business owners in every sector are under increasing pressure to satisfy the on-demand culture, and that includes health club owners. Upgrading services available on digital platforms is as important as upgrading equipment. Placing a sign-up sheet for spin classes at the front desk is no way to appeal to the modern consumer. 

How do clubs survive, even thrive, in this new environment? 

Continue reading "To Thrive in an On-demand Culture, Your Health Club Needs a Mobile App."

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jan172017

More Money, More Problems? How to Avoid Growth Pains in the Health Club Industry

This is an IHRSA featured post, brought to you by ABC Financial.

You’re in business to make money. That doesn’t mean that an inflow of cash solves all your problems, especially in the health club business, where volatility is the norm. Membership fees, employee turnover, equipment upgrades, and servicing—these are just a few of the unpredictable cost variables of health club management. 

Tracking cash flow and managing funds for growth in the midst of ongoing market disruptions requires special expertise. A bookkeeper with a QuickBooks account isn’t going to cut it. 

Continue reading "More Money, More Problems? How to Avoid Growth Pains in the Health Club Industry."

Click to read more ...

Friday
Jan132017

5 Ways Wearable Devices Can Turn Your PT Staff into Supertrainers 

This is an IHRSA featured post, brought to you by EXOS.

Knowing your heart rate is so 2010. Today’s wearable fitness technology delivers data points that far exceed anything that’s ever before been made available outside of medical clinics. But what good is all that information if it’s not used to improve health outcomes and fitness levels?

When personal trainers and performance coaches are trained in analyzing data from wearable devices, they can provide tremendous benefits to novice and serious clients in reaching their goals. And that means happier members and improved retention.

Here are five ways wearables can take fitness training to the next level.

Continue reading "5 Ways Wearable Devices Can Turn Your PT Staff into Supertrainers."

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Jan042017

How to Go from Madness to Mindfulness in Record Time 

This is an IHRSA featured post, brought to you by SportsArt.

Have you noticed that the same old objects we’ve had for decades have suddenly become “smart”? We have smartphones, smart watches, smart lights, smart clothing—even our appliances like dishwashers and refrigerators have joined the smart club.

Soon you’ll be using a smart toilet, if you’re not already.

Great, right? Well, not always. We love technology until we don’t. While cramming an appliance with chips and circuits brings a new level of performance and function, it also increases complexity, forcing the user to learn new operating systems with varying levels of difficulty. In short, our appliances are getting smarter, but that doesn’t mean we are.  

The Technology Paradox Plagues Health Clubs, Too

Any health club owner has witnessed this technology paradox in his or her own facility.

Today’s high-tech exercise machines are ingenious inventions, offering numerous variations of workouts on stair climbers, treadmills, stationary bikes, and other cardio equipment. But while the functionality always improves, the usability may not. Or to paraphrase noted Russian philosopher Yakof Smirnoff: “On health club machine, touchscreen controls you.”

Continue reading "How to Go from Madness to Mindfulness in Record Time."

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Aug102016

The Fitness Singularity Is Here—And It’s Awesome

This is a Club Business Exchange featured post, brought to you by SportsArt.

We live in an age of anxiety. We worry about the changing global climate, public health, and the speed at which technology is transforming our lives. Sometimes it seems like it’s all going too fast, spinning out of control. 

It’s hard to believe that a single technological development could address both our quest for more renewable energy sources, and better tools to fight obesity and chronic diseases. But SportsArt, a pioneer in green technology, set out to create a line of fitness products that did just that: deliver optimum fitness results without a measurable carbon footprint. They succeeded—and then some—by creating ECO-POWR: a line of health club equipment that harnesses human activity and converts it back to the power grid. 

Rarely has man and machine combined to create such an elegant solution to multiple problems. Think of it as the fitness singularity: where technology combines with human abilities to create a better world. 

Human Energy Meets Human Ingenuity 

Turning human activity into a renewable energy source takes state-of-the-art technology, but to make it practical for a health club setting, SportsArt knew that their ECO-POWR line needed to be as easy to install and manage as traditional equipment. Using micro-inverters, similar to what’s used in solar panels and wind turbines, the stationary bikes and ellipticals don’t have any extra cords or boxes (external power devices)—they simply plug into a wall outlet. 

That’s it. Then the power generated by using the fitness equipment goes right back into the facility’s power grid.

Using humans as a renewable energy source is also good for the bottom line. One workout can produce as many as 160 kilowatts of electricity. That significantly adds up during the course of a day, creating a pleasing complement of benefits: the member’s health improves as the health-club’s energy costs decline—and all for the benefit of the environment. 

Appealing to the Eco-conscious—and Millennials 

SportsArt’s technology edge isn’t isolated to their green outlook. The company has created a revolutionary touchscreen technology called Senza that’s intuitive and versatile. With Senza, exercisers can easily and quickly find their desired workout and entertainment in the intuitive touchscreen controls. With Senza Journeys, you can work out in a number of scenic environments, from the Golden Gate Bridge to nature trails, and Senza is also customizable, so the club owner can personalize it to reflect the culture of his or her gym. 

