THE UK'S NO 1 DIGITAL MAGAZINE FOR GYM OWNERS & FITNESS PROFESSIONALS
ISSUE 27 // June 2018
HOW CAN MY TRAINERS IMPROVE THE MEMBER EXPERIENCE VIA FITNESS ASSESSMENT?
FEED YOUR BRAIN -
the importance of reading to reach your goals.
ASPIREâ€™S INSTRUCTABILITY: From Exercise Referral P at i e n t t o F i t n e s s S p e c i a l i s t
STATE OF THE FITNESS INDUSTRY REPORT GYM OWNER OF THE MONTH:
DR. ZAK PALLIKAROS
Op ti m um Pe rf or m an ce Tr ai ni ng
Life is an Obstacle Course JUNE 2018
NE WS / / REV I EWS // T EC H NOLO G Y / / TRE N DS / / EQU I PM E N T / / I NSIG HT
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Welcome... …to the June 2018 issue of Gym Owner Monthly Magazine. Another month has passed, and we’re finding ourselves half way through 2018 already. As I announced last month, we are the official Media Partners for Aspire InstructAbility, who work tirelessly for greater inclusivity for people with disabilities in the leisure industry. On pages 19 - 21, you can learn more about Michelle Felix, an InstructAbility graduate. We strongly believe in this inclusivity, and on pages 56 -57, we introduce you to Iain McKendry, a qualified Spinning® Instructor with cerebral palsy who launched his own club in Scotland. We, of course, have a host of other great articles, which we hope you find useful, inspiring and informative. Amongst these, Taz Dunstan talks about Obstacle Races on pages 24 - 25, something near and dear to my heart, as I line myself up to complete a Spartan Trifecta this year. As someone who has recently moved continents, which has resulted in far less exercise than before, I have some serious work to do. I’ll keep you updated!. We hope you enjoy the issue!
Nicky & The GOM Team
email@example.com Tel: 07858 487 357
Keep up to date
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COVER MODEL: Pete Howe
endorsed by British Weight Lifting © Gym Owner Monthly Magazine 2017 Gym Owner Monthly is published by PW Media. Gym Owner Monthly is protected by copyright and nothing may be produced wholly or in part without prior permission. The acceptance of advertising does not indicate editorial endorsement. The opinions expressed in editorial material do not necessarily represent the views of Gym Owner Monthly. Unless specifically stated, good or services mentioned in editorial or advertisements are not formally endorsed by Gym Owner Monthly, which does not guarantee or endorse or accept any liability for any goods and/or services featured in this publication. We cannot accept responsibility for any mistakes or misprints. Unsolicited material cannot be returned. The views expressed are not necessarily those of the publisher. Please note that we reserve the right to use all supplied photographs/images elsewhere in the publication or on our social media channels.
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News The latest news and hot topics in the industry.
2018 State of the UK Fitness Industry Report
Appointments A round-up of industry movers and shakers.
Optimum Performance Training
Dr. Zak We meet Dr. Zak Pallikaros, owner of Pumping Iron Gym.
I Wanted to Work on Prevention Rather Than Diagnosis We meet Brian Firth, CEO at FitQuest for our Big Interview.
PT of the Month We meet James Sutliff.
Improving Fitness & Staying Motivated Through Group Exercise Joe Cooper talks about group fitness classes, how they are a vital part of the industry, and growing all the time.
Feed Your Brain Daniel Nyiri on the importance of reading.
FitKit This month’s round-up of kit, products and extras you can stock for your members – boosting loyalty, retention and your revenue.
Technology Takeaway at 2018 Retention Convention
30 60 24 58 19
New Technology Keeps Third Space Ahead of The Curve
Lower Slower Chris Zaremba on the importance of the second half of weight exercises.
Life is an Obstacle Course Taz Dunstan on why obstacle courses are ideal for overcoming challenges in all areas of life.
From Exercise Referral Patient to Fitness Specialist Meet Michelle Felix, InstructAbility graduate and Founder of the Michelle Felix Group.
Gamification – How Effective is it in Influencing Behaviour Change? Kerstin Obenauer finds out how influential the introduction of gaming elements can be with regards to behaviour change.
EMS Training Sonja Sefke tries her hand at Electrical Muscle Stimulation.
Spinning® For All Qualified Spinning® Instructor who has cerebral palsy launches his own club in Scotland.
Ask the Expert
Massage, Vibration And How The Industry Rolls These Days... Matt Gleed discusses the best methods to balance out and release.
We're always seeking contributors, if you're interested in writing for us then please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
What’s hot in the fitness industry
EGYM LAUNCHES AUTOMATED PROGRAMME TO TACKLE DIABETES As part of its ambition to enable operators to provide a ‘gym for everyone’, eGym has enhanced its software solution to include ‘Metabolic Fit’ an evidence based programme proven to regulate blood glucose levels. Through its application, operators can seamlessly prescribe and manage bespoke, automated training plans on a large scale, to people with metabolic conditions including type 2 diabetes. In the UK, diabetes affects more than 3.7 million people, with a further 1 million estimated undiagnosed cases. One in every 16 people who visit our gyms suffers from the condition. By 2025 it is predicted that diabetes prevalence in the UK will surpass 5 million, putting a further strain on an already struggling NHS service. Metabolic Fit enables operators to deliver effective training programmes to a growing segment of the population suffering from a metabolic disorder, such as diabetes, widening the new member pool through increased accessibility and enhanced service provision. This software advancement is a prime example of how the physical activity sector can work alongside the health sector to achieve positive, patient-centred health outcomes. The new programme appears as an integral training programming under the ‘Health’ training goal option on the eGym strength equipment and applies all the benefits of eGym’s well established intelligent training system. Periodisation and regular strength tests are automated to ensure the prescription and administration of an effective, progressive training programme. The introduction of Metabolic Fit means, based on the latest scientific findings, trainers can prescribe bespoke activity programmes which fully support medical assessment and treatment plans, on a large scale, without undergoing expensive and time consuming medical training. Scientific studies have proved that optimal training for type 2 diabetes patients is a high number of repetitions over long exercise periods, working all the major muscle groups. The eGym intelligent system automates a progressive programme, developed to increase insulin receptor sensitivity and reduce blood glucose levels longterm. This is achieved by the slow building of strength endurance, which the German Diabetes Association has found to be the most effective type of training for those with diabetes. The focus is on 6
the increasing muscle stimulus without triggering a significant rise in blood pressure. In partnership with the University of Leipzig, eGym conducted a study which measured the impact of the Metabolic Fit programme on a group of type 2 diabetes patients. Participants trained on the eGym strength circuit at least once a week for 6 months, following the automated, prescribed programme. The study reported a significant correlation between the training and a reduction in blood glucose (HbA1c) levels. At the end of the 6 months, 39 per cent of participants recorded such a reduction in blood glucose that they were no longer clinically classified as diabetic. In addition, all patients experienced a decrease in blood pressure and a reduction in hip and waist circumference measurements, both indicators of an improvement in long term health. Speaking about the development of Metabolic Fit, eGym CEO, Philipp Roesch-Schlanderer, says: “Our goal has always been to develop a comprehensive, optimally connected, product portfolio which exploits the full potential of digitalisation, creating a gym for everyone and offering our operator partners a sustainable future. “The introduction of Metabolic Fit enables gyms to effectively support a growing percentage of the population with a specific longterm health condition, widening the potential market for operators and closing the gap between the health and physical activity sectors. We are very excited to be offering this to market and look forward to our continued commitment to supporting a healthier more active population.” For more information about the Metabolic Fit training programme or any of eGym’s product innovations, please contact eGym at email@example.com or visit www.egym. co.uk/business.
VERSACLIMBER UK ANNOUNCES RECORD YEAR OF SALES
and businesses, to those wanting to train from the privacy of their own home. “We have received hundreds of enquiries about the option of leasing and we’re delighted that we can now offer this option.” The Versaclimber offers a full body workout that targets all muscle groups and provides a low impact alternative to the treadmill that is suitable to all levels of fitness. Its latest version of the machine comes equipped with contra-lateral movements, otherwise known as the ‘cross-crawl’. For more information about Versaclimber UK, visit www. versaclimber.co.uk.
PLACES LEISURE COMPLETES ESTATE-WIDE ROLL OUT WITH REFERALL TO DRIVE HEALTHFOCUSED PROGRAMMING Places Leisure has extended its partnership with ReferAll to cover its entire nationwide estate of community-based health programmes.
Total body workout machine specialist Versaclimber UK has announced that 2017/18 was a record year for the company, achieving a 25 per cent increase in yearon-year sales. A large part of the success followed the launch of Europe’s first Versaclimber group training class at London’s ‘Sweat By BXR’ in 2017, which has continued to grow in popularity and attract attention from other fitness outlets into 2018. Commenting on the growth of the business, managing director at Versaclimber UK, Neil Kelford, said: “The last 12 months really has been the year of the Versaclimber. Thanks to the rise in popularity of group training using the machine, the Versaclimber has been catapulted back into the media limelight. It has also helped that athletes such as Andy Murray are incorporating the machine into his recovery routine from injury. “We have witnessed a significant rise in enquiries from both health club managers and those who want to install a machine at home for personal use, to the point where we have had to fast forward shipments from our American suppliers to meet heightened demand.” Continuing with its moment into 2018, the Versaclimber has also been featured in the Press Association’s list of health trends to look out for in the year ahead, highlighting the continued growth of this popular machine, which first gained notoriety after famously featuring in the box office classic, Rocky IV. Working closely with Nottingham-based digital PR agency Tank, the Versaclimber UK website has seen a 60 per cent rise in year-onyear traffic driven by social media alone. 2018 also sees the launch of the company’s new leasing scheme, which allows businesses to purchase equipment without having to commit to the full cost of a machine up front. Neil adds: “The aim of this scheme is to improve the accessibility of these machines to a wider variety of users, from small, independent gyms
The award-winning social enterprise, which currently manages over 120 leisure facilities on behalf of its local authority partners, is using ReferAll’s software-based Exercise on Referral (EOR) solutions to support a number of health-focused programmes, including Exercise on Referral, Shape-Up and Swim for Health. Dr Steve Mann, Head of Healthy Communities at Places Leisure, explained: “As a social enterprise, it is essential to see what impact our Exercise on Referral and condition-specific programmes are having for individuals, communities and nationally. It is also crucial we equip sites to capture data in the most efficient way possible. We need to be able to report accurately so we can engage with key stakeholders at a local and national level. ReferAll gives us the opportunity to do that.” Places Leisure is committed to tackling health inequalities in communities. Dr Mann explained the importance of the ReferAll roll out in achieving this: “ReferAll’s software allows us to prioritise and specifically target our resources within communities for maximum gain. By collating data in a consistent and accurate way, we can actively ensure our services are being designed and delivered for people who need them most.” ReferAll offers a fast and efficient online referral pathway for Exercise on Referral schemes. The software connects GP practices, commissioners, scheme administrators and EOR instructors. This ensures all data is collected centrally, enabling real time reporting with ease on anything from uptake demographics to evaluation of improvement in activity levels. Stuart Stokes, Commercial Director at ReferAll, added: “Working with Places Leisure is hugely important to us as a company. It supports our global aim to celebrate the success of EOR programmes. Change is a difficult thing. For an organisation the size of Places Leisure to take this on is fantastic. Our collaborative investment of time and support has made this happen.” Dr Mann concluded: “Both Places Leisure and ReferAll are committed to research and innovation. Our partnership will deliver unprecedented levels of insight into the effectiveness of our community health programmes and place evidence based delivery at the forefront of our service.” ReferAll is currently working with over 360 service providers JUNE 2018
to power lifestyle services that, to date, have seen more than 300,000 referrals. For further information visit www.referall.net
EVERYONE ACTIVE LAUNCH PARTNERSHIP WITH DOUBLE OLYMPIC GOLD MEDALLIST, MAX WHITLOCK, TO DRIVE GYMNASTICS PARTICIPATION
Double Olympic gold medallist, Max Whitlock, has joined forces with sports and leisure provider, Everyone Active, to introduce an exciting gymnastics programme to children across the country. Everyone Active launched its partnership with Max Whitlock Gymnastics at Seymour Leisure Centre in London on Tuesday 22 May. The duo are aiming to get more young people active by offering them access to fun, engaging sessions and expert coaches. The event was one of three launches, with the other two taking place at Everyone Active sites in Sunderland (Washington Leisure Centre) and Plymouth (Plymouth Life Centre). More than 300 children from primary schools across each area attended the events to become some of the first to try out the sessions. They were led through a variety of gymnastics moves and apparatus by Max himself and his elite coach wife, Leah, who has also been instrumental in the setup of the scheme. Through the partnership with Whitlock, Everyone Active has pledged to get one million children aged 4 – 11 taking part in gymnastics over the next four years. The partnership was born from Max’s ongoing relationship with the sports and leisure operator through the Everyone Active Sporting Champions Scheme, which he has been part of for the past three years. He also trains at Basildon Sporting Village. Max Whitlock Gymnastics consists of structured sessions that give children the chance to develop and perfect their skills as they progress. They have the opportunity to their hand on a number of apparatus and take part in fun and exciting activities set by Max, Leah and their coaches. Everyone Active will be launching the scheme in 32 of sites across England. Regional Director, Duncan Jefford, spoke to guests at the launch about the vision and objectives of the scheme: “We are delighted to have launched this partnership with Max Whitlock, one of Britain’s greatest sportsmen. “The partnership forms part of our major drive towards increasing sports participation, as it continues to decline across the UK. We firmly believe in the benefits of taking part in sport at a young age and will continue to diversify our offering to provide opportunities to get involved in activities that are disappearing from the school curriculum. “In addition, it is vital that we bridge the gap between participation levels of men and women in sport and tackle the declining rate of participation in girls as they enter their teens. Through the partnership we aim to create a life-long passion for gymnastics from an early age in both girls and boys.” Whitlock also spoke to guests about importance of providing highquality access to gymnastics, as well as the benefits of introducing children to the sport at a younger age. He said: “I am delighted to have teamed up with Everyone Active to ensure that more young people are given the opportunity to enjoy gymnastics. Training at an Everyone Active centre myself I know first-hand that their brilliant facilities, UK wide, offer scope to get children all over the country benefitting from the gymnastics programme.” “I truly believe that gymnastics is one of the best sporting foundations for children, helping them to develop skills that can be used in all aspects of their lives. It’s a sport that has opened many doors for me and I hope it can do the same for others.” For more information, visit www.everyoneactive.com/ newsmax-whitlock-gymnastics-powered-by-everyoneactive/
