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.



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Entries in Helen Durkin (3)


Don't let legal issues put you in a difficult spot

Helen Durkin, IHRSA's executive vice president of Global Public Policy.Educational sessions at IHRSA events are a great way to help you with almost every part of running a health club. Sales, membership, programs, marketing, social media and more are offered at almost every convention or gathering run by IHRSA.

It is also a chance for us to delve deeper into some of our offerings. As the organization that grows, protects and promotes the health and fitness industry, IHRSA, too, has many offerings that can help in running a gym or club.

Helen Durkin, executive vice president of Global Public Policy, and Tom Richards, senior legislative counsel, hosted an education class during the IHRSA Institute earlier in August to explain some of the bigger and more prominent legal issues for clubs. They went over specific scenarios their department often runs into while also taking questions from the crowd, providing the best answers.

Read on to see what they talked about and some sample issues.

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State pages provide news, alerts and laws

IHRSA's mission is to grow, protect and promote the health and fitness industry, and to provide its members with benefits that will help them be more successful. 

The three areas – promote, protect and grow – are equally important to us here. While it may seem most of the bells and whistles are put into the growing (convention, trade show) and promoting (publications, research, website) baskets, the third leg may be overlooked by our members.

That would be a big mistake.

Regulars to the Advocacy pages on or those who make sure they are in attendance when Public Policy staff are presenting at our events are well aware of the importance of that arm of IHRSA.

Read on to see how the State pages on should be checked out on a weekly basis.

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Public Policy VP discusses importance of physical health in op-ed

Helen Durkin, executive vice president of Public Policy at IHRSA, this week wrote an op-ed piece for McClatchy Newspapers on the significance of physical health when it comes to one’s mental health. 

Studies have shown that being physically active can directly improve one’s mood by lowing depression and anxiety levels. 

Since one in four adults in the United States has a mental health issue, and one in five has an anxiety disorder, according to a Milken Institute study, the importance of exercise is undeniable. 

The result of increasing mental health issues can be missing work, disability and unemployment claims, low productivity and less innovative.

Read the entire op-ed piece:

Helen Durkin's McClatchy Newspaper op-ed

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