ECO-POWR can open up a whole new marketplace for health clubs. SportsArt’s powerful green equipment and the Senza experience are uniquely appealing to millennials and other populations who may otherwise not consider joining a gym. In fact, some club owners use the equipment to offer discounts to member who generate the most energy. 

Despite its groundbreaking technology, SportsArt equipment is a money-saver, backed by a best-in-class warranty. To learn more about SportsArt and ECO-POWR, including videos of the equipment in operation, visit us.gosportsart.com.

Wednesday
Jun012016

Data is King—Here’s How to Rule the Kingdom

This is a Club Business Exchange featured post, brought to you by Motionsoft.

Today’s technology has transformed business and marketing in fundamental ways. Data isn’t just valuable, it’s essential. Success in the health club industry in the 21st century depends on mastering the details of the vast information you compile about your current members and target markets. 

But compiling data is one thing. Making sense of it is the real challenge. It’s as if you need to create a separate division in your company to manage, organize, and produce reports on the data you continually accrue from members visiting your gym. 

Sure, you could do that. Or else you could get MoSoClub software, and have it do the work for you. 

The Information Revolution at Your Fingertips 

Created by Motionsoft, Inc., industry leaders in club management software, MoSoClub Front Desk Check-in is a tab-based software solution that gives you a complete 360-degree view of your member’s entire account information, from demographics to financial information—all on one screen. Designed exclusively for gyms, MoSoClub allows you to drive deeper into member data, so that you can create a great club experience for every member. 

Here are a few highlights of MoSoClub software:  

  • Easy to use. You won’t have to download any software. It’s all in the cloud, including member agreements, waivers, PT contracts—everything.
  • No special hardware requirements. The software allows unlimited uploading of documents without file-size restrictions.
  • Slick data-driven reporting. Ready to run any report you need when you need it.  
  • Increases on-site efficiency. Allows desk staff to redeem PT packages, as well as being able to track members' purchases, such as towel service or daycare.
  • Built with security in mind. Works with the most sophisticated entry systems in the marketplace, from key-tags, card readers and RFID (radio-frequency identification), to biometric entrance control solutions (fingerprint, handprint, iris), and it can activate turnstiles or magnetically lock doors in under a second. 
  • It’s customizable. In addition to nearly 50 standardized reports, MoSoClub features a Custom Report Builder that will give your staff the ability to create your own custom reports.  

Continue reading about Motionsoft's MoSoClub software.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
May102016

Problem Solved: Meet the Unsung Health Club Heroes 

This is a Club Business Exchange featured post, brought to you by SPORTSMITH

Health clubs are a place for maximizing human potential, where men and women engage in challenging workouts to achieve their health and fitness goals. Sounds like a happy place. 

But there is the occasional unhappy event, things you don’t want to see in a health club, such as:  

  • Sweaty brutes without towels to clean up after themselves;
  • People on smartphones hogging equipment;
  • Screaming weightlifters who yell on every lift, then drop the weights;
  • Signs on equipment that read, “Out of Order”;
  • A personal training area lacking essential fitness tools.  

The first three on the list above would be classified as “people problems” that call for finesse and clearly stated policies. But the other two require a partner in the background who can save the day with quick solutions, expert service, and a fast response. Kind of like a superhero. 

Who does a health club manager or owner turn to when that treadmill belt slips or those Kevlar Belting and fitness equipment wipes are dangerously low? 

The good news is that you don’t need a bat signal to summon the go-to company for support—you just need a phone or Internet connection to reach SPORTSMITH. The premier service provider of parts and accessories for health clubs, SPORTSMITH has been the hero in the background for 21 years, keeping gyms supplied with high-quality fitness gear and equipment parts. But SPORTSMITH’s inventory of over 100,000 parts for major equipment brands isn’t what sets it apart: It’s their dedication to making sure the job is done well and quickly, and your sad “out of order” sign is returned to a drawer ASAP. 

A Quick Diagnosis, A Fast Fix 

SPORTSMITH can help you solve your equipment and gear problems in a number of ways. They have a large collection of repair and maintenance articles and videos to help service technicians diagnose and fix problems quickly. And their in-house technical staff is OEM certified with over 10 years of field service experience, so you get knowledgeable assistance from real pros. 

SPORTSMITH knows your problem may be urgent, which is why they offer same-day shipping, and they back up their parts with a 120-day guarantee, so you get immediate satisfaction and peace of mind at the same time. 

You’ll find that SPORTSMITH services almost every brand of equipment imaginable, including Life Fitness, Star Trac, Cybex, Precor, Nautilus, Stairmaster, Bottom Brackets and more. And they can supply just about anything you can think of: belts, pulleys, pedals, medicine balls, mats, foam rollers, even training packages. And their extensive inventory allows them to offer a “best price” guarantee. 