ETHICS LEISURE & TOTAL GYM TAKES HOME TWO COVETED PRIZES AT 2018 ELEVATE INNOVATION AWARDS Date, Location - Total Gym, the brand at the forefront of functional training for over 40 years, has been awarded two of the top prizes at the 2018 Elevate Innovation Awards sponsored by Action PR. Judges were made up of an elite panel of fitness industry experts, athletes and business leaders, awarding a series of prizes for the best products and services in defined categories. The ELEVATE Encompass was selected as this years Best Innovation for Human Performance. With the Encompass, users work multiple muscle groups together for a complete workout that challenges proprioception and core stabilizers by integrating multi-plane movement and unrestricted range of motion in nearly every exercise. The ELEVATE Encompass works on an incline against gravity to strengthen the way the body executes daily physical activities. This allows training to be more productive and functional using one's own bodyweight as resistance. This years Best Workout Innovation was awarded to the ELEVATE Row ADJ. The only rower on the market that can be used for cardio and resistance simultaneously and on an incline, the ELEVATE Row ADJ features seven levels of adjustable bodyweight resistance and produces a full body workout, integrating a strength component into a traditional cardio machine. Simple and fun to use, the ELEVATE Row ADJ targets all the muscles groups simultaneously and enables a smooth consistent load through the entire range of motion, due to loaded concentric and eccentric phases of the exercise. Designed for multi-planar movement including exercises such as biceps curls and an alternating side-to-side row, rowing is fun to use and user friendly, accommodating all fitness levels. Andy Gill, Founder and Director of Ethics Leisure, who are the official and exclusive distributors of Total Gym products in the UK & Ireland said, “We are very proud of our team in the UK & Ireland and their huge efforts to win these awards on behalf of Total Gym Commercial with the NEW innovations that they bring to the Health & Fitness markets around the world. Total Gym are relentless in their pursuit of the best workout experience, whilst staying unique in their approach and loyal to their customers. Total Gym will become the required brand In the Health & Wellness industries” www. ethicsleisure.com firstname.lastname@example.org +44(0)7535284888 “With more and more gyms creating functional and small group training areas, ELEVATE is perfectly positioned to compliment this industry shift.” said Erik Vervloet, new CSMO at Total Gym. “We are very excited to continue on this new journey that will continue to keep Total Gym at the forefront of incline bodyweight innovation for another 40 years.” JUNE 2018
2018 STATE OF FITNESS INDU 4.9bn
estimated total market value
2018 State of the UK Fitness Industry Report OUT NOW
The 2018 State of the UK Fitness Industry Report reveals that the UK health and fitness industry is continuing to strengthen. It has more gyms, more members and a greater market value than ever before. There are over 7,000 gyms in the UK for the first time, total membership is approaching 10 million, and market value is just under £5 billion. The penetration rate remains at 14.9%, so 1 in every 7 people in the UK is a member of a gym. During the 12 months to March 2018, the industry has seen increases of 4.6% in the number of fitness facilities, 2% in the number of members and 2.9% in market value. The rates of growth are, however, lower than recorded during the previous 12 months (from March 2016 to March 2017), when the sector saw increases of more than 5% in both members and market value. The 2018 report also shows distinct differences in the performance of the key metrics between the public and private sectors over the last 12 months. Can the public sector stabilise amid ever 10
7,038 UK gyms
Purchase at www.leisuredb.com/publications
increasing competition from the growing private low-cost market? Will the private sector reach the growth rates of the previous year again, or is the rise of boutique studios beginning to take effect? Pure Gym and GLL have strengthened their positions as the UK’s leading private and public operators (by number of gyms and members). Pure Gym have become the first operator to reach 200 clubs and impressively passed the 1 million member mark earlier this year. GLL, with 194 gyms, are also likely to break the 200 milestone in the next year. Commenting on the figures, David Minton, Director of LeisureDB said: ‘After being widely quoted from last year’s report about the golden age of fitness, I’m sticking to my prediction that the period up to 2020 remains the time for fitness to continue to break all barriers. It has for the past six years, after all; and as the consumer gets more personalisation, localisation, seamless booking and payment options, taking part will become easier. The next challenge will be broader consumer adoption... could we aim for 20% penetration in the UK by 2020?’
F THE UK USTRY REPORT David believes technology will shape our industry, particularly apps such as Instagram, who have announced a new set of features for businesses which will include ‘action’ buttons. These will allow people to reserve, get tickets, start an order or book classes without leaving the app. With MindBody as one of their partners, that cool new boutique class that just caught your eye or the new gym on your Instastories, is only going to become easier and easier to try. Bridging the gap between discovery and action is likely to be become one of the best features Instagram could have introduced for the fitness industry. In five years, online class bookings have jumped from almost nothing to 46% across the private sites, while the public sector stands at an impressive 65%. Although apps have been around for ten years, there’s still less than a third of private sites with a mobile app (around a quarter of public sites). The rise of franchisors, low-cost high value sites and national brands across the private sector shows we are in the technology business and these percentages need to rise. Visit www.leisuredb.com/publications to purchase the 2018 State of the UK Fitness Industry Report.
Top PRIVATE operator
Top Public operator Source: 2018 State of the UK Fitness Industry Report
Technology T 2018 Retention Delegates at the 2018 Retention Convention were treated to a series of technology takeaways as speakers from across the world gave their take on how the digital revolution will change the face of health club membership as we know it. Dr. Paul Bedford’s fourth annual Retention Convention, hosted by industry stalwart, Dean Hodgekin, welcomed 150 guests representing 63 operators across the UK, Portugal, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Thailand, Columbia and KSA, as well as Germany, China, the USA and Israel, between them running 951 facilities and serving 2.1 million customers every year. Global technology expert, Bryan O’Rourke, opened the daylong Birmingham event last week, saying most businesses use less than 1% of the data they hold and 77% of customers are under serviced. He asked operators ‘how are you really competing?’ ‘The world is going through a period of rebirth and all industries are shifting. It’s happening faster and faster and the customer journey is getting more complicated. It forces us to ask better questions. Customers don’t care what we think, so we need to rethink the things we believe are valuable that aren’t in the eyes of the customer,’ he said. ‘Adopting the right mindset and how you approach change is vital. If you’re not relevant you can have all retention strategies in the world, you still won’t be relevant. For those that get it, and understand where they are going, the opportunities are huge. Our market will triple in size in next eight years.’ O’Rourke’s five key takeaways, which he says separates the winners from the losers are: 1. Get personal - use data in a meaningful way to target the individual 2. Make it easy. Remove the friction to let people buy with ease 3. Facilitate shopping in different ways and places 4. Invest strategically. Use mobile and video and innovate, don’t recycle 5. What is old is new again. The older brands have a 12
Takeaway at n Convention ‘Creating a lasting behavioural change is one of life’s greatest challenges. It’s not just about inside the club, but the 23 hours of the day outside of it too. It will be a while before AI can complete with the experience a person can give face to face, but it does have a set of advantages - being able to offer quality care at an unprecedented scale.’
Providing Evidence median age of 65 years but are finding novel ways to create new experiences for their customers.
Creating Habits Israeli entrepreneur, Shai Neiger, then introduced delegates to the world of Artificial Intelligence (AI) outside of the movie I, Robot, explaining how their innovative virtual coach uses AI-driven behavioural psychology to help people make exercise into a habit. CoachAi acts as a personal companion, interacting via the members’ smartphones.
With so many products on the market, renowned retention expert, Dr. Melvyn Hillsdon, advised operators on how to evaluate the effectiveness of retention interventions. “Most things are subject to trends,” he said. “The weather, our fitness activity - they all go up and down. Sometimes it’s just the passage of time, so we need to be confident we can attribute any change to something we’ve done.” Key takeaways included: 1. Always begin by defining the question you are trying to answer 2. Mini me’s - make sure your sample group represents your entire club
‘It’s a common story; the new member starts enthusiastically, but gradually attendance trails off and before you know it, they’ve cancel their membership. You did everything right, so what went wrong?’ said Neiger. ‘Lifestyle change is not about motivation, it’s about habit. You think you’re making decisions, but actually once you learn a behaviour your brain does it on autopilot.’
3. Never dump any data. All data is good and you may accidentally skew the results
Rather than giving insights, AI can directly translate the enormous bodies of data health clubs have in their possession into action, and because it can chat as you would with a human being, it makes personal interaction scalable. ‘Finally clubs can offer a truly personal service to infinite number of people at once. Supporting members to the point where exercise becomes a regular part of their lives,’ he said.
TRP’s General Manager, Mike Hills, lives next to one of best leisure centres in country; it’s Quest status and ukactive Flame award says so. But a tea bag in the shower and chocolate wrapper in the teaching pool, repeatedly ignored by staff, don’t back this up.
CoachAi has been piloted by 1,000 members across three health club brands in Israel, including the country’s second largest chain, Space, during the last four months. The pilot saw a 71% overall improvement in attendance of existing members, with a third increasing their visits to become ‘regular’ users. Almost three quarters of new members became regulars compared to just under half of the control group.
4. Think about timescales. Changing habits takes time, so make sure the intervention is in place for long enough.
Tea Bags and Chocolate Wrappers
During his session, Hills talked about leading from the front and utilising technology to provide the ultimate customer experience and create raving fans. He said: ‘I’m here to talk about learning from the best, to highlight strong leaders who set a standard and create a culture where ignoring tea bags in the showers is totally unacceptable, rather than weak leaders who may write a check list but don’t really care if it’s done as long as the box is ticked. We talk about eating your own dog food - you have to test your own products JUNE 2018
and services by using them yourself. It’s vital for staff to experience the centre the way the customer does.’ Hills said operators often invest in technology because they think it will do job for them. ‘It’s not going to do that. It still needs leadership and direction. Be proactive or you will end up with biased feedback, and engage with people at different opportunities and based on different aspects of your club. Make it user friendly. I fill out every survey I get, but if after five minutes the progress bar hasn’t got past 25% even I close it down!’ Hills praised tmactive’s CEO, Martin Guyton, who checks his weekly Net Promoter Score (NPS) report each Monday morning before he’s even got out of bed to monitor customer feedback. ‘You need a finger on the pulse of what’s going on,’ Hills said. ‘Technology can help make that happen for you, automating analysis and reporting so you can understand what customers are telling you, act on the data and make better decisions as a result.’
Digital Doesn’t Care About Your Gym Self-proclaimed digital evangelist, Life Fitness’s Leon Rudge, advised operators to look at the growth, loyalty and retention of wearables and Apps for new ways to engage members. He said: ‘Commercial fitness is growing, but if you look at health and fitness as a whole it’s growing exponentially. There’s been a 49% increase in the use of workout Apps compared to a 9% growth in general health and fitness App 14
usage. And with 96% of people using just one fitness App, they’re a pretty loyal bunch too. They don’t want to come into a facility and be told what App to use. They expect you to help them use their own.’ People don’t need to enter a classroom to learn any more or a travel agent to book a holiday. They don’t need a gym to work out either, and Rudge said operators need to understand the gap between clubs and digital fitness and adapt their business models to embrace the digital world. ‘Use wearable tech in your marketing,’ he said. ‘FitBit is top in the App store every Christmas, but I’ve yet to see clubs get engaged for the January rush. Why not invite the public to ‘come and talk to staff about using your FitBit’? Or engage with members at 10pm when App usage peaks as they are syncing their data?’ For every three workouts logged inside a gym, five are logged outside, according to Rudge who points out: ‘Digital doesn’t care about your gym. If you can see where members are exercising outside, get down there with towels and water! If your members are there, non members will be too!’
Taking Orders From a Rock Closing the day, Retention Guru, Dr. Paul Bedford, lightened the mood with a tale of taking orders from a rock as he explained the art of persuasive behaviour, which is used in so many aspects of our everyday lives, from the layout of airport duty free to Wagamama’s placemat menu and Schiphol airport’s toilet bowl target.
