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Entries in IHRSA/Fitness Brasil (13)


IHRSA Events in Brazil and Mexico Highlight Achievements and Promise

This past fall, I had the pleasure of attending the industry’s premier gatherings in Brazil and Mexico—the 16th Annual IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show, which took place in September, and the 2nd Annual IHRSA/Mercado Fitness Mexico City Conference & Trade Show, which took place in October. As a result, I’m able to report, with confidence, that the Latin American fitness industry is healthy, vibrant, and overflowing with potential.

Bullish in Brazil 

São Paulo was once again the host city for IHRSA/Fitness Brasil. More than 15,000 professionals took part in the region’s largest industry gathering. While the Brazilian economy as a whole struggled in 2015—and continues to battle strong headwinds this year—the fitness industry fared better, especially in the budget sector, where low-cost clubs continued to open at an impressive rate.

During the three-day IHRSA/Fitness Brasil event, the Transamerica Expo Center was bustling with activity, as 157 companies showcased their products and services, engaging trade show visitors. Waldyr Soares, the president of Fitness Brasil, observes that the strong showing by both exhibitors and attendees is a strong indication that the Brazilian health club sector is definitely open for business. He reports that the number of exhibitors increased by an impressive 15% over 2014, while attendance at the educational sessions rose by a solid 10%.

“People come here to catch up, regardless of the struggle the Brazilian economy is facing,” Soares said. “This industry is forward-looking.” 

On the Move in Mexico 

As for the 2nd Annual IHRSA/Mercado Fitness Mexico City Conference & Trade Show, Jacqueline Antunes, IHRSA’s senior manager for Latin America, summed it up this way: “It was gratifying to see the industry come together in Mexico City in such numbers. … There’s clearly a need for more collaboration, learning, and networking.”

Conference attendance grew by a substantial 37%, and trade show participation by a remarkable 50%, over figures for the inaugural 2014 gathering.

“I’ve attended both IHRSA events in Mexico City, and have had a great experience!” said José Manuel Pérez y López, the regional manger for Mexico’s Sport City Clubs. “These conferences have great value, because, while the speakers have an international perspective on the fitness industry, they offer useful tools that apply to the Mexican industry.”

Read Jay Ablondi’s full account of both events in the March issue of CBI. 


Last Rep: IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Has Grown in 15 Years

IHRSA CEO and President Joe Moore, in his monthly Last Rep column in CBI magazine, marvels at the many highlights of the recently completed 15th Annual IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference and Trade Show, in Sao Paulo.

Here is some of what he most enjoyed:

  • as he talked about the new InfoPacks members received an e-mail from IHRSA to download it
  • IHRSA Board member Christian Pierar’s talk on innovations and technologies
  • the excitement in Brazil with the Olympics arriving in 2016.

It was also fun to consider how far this indus- try gathering has come. The first IHRSA/Fitness Brasil trade show was held in a closed-off parking lot, but, since then, it’s grown into a true world- class event. This year, the attendees were able to view and try out countless innovative products and services.

Read the entire column in CBI magazine online.


Final Fitness Brasil roundtable focuses on growing during recession

The roundtable from the final day of the IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show asked the speakers answer how they react in a recession. All of the panelist actually grew their businesses during the most recent down period.

Panelists included: Carlos Josè dos Santos - São Paulo; Cláudio Barnabé - Pernambuco; Flavio Alexandre Costa Cancado - Belo Horizonte; Paulo - Porto Alegre; and Valter Stoiani - São Paulo; The moderator was Fabio Saba.

The key points were:

  • Planning/Strategy - way in advance
  • Be more proactive - always looking for information/data
  • We’ve always had crises to deal with - just work, work, work; clear goals; develop a good team
  • Create/innovate; attract people; planning from the bottom up
  • Strategic planning not only for crises; make service a priority; give value to your service

For more on IHRSA/Fitness Brasil, visit


Brazil's fitness industry not suffering same fate as economy

When Brazilians aren’t talking about the recently completed World Cup or the upcoming 2016 Summer Olympics, the topic is usually the economy. Unfortunately, it is not doing so great.

At the 15th IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show, last week in Sao Paulo, Gustavo Loyalo, the former president of Central Bank of Brazil, presented, “Perspective for the Brazilian Economy.”

As you can guess, it was a packed room with the majority of attendees paying close attention.

Read on to see what Loyola talked about.

Click to read more ...


New resources for Portuguese-speaking club operators

On Aug. 28, during the 15th Annual IHRSA /Fitness Brasil Conference & Trade Show in São Paulo, Brazil, IHRSA President and CEO Joe Moore announced the release of three new resources for Portuguese-speaking club operators. New 28-page Infopacks on management & planning, marketing, and sales & trends are free for IHRSA members, and include key information on trends and case studies. Non-members may purchase the PDFs from the IHRSA Store for $15 each, or $40 for the full set of three.