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, but if it is broke, SPORTSMITH is the easy name to remember when you need a quick fix with high-quality products. For more information on their products and services, see sportsmith.com.

Monday
Feb292016

Lock Out Thieves Targeting Your Health Club 

This is a Club Business Exchange featured post, brought to you by Keyless.Co

Willie Sutton was a prolific bank robber from decades past, who was in and out of prison for almost his entire life. Notorious in his day, the famed outlaw was once asked by a reporter, “Why do you rob banks?” According to legend, Sutton replied, “Because that’s where the money is.” 

Thieves who target health club lockers share Sutton’s mentality. It’s where the wallets, keys, watches, jewelry, and other valuables are found. It doesn’t help that lockers can seem like easy pickings, since locker rooms have a unique set of vulnerabilities.  

  • Locker rooms do not have surveillance cameras;
  • Are busy during peak hours;
  • Aren’t centers of social interaction (people mind their own business, and leave and exit quickly).  

It’s not always easy for club employees and members to recognize who doesn’t belong in the gym if they’ve made it to the locker room. That makes the locks themselves your club’s last line of defense. 

Keyless.co Has a Lock on the Solution 

Some of the top health club chains in the world have realized that the key to locker security is no key at all, and have enlisted Keyless.Co, a Texas-based company, as their go-to solution for locker security. As the name implies, Keyless.Co utilizes a combination system that’s unique in its durability (the locks last decades) and security (it’s the only lock on the market with a reprogrammable cylinder). 

Keyless.Co locks also:  

  • Have zero operating expenses, with no replacement parts or maintenance.
  • Are non-battery operated, with no wires or software.
  • Have custom finishes and come with a five-year warranty.  

One recent news story on a locker room theft said that the robbers used a “shim” from a soda can to pick the lock. They wouldn’t have been successful if faced with a Keyless.Co lock. 

Low maintenance and high security is a desirable combination, and Keyless.Co manages it with a sleek product that’s easy to install. And when you need attention, customer service is a priority with Keyless.Co. 

Keyless.Co offers zero interest rate on financing and a rent-to-own program, so if you think these cutting-edge locks are out of your price range, give them a call or contact them through their website: keyless.co.

So keep a lock on member loyalty with top-of-the-line security, and stop today’s locker-room Willie Suttons from turning your customers into victims.  

Monday
Feb222016

And The Worst Gym Fail of All Time Is...

This is a Club Business Exchange featured post, brought to you by K&K Insurance.

If you've ever watched "gym fails" on YouTube you've seen some of the ridiculous, unfortunate things people do with fitness equipment. Imagine them doing something like that at your health club. 

It’s almost inevitable. As much effort as you put into safeguarding every inch of your club, humans are going to be humans. It would seem that mishandling gym equipment is epidemic, especially with CrossFit popularizing Olympic lifts, kettlebells, and other advanced training techniques. 

Statistics back this up. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, injuries caused by exercise and exercise equipment increased to almost 45% from 2007 to 2010. That’s a ton of liability exposure to health club operators, who also have to worry about the usual slip-and-falls and other routine concerns of business owners. If you’re not protected, you could lose it all. One person’s clickbait is another person’s business catastrophe. 

How to Lose Your Club in One Easy Step 

There’s an army of personal injury attorneys ready to take advantage of that tumble off the treadmill. Go ahead, Google “accidents in health clubs” and meet them. The threat is real. The worst gym fail of all is not protecting yourself from gym fails. 

Obviously, health club operators are uniquely vulnerable. What may not be obvious is that you can get coverage specifically designed for the unique needs of your gym. 

Insuring health clubs is a specialized service not well-suited to routine risk-assessment of your standard, everyday company, but that’s where K&K Insurance is most comfortable. Located in Fort Wayne, Indiana, K&K has been covering health clubs for almost as long as the health club industry has existed. The company was founded more than 60 years ago by husband and wife Nord and Teddi Krauskopf, motorsports enthusiasts who discovered that it was nearly impossible to get insurance for their hobby. So they decided to create a company that could cover those considered to be engaged in high-risk activities. 

Eventually, the company moved into other leisure sporting pursuits, which naturally led to K&K creating insurance products for the health club industry. Today, the company is considered the leading provider of sports, leisure, and entertainment insurance for everything from campgrounds to martial artists. And, yes, they still cover motorsports. 

To learn more about K&K Insurance and their products for health clubs, visit kandkinsurance.com. With the right coverage comes peace of mind. And shouldn’t health club operators be able to laugh at gym fail videos like the rest of us? IHRSA 2016 attendees in Orlando are invited to visit K&K Insurance at Booth #1400 on March 22-23.

Page 1 2 3