‘The smartphone is the most persuasive tool in the world,’ he said. ‘In TV and film there’s an unwritten agreement between the filmmaker and audience called suspension of disbelief. You know they’re actors, but you still have an emotional reaction. Technology providers realise we’re doing this with our phones too and cleverly market to us, tailoring persuasion through customisation.’ Bedford explained the seven aspects of persuasion technology: 1. Reduction technologies persuade people by making things simpler, such as class booking, where Google knows the more steps you have to go through, the less chance you have of completing the transaction. Google says class booking can now be done in just four steps from search to book, after your first visit 2. Tunnelling, which is how you control the customer experience, mapping out their journey based on the member type. You can tailor member information to make it relevant, but also staff behaviour, directing which members staff should speak to based on their ‘at risk’ score 3. Tailoring, which is persuasion through customisation; having the right content at the right time. If you’re a new exerciser the type of information you need is very different to someone who’s exercise savvy.
to achieve their goal. Think of black boxes for new drivers. It takes the tedium out of tracking 6. Persuasion through surveillance, where your presence creates a new behaviour. Think about how staff change their behaviour when a manager walks into the room. On a positive slant think of Disney’s Magic RFID band. They know where you are and what you bought so they can increase the quality of your experience. Operators can use this technology to see if equipment is being used effectively and change the layout accordingly, creating a new member journey 7. Conditioning - reinforcing target behaviours just as you would a child at school. Loyalty cards is a typical example. Positive reinforcements will increase your members’ chances of success. Think about computer games. Each time you jump off the cliff you have to start again, but if you jump the other way you can earn rewards. The gamer soon learns! We are starting to see this in the fitness industry too with the 10pm email Leon referred to, for instance. ‘Technology can make things simpler and really enhance people’s experience,’ concluded Bedford, bringing the 2018 Retention Convention to a close. ‘But use the advice you
4. Suggestion, which is intervention at the exactly the right time, building on existing motivation by asking things like ‘When are you in next? You could come in now, there’s one space left.’
have heard here as a guide. If they say the product improves
5. Self monitoring to help people modify their attitudes
to test it.’
retention, check how many of the persuasive techniques are included, ask how many extra months of membership you can expect from using the product and use Melvyn’s advice
We meet Dr. Zak Pallikaros to find out about his journey from Scientist to Gym Owner, and his facility Pumping Iron Gym.
Gym Owner: Dr. Zak Pallikaros Gym Name: Pumping Iron Gym Location: 31 Oakleigh Road South, London, N11 1LD Email: email@example.com Web: www.pumpingironfitnessgym.com
How did you become a gym owner? From a young age, I had a passion for bodybuilding. I was always involved in Martial Arts as a kid, then took up bodybuilding. After graduating in Medicinal Chemistry as my first degree, i went on and did a PhD in Steroid Biochemistry. I worked as a Scientist for nine years, but my passion was always training and the gym, and how to help people achieve their goals. After a tough decision, I decided to give up my science career and open a gym, making my dreams come true!
How many gyms do you own/ operate? I only have the one gym.
How long has your gym been operating for? The first gym I had was in a smaller location, and that was going for five years. After the five years, the number of members was increasing, and we had to relocate to bigger premises to accommodate for that. We have been here for six years now.
Aside from the gym, what other facilities do you offer your members e.g. cafe, classes, creche etc.? My gym has a sitting area with sofas and TV, we have a coffee machine, and we also have a bar where we serve all
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the protein shakes, pre-workouts, energy drinks, aminos and carb drinks etc. We also have a supplement store in the gym where we serve my own Dr. Zakâ€™s high protein foods, which consist of high protein bread, pasta, egg whites, bagels, peanut butters, cookies and protein clusters. We also stock all the BPI range and Cutler Nutrition range.
How many staff do you employ? We employ five members of staff, some part time, some full time.
How important are PTs to your business? We have independant PTs that operate from our gym.
What makes your gym unique? What makes our gym unique, and the best feedback I get from all my members, is the friendly family environment we provide here at Pumping Iron. We are like one big family. Everyone knows everyone. Even though we are a hardcore gym, the feeling you get as you walk in is warm and friendly, but on the other hand motivating and inspiring.
What advice would you give to other gym owners just starting out? The advice I would give to new gym owners is that you have to love what you doing and have passion for the sport otherwise it's not going to work. You have to put in the hours and be available for your members when they need you.
What are the biggest challenges facing your business today? A lot of independent gym owners are concerned about the multiple budget gyms opening, taking away business, but from my experience and in my case it's not an issue. My gym is unique in the sense that we know everyone by name, we support and encourage our members to compete and when they do, a big crowd from the gym go to support them, we are the Pumping Iron Team. We stick together and help and motivate and drive people to reach their goals. In addition to that, all our members are entitled to a free diet and training plan as part of their membership which adds value to their membership, something that these budget gyms don't provide.
What significant changes have you seen within the industry over the past 3 years? It saddens me to see that hardcore bodybuilding is dying out, and the industry is becoming more fitness related. Being a bodybuilder myself, I find that hard to accept, but we have to move with the times! Also, the gym business now has become more for the money and there is no love from the sport from people operating the gyms.
How do you engage with your members? I am the first person here in the morning, and the last person
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Another success story for me and my gym members was bringing 4 x Mr Olympia Jay Cutler to visit my gym. I have know Jay for many years and became good friends after he invited me the first time to compete in his show in Vegas. Since then, we have kept a good relationship and last year in May Jay came to visit my gym in London and spent the day here talking to all my members, taking photos with them and answering questions. It was a great success and it was free for everyone to attend. We plan to do it again in the next couple of months! That was a gift from me to my members!
Finally, if there was one thing you could change in the industry, what would it be? to close up. I don't do personal training myself even though qualified, because i want to be available to anyone that needs my help throughout the day.
How do you retain your members? Like i said, my approach to everyone's individual needs is enough to keep my members coming back. When members reach their goal, whatever that might be they are happy to stay and recommend us to new customers. My business is word of mouth. We don't advertise. My advertising is my members entering various competitions and placing high.
How are you promoting your brand and marketing your gym?
Make bodybuilding a more accepted sport in the UK as it is in other countries like the USA. Have more televised shows, and give more recognition to the athletes that compete in one of the hardest sports in my opinion. Bodybuilding lifestyle is 24/7 and requires more recognition and perhaps money prizes to the athletes that sacrifice a lot to be in the sport. Lose the ‘DRUG’ stigma that goes with the bodybuilders and praise the way the athletes diet and train to attain that look. It should be like an underground sport but bring it out in the limelight. Educate the youngsters about the benefits of exercise and healthy eating for a better and healthier lifestyle. As a scientist I know and I believe a lot of the illnesses can be cured, avoided and controlled by healthy lifestyle eating and training. That's my job - to relate that to everyone that walks through my gym!
I am promoting my Dr. Zak’s protein food range and also my Pumping Iron Gym business by doing various expos and appearances in the UK and abroad. I have also found enlisting the help of a specialist marketing agency invaluable and would like to take this opportunity to give Media Pimps a mention (enquiries: janine@mediapimps. co.uk).
What is your biggest success story? My biggest success on a personal level is winning the UKBFF British Championships twice in 2010 and 2013. In addition to that, I won the IFBB Grand prix in Cyprus five times, and also competed in the famous NPC Jay Cutler Classic in Las Vegas six times. Winning that show four times, and placing in the top three the other two times
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FROM EXERCISE R E F E R R A L PAT I E N T TO FITNESS SPECIALIST Meet Michelle Felix, InstructAbility graduate and Founder of the Michelle Felix Group, as part of Aspireâ€™s InstructAbility Report: Disabled people working in Leisure
As a child I had low vision. Over the years I experienced more sight loss and was registered blind in 1993. I am grateful for the residual vision that I have which is useful. Around 2010 I experienced upper limb disorder which is a form of repetitive strain injury along with myalgia. I lived with pain and weakness on the right side of my body and cramp and pins and needles on the left side of my body. I lost most of my sense of touch in my fingers and barely had strength to hold a cup and saucer. At that time, I had physiotherapy from Occupational Health at work, and I was later referred to my local Exercise Referral Scheme. The exercise referral gym program complimented my physio exercise. My pain was alleviated through exercise and I found new joy in going to the gym. In 2014 I discovered the InstructAbility program, set up by spinal injury charity, Aspire, to train disabled people to become positive role models in the fitness industry. So I attained Level 2 Gym Instructor training along with Level 3
Programing and Supervising Exercise with Disabled clients through Instructability. Engaging in the InstructAbility program was a rich experience of getting to understand fellow students with different disabilities, and I came to appreciate how individuals worked around their physical or sensory conditions. We, as class mates, shared our experiences of situations which could have been disabling and got on with not just coping but endeavouring to make the most of life and contributing to society. The YMCAfit tutors who delivered the training on the InstructAbility programme were down to earth and attentive to our individual accessibility needs. I particularly appreciated having the course material in electronic format for use with my screen reading assistive technology software, which converts text to an audible output to listen to. Being able to touch the life size model of a skeleton that was used during classroom sessions was particularly helpful for understanding the anatomy and physiology aspect of the training. JUNE 2018
Inclusive dance fitness for people with a range of disabilities Specialist, upbeat, friendly, fun fitness tailored to your clients/service user’s needs. Sessions can be seated, supported or standing for teens, seniors or mixed age groups. Participants are pleasantly surprised to experience the fun factor built into our sessions. Dance fitness and Exercise to Music for people with dementia Sensational movement and dance which brings out the feel great factor for clients and participants. Meeting the fitness needs of people with dementia is very close to my heart as a very dear family member lived with dementia for the last few years of her life. It is always wonderful to see the joy that my dance fitness sessions brings to this client group which I’ve found to be very appreciative of our sessions together. After InstructAbility, I have continued my professional development to include Teen Gym, Exercise to Music, Exercise for Over 60s, Dementia Training and The Diploma in Exercise Referral. My company is Michelle Felix Group, which was founded with a key focus to make exercise to music accessible to people with sight loss by audio description. I have widened our portfolio which now includes the following: Dance Fitness for Schools and Colleges Dancing is a wonderful way of having fun whilst getting fit and it has been great to see improvements to young people’s coordination and confidence; particularly young people who dislike other forms of physical activity. Ladies Only Teen Gym for Age 16 – 18 Making friends with the gym equipment for new gym users is the first step to feeling relaxed in preparation for a good workout. It’s wonderful to see the transformation from being equipment-shy, to a keen readiness to workout on a regular basis. My circuit training is popular and offers a full body workout alternative to the cardio and resistance machines. I really enjoy creating MSE (Muscular Strength and Endurance) to music sessions using a combination of free weights and bodyweight exercises. These sessions go down a treat with student’s favourite music tracks! Group Exercise to Music for residential homes Personalised group exercise sessions for a full body workout. Programs are tailored to suit maintaining or improving fitness with adaptations when necessary for managing a range of medical conditions to meet the needs of each member of your group. Regular fitness reviews are in place to chart progress of attaining individual’s goals. As usual the environment is set to get fit, have fun and feel great! Dance fitness for people with sight loss We create a journey of spatial and self-discovery as part of a fun filled full body workout; providing rich audio description for your blind clients, visual enhancements for your clients with low vision, and the kinaesthetic feel good factor for all ages and abilities. 20
At Home Exercise Service For people who are unable to easily leave their home or simply prefer the comfort of exercising at home. 12 week program options for people with specific medical conditions. Ideal for post exercise referral clients and people returning to exercise after many years. I truly believe that whilst there is life, there is hope. Clients can rest assured that our patient supportive approach to maintaining, improving and managing medical conditions will aid longevity and assist in enjoying a better quality of life as fitness improves. It has been a joy to see daily living tasks such as getting dressed, climbing stairs and gardening made possible again after my 12 week program. As product and service providers are wanting to be inclusive and reach a wider audience, we need to keep the social model of inclusion a high priority when creating and developing our products and services. I believe that the key to accessible design is consulting with existing and/or potential users of our product or services. Clubbercise is dance fitness to club anthems from the 90s to present with disco lights and glow-sticks. It was a pleasure adapting Clubbercise Dance Fitness to a seated format and showcasing seated Clubbercise at Leisure Industry Week
at Birmingham National Exhibition Centre in 2015. In 2016, it was also a pleasure spending time with the Clubbercise choreography team to observe the creation of choreography and to make recommendations for the design and delivery of dance fitness routines for delivery to visually impaired participants. SOSA Dance Fitness is International dance styles with authentic steps and body styling. SOSA Dance Fitness is in the process of further developing Seated SOSA for people who require seated exercise and I have been honoured to be part of the consultation process. I’m looking forward to checking out the Seated SOSA research case study data which will be available soon. I thoroughly enjoyed presenting Seated SOSA alongside Katy Barrow, Founder of SOSA and the SOSA Pro Team at The Mayor of London SOSA in the City event in January 2018. It was wonderful to see mobility impaired seated participants enjoying dance fitness alongside standing participants. I was involved with RICA (now known as Research Institute for Disabled Consumers), research into the accessibility of gym cardio machines such as treadmills, cross-trainers and rowing machines in 2017. This project was initiated by Metro Blind Sport. Manufacturers of gym equipment agreed that the technology exists to make cardio machines accessible to people who are blind or partially sighted. Our research findings can be found here: http://www.ridc.org. uk/blog/201802/accessible-gym-equipment-blind-andpartially-sighted-people-%E2%80%93-yes-please Following RICA’s research, we look forward to manufacturers implementing best practice which will give visually impaired clients the accessibility we all deserve. In the meantime, Gym Instructors can make the gym experience easier for visually impaired clients by: 1. Where possible select the use of existing machines with tactile buttons rather than the touch screen counterparts. 2. Provide a tactile tour of the machine to enable the
user to learn where to locate the basic operational buttons and use the equipment independently as far as possible. 3. In situations where only touch screen machines are available – program and adjust the machine on behalf of the client 4. Promote the use of the safety clip on treadmills and highlight the location of the brakes on bikes My motto is Get Fit, Have Fun, and Feel Great! Hilary Farmiloe, Manager of the InstructAbility programme at Aspire, applauds Michelle’s continuing professional development and says, ‘This story is a great example of how a small amount of support and encouragement can be all a disabled person needs to get started and flourish in the fitness industry. It is incredibly important that sector training and jobs appear inclusive to disabled people to attract them into the workforce. Just looking at what Michelle has already achieved and the contribution she is making to inclusive exercise, demonstrates the added value disabled people can bring to such roles.’ Tara Dillon, CIMSPA CEO added: ‘Michelle’s journey to become a fitness professional is both inspiring and important. Having disabled people on the gym floor as instructors is hugely important to ensuring that our workforce truly represents the communities we serve, and can only help encourage other disabled people to become more active. It’s also very positive to see so many CIMSPA partners namechecked in Michelle’s story – Aspire, YMCAfit and SOSA Dance Fitness should be proud of their commitment to inclusivity.’ Anyone interested in dance fitness and exercise bookings or working as an instructor with the Michelle Felix Group can contact Michelle at firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.michellefelixgroup.com JUNE 2018
