IHRSA Newsroom

Get the latest news about the health and fitness industry, consumer research and trend information, IHRSA advocacy, and the role that it plays in providing a solution to the crisis of physical inactivity.

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NeuroChallenge Foundation Announces Partnership with Medical Fitness Network to Provide New Fitness and Allied Healthcare Provider Resource

(August 9, 2017) Sarasota, FL– NeuroChallengeFoundation has partnered with the Medical Fitness Network (MFN) – a free national online resource directory to locate fitness, wellness and allied healthcare professionals who provide services for those with medical conditions, chronic disease or women’s health issues.

“Exercise is an important part of healthy living for everyone. For people with Parkinson’s, exercise is more than healthy, it is a vital component to maintaining balance, mobility and the ability to perform activities of daily living. Establishing early exercise habits is essential part of overall disease management as an extension of their treatment. Doctors will recommend exercise but then people with Parkinson’s are often left to their own devices to determine how best to fill these doctor’s orders. The person can search online for fitness and allied healthcare providers, but it can be a daunting task to find the right solution. ”Robyn Faucy, the Executive Director at NeuroChallenge said. “We are excited to partner with the MFN in order to provide a resource for those with Parkinson’s and their families to find health, wellness & fitness providers all in one place that best fit their needs.”

“The MFN strives to improve the quality of life for those with Parkinson’s, family members and caregivers by providing a registry of professionals that offer a holistic approach to complement their medical care,” said MFN founder Lisa Dougherty. ”We are also excited to help create awareness about their community programs & events.”

About NeuroChallenge

Neuro Challenge Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life of people with Parkinson’s and their caregivers.NeuroChallenge provides ongoing monthly support groups and educational programs, individualized care advising and community resource referrals to help empower people with Parkinson’s and their caregivers.

About the Medical Fitness Network (MFN)

The Medical Fitness Network (MFN) is a free online resource directory for consumers to locate fitness & allied healthcare professionals with a background in prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation in working with those with chronic disease/medical conditions, including but not limited to: Alzheimer’s, Arthritis, Cancer, Diabetes, Fibromyalgia, Heart Disease, Mental Disorders, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s, Pre & Postnatal Care, Respiratory Disease and Stroke. The MFN donates its services as a national database management company to medical, health organizations that do not offer resources for locating fitness & allied healthcare professional. medicalfitnessnetwork.org


The Abs Company Announces Issuance of U.S. Patent for TireFlip 180®

CHESTER, New Jersey, August 16, 2017 -- The Abs Company, a leading supplier of health and fitness equipment, today announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued a utility patent for TireFlip 180®, the Company's innovative functional training product for the commercial fitness market.  TireFlip 180® transforms tire training into a safe, space-saving activity, which is perfect for fitness facilities and training centers where space comes at a premium.

Sean Gagnon, President of The Abs Company, commented, "We are excited to have our TireFlip 180® receive utility patent protection.  Our company strongly believes in innovation and we expect this patent to add significant value to our fitness patent portfolio and enable us to protect our important IP assets."

The patent, U.S. Patent 9,717,941-B2, is expected to expire no earlier than April 2036 in the U.S. for the issued claims. International patents are pending. 


S.F. & Wellness, Inc dba W.I.T.S. Receives Accreditation of its Certified Personal Trainer from the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA)

WASHINGTON (8/14/2017)—The NCCA accredited the WORLD INSTRUCTOR TRAINING SCHOOLS Certified Personal Trainer for a five-year period, expiring 8/14/22, during its recent meeting.

Founded in July 1993, W.I.T.S., is a professional certification organization acting in the public interest by establishing and enforcing education, examination, experience and ethics requirements for certification. 

W.I.T.S. received NCCA accreditation of its Certified Personal Trainer Level 1 by submitting an application demonstrating the program’s compliance with the NCCA’s Standards for the Accreditation of Certification ProgramsNCCA is the accrediting body of the Institute for Credentialing Excellence (formerly the National Organization for Competency Assurance).  Since 1977, the NCCA has been accrediting certifying programs based on the highest quality standards in professional certification to ensure the programs adhere to modern standards of practice in the certification industry.  To purchase a copy of the standards, please visit www.credentialingexcellence.org/ncca. 

