Club Insider

A Seat at WHO’s Table? How the GHFA is Proving the Fitness Industry’s Value

Posted: August 25, 2021 in IHRSA

IHRSA AdvocateIHRSA Advocate

BOSTON, MA – Work is underway on a major new report —The Economic Impact of the Health and Fitness Industry— commissioned by the Global Health & Fitness Alliance (GHFA), conducted by Deloitte, supported by IHRSA, and with the World Health Organization as a key target audience.

Initially covering around 60 countries, which between them account for the majority of the global health and fitness club market, the report will analyze the sector’s social and economic contribution and deliver a comprehensive view of its direct and indirect value to society.

Due to be published in the new year, the report’s broad scope will encompass topics such as:

  • operators’ P&L items, including rent, utilities, and people,
  • the value to communities of these career opportunities,
  • the impact of migration trends,
  • the sector’s quantifiable impact on industries including health and technology, and
  • the socio-economic value of health and fitness facilities over and above exercise conducted elsewhere.

The Economic Impact of the Health and Fitness Industry is the first major initiative from the GHFA, a new organization whose over-arching mission is to reposition the health and fitness sector, definitively confirming it as an essential service in the eyes of global governments and health bodies.

This new report represents the first step in building a conclusive case.

“The GHFA was created as an independent, globally representative group of our sector’s senior decision-makers, ensuring we have the authority and influence to move at pace,” explained Greg Oliver, CEO of Fitness & Lifestyle Group and spokesperson for the GHFA’s Advisory Council.

“It was forged in the frustrations of lockdown when, amid surging public and governmental interest in health and wellbeing and in spite of our sector’s unparalleled health credentials, gyms and wellness centers were the first to be closed and the last to re-open.

“In creating the GHFA, we recognized the pressing need to bring our industry leaders together—with singular focus, a challenger mindset and a global remit—to confirm our essential status.

“The GHFA represents the entire global health and fitness industry as we push forward to achieve our goals, working as a team and in cooperation with the relevant authorities.”

He concluded, “One of our primary objectives is to secure a seat at the table of the World Health Organization as it produces its physical activity policy briefing for national governments—a briefing that for the first time will include the health and fitness club industry in its scope. Our new report will provide invaluable evidence to inform these discussions.”

The GHFA operates independently of all other trade organizations and charges no membership fees. All applications are reviewed to ensure global representation and thought leadership. Apply today.

Learn more about the Global Health & Fitness Alliance.

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