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Life is an Course Taz Dunstan, CEO and head PT of XL Personal Training, athlete, mountaineer, fitness professional and devoted mum of two, on why obstacle courses are ideal for overcoming challenges in all areas of life. With a recent resurgence of obstacle courses televised across the world such as Ninja Warrior and Spartan, physical fitness is being showcased as somewhat of a superpower to be respected. This is especially true for the youth of each nation, being inspired to challenge themselves and improve their fitness and strength. It is little wonder that obstacle courses are increasing in popularity, yet it is important to know just how beneficial this style of training actually is. Obstacle courses are an effective training resource for several reasons. The benefits span well beyond physical adaption, but also result in a mental adaptation which improves coordination, reflex time, overall functionality and general confidence. Ultimately, the goal of any obstacle course is to complete it. Having a goal orientated session, instead of simply completing sets and reps or surviving a time period, increases the level of motivation as the client can see their success and track their improvements dependent on how far they progress through the course, and in what time. The more measurements you have to gauge your progress and the more ownership you can take of it, the more motivated you are to improve on it. This also increases the sense of satisfaction once the course is completed, making it an objective training style where the successful completion is undeniable and improvements are obvious. A strong reason that obstacle courses are a great addition to any training program is because they take away the distraction of other people and refocus your attention to yourself. You are not aiming to do better than anyone else, your competition is you against yourself and the course. Intrinsic motivation is a skill each trainer should aim to impart in their clients as you are essentially empowering 24
them to empower themselves. This shifts the focus of training from you being in a co-dependant relationship where the client feels they need you to motivate them and transitions the relationship to a mutual respect where your client has the drive but they employ you for your expertise to fast track their desired results in the safest and most effective way. It is a common quote from athletes in the fitness industry to state: â€˜look in the mirror, that's your competition,â€™ as if each individuals performance only needs to be better than their previous attempts, however this is immediately contradicted by posts of placings and trophies to display where they ranked amongst their fellow competitors. The beauty of an obstacle course is that it provides the platform for you to showcase your strength, speed and stamina without placing you in competition with anyone else. (Although human nature is to be competitive so anything can essentially be compared.) The army is a prime example of a fitness training organisation utilising obstacle courses to train their military personnel with several obstacles requiring strength,
Obstacle concentration and speed. The closer the obstacle course resembles realistic environments the safer it will be. It was thought at one stage that if the ground under the high walls was softer there would be less impact on joints and result in a safer practice. In effect, this actually presented in an increase of ankle and knee injuries due to the lack of stability upon impact, so the landing area was returned to its original, compacted base. Mitigating risk is necessary and as an obstacle course designer and trainer you need to assess hazards, however keep in mind people are designed to fall. The human body is designed to heal, learn and adapt so learning to roll with any obstacle is paramount for injury minimisation. Often the fear of failure is a self-fulfilling prophecy and as a result people are afraid to jump (in any aspect of their lives.) Often physical challenges can present as metaphors for several obstacles in life, and seeing the confidence a client taps into upon completing a physical challenge is enough to unlock several other restrictions that may have been holding that client back. Obstacle courses have also added an element of fun and for this reason have been a preferred training avenue for charity events such as, ‘Color run’, ‘Miss muddy’ and ‘Tough Mudder’all including various challenges from heights, crawls, water,
foam and chalk catering to all fitness levels. The incorporation of fitness based programs and activities for charitable causes is a win on all levels. Every fitness professional should assess their philanthropic values and attempt to contribute their time and energy to something that gives back to the community. Sponsoring, organising or promoting charity based obstacle courses is a great opportunity to showcase who you are and what you can do for the greater good of the community and those less fortunate. Fundamentally, the harder you have to work for something the more satisfying it is, so each course needs to be challenging but achievable. The same as any SMART goal setting should be (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and within Time frames). To be successful in any capacity you have to be ambitious and challenge yourself, what better way to do this than take on an obstacle course and challenge your body, mind and soul? JUNE 2018 25
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CLAIMS POSITION AS INDUSTRY LEADER AND EXCELS ON THEIR 10 YEAR ANNIVERSARY Leading fitness competitions, tens of thousands of visitors and the world-leading athletes, BodyPower once again brought the biggest weekend in fitness!
the likes of HECK Foods, Kettlebell Kitchen, Eatright and Musclefood, they all projected the BodyPower atmosphere to the masses and provided an unforgettable experience for visitors.
Around 100,000 visitors flocked to the NEC to celebrate BodyPower’s Las Vegas themed 10th anniversary! The show continues to diversify and develop, with this weekend seeing a record number of females enter the show, due to a strong focus on lifestyle fitness with many leading athletes in attendance. Paige Hathaway, Michelle Lewin, Jen Selter and Hannah Eden were just some of the female names who attracted the crowds!
With a strong focus on offering the ultimate customer experience for all, BodyPower saw widened aisles, better queuing systems and opportunities to see everything all in one day!
As the show develops the traditional markets remain as strong as ever, providing visitors with a broad range of competitions and all things health and fitness. From leading brands to a collection of world-class educators, BodyPower really is the go to event in the industry! The popularity of competitions showed no sign of slowing for 2018 and the likes of BodyPower Games and Kettlebell Championships amongst many others had a record number of competitors. Terry Hollands hosted the Strongman competition in unforgettable fashion and welcomed buzzing spectators into BodyPower’s very own circus tent, while competitors showcased the elite in strength and power. 2018 World’s Strongest Man and Game of Thrones star, Hafthor ‘The Mountain’ Bjornsson attracted hundreds and left fans blown away with his presence. In addition to competitions and seminars, BodyPower brought demonstrations, workshops and Q&A sessions with the leading stars in fitness. Exhibitors didn’t disappoint and a range of healthy nutrition brands were in attendance, from
Nick Orton, Founder and CEO of BodyPower commented, “Our 10-year anniversary didn’t disappoint, athletes, exhibitors and amazing competitions all under one roof. BodyPower always has and continues to bring the fitness family together, we must work as one to ensure each and every visitor has a fantastic, unforgettable experience. We lift the nation and we will continue to do so. Plans are already underway for an exciting 2018 and 2019, including BodyPower on the Beach and the unmissable BodyPower Weekender in Edinburgh. BodyPower Expo 2019 will be all change and experience will be the word on everyone’s lips, this is the future for BodyPower and the expo is changing as you know it!” With a new format and exciting changes planned, BodyPower 2019 is not to be missed. All are invited to witness the evolution of BodyPower at the NEC, Birmingham on the 10th - 12th May 2019. Information regarding tickets for BodyPower 2019 will be released over the coming months. For more information on BodyPower please visit www. bodypower.com. JUNE 2018
I WANTED TO WORK ON PREVENTION R AT H E R T H A N DIAGNOSIS We meet Brian Firth, CEO at FitQuest, to learn more about what the company offers, and what is next.
How did you get into the fitness industry? For much of my career, I worked in the medical industry. I spent over 20 years launching diagnostic devices working across a range of departments in organisations. But, I wanted to work on prevention rather than diagnosis. I recognised the fitness industry had the highest potential for prevention, but it often did not have the measurement and diagnosis rigour of the medical world. So, I decided to get involved.
Tell us more about Fit Quest. FitQuest measures an individual’s fitness against classic sports science parameters. In fact, we measure the factors from the American College of Sports and Exercise Medicine (ACSEM) model for fitness. In just four minutes, the user competes four simple tasks and we are able to measure upper body strength, upper body endurance, lower body strength, lower body endurance, explosive power, leg speed, balance and cardio strength. Our machines are now also equipped to provide a full segmental body composition analysis as well, bringing a new level of detail for the user.
the way. Finding space is an issue. It is challenging to find both manufacturing space and quality space in the UK for our kind of business.
What’s the most valuable lesson you've learned from the fitness industry? Patience. Some aspects of the health and fitness industry move more slowly than other industries, but without the same level of regulation. Innovation still happens, however the investment into research and development is less than industries such as the medical industry, so things often take a lot longer to grow.
What’s next for FitQuest? Despite the industry being full of very capable and professional trainers, 70% of people do not know what to do in the gym. This is our next challenge: addressing this problem while giving training professionals greater opportunities to reach more people with their expertise. The solution is automated, quality controlled programming and FitQuest can play a key role in its development.
What sets FitQuest apart from its competitors?
In your opinion, what is the current state of the UK's fitness industry?
As far as we know, FitQuest is the only piece of technology in the world that does everything in one machine. We’re also the only machine that can provide this level of measurement and analysis without requiring an instructor to be present. It’s completely self-sufficient and very user-friendly.
It is fragmenting into those who win and those who do not. The industry is facing huge opportunities and the innovators are doing well. Those who are not innovators have to either step up or disappear. This is creating a two-speed market. It is not as simple as budget operators versus the rest. There are innovators in all categories - budget, local authority, luxury and boutique - who are winning. But, in each category, there are also followers lagging behind. I think we will start to see some very different creative offerings over the next few years that will allow the industry to address significantly more people than it ever has before.
What are the biggest challenges you face in your business? We are growing very fast – about 300% per annum. It’s a good problem to have, but it does present challenges along
JUNE 2018 29
GAMIFICATION – H IS IT IN INFLUENC CHANGE? As the integration of gamification becomes more prevalent as a means of encouraging engagement in physical activity, Kerstin Obenauer, Country Director, eGym UK, looks at some of the research and case study evidence to find out how influential the introduction of gaming elements can be with regards to behaviour change. What is gamification and why are we talking about it? According to Wikipedia, gamification is: ‘The application of game-design elements and game principles in non-game contexts. Gamification commonly employs game design elements to improve user engagement.’ The introduction of ‘games’ to encourage participation is nothing new. Gym challenges inviting users to climb to the top of Empire State Building on a step machine, or cross the Atlantic on a stationary rower have been employed for many years to drive participation, but digitalisation and technological developments have created infinite possibilities to professionalise the offering and truly integrate gaming elements into the fitness experience. As a result, there has been an explosion of companies offering users the chance to disappear into virtual worlds as they pedal or run through digital landscapes or enjoy incredible narratives built around the collection of reward points for reaching activity or performance goals.
Does gamification influence behaviour? Anecdotally, there is evidence to suggest that gamification can hugely influence behaviour. For example, a study by the Journal of Medical Internet Research  looked at the effects of Pokémon Go on physical activity levels. During a three-month period, data collated from 32,000 Microsoft 30
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Band users was analysed and found that highly engaged users increased their activity by 1,473 steps a day on average, representing a 25% increase on prior activity levels. Conclusions were drawn that the app has added more than a total of 144 billion steps to US physical activity and had engaged a largely inactive population. A solid indication that with a strong narrative and easy access, gamification can motivate a significant proportion of the inactive market to move more. Surprisingly, the effects of gamification on engagement, motivation, participation and performance have not been widely scientifically studied, especially when it comes to placement within a physical activity context. In fact,  Jonna Koivisto, a researcher at the University of Tampere Game Research Lab in Finland, said that while she has identified over 800 papers on gamification, only about 300 are empirical studies. Furthermore, she found that there are very few papers which have found concrete evidence of behaviour change and states: ‘We can’t confidently say much of anything about what works and what doesn’t.’ This lack of scientific-based information on the effects of gamification makes it difficult for companies to integrate gaming elements which are scientifically proven to have the highest propensity to affect behavioural change. This, unfortunately, leaves much of the design and integration down to a gut feel as to how engaging users will find a virtual gaming experience and how much influence it will have on behaviour change.
A closer look at motivation and how it is influenced One factor worth considering, however, is the influence gamification can have on motivation levels. It is reasonable to assume that a motivated person is more likely to remain engaged than an unmotivated person and will therefore, in the context of physical activity, make a longer-term commitment to an active lifestyle. To understand how gamification can be used to affect motivation and drive engagement, we first have to understand motivation influencers. A  paper written by Richard Stålnacke Larsson for Umeå University identifies internal and external motivations. Internal motivations are classified as ‘those that are driven by core self, where the person acts because he finds the activity meaningful, even if there is no reward’ explains Larsson. ‘External motivations are driven because the goal will result in external rewards, like cash, social status or achievement points.’ The research study used qualitative interviews to determine whether rewards motivate users and concluded that yes, rewarding achievement does positively impact external motivation. By motivating a user into action with external rewards, the internal motivation can also be positively influenced over time, if the user finds the activity interesting enough. So, this is good news indeed for our sector which continues to struggle to meet the attrition challenge. To summarise, according to this research, the use of gamification to reward success can have a positive effect on motivation levels. JUNE 2018
FITNESS The psychology of gamification So, why do we respond so positively to virtual rewards? According to a piece in Lifehacker magazine, entitled  ‘The Psychology of Gamification,’ when we experience pleasure we release a chemical called dopamine. Achieving goals and receiving recognition as a result can stimulate the release of this chemical, making us feel incredible. The more recognition we receive the more dopamine is released and the more incredible we feel. Gamification can tap into this by offering rewards for the completion of goals creating the feel-good factor and leaving the individual craving more.
Application of gamification eGym is an early adopter of gamification, utilising gaming elements such as the eGym curve to support sports science and encourage the use of correct training parameters in every movement and to drive motivation through the awarding of points and progress through a series of levels. We also employ the use of leader boards to build online friendship groups because our intelligence shows that users with at least one ‘friend’ work out more often and maintain their membership 40 per cent longer than those who train alone. Gamification is just one of the integrations we use, specifically designed to motivate and encourage long term
Conclusion Gamification is here to stay and there is little doubt that, implemented in the correct way, it offers our sector huge opportunities to attract new markets and better engage existing users for longer. For years, people have played games for no other reason than personal enjoyment so the idea of introducing gamification as a means of promoting wider, long term desired outcomes such as regular physical activity remains an interesting topic of discussion. We look forward to the completion of more evidence-based research to enable the sector to refine its gamification offering. In the meantime, eGym continues to invest in this area as our retention statistics and user feedback suggests a positive correlation with our gaming integration.