There are more than 270 NCCA-accredited programs that certify individuals in a wide range of professions and occupations including nurses, financial professionals, respiratory therapists, counselors, emergency technicians, crane operators and more.  Of ICE’s more than 330 organizational members, over 120 of them have accredited programs.

ICE’s mission is to advance credentialing through education, standards, research, and advocacy to ensure competence across professions and occupations.  NCCA was founded as a commission whose mission is to help ensure the health, welfare, and safety of the public through the accreditation of a variety of certification programs that assess professional competence.  NCCA uses a peer review process to: establish accreditation standards; evaluate compliance with these standards; recognize programs which demonstrate compliance; and serve as a resource on quality certification.


Agenda and Speakers Announced for 18th Annual IHRSA / Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show

August 10, 2017 – Boston, MA – IHRSA, the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association and Fitness Brasil have officially announced the agenda and speakers for the 18th Annual IHRSA / Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show. The event will take place at the Transamerica Expo Center in São Paulo, Brazil, August 31 through September 2, 2017.

Nearly 2,000 health club owners, operators, and industry experts are expected to attend the full, three day conference, and approximately 15,000 will test out the latest fitness equipment and technology during trade show hours.

Derek Gallup EVP of Fitness for New Evolution Ventures (NeV) and the current Chair of the IHRSA Board of Directors, is the featured presenter. The focus of his presentation, “Achieve Extraordinary Results Even In Challenging Times,” will be on making the connection between leadership, fitness, and personal training.

“I’m looking forward to presenting at IHRSA / Fitness Brasil,” said Gallup. “I believe attendees will come away from my talk with a better understanding of global and local industry trends, and will gain valuable insight on how to grow business through positive leadership practices, creative thinking, unique fitness offerings, and fun.”

The event will also feature a number of keynote presentations from:

Gustavo “Guga" Kuerten

Kuerten is a champion tennis player with 20 career singles and eight doubles titles. He is a three-time champion of Roland Garros (The French Open) who spent 43 weeks as the world's No. 1 player with a total of 358 career wins.

Mailson da Nóbrega

Da Nóbrega is the former Finance Minister of Brazil and former Secretary General of the Ministry of Finance. He led a number of studies that resulted in the creation of the National Treasury Secretariat and the restructuring of the Brazilian Central Bank, and he is also a columnist for two major newspapers (Folha de S. Paulo and O Estado de S. Paulo), and Veja magazine.

Claudia Elisa Soares

Soares serves on the Board of the São Paulo City Management Secretary, and is a former executive of companies such as AmBev, GPA, Via Varejo, Votorantim Cimentos, FNAC, Arezzo & Co, and Pão de Açúcar group.

Eugenio Mussak

Mussak is an author and professor at FIA-USP and Dom Cabral Foundation in the areas of Leadership and People Management. He is also Scientific Director of the Brazilian Association of Human Resources, a columnist for the magazines Você S.A. and Vida Simples and the portal UOL, as well as a commentator for Radio Eldorado.

Eduardo Carmello

Carmello is Director of Enthusiasms for Human Talent Consulting and an organizational and educational consultant specializing in strategic people management. He has been recognized seven times with the TOP 5 Mind Award for Human Resources.

In addition, IHRSA President and CEO Joe Moore, will be presenting relevant information and trends highlighted in The IHRSA Latin American Report (Second Edition), which was released earlier this year. The report provides the most comprehensive examination of key Latin American health club markets available anywhere and was sponsored by Hoist Fitness, produced in collaboration with Mercado Fitness, and supported by Fitness Brasil. The IHRSA Latin American Report (Second Edition) is available in Spanish, Portuguese, and English language versions and can be purchased through IHRSA’s website.