In addition to the new Infopacks, The 2012 IHRSA Latin American Report: Size & Scope of Key Health Club Markets is also available in Portuguese (as well as English and Spanish). This is the most comprehensive examination of key Latin American health club markets available anywhere. Sponsored by Hoist Fitness, this research publication was produced in collaboration with Mercado Fitness (Argentina) and supported by Fitness Brasil. The 60-page report retails for $149.95 (non-members) and $74.95 (members).

Contact with any questions.


IHRSA/Fitness Brasil leaders roundtable runs the gamut

Gustavo Borges, owner, Gustavo Borges Academia, and IHRSA board of directors members, answers a question.Leaders gathered for a roundtable discussion at the IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show, in Sao Paulo, Brazil, to talk about “Growth with Quality.” The panel included Edgard Corona, Bio Ritmo/SmarFit; Gustavo Borges, Gustavo Borges Academia; Marfara, Reebok; Luiz Urchiza, Body Tech; Gary Shulze, Companhia Atletica; and Mario Sergio Moreira, runner.

Read on to see the roundtable hightlights.

Click to read more ...


Are you a digital native or immigrant?

Christian Pierar, president of De Fitness Organisatie in Belgium and a member of the IHRSA board of directors, presented at the 15th IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show on Thursday. 

He asked the audience, during "Innovations & Technologies in the Digital World, How to implement them in your business," if they were digital natives or immigrants. He said natives are those who grew up with the Internet and are familiar and accustomed to using it. And that they are not deterred with changes and upgrades. Immigrants on the other hand are “the rest of us trying to keep up.”

The important thing to consider, for both, is how to implement technology into your business because marketing strategies 10 years ago are now fading. But with a wide gap with what marketing managers know and the possibilities with technology it is vital they get training.

“Reconsider how you are going to apply your resources from print to digital,” Pierar said. “Look at what you have and then implement technology with what you need.”

For more on IHRSA/Fitness Brasil, visit


InfoPacks are unveiled at IHRSA/Fitness Brasil

IHRSA President and CEO Joe Moore explains InfoPacks at the IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show.Those who are attending the 15th IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show, currently running through Aug. 30 in Sao Paulo, have the opportunity to get a new IHRSA publication for free.

The InfoPacks are informative articles and ideas that are essential for club owners in Brazil, South America and Latin America. They also include trends and relevant cases. There are three available:

  • IHRSA InfoPack Management & Planning
  • IHRSA InfoPack & Sales Trends
  • IHRSA InfoPack Marketing

InfoPacks are free for those who attended IHRSA/Fitness Brasil and fill out a quick survey, until Sept. 30, at They are also available for purchase at the IHRSA Store.


Reflections on IHRSA/Fitness Brasil beginnings during opening remarks

Waldyr Soares, president of Fitness Brasil, opens the 15th IHRSA/Fitness Brail Latin American Conference & Trade Show.The opening remarks at the 15th IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show saw Fitness Brasil President Waldyr Soares reflect on how far the event has come.

He said it started a little more than 15 years ago when he traveled to Boston to meet with IHRSA’s John McCarthy (executive director) and John Kersh (head of International) to forge a partnership. The inaugural show was held in a closed parking lot.

Soares went on to single out the many supporting institutions, including SEBRAE, the Brazilian support of micro and small businesses through empowerment, promotion and development.

He also talked about the future of Fitness Brasil. Two programs on the docket are a 360-hour course for instructors to work with the aging population and Project MOVE (similar to IHRSA’s Let’s Move). Also in the works is CRIANCA ESPERANCA, a 24-hour TV show to raise money for children’s well-being.

Soares finished he introduction by giving bottles of champagne to all of the partners.


Fitness Brasil is on

Fitness Brasil Executive Director Gustavo Almeida, left, and President Waldyr Soares, right, open the IHRSA/Fitness Brasil trade show with IHRSA President and CEO Joe Moore.The 15th IHRSA/Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show opened its doors this morning to a large crowd.

The three-day event is a a huge opportunity for those in attendance with close to 100 speakers and a trade show with almost 150 booths. 

The education features inspirational and practical information on a range of topics covering all aspects of the health club business: marketing, sales, technology, finance, management, retention, infrastructure, leadership, neuroscience, personal training, and much more. These will be presented by combining with the reality of what happens in the market and what still lies ahead. Most seminars are presented in Portuguese; some are presented English with simultaneous translation into Portuguese.

IHRSA/Fitness Brasil is at the Transamerica Expo Center in Sao Paulo.

To follow the happenings, and view photos and videos from IHRSA/Fitness Brasil, go to For more information on the event, including registration, visit