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participation. Whilst we have yet to specifically study the effect of gamification on engagement in isolation, as a contributing, fully integrated element of our intelligent training system, we can report that users working out on our equipment and engaging with our Fitness app have a retention rate of 82 per cent over a 12-month period, compared to a UK average of just 51 per cent. This translates to a very positive influence on the bottom line.
Massage, Vibration And How The Industry Rolls These Days... Matt Gleed, Master Trainer and Education Specialist, discusses the best methods to balance out and release. In order to offer a comprehensive training approach, trainers need to ensure the muscles that members are working get some release from the stresses and strains. Some trainers take additional qualifications in massage, some use tools and others coach self-release strategies. With HIIT training and lifting exercises clear trends at the moment, a lot of people need to balance the body out, especially as it can improve performance too. I’ve put together a guide to what methods can be used, all which have the below shared benefits: • Increases blood and lymphatic flow • Breaks up scar tissue • Reduces lactic acid • Activates the nervous system and muscles • Resets the nervous system
Whole Body Vibration Power Plate The Power Plate has been linked to a wide range of health and wellness benefits, from strength, balance and flexibility to improved circulation, pain reduction, detoxification and stress alleviation. I’ve worked for Power Plate over the last couple of years, helping Fitness Professionals understand how it can be used before workouts to increase mobility, range of movement and muscle integrations, as well as for recovery and relaxation. The plate creates a vibrational platform that any exercises can be done on, with the vibration travelling up and down, side-to-side, and front-to-back, destabilising the body and promoting the reflexive engagement of soft tissue. This then gives quick, reflexive responses in muscle fibres and an increase in circulation. This develops whole–body balance, mobility and stability, strength and motor control (muscle memory), in a shorter time frame than with traditional methods. • 25Hz - 50Hz Frequency • 1-4mm Amplitude • Various different models from a portable 16kg weight personal plate
Foam Rolling Rumble Roller The market of Self Massage Rolling is big, and many rollers are available from supermarkets through to specialised sports retailers. Some of the developments in recent years have been on the type of patterns the roller has, through to the hollow or solid core giving different feedback to the user. One of the more unusual designs championed by Kelly Starrett of Mobility WOD and author of Supple Leopard, is the Rumble Roller. The high-profile bumps on one design
penetrate deeper into the muscle, and large inter-bump spaces provide room for soft tissue displacement. The bumps' resilience enables them to deflect around bones and get closer than ever to the source of your problem. When you roll on a conventional foam roller, a compressive force is generated. The amount of compression depends on the size of the contact patch between the roller and your skin. For a typical 6" diameter foam roller, that contact patch is large so massage balls can offer more specific release. A very effective way to use these types of products can be to roll or cause a cross pathway of release through rolling in different directions and using breath to assist in managing the time and intensity of work. My personal view is that if it is hurting your either on the wrong product, need to go in a new direction or should ease off the weight load and retry.
Handheld Vibration Therapy Theragun You might have seen Theragun at recent trade shows; a battery operated, professional grade device that provides deep massage to reduce muscle and joint pain, improve mobility, and enhance performance. Used by professional athletes, Premier League football teams and the general public. The instant release Theragun gives, and the ability to position the AmpBIT where needed, helps relieve muscle fatigue, tightness, soreness, knots and spasms. • 33Hz - 42Hz Frequency • 16mm Amplitude • Various attachments lasting 90 days
Deep Tissue Massage Sports Therapy Massage Sports massage therapy has become a sought after skill within the fitness industry. Sports Massage Therapists can help anyone - from athletes to occasional gym users and will need to prevent injuries as much as treat them. The first thing to remember is that deep tissue massage is used for therapy and rehabilitation, not relaxation. You might experience some pain during the massage as this form of massage concentrates on relieving strain and tension from tissues that go deeper. The pain could also be because the massage uses movements against the muscles rather than moving with them. It’s important to go to a certified and experienced massage therapist for a deep tissue massage, and ideally follow a plan to ensure whatever the cause of the injury was doesn't have a chance to do it again. JUNE 2018
Always be yourself and find your own niche in the industry.
NAME: James Sutliff
QUALIFICATIONS: Level 2 Gym Instructor, Level 3 Specialised Disability Coach, Level 3 Personal Trainer
FACEBOOK: James Sutliff
YEARS AS A QUALIFIED PT: 2 years WORKS IN: Leicester
TWITTER: JSutliffFitness YOUTUBE: James Sutliff Dystonia Fighter INSTAGRAM: james_sutliff
How did you become a PT? In 2012 I was diagnosed with a neurological dysfunction disorder called Dystonia, which has affected my speech and the ability to use my hands freely. I always kept myself in good shape and had an interest in fitness as I played competitive rugby from a young age. I got into personal training because my disability stopped me from doing my previous career, as a plumber/ heating engineer. I couldnâ€™t think of anything better than getting into a career that has helped me so much.
What was your experience of the training/qualification process? It was a good experience, but of course it was hard work, having Dystonia can be both mentally and physically draining. I wanted to show people that regardless of your disability you can still achieve your goals and dreams. 34
Do you (or do you intend to) specialise in a particular type of fitness?
What advice would you give to other PTs just starting out in the business?
Due to having a disability myself, I decided to train to be a qualified Specialist Disability Coach. I believe that through my own experiences I can inspire and motivate others with disabilities. It’s very therapeutic knowing that I am helping others improve their quality of life, it gives me a sense of purpose. The gym became my safe haven, and also had a knock-on effect in improving my mental well being and self esteem, which I hope I now pass on to others.
Always be yourself and find your own niche in the industry. It’s important to play to your own strengths. Personal training has become a saturated market, so it’s important that you stand out.
What’s it like working with gym owners? I train my clients at Fosse Fitness in Syston. I have been extremely lucky as the gym owner has been very supportive in everything I do. To have access to such great facilities has also allowed me to expand my client base.
What is your opinion of CPD?
What are the biggest challenges facing your business today? I have found gaining new clients challenging. My disability affects my speech, which I worry will put off potential new clients. Hopefully, people can see that regardless of my speech I am able to deliver the same high level of service and training as any other PT.
What significant changes have you seen within the industry over the past 3 years?
I’m a big believer in CPD because it ensures you continue to be competent in your profession. If there are no measures in place, how do you improve?
It’s become a lot more competitive. As previously mentioned, the PT market is saturated, online training programs have made PT qualifications more accessible. That’s why I believe it’s important to have your own niche, to stand out.
You spend your working hours motivating others, how do you motivate yourself?
How do you engage with your clients (active and inactive)?
My struggles motivate me when I train, reflecting on how far I’ve come since being diagnosed with Dystonia back in 2012. I could’ve felt sorry for myself, but instead I have turned my diagnose into a positive. I now train people with disabilities and I have helped raised awareness of Dystonia, most recently appearing on This Morning with Holly and Phil! Hopefully I have shown others that you can achieve anything regardless of your disability. My biggest motivation in life is myself.
I keep daily tabs on all my clients, whether it’s text, WhatsApp or email. Just a message to see how they’re feeling in themselves and that they’re happy with everything we’re doing.
How do you promote your services? Across all social media platforms. Social media is great for promoting any business, and the reach is phenomenal once you get it right. I would also like to thank Janine at JUNE 2018 35
What is your biggest success story? In 2017 I was extremely proud to be given a positive role model national diversity award for disability. I have also featured in two well known fitness magazines, Menâ€™s Fitness Magazine and Muscle and Fitness Magazine and most recently appeared on This Morning on ITV. I have also just launched my own personal training website www.jamessutliff.co.uk Media Pimps for her continued support (enquiries: janine@ mediapimps.co.uk)
How often do you train yourself? Six days a week. Being a PT and selling my personal training services itâ€™s important that I look good, I am my own advert so to speak. I am also a fitness model, so itâ€™s important that I stay in shape. If there was one thing you could radically change within the industry, what would that be? There needs to be more accessible fitness facilities for people with disabilities. Gyms should welcome and encourage the disabled and have specialist trainers in place. People with disabilities are faced with daily challenges so we need to make sure gyms are equipped and well prepared so the experience of using a gym is a pleasant one, motivating, helping them build in confidence and not another obstacle to face.
Do you see yourself still working as a PT in 10 years time? Yes I definitely do! Further down the line my goal is to have my own gyms for people with various disabilities. With each client I train, I am learning and having to adapt to each individual's disability. I hope that I am not just physically helping my clients but mentally helping them also. When you train, you can switch off from the world and focus all your energies into your workout. 36
Membership/CRM & Marketing Access Control inc Biometrics Till, Credit Card & Stock Control Web & Mobile Activity & Class Bookings DD Management & Online Sign-ups Implementation, Training & Support
Best Practice Insights for Gym Cleaning
Matthew Gregson, Director of Operations at Fluid Hygiene discusses industry challenges and best practice in the sector. When customers go to the gym they are expecting to burn calories, increase their strength and improve their health and fitness. But if your gym hygiene lacks a lot to be desired, they will leave the gym with a lot more than ripped abs! Gyms, like many public places, harbour bacteria, but gyms are a well-researched hotspot for germs which can produce illness or infection. Providing a clean environment for your gym or health club is a priority for your customers and will enhance member experience and satisfaction. Gyms vary in size, but most have a number of different areas for members to use. All of them need to be kept clean, from spaces where people exercise, to other spaces such as changing and locker rooms or leisure spaces. Gyms accumulate many germs due to the large number of people using the same machines on a constant basis. Over the course of
a day, gym equipment is subject to sweaty hands, dirty shoes and sometimes literally, blood, sweat and maybe even a few tears! Every time someone uses a treadmill, theyâ€™re transferring dirt (and worse) from their trainers to the conveyor. After ten people, you can begin to see the dust and dirt accumulate on the track as well as the buttons and handles. The fitness area can retain odours and unpleasant smells, and dangerous bacteria which can contribute to the spread of contagious diseases if the areas are not sanitised properly. Nasty odours can make the client experience very unpleasant, but they can easily be eliminated by using the correct cleaning procedures. Swimming pools, showers, toilets, steam rooms and saunas, are all ridden with germs on surfaces and floors. At Fluid Hygiene we recognise that it is vital that your health club, workout areas, changing rooms, shower areas, kids' play areas, eating areas, tennis and squash courts all look clean, and professional for your gym members, visitors and your staff. JUNE 2018
So how can you keep your gym clean? Here are just a few suggestions: FIRST IMPRESSIONS MATTER The first impression of your facility is usually made or destroyed on entering the gym. It may be a sweat inducing environment, but no one wants to be reminded of that as they enter. Ensure your premises smell clean and fresh and not overly disinfected by using the right cleaning products. Give special attention to the entrance way, doors, windows, patio approach (if you have one) and most importantly, the reception desk. DON’T DELEGATE CLEANING TO YOUR CUSTOMERS In many gyms it’s become an unwritten rule for customers to wipe down gym equipment after use. But if they use their own (often unwashed) towel this will just dry the sweat on the machine, it does very little to kill germs and can spread bacteria from one machine to another. Some gyms provide paper towels and hand sanitisers or sanitising sprays, and with correct usage this may help the spread of germs, but how often are customers actually using these? Although gym users can help you keep on top of machine cleaning, it’s obviously not their responsibility. Ensure that a member of staff cleans each machine on a regular basis and make sure you arrange periodic deep cleans of the entire facility. If your gym provides exercise mats for mat-based classes, it is important to ensure the mats are regularly sanitised. Don’t rely on customers using their (often sweat soaked) towels on the mats as an indication that mat cleaning is not required. Regular sanitising with cleaning fluids and tools which won’t damage your equipment ensures you keep your premises hygienically clean. KEEP COMMUNAL AREAS CLEAN There’s more to keeping a gym clean than removing visible signs of dirt and grime. With so many people entering a gym each day and making use of the machines, keeping a workout environment clean can be a real challenge. High traffic in locker rooms presents a particular challenge in maintaining sparkling surfaces and controlling odour. Like any public restroom, those in a gym need to be cleaned regularly. When we consider how many sweaty people use gym restrooms and changing rooms on a daily basis, it’s easy to see why cleaning the area thoroughly is important. Introduce a cleaning schedule and ensure a member of staff checks on the restrooms and locker rooms on a regular basis to check standards are maintained. Then ensure you arrange periodic deep cleans to ensure the communal areas are as hygienically clean as possible. DON’T JUST CLEAN, MAKE SURE IT SMELLS CLEAN TOO A common mistake gym staff make when addressing odours is to just mask the smell rather than remove it. To fully tackle the problem, you need to remove the source and scrub away any odour-causing bacteria. A steam cleaner can be a fantastic tool for cleaning everything from bench presses to the treadmills. It can also be used to clean exercise balls, machine handles and even dumbbells. With the help of a steam cleaner, you’ll be able to remove sweat, grease and smells in a matter of seconds. Regular steam cleans of your facility will reduce the odour inducing bacteria and create a hygienically clean environment. DO SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF! There are times when “don’t sweat the small stuff” applies, gym cleaning is not one of those! Free weights have been found to carry 362 times more germs than a toilet seat! You don’t need to think too hard to know how that statistic has come about. Ensure 38
your weights are as clean as they can be by arranging deep cleans of all your hand-held gym equipment. PAY ATTENTION TO THE FLOOR Gym floors are high traffic areas, whether people are walking around with shoes or with bare feet in a studio, changing room or floor area around a swimming pool, the floor is a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. Depending on the floor surface, you need to use the appropriate floor cleaners to maintain class studio floors, changing room floor and pool area. Regular maintenance of tiled, stone and wood surfaces in sauna rooms with cleaners that naturally deodorise, will leave surfaces clean and residue-free. If you have carpet in your gym, keeping the floor clean could be a challenge, particularly when you consider the inevitable spillages involving energy drinks and protein shakes. Arrange a carpet deep clean to ensure stubborn stains are removed and the carpet remains hygienically clean. ENSURING YOUR GYM IS HYGIENICALLY CLEAN Health clubs and other fitness and leisure facilities can be extremely busy at certain times. People are using exercise equipment, dripping with sweat, moving from machine to machine, at all hours of the day and in some cases, at night. Your cleaners need to be able to work to a flexible schedule, get in and out quickly and work efficiently to ensure minimal disruption to your business. Any business needs to be careful about maintaining high standards of cleanliness. However, gyms need to be especially vigilant, as people are sharing spaces, using equipment one after the other and, of course, getting sweaty. There are some particular health risks that are important to fight against in a gym setting, including MRSA and various other bacteria. Good hygiene in your gym protects your members, your staff and your business. Gyms these days can accommodate a variety of uses such as gym classes like spinning, yoga, free weights and crossfit. Which means there will be a lot of spaces in your gym that need regular cleaning and spaces which would benefit from a periodic deep clean, e.g. around the swimming pool, high level windows, sound systems, ventilation and lighting. Enlisting a cleaning firm that can clean your gym from top to bottom will guarantee that all these areas and more are taken care of. A comprehensive clean of your gym on a daily or weekly basis will ensure that every time you open your gym, your customers are given a fresh smelling and clean environment to train in. Using an experienced cleaning contractor rather than an inhouse team will help you maintain a clean and hygienic environment for your clients and employees and are guaranteed to leave your premises at the highest level of cleanliness. PROVIDING PEACE OF MIND Fluid Hygiene has been the cleaning contractor of choice for gym and leisure businesses for over 20 years. We provide high standards of cleaning, quick and effective daily contract cleaning and periodic dep cleans to meet business needs and ensure continuity. Our cleaning programs are customised to meet the challenges of your individual site. We understand in this competitive environment value for money is of paramount importance to our clients and we pride ourselves on delivering hygienically clean solutions, optimal service and value.