To register for the 18th Annual IHRSA / Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show, please visit the event webpage or contact Jacqueline Antunes, IHRSA’s senior manager Latin America.


IHRSA, the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association is a not-for-profit trade association representing health and fitness facilities, gyms, spas, sports clubs, and suppliers worldwide. IHRSA and its members are dedicated to making the world healthier through regular exercise and activity promotion. IHRSA's events provide a vast array of speakers on business and corporate culture, instructional sessions on all aspects of succeeding in the health club industry, social events to mix and mingle with peers, and the most spectacular trade shows in the industry.

About Fitness Brasil

Fitness Brasil is dedicated to developing business and careers related to fitness, health, and wellbeing. Fitness Brasil hosts industry events, such as the annual IHRSA / Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show in São Paulo. Other Fitness Brasil events include: Fitness Brasil Internacional and various Fitness Business Tours throughout the year.

About IHRSA / Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show

Established in 2000, the IHRSA / Fitness Brasil Latin American Conference & Trade Show has grown to become the health and wellness industry's premier annual Latin American event. The event, features three days of seminars, networking opportunities, and a trade show with more than 100 exhibitors and over 15,000 visitors.



Fitness First Asia has announced the launch of a brand new digital membership, available to both members and non-members, in a bid to broaden the reach of the Fitness First brand and inspire people to stay active wherever they are.

The digital membership is delivered through the CustomFit app, Fitness First’s version of the award-winning Wexer Mobile app. This app will also now allow Fitness First to live-stream group fitness classes – from its clubs, direct to users wherever they are, and provide a library of hundreds of on-demand virtual classes.

The app – Wexer Mobile – was created as a white label mobile solution for operators to extend their reach beyond the four walls of the gym. Additional modules in the app include a workout builder, class bookings, challenges, results-focused programmes and a tool for PTs to prescribe bespoke workout plans for their clients.

Simon Flint, CEO of Evolution Wellness – the parent company for both Fitness First Asia and Celebrity Fitness following a recent merger – says: “Fitness First understands that in today’s busy life there may be occasions where members won’t always be able to make it to the gym, so we want to provide tools and content which will allow them to stay on track with their fitness regimen. We’re keen to continue to help keep people inspired wherever they may be – at home, at work, or while travelling – through fitness-rich experiences.

“This is why we have chosen to partner with Wexer in this unique way.”

Wexer CEO Paul Bowman adds: “Our key objective is to help clubs stay relevant in a world where consumers are increasingly looking online for fitness inspiration and content.

“Wexer Mobile is a digital extension of the club’s offering. It allows the operator to maintain its relationship with members 24/7, while also expanding the reach of the business by engaging a new cohort of non-gym-goers.”

About Wexer

Through a range of digital products and services Wexer helps club groups connect with members both inside and outside the four walls of the gym. The original product, Wexer Virtual, features world-class exercise content and allows 24h usage of group exercise and cycling studios. The gym floor product, Wexer Trainer, helps clubs activate their functional space. Wexer also offer Wexer Mobile, an app, which allows streaming of both live and pre-recorded classes as well as ‘on-the-fly’ exercise programming which can be used whenever, wherever. 

About Evolution Wellness 

Evolution Wellness brings together two leading fitness brands – Celebrity Fitness and Fitness First – under one roof to create one of the largest fitness club networks in Asia. It combines the expertise of one of the most established brands, Fitness First, with one of the fastest-growing brands in the health and fitness industry, Celebrity Fitness. The combined entity will wholly-own, manage, and operate all 153 fitness clubs across Asia.

About Fitness First Asia

Fitness First is one of the largest fitness brands in the world and the largest in Southeast Asia. In Asia alone, there are more than 90 Fitness First clubs across Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand. With over 222,000 members generating close to 15 million visits per year, Fitness First carries unparalleled brand equity across the region. With an unrivalled club network in the region, a unique range of proprietary group fitness classes / experiences, class-leading fitness app CustomFit, and a reputation for great customer service, Fitness  First  is  well  placed  to  build  on  its leadership position in the fast-growing Asian fitness market.