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


Entries in ACAC (6)


Clubs and members prosper with cross-discipline collaboration 

The growing sophistication of health, fitness, and wellness professionals, and the expanding number of specialties they practice, pay significant dividends for clubs and their members. It’s innovative improvement, with special relevance for the increasingly diverse populations - including those with health issues - that clubs are now being called upon to serve.

But there’s often a fly in the ointment, a pebble in the progress.

As the process of caring for members becomes more complex, the providers - personal trainers, nutritionists, health coaches, group and small-group exercise instructors, and others - tend to work independently within their respective niche, focusing exclusively on their particular skill set.

It’s a situation that’s sometimes referred to as “siloing” - a failure on the part of professionals to communicate, fully and effectively, about the singular goal that they’re all striving toward: the well-being of an individual client.

A number of factors may contribute to the condition: a limited understanding of other disciplines, professional tunnel vision, heavy work loads, lack of opportunities to confer with colleagues, etc. But the result is a disjointed, rather than a seamless, procedure; a limited, rather than a comprehensive, treatment plan.

Read on to see how some clubs and businesses are helping members' overall health with teamwork and collaboration.

Click to read more ...


Exercise may be the best medicine

It seems so simple and obvious. Why, then, has it not caught on?

The idea is having physicians talking more about physical fitness in the doctor’s office, and for those who need it, prescribing exercise. 

The hope is to cut down on the amount of pills a patient takes, get them to the gym to improve their health and prevent other health issues from occurring, while cutting down on health care costs in the United States.

This is the premise of the educational session by Edward Phillips, M.D., Exercise as Medicine: Tapping the Medical Community. The Health Promotion & Wellness track discussion is Thursday, March 13, 1:30 p.m., during IHRSA 2014 33rd Annual International Convention & Trade Show.

For more on Dr. Phillips's session, Exercise as Medicine, read on.

Click to read more ...


Learn tactics for leases, contractors, financing and more

For those who are looking into the real estate aspect of a club – leasing or renting, expanding, renovating or deciding on a location – there is a lot to consider. 

That may sound obvious, but sometimes in order to get the best price, results and member experience it requires stepping back from the project or seeking advice in order to get perspective.

Chris Craytor, vice president of Development at ACAC Fitness and Wellness Centers in Virginia and Pennsylvania, will be able to give some of his perspective during his discussion, Health Club Real Estate Tactics and Strategies on Saturday, March 15, at 9 a.m., as part of the Innovations & Opportunities track.

IHRSA is writing about all of the different educational session tracks leading up to the 33rd Annual International Convention & Trade Show, which is March 12-15 in San Diego.

Read on for more on Health Club Real Estate Tactics and Strategies.

Click to read more ...


Members weigh in on obesity as a disease

On the surface, the recent announcement that the American Medical Association has decided to designate obesity as a disease is great news.

How can it not be? Now doctors will be able to prescribe various solutions for the overweight, the current epidemic is now being brought to the forefront as a serious issue that needs to be dealt with, and, for the fitness industry, it may bring in more visitors through the doors.

While all of that is true, it is not all perfect. 

First, doctors still need to take the time to talk to patients who are in need of a solution – usually exercise and a proper diet. But, as many physicians get paid on the number of patients they see, squeezing in even a 20-minute discussion on the benefits of hitting the gym may be too much for a primary care physician. And, what if now, with obesity considered a disease the option of surgery, like gastric bypass, or a yet-to-be discovered drug is the easier way?

Then, there are insurance companies. If they don’t cover gym memberships or other options that cost money then there is a viable chance the obese will not take their doctor’s suggestion.

But this doesn’t mean the new disease label can’t be an impetus for battling the ghastly obesity numbers – currently 1 in 5 for children and 1 in 3 for adults.

Read on for the complete story.

Click to read more ...


What workout is right for you?

In this space we talk a lot about trends and hot new workouts. But are they OK for the general public to be taking part in? 

A Fox station recently looked into different options out there – TRX Suspension Trainer, High-Intensity Interval Trainer, Minimalist Running Shoes, Digital Body Monitors, Crossfit and Myofascial Release Therapy – and gave its opinions while also experts’ analysis on each.

Also in This Week in the Fitness Industry:

  • Anytime Fitness expands into Spain
  • Huffington Post round-up
  • ACAC membership drive a boon for area club
  • Trapeze workout the latest craze 

Click to read more ...