For more information about our Gym and Leisure Cleaning service visit www.fluidhygiene.com
MAKE IT POSITIVELY CLEAN
Call us for a free quote
Nationwide contract and on-demand Nationwide contract and on-demand cleaning services for over 20 years cleaning services for over 20 years Call quote0800 975 2828 Callus usfor for aa free quote or E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org www.fluidhygiene.com
Optimum Perfor Fitness professionals require fundamentally different skills if we are to be a credible partner with the healthcare sector and meet the challenges of the physical inactivity epidemic, says Brad Tucker, Vice President and General Manager of Premier Global NASM This is an exciting era for the UK health and fitness sector. Our facilities are playing host to a more diverse range of clients than ever before from people who want to lose weight and those who have been referred by their GP with conditions like diabetes, to older adults looking to maintain independence in later life and elite athletes who want to improve their performance. This changing client demographic presents great opportunities, but challenges in equal measure, particularly around attracting and retaining quality fitness professionals. We are constantly being told that there is a skills shortage in the sector and employers regularly complain that personal trainers don’t have the skills required to engage with these new populations entering our facilities. So, what’s the answer?
A different approach It’s time to adopt a different approach to how we deliver personal training. We need to up-skill our frontline staff so they can engage with special populations and deliver bespoke progammes that help these clients to meet their goals. A training model, developed by a leading expert in human movement science, has been helping fitness professionals throughout the US do just that for more than 20 years. And
INDUSTRY LEADING PERSONAL TRAINER COURSES AND FITNESS EDUCATION
Over 50 years combined experience in developing fitness professionals.
rmance Training The progressive model is the ideal way to start deconditioned clients on their path to fitness. It begins by building a stable foundation that focuses on posture, joint and core stabilisation and improving physical endurance. Once this base has been achieved, clients are progressed through the OPT™ Model with appropriately increased challenges. In this way, Personal Trainers can work with their clients to achieve their optimal fitness without progressing them too quickly or comprising their stability and causing injury.
The benefits for the sector Premier Global NASM has introduced the training model to a UK personal training qualification for the first time. The Optimum Performance Training ™ (OPT™) Model combines sports science (used by sport coaches), human movement science (used by physical therapists and athletic trainers) and exercise science (used by health and fitness professionals) to give fitness professionals the skills to work with any client or any ability in any setting. The model was developed by Dr Mike Clark, a sports medicine professional at two Olympic Games and a specialist consultant to numerous professional teams and athletes. He developed this integrated approach to training to serve the needs of both elite athletes and the general public.
How does it work? As an evidenced-based training model, the OPT™ Model continues to evolve as new science emerges. The techniques used are backed by science and have been successfully employed in health settings and on the gym floor with thousands of patients, clients and athletes. The OPT™ Model uses an integrated approach to exercise combining multiple forms of training into one progressive system that focuses on the principles of how the human body works. These include: flexibility training, cardio-respiratory training, core training, balance training, plyometric training, speed, agility and quickness training, and resistance training.
The physical activity sector continues to call for a cross-sector approach to the inactivity crisis, and with fitness professionals increasingly being expected to support medical treatment and care plans, we need to take a serious look at how we are equipping fitness staff to meet the challenges of working with a more diverse range of clients. The OPT™ Model prepares trainers to be client-ready and can be applied to individuals of all physical abilities and ages. It teaches the trainer to work within a scientifically proven, structured framework to design and deliver highly bespoke programmes that propel clients towards their goals which can range from weight loss to strength development and from athletic pursuits to a general improvement in health and fitness. The result? Greater customer satisfaction as more clients see a return on their investment. Employers appreciate the knowledge and skills that trainers using the OPT™ Model bring to their business and members. In fact, according to an independent study conducted by MarketLab in May-June 2016 in the USA, ‘Employers agree: No certifier better prepares you to start your career than NASM.’ There needs to be a radical change in the way that personal training is delivered if we are to successfully engage special populations in physical activity. Rooted in science, the OPT™ Model which allows fitness professionals to train anyone safely, efficiently and effectively to reach their health, wellness, and fitness goals, offers our best chance of success.
A fundamental component of the OPT™ Model is assessment, and this is what distinguishes the training model and prepares fitness professionals to work with all clients, including special populations. Trainers learn how to conduct a series of health and movement assessments to observe and understand exactly how the client moves, noting any muscle imbalances etc. The results of these assessments are used to develop a truly bespoke exercise programme for each client, determining where trainers need to focus on flexibility or flexibility to safely progress towards their goals. It takes the guesswork out of programme design. JUNE 2018
Becoming a Yoga instructor with the Careers in Fitness Global Ltd online educational platform. Learn on the go with the educational app right in the palm of your hand! Namaste. Why do I love this course so much? I have been recently restudying this qualification having taught yoga and Pilates on a 1-2-1 basis for many years, and I have to say as an exercise and standards expert, it is the very best version of Yoga education I have ever been involved in over my 25 year career in the industry. I have certainly seen many qualification variants in that time. Yoga 200 is learning made easy, affordable and fun with correct exercise execution for safe and effective exercise. The inspirational educator Logan Cahoon, based in Los Angeles, is calm, professional and shows exactly how one should be teaching their clients with correct exercise execution to ensure safe and effective practice, avoiding injuries and issues arising. On booking into this course, you will have live workshops in your own home, 3-D videos for anatomy and physiology, quizzes, each pose broken down with descriptions and risk factors, benefits, cues, progressions and regressions.
We just love Yoga 200 and you will too...... now available on the Careers in Fitness Global App. Study in the comfort of your own home, in the car, during your breaks at work. Charlotte Purvis is a world leading, highly regarded 1-2-1 Personal Trainer, Pilates and Yoga specialist with over 25 years experience in the health, fitness and active leisure sector as both trainer/ therapist, tutor, assessor verifier and external verifier for Oxford Cambridge and Royal Society of Arts. Charlotte (CEO) owns and runs Careers in Fitness Global ltd which operates all over the world and as a well known brand. Charlotte was heavily involved in regulating Yoga at Level 3 in the UK and wrote the world's only standards for Pilates at Level 4 42
The course itself takes you through each stage very easily with an interactive programme, videos and images of the yoga poses and online practical exams. Learn 6 Master Classes and a 30 minute consultation with a Yoga professional, educational support, practical video evaluation and feedback, as well as online exams, careers advice and progression. The course also offers an insight into the basic history of Yoga, the anatomical theory and the practical application components are just fantastic! On course completion one will be able to: Define the foundational concepts of Yoga Discuss the basic principles of NAFC Yoga 200™ Identify key persons who contributed to bringing Yoga to the West Experience the benefits of a Yoga practice Convey the benefits of a consistent Yoga practice to students
Effectively apply the theoretical knowledge (and benefits) in all three planes-of-motion Guide participants through the proper set-up, troubleshooting, and levels of intensity for each posture Demonstrate, instruct, and correct Yoga postures in the areas of form and alignment Properly design an intelligent Yoga class for a group or individual, using course resources as a foundation Safely, efficiently, and effectively train and progress clients of all fitness levels within the safety guidelines of the Certification
A little taster of an end to one of my yoga classes: Imagine you are enveloped in soft sand, the sun brushing warmly across your marvellous body Feel the breath into the abdominal/ tummy area - enjoy every breath. Make that breath deeper in and out. Any thoughts entering your mind just simply let go, let the thoughts go. Embrace the peace, and enjoy the moment right here, right now all about you, your unbelievable body, your wonderful mind. Your beautiful toes gently parting, moving away from each other. Enjoy that space you have created between TRP-adverts-Jan18.pdf 1 25/01/2018 them, soften the ankles, gently roll them11:15 side to side,
relax through the lower leg, soften the knees, feel them gently release, thighs are tightened and released. Just for a moment, take your mind to that thigh and the complete softness of your thigh. Feel and enjoy the relaxed muscle. Find that space you have created between the top of the leg and the hip area. The warm sun still over you. Breathe into the tummy area. Enjoy the breath, let everything go - any negative thoughts are gone. You feel completely at peace. The rib cage gently lifting and lowering, relaxing through the lower middle upper back, release the thoracic area then rolling the neck side to side - any tension releasing here. Part those teeth, feel the face let go, then enjoy that space you have created between your teeth, the nose is soft, your forehead lifts, softens, widens, releases, removing any tension that has built up. Empty your mind and enjoy some time now in silence before I bring you back to this room. You are amazing Your body is amazing Love yourself you are at peace. Well done!
Book on the app now and enjoy following in my footsteps study this wonderful course Yoga 200 recognized all over the world.
Creating Happy, Loyal Members Through Effective Engagement
Customer Engagement Software for Health Clubs, Leisure Centres and Gyms Visit www.trpcem.com
MAY 2018 43
This monthâ€™s round-up of kit, products and extras you can stock for your members â€“ boost loyalty, retention and your revenue!
Premium Compact Rack A fantastic addition to the Premium Racks family, the Compact Rack is perfect for smaller training spaces and PT studios. It retains many of the great features of the Premium Half and Power Racks, but in a much smaller footprint. Plus, with transport wheel and lifting handles the rack can be moved around the training space as required. www.indigofitness.com
Primal Strength Monster GHD/Reverse Hyper Multi Angle GHD Adjustable Foot Height & Distance Reverse Hyper Handle Band Pegs www.primalstrength.com
Primal Strength Standing ISO Hamstring Curl Full Adjustable Footplates Multiple Grip Handle Dual Pads for Comfort Part of a 20 Strong ISO Plate Loaded Range www.primalstrength.com
High Protein Clusters Super convenient and healthy, High Protein Clusters deliver up to 12g of protein in every 30g pack (an amazing 41% protein), with our no compromise taste promise. And once again, we have avoided using palm oil to help do our bit for the rainforests. They are a healthy on the go protein snack to keep you on track for the day and come in the following flavours: Chipotle Chilli Fruit and Yogurt Chocolate http://www.dr-zaks.com/
High Protein Cookies Packed with 15g of protein in each 60g cookie and with a very low sugar content (one is even sugar free), they will keep hunger at bay in-between meals while feeding your body with the complete protein source it needs. And to do our bit for the rain forests, the cookies are one of only a few on the market that do not use palm oil. You can see why we are calling it the â€˜guilt free cookieâ€™ from every aspect. They are available in 3 flavours: Chocolate Chip Salted Caramel Triple Chocolate http://www.dr-zaks.com/
JUNE 2018 45
Feed Your Brain Daniel Nyiri, Founder of 4U Fitness, explores the importance of reading to reach your goals.
