Club Insider

The Club Insider Archives: June 2016

Todd Smith and Las Vegas Athletic Club
Continuing the Smith-Palluck Legacy

By: Justin Cates

Justin CatesJustin CatesAmong Club Insider's Mission and Objectives, being a reporter and guardian of the health and fitness club industry's history is paramount in supporting those tasks. In January and February of 2002, Club Insider Publisher, Norm Cates, reported on and forever locked into our publication's archives the story of Rudy and Virginia Smith across a 2-part cover story. Already having completed a legendary career with more than 100 years of experience between them, Rudy and Virginia took on the task of transforming a 4-club chain known as Las Vegas Athletic Club (LVAC). Across the totality of their careers, their list of colleagues, business associates and team members reads like a Who's Who list of the most well known industry pioneers and legends, to whom we all owe so much. Todd Smith, along with his brother, Chad, were deeply entrenched in this industry from their own early days, and those whom they were exposed to and learned from during their developmental years ensured a long-term future in the industry their parents helped build and loved so much. Read More

"Insider Speaks"
The Missing Sound Bite in the Presidential Campaign

By: Helen Durkin

Helen DurkinHelen DurkinWhen the Presidential candidates are challenged with voter questions on how they'll drive down the cost of healthcare, the word "prevention" should pop right out. Personal tales of heavy premiums, rising deductibles and increased out-of-pocket healthcare costs are cropping up all along the campaign trail. Voters are complaining that they're spending more of their own money on healthcare than ever before. And, businesses have been saying for years that they can't sustain current healthcare costs. Over about a 10-year period, the percentage of workers enrolled in high-deductible employer-sponsored plans has more than quadrupled, from 10% in 2006 to 46% in 2015. And, a family of four now pays roughly $10,000 in medical expenses, or about 19% of its yearly income, with deductibles between $1,000 and $3,000, according to the Commonwealth Fund. Read More

What Do the New FLSA Exempt Pay Laws Mean for Fitness Business Owners?
By: Melissa Knowles

Melissa KnowlesMelissa KnowlesJust when you thought that navigating the landscape of wage and hour laws was challenging enough, another mountain to climb has popped up on the horizon! On May 18th, the Department of Labor announced major changes to the standard salary level for employees classified as exempt. Under this new ruling, the salary threshold increases to $913/week ($47,476 per year) from $455/week ($23,660 per year). It was also announced that the DOL intends to automatically update the threshold every three years to adjust it to scale with exempt wage earners in the 40th percentile of the region with the poorest salary demographics (currently the south). Read More

A Simple Tip for "Selling Out" Your Club Programs
By: Karen Woodard-Chavez

Karen Woodard-ChavezKaren Woodard-ChavezWhen I ask my clients how their programs are doing, they often respond with disappointing results. They report that they're just not getting the participation they expected. Does this sound familiar? When they implement the following tool, they see very different results. Often times, when planning a program, what is thought about is the title or the activity... rather than the desired outcome. If you're planning with outcomes in mind that your population has expressed a desire to achieve, it will make it easier for them to recognize that you're providing a solution for their needs. Ensure that at least one of your outcomes is incorporated into the title of the program so it's simple to understand what the program is about, and what the participant can expect, without having to read through a lot of marketing material. Naturally, we think of a title first, and we need to go into a bit more depth to include the outcomes and who the program will best serve. Read More

Summer Doesn't Have To Be Slow
By: Jon Butts

Jon ButtsJon ButtsSummertime is here, which means several things: the weather is warm, children are out of school, family vacations are in full effect and club owners nationwide are worried about keeping their membership numbers up during this historically slow time of the year. Club owners ask me all the time what they should do during the summer in regards to marketing. My answer? Keep going! Marketing is not a "sometime" thing; it's an "all the time" thing. Any club owner that believes otherwise will see less than desirable results with their membership numbers. The most successful clubs I have worked with over the years stay consistent and market every month; this is not a coincidence. Read More

Breathe Life Into Your Social Media
By: Nancy Trent

Nancy TrentNancy TrentSome brands thrive on social media, while others consider it a necessary evil. Those brands that are doing social media as a chore are doing what we call "check-the-box" social media. They need to start engaging, genuinely, to thrive in today's competitive marketplace. Social media supports the human need for social interaction. It has the ability to take a message from dozens to millions. That is power! It is the democratization of knowledge and information. At its best, it can transform consumers into actual journalists and producers for your brand. Read More

Wellness Vs. Fitness:
Do You "Get" the Difference?

By: Casey Conrad

Casey ConradCasey ConradIt's 2016, and there are more fitness facilities in any given market than ever before. Americans are more obese and overweight than any other time in history. The United States ranks as one of the highest in the western world for all chronic diseases and spends more on prescription drugs than do ALL the people of Japan, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Mexico, Brazil and Argentina... COMBINED! Still, only about 16% of the U.S. population are members of commercial health and fitness facilities. Furthermore, it's clear that our citizens aren't foregoing a facility because they are doing it on their own. Read More

Racquetball: Alive and Well
By: Luke St. Onge

Luke St. OngeLuke St. OngeI have been involved with the sport of Racquetball for 44+ years now, and I have lived through the days when many gave up on the sport, calling it a fad. I am happy to share with you that Racquetball is definitely alive and well. Many things have contributed to the popular belief that the sport has gone away. However, based upon the latest Sporting Goods Manufacturing figures, there are over 4,000,000 active players in the United States, with a core of 1,250,000 who play up to 30 times per year. The following is a little background for those who are not familiar with how the sport was born, how it has grown and where it is today. This brief history does not address everything that took place... Read More

Programming For The "Fun Of It!"
Step 5 of 7 to Becoming a Programming Professional

By: Laurie Cingle

Laurie CingleLaurie CingleA programming professional is a person who is an expert at the skills required to implement and fill programs. What does it take to become a programming professional in your facility? There are seven steps or skills: (1) Find program prospects, (2) Invite them to learn about and understand your program, (3) Present the program, (4) Follow up with program prospects, (5) Enroll them in the program, (6) Ensure success in the program and (7) Grow programs by promoting events and additional programs. Let's discuss Step #5, Enroll Them In The Program. Read More

Motionsoft Selected By Blink Fitness to Provide Club Management Software for Corporate and Franchise Gyms
ROCKVILLE, MD - Blink Fitness, a premium-quality, value-based gym chain, has selected Motionsoft to provide club management software for both corporate and franchise locations. Motionsoft's MoSo solution, an enterprise software solution designed for large fitness operators as well as franchise chains is now implemented across all 44 Blink Fitness locations. Read More

Norm's Notes for June 2016
By: Norm Cates

Norm CatesNorm CatesHello Everybody! This is your CLUB INSIDER Publisher and Tribal Leader Since 1993 checking in! YEP... this is our 270th monthly edition! To say this has been an interesting and challenging 23 1/2 years would be an understatement! We will celebrate our 24th Anniversary of Club Insider in Chicago at the Club Industry Show, October 12 - 14th, and I want to urge you to be there! People ask me, "Norm, what are the keys to Club Insider staying in the game for so long?" I always tell them the KEY is the people... YOU, the readers of Club Insider! So, my partner and son, JUSTIN CATES, and I want to Thank YOU for reading Club Insider! Please understand how much we DO appreciate YOU being a reader of our publication wherever you are on God's Beautiful Green Earth. Read More

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