"A mind always employed is always happy." - Thomas Jefferson If you want to be a seven-figure gym owner, you have to switch gears. It used to be all about your looks and about your muscles and working out so much. To be successful today, you have to switch gears and do the same, but with your brain. To earn the title of successful business owner and CEO, you must feed your brain. Just like your muscles get stronger from working out, your brain gets stronger when you exercise it. Feed your brain regularly. Yes, this means healthy nutrition but it also means reading, reading and reading some more. I personally read an absolute minimum of four books per month, not magazines. Your fitness magazine subscriptions will not teach you how to run a successful personal training studio or gym. When I started out as a Personal Trainer, I woke up at 4:45 a.m. every morning to work out. As a Personal Trainer, I knew that I had to look the part. Now, that has changed. I still look the part, don’t get me wrong, being fit and healthy should be a top priority for everyone, but now I get up at the same time every day except for Sunday and I read for the first two hours of the day. No matter what! Just like you schedule a time to work out and you never miss it, I schedule time to feed my brain. You should block of a time for reading and learning; if you sleep more than six or seven hours a night, you might be able to cut back on sleep or social media time to make time for your brain. ‘The Chicago Tribune’ interviewed me about how to make your first million the Warren Buffet way (if you want to read the full article, simply Google ‘Daniel Nyiri and Warren Buffet’ and it will pop up right away), and what did I tell them? I talked a lot about reading and learning. You do not need a college degree to become a millionaire, and you don’t have to come from a wealthy family either. You can create wealth for yourself. But, if you don’t learn how to create it and then how to manage it, you will never have what you desire. It all comes back to reading and learning 46
again and again. Warren Buffet, who is one of the richest and most successful people on earth, reportedly reads four hours a day. My schedule is to get up every morning at 4:45 a.m., take a shower, go over my goals in my head, read my notebook so I am up- to-date on everything, and then from 5:05 a.m., I am reading till 7 a.m. That is my morning ritual. No matter what else is going on, I organize my day around reading. You, however, might think that you don’t time for that. You might say, ‘I work out at that time or have clients’. No, you don’t have time because you are unwilling to make time for learning. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who is also pretty smart and healthy, has said that you only need about six hours of sleep each night. So you still have time to work, eat, workout and learn and recreate yourself. Read. Everyone has the same amount of time in life so use it wisely! When you make it part of your daily schedule, it will become an enjoyable ritual each day. People ask me how I have the time to read so much. First of all, this is no secret... Having time to read comes down to choice. Always continue learning! I find it astonishing to meet other business owners who tell me what they don’t read books. There is always an excuse like ‘I don’t have time’ or ‘I am just too busy’. I believe there are two things wrong with those statements. Number one, they are probably spending most of their time working in the business instead of on the business, making it easy for them to think they have no free time. Number two comes down to choice. When I happen to ask these people about any current hit TV show, they can describe every character and want to discuss the latest episode. I end up offering my apologies to them because I do not watch TV. However, I could recommend a vast number of great business books that could solve the problems they are currently facing, and when I offer this advice, instead of saying ‘oh man, thank you let me write that title down’, they generally ignore this tip. Keep in mind
that these are the people who will start making up stories about you when you’ve made it and your dreams come true. They will say things like: ‘he got lucky, his family is rich, he married rich, he is not happy, he will burn out, it is in his genetics, he has a photogenic memory, it’s easy for him’ or whatever it is. Again, they just don’t see the hustle you go through every day, the hard work and what it actually takes! All they see is the finished product. Now think for a second - isn’t this the same thing that many overweight people say when they see a thin person? They say things like ‘oh he is young, when he gets my age’, or ‘its genetics’. They are also mistaken, and they are usually making excuses. As I mentioned, I don’t really watch TV. I would not be able to name any of your favorite characters on TV and no, I do not watch ‘The Walking Dead’ or ‘The Kardashians’, or whatever is currently hot. I only know about them because everyone talks about these shows, especially the ones who should not talk about watching so much TV. They should invest in themselves to be able to move up in life. Sometimes, my TV is on in the background, but I’m not paying attention to it. I just like a little background noise. For some reason, this background noise helps my concentration, but this won’t work for everyone; if you get distracted by the TV, turn it off and try some classical music instead. An average person sleeps for eight or nine hours a day and spends another three or four hours watching TV, one hour or more commuting, and another two or three hours a week shopping. That’s about 25 hours per week, without counting the sleep hours and it equals 1,500 minutes. If you read a page a minute, that should be 1,500 pages a week. Of course, the same goes for exercise! We developed our system for people who keep saying they don’t have time to work out!. Most people spend countless hours per week in the gym, and yet they don’t have time to read. That’s hard to believe. If you want to be a CEO of your fitness empire one day, then you must be prepared to be paid to use your brain. That means that it’s in your best interest to grow that brain JUNE 2018 47
as big as possible! For example, take a look at Arnold Schwarzenegger – first, he was in the fitness industry and had to build muscle in order to succeed in his field. So, he worked hard and spent countless hours to make his muscles the biggest in order to become Mr. Olympia multiple times, and on top of that, he also chose to feed his brain and became very successful in business as well. As you may know, he came from nothing, but he was dedicated to going after his dreams. It had nothing to do with luck. He worked his butt off. Reading, working, studying, networking, every day! Reading isn’t something to be done once a week and to check off your list, it’s something that needs to be done every day. Why do I read? I read so I can stay on top of my game. This information is out there for everyone, and if my competition is not reading, I am already ahead of them. But, I mainly read to increase my knowledge and to improve my English. Warren Buffet once said that the rich invest in time, the poor invest in money. I totally agree with that. All of the entrepreneurs who fail in their business, 85% of
them have one major thing in common: they only read from one to five books per year. Of those who come from nothing to become millionaires, there is another important statistic that they share: they read a minimum of four books per month. Lastly, just ask yourself these questions: How do I benefit from watching TV or listening to the radio? Or how does my business benefit from these things? Because if your goal is to make it big and get ahead of the competition, then you better get to reading and acquiring new information though business coaches and mentors. I have business coaches and mentors as well. They are a very important part of my life, and I highly recommend taking the time to find the right ones for you. I am available for mentoring, but my time is very limited because I only take on a few people to mentor so I can really commit to their success. As a mentor, I will tell you up front if I can help you and I might give you what you seek up front for absolutely free. You don’t need to pay me. I love what I do. I respond to all the emails I receive and yes, sometimes it does take months. I do have to prioritise my business so I can help you even more later!
" Just like you schedule a time to work out and you never miss it, I schedule time to feed my brain." Merle, A. (2016, April 14). The reading habits of ultra-successful people. Huffington Post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/andrew-merle/the-reading-habits- of-ult_b_9688130.html
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IMPROVING FITNESS MOTIVATED THROUG Joe Cooper, Personal Trainer & Les Mills Instructor at David Lloyd Clubs Ipswich, talks about group fitness classes, how they are a vital part of the industry, and growing all the time. approach to group exercise has changed immensely. I stopped working overseas in 2016 and have since gone on to take qualifications in a variety of Les Mills programmes, such as GRIT, CXWORX and Born To Move. What attracts me so strongly towards group exercise as an instructor is the ability to influence so many people at once, with a passion to stay healthy and improve mental wellbeing through fitness. There is nothing more fulfilling than to see people go on to achieve something in your class that they once thought they couldn't. Now, if you have ever attended a bootcamp, spin, or Zumba class, then you've experienced group fitness. Group fitness is any form of exercise that is done in a group setting, either lead by a Personal Trainer or Group Exercise Instructor. With this form of training constantly growing in popularity, you can find at least one type of group fitness class at almost any gym you go to globally. Many gyms offer a wide range of classes on their timetable, from HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), strength and core classes, to the more dance based classes. Some group fitness classes are much older than others with combined classes such as Les Mills Body Pump & Les Mills Body Attack spending over 20 years in the industry.
I have been in the industry for 9 years now, having been the youngest recipient of the Fitness Instructor Qualification at the age of 16. My passion for fitness has seen me travel across Europe and the Middle East delivering Personal Training and Sport & Wellbeing programmes. I first started teaching group fitness classes back in 2013, whilst working in Sensatori Resort Sharm el-Sheikh. At the time, I didn't have a huge outlook on group fitness, until I started teaching Aqua Aerobics classes several months later after going on a basic course. This was something completely fresh to me, and saw me delve well out of my comfort zone, but I truly believe that it's one of the best decisions I made, and since then my 52
Virtual classes are also slowly starting to become much more popular in gyms. In these classes the members can follow the instructor via a drop-down-screen using equipment provided in the studio depending on the class. Virtual classes are fantastic for people who may not be able to get to a specific instructor lead class, and gym timetables are starting to add a reasonable amount of virtual classes for participants to attend. There are many benefits to a group fitness class, extra motivation while you work in a group setting, friendly competition with one another, as well as the social aspect. Most gyms will have class introductions on their timetables for members to find out more information on the class that best suits their goals, usually this will take place with either an instructor or the Group Exercise Manager. Once you have established what class is best suited, it will then make it easier to book in and find a consistent class routine.
S & STAYING GH GROUP EXERCISE WHY GROUP EXERCISE WILL HELP YOU TO STAY MOTIVATED & ACCOUNTABLE Group fitness classes can be especially beneficial on the days when you are not feeling motivated to train. While the session is less work for you to have to think about mentally, it will still remain beneficial with the aid of a professional giving you instructions so you can be fully engaged in the workout. If you are feeling in a mood that you cannot even be bothered to get yourself to the gym to workout, a group class could be just the motivation you need. Would you feel good if you booked into a class and bailed on it? I highly doubt it! So, what is good about the booking systems that you will find at most gyms or fitness clubs, is that they leave you accountable, you either attend the class that you signed up for or pay the consequence for not turning up. Some gyms will take away booking rights for a certain period of time before you are able to then book again if you failed to turn up for a class you booked in advanced for. Just think, had you unsubscribed from the class you would have left your booking space open for someone who was much more motivated than yourself and would have made good use of that spot.
GROUP FITNESS IS AN EXTREMELY FUN ENVIRONMENT One great, simple reason to attend a group exercise class; it's an incredible amount of fun. A class like Les Mills Sh'Bam for example, can sometimes feel more of a party rather than a workout. When everyone in the class is working hard and struggling to fight through the intensity, having fun and sharing success together is really important in order to endure the class together until the end. For example, Les Mills International pride themselves on creating the ultimate fitness experience in every class, and music and moves play a key role in the success of this. There is nothing worse than going into a class, and the instructor feels like he/she has no energy and enthusiasm, on top of this, having the music feel quiet and extremely boring doesn't help when trying to create the perfect class. If you are looking for fun, dance based group workouts then try to find gyms that have Les Mills BodyJam, Sh'bam and Zumba on their timetables. Fun-filled classes that have a relaxed feel to them, are often attended by people that want to workout just to break a sweat and socialise so they
can often be great for the fitness beginner that wants to exercise and meet new like-minded people. If you are short on time, want to work up a sweat and want a class that is no more than 30/45 minutes, try to look for certain HIIT classes such as Les Mills GRIT Series and Les Mills SPRINT. These classes are 30 minutes, and consist of three individual elements. In these classes intensity is the real turning point. These aren't workout classes, these are training classes. There is an intensity to work to in these classes and getting out of your comfort zones in these types of classes often define those that want to achieve results and those who don't. GRIT Strength focuses on load and range within the movements, it has plate and barbell work to help build lean muscle. GRIT Plyo is about explosive power and consists of some plate and barbell exercises, while GRIT Cardio is free from equipment and the focus within this class is simply speed. Les Mills SPRINT is 30 minute HIIT class on the bike. Just like GRIT, it's set to some of the hottest underground beats and it consists of a variety of tracks that test strength, speed and power. What is great about SPRINT is that it is low impact. So while trying to maintain 85%+ of your maximum heart rate, it will not hinder the joints in any way. (Remember that if you have any medical conditions/injuries/ pregnancies or previous history, it is extremely important to speak with the instructor prior to the class in order for them to determine whether the class is right for you)
SETTING YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS Here's what you'll need to know before your group fitness class. While all classes are different, there are still a few basic things to keep in mind when preparing for your class: • Bring a towel; some gyms even require this and you aren't allowed to participate without one. • Bring a water bottle so you don’t have to leave class to get a sip of water. • Talk to the instructor before the class if you have any questions or concerns. • Talk to other members. While this isn’t mandatory, it will give you insight on what to expect if you are a first-timer. Find Joe on Instagram @joecooperfitness JUNE 2018 53
EMS Tr Sonja Sefke visits Exerceo Training in London, for her first EMS Training experience.
Electrical muscle stimulation was used by Dr. Yakow Kots to train Russian athletes and his resulting studies were made public at the Montreal Olympics in 1976. Â Soon this method was also used by the athletes of other countries thus becoming a widespread sports training method. Amongst the various papers, research from the Bayreuth University in Germany reported that after a six week period of using EMS some of the results were reduction of back pain, 54
improvement with incontinence problems and increased levels of endurance and fitness levels. Weight Training, in particular, is tough on the joints and bones. With EMS, however, any weight and pressure is applied to the muscles directly, through electronic simulation. This means that stress on joints and bones is minimal, but your workout is just as intense therefore making it a fitness regime for people who suffer with brittle bones or osteoporosis.
aining When I set off to test EMS at Exerceo Training, Canary Wharf in London I hadn’t read any reviews or scientific papers, and so I had no expectations. In hindsight, I am glad that I only knew that it involved wearing a Tron like outfit, and doing a work out. Having since read comments such as ‘the worst 20 minutes of my life’, ‘could hardly move my arms the next day’ and similar off-putting comments, I am glad to have been opened minded and not at all nervous, with little expectations in regards to the process itself. Sonja and Giovanni welcomed me to the studio which is well equipped, and like the changing rooms and showers, in immaculate condition. I was given a cotton top and pants, and squeezed into the electrode suit which needs to fit well for the electrodes to do their job. After a short, interesting introduction and explanation of how EMS works, we started with the warm up and then a series of exercises using various muscle groups and finding the right intensity of electric impulses.
After a 20-minute EMS workout, endorphins will have been released into your body and that certainly explains why I felt so good after this relatively short workout. Although I was of course tired, I felt invigorated and very positive. I thoroughly enjoyed this new experience and will definitely be back for more, especially as I did not suffer from muscle pain afterwards, and unlike the earlier mentioned reviews, enjoyed the process. EMS is certainly the future of fitness. The sessions being only 25 minutes and a maximum of twice a week, it fits easily into the busiest of schedules. You don’t need to carry gym kit with you, you burn up to 500 calories per session and results start showing in just four weeks - an easy time period to commit to. Exerceo Training have two studios in London Canary Wharf and Moorgate. To book your trial, visit www.exerceotraining.co.uk
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Spinning® for all – Qualified Spinning® Instructor who has cerebral palsy launches his own club in Scotland Club McKendry opened its doors in March 2018, offering Spinning® classes seven times a week. The specialist club, based within Danderhall Leisure Centre just outside of Edinburgh, was a dream come true for Iain McKendry, 24, who runs the sessions. ‘Spinning® is my life,’ he says. ‘It’s the only job I have ever wanted to do. I love being the show man up on stage.’ Iain was born seven weeks premature and was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at 15 months. At the time, his parents were told he may never walk. Defying the odds, Iain went on to thrive at his local primary school and was given every opportunity to overcome his disability. He has endured many surgeries to help him to walk with assistance and to get him out of a wheelchair. Iain says: ‘I have always enjoyed sport, but my disability left me on the side-lines. Everything changed after my mum introduced me to Spinning®.’ Janis McKendry, Iain’s mother says: ‘The family moved to Florida in 2000, and it was whilst we lived there that we found a Spinning® class that we could all participate in. We soon noticed how beneficial this was for Iain’s overall physical strength, mobility and also for his confidence. Iain has a natural ability and a passion for Spinning®. He has gone from strength to strength, having completed his official Spinning® training courses and is now a qualified level 3 Elite Rockstar instructor.’ The family relocated back to Danderhall in 2016 and it was Iain’s ambition to set up a Spinning® club in his hometown. Club McKendry currently has 13 Precor Shift Bikes with consoles, and Iain rides a Spinner® bike that was gifted and personalised for him by John Baudhuin, CEO and Founder of Mad Dogg Athletics, and Josh Taylor, International Spinning® Master Instructor. The club plans to add more bikes in the future, as the classes are oversubscribed with a long waiting list. 56
Iain says: ‘The Precor Shift Bikes are fantastic. The ride is very smooth and very quiet. My clients love the bikes as they are easy to adjust the height of the seat and the handlebar position. They look cool too!’ Iain is keen for the Spinning® classes at Club McKendry to support his local community. He is a great ambassador for Spinning® and living a healthier lifestyle. He says: ‘I’m helping the people in my community get fitter. If I can spin, then anyone can spin. There are no excuses in my life. When I’m on my bike I feel like a different person, my disability disappears and my ability shines through. My classes welcome the young, the old, men and women, elite athletes and beginners.’
The area of Danderhall is being developed, with new homes being built, as well as schools and leisure centres and Iain hopes to continue to bring Spinning® to the community with the possibility of expanding Club McKendry. His long term personal goal is to become a Master Instructor himself and be a brand ambassador for Spinning®. He says: ‘I want to show the world that anyone can overcome their disability and achieve their goals and dreams.’
Iain’s mother Janis, goes on to say: ‘There is a young man who suffers with autism that comes to the classes accompanied by his mum, he reminds me of Iain when he was younger. He too felt left out of the sporting community, but with Spinning® he can participate fully. As it is simply you and the Precor bike, everyone goes at their own pace – no intimidation – just a feeling of everyone working together as a team.’ In June 2018, Iain and Janis will be attending the World Spinning® and Sports Conditioning Conference in Miami, Florida. Iain is looking forward to reuniting with Spinning® Master Instructors, his Spinning® mentors and friends from around the world, plus it is an opportunity for him to see the full range of Precor Spinning® bikes and equipment.
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Lower Slower Chris Zaremba, our specialist on fitness for the over fifties, on the importance of the second half of weight exercises. My comments this month look at something I see taking place every day in the gym (yes, I do go every day at the moment). It's a bad habit which people slip into, and I hope I can correct a few with these sentences. It's to do with the speed of performing any exercise. This really relates to any resistance exercise, whether it's with dumbbells, barbells, cable machines, fixed-path machines, Smith machines or anything I've forgotten. Oh yes, body weight too. It's the principle of 'lower slower', a term I came up with to describe that the lowering phase should be executed more slowly than the lifting phase. Every resistance exercise has a lifting phase - technically called the concentric phase and this is when you are pushing the weight up - such as standing up in a squat, pressing the bar in a bench press, sitting upwards in a floor crunch or curling the dumbbell towards you in bicep curl. This phase can be seen as moving the weight in the opposite direction that gravity wants to move it, and isn't the bit I'm talking about, so I'll move on.
eyebrows, and not just from Mr Spock. So, I tend to stick with the term 'lowering phase' - easily identifiable as the opposite of the lifting phase. In some exercises, the lowering phase needs to be thought about, as it may be slightly counterintuitive. For example, the lowering phase of a lat pull down is as the bar goes up it's the weight stack that is lowering at that time. Similarly, on a tricep push down on a cable machine - the weight stack lowers as the hands go upwards, and it's this lowering of the weights that makes that the lowering phase. By lowering quickly, and letting gravity do all or most of the work for you, you are missing out on most of the benefit from performing the rep in the first place, as I said before. But worse may be to come - how does a rapid lowering phase usually end? Maybe with a slam into the ground or bang on the weight stack of a machine, or perhaps a sudden jolt on your body's anatomy as you halt the rapid movement pretty violently. The first offers no benefit to the body, the second is potentially seriously injurious.
The other phase is the gravity resisting phase, what happens as the weight lowers. I see many people struggle on the lifting phase, then let gravity take the weight downwards again, without any work for the muscle in that second stage. In fact, this phase - if timed correctly - is more beneficial for strength and muscle building than the lifting phase. The correct timing I'm referring to is for it to be slower than the lifting phase - at least twice as long per rep.
The number one offending exercise is probably the deadlift. I've seen some people really struggle to lift the bar to back-straight position, then just drop the thing. Apart from the effect that has on the other gym users (and the structure of the building), they are missing out on so much of the benefit they are aiming for. Much better to use less weight, lift as before, then lower slower to within a nanoprobe's distance of the floor, then commence the next rep.
The lowering phase is called the eccentric phase, technically, which is a term I dislike as it sounds like it's for weirdos only. I've also seen it referred to as the 'anti-grav' phase, which is nicely Star Trek I guess, but does get a few raised
So, for the next few times you are undertaking a resistance exercise, think of the lowering phase, and how you can do that more slowly. Lower slower, my friends. Have a great month, live long, and prosper.
Our contributor Chris Zaremba offers self-guided fitness courses, plus personal training and coaching both online and in-person. The latest addition to his fitness packages is a monthly subscription members' club specifically designed for those, like him, in their second half-century: 'Fitness Club 50'. Interested? Read more about all of these on www.bitly.com/ChrisPT 58
Ask The Expert Do you have a question that you would like to see answered in this feature in a future issue? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
HOW CAN MY TRAINERS IMPROVE THE MEMBER EXPERIENCE VIA FITNESS ASSESSMENT? Matt Ford of Archon Combine explains how important seeing progress and understanding your clients individual assessments really are Every member that comes to the gym expects one thing. Results. Those results manifest themselves in many different guises, some in the form of fat loss, muscle gain, increases in strength, speed or the staple, I just want to get fitter. Achieving those results will ultimately mean happy members, higher adherence to programming and high membership retention. Everything you want as a facility owner. So how do your members get results? They get them by being shown improvements. By being shown that they are at a different place on their journey now to when they started. So the most important part of their entire journey isn’t where they end, but rather where they start, because if they don’t know this, then they will never know that they are getting better. So how do we find the start? This is all to do with creating an individual approach rather than a blanket one. Each and every member that walks through your doors not only has different goals and aspirations, but they are also different people. Different genders, heights, weights and ages, and as such need to be treated this way when discovering their floor (or the beginning of their journey). It’s counterproductive to compare apples to oranges, but we have a tendency to do that when it comes to fitness testing in the modern day facility. We look at the person next to us on the bench and compare loads being lifted, or the speed of the person running next to you on the treadmill with yours. This is apples and oranges. Are they the same as you? If not, stop comparing what they are doing to what you are doing. Let’s take a squat as an example, most of us will look to create a baseline for our programming on a series of fundamental movement patterns in order to create standards from which to work off of. The only problem with this method is the frame of reference. Our main aim is to do this in order to be able to show progress and improvements, or personal bests at a given point in the future, we all love a personal best we can share to Instagram or Twitter. The problem however is that if you find you have a 5-rep max of 60kg then how good or bad is this figure? Is it good for a female but not for a male? Good for someone who’s 55 years old but not 22? If 60 is a bad score, then what’s a good score? If 60 is good, then what’s great? How do I look to create a program based on a result that I don’t
really know much about? Or how does my trainer? This is where the industry needs to play catch up. We need to begin to understand that people need to be assessed as an individual, we need to be able to decipher an individual’s floors and ceiling to their performance. We need to be able to know how far someone has to go and how to create the best programming possible to instigate the highest response and deliver progress and results. We live in a world of analytics, everything we do is measured. Our heart rates, steps, calories, hydration. We are told what macros to eat, how much to drink and how many steps we are supposed to fit into our day, but at no point are we ever given the same information about our rowing performance, running or lifting, all things our members or clients do every single day in our facilities. This is fundamental information for progression, without it they just end up on the treadmill doing the same old program and squatting the same weights for weeks, months and years on end thinking, but never actually knowing they are getting better. So what would happen if you could prove that your members are improving? What would happen if you could test someone with a unique frame of reference to their age, height, weight and gender so that they would no longer be compared out of context? What would happen in those personal bests were actually personal greats? I’ll tell you what would happen. You would have happy members, increased retention, increased PT uptake and increased revenue. The good news is that the industry is slowing catching up. Using platforms like Archon Combine and training instructors, personal trainers and coaches to understand fitness assessment and programming more clearly, it has begun to create a movement away from generic testing and inaccurate data in order to help people achieve their goals and the facilities to better serve their members. If you’re interested in becoming an Archon Affiliated centre, having a branded platform or training your staff on how to improve fitness assessment contact Archon Combine matt. email@example.com, for press enquiries contact janine@ mediapimps.co.uk. JUNE 2018 59
NEW TECHNOLOGY KEEPS THIRD SPACE AHEAD OF THE CURVE With 200 instructors working across its five clubs, communications and managing class cover is a challenging issue, according to Third Space’s Head of Group Exercise, Antony Stewart. ‘I had noticed a trend of people using email less. In a more stylish, millennium world it’s an old hat. Our instructors are aged between about 18 and 30 and use WhatsApp and Snapchat - half won’t even open email,’ says Stewart. Third Space partnered with smartphone-driven workforce management platform, Our People, to revolutionise the way it communicates with staff, and since its launch at the end of last year, 90% of the company’s instructors have signed up and are engaged on the platform. ‘I wanted to explore how we could turn what was essentially a tool for remote workers into a tool for the group exercise world. Our slant was instructors who work across multiple sites, not necessarily people that don’t have access to a computer. How can we communicate effectively with these instructors?’ continues Stewart. ‘We spent the first six months fading out emails and pumping all our communications through the Our People to encourage our 200 instructors to engage with it. Once a week, we send a series of stimulating and interesting messages, including the anatomy and physiology update as well as a motivational quote from our mind/ body team. I also share my recommended ‘track of the week’, with insight on its genre and BPM for those that may want to buy it. We’ve now got 180 of our instructors using Our People on a regular basis. The remaining 10% will need to engage quickly or they won’t be able to enjoy the benefits of class cover that it offers.’ Third Space is the first club to use the platform to manage cover for its group exercise classes. Our People CEO, Ross McCaw explains: ‘A big difference between boutique clubs like Third Space and traditional leisure centres is how they manage cover of group exercise classes. Traditionally a leisure centre will look to management to organise class cover, whereas in the boutique market they actively encourage team members to 'own' their classes. For Third Space, we built a way for instructors to ‘broadcast' cover requests directly from their App, meaning they can truly take responsibility for covering their classes.’ ‘The response indicates to me that this is the way of communications for the future. This App could literally change the way the entire group exercise industry manages class cover,’ says Stewart. ‘As with many other operators, for Third Space organising class cover was previously random, unsupervised and uncontrolled. 60
As a business we want to have better insight.’ ‘Now, using the App, an instructor can quickly and easily message everyone qualified to teach their class, with those confirming availability sent to the group exercise manager to sign off, providing two checks to ensure the best person possible covers the class. It’s working really well and brings us totally into 21st century in the instructors’ eyes; they expect Third Space to be ahead of the curve.’ Whilst Stewart points out they never cancel classes, his mission it to ensure members enjoy first class experience whether it’s their usual instructor or a replacement. ‘Our members have the right to expect ten out of ten cover all year round; it’s not acceptable for it to drop to seven out of ten for five weeks of the year when their instructor is on holiday. Our People will enable us to deliver this.’ McCaw continues: ‘The Third Space management team have full visibility over who covers which shift and managers can even approve this process. The great news is traditional leisure centres are also now using elements of this new feature and we're seeing some really great feedback. As well as managing class cover, the App also acts as a diary, a messaging system and an educational tool, enabling instructors to enlist on education programmes, including surveys and quizzes, as well as search and view operating procedure manuals and action plans. ‘All our signature Third Space classes have comprehensive training behind them,’ continues Stewart. ‘Every quarter we run an intense day-long training session for each and every class. We want to know at the end whether our instructors have understood and enjoyed what they’ve learned, so we use Our People to broadcast surveys and quizzes to follow up and test their knowledge. That’s really important to us.’
Appointments A round-up of industry movers and shakers
Active IQ Introduces Independent Advisory Panel
Jon Singleton – previously Chief Executive for the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance (another vocational awarding organization) and more recently Executive Director for South East Dance. In July Jon moves on to the English National Ballet School as Executive Director – remaining fully immersed in vocational education. ‘As a regulatory business, external regulation for us is key,’ says Sarah Edmonds, Active IQ Director of Quality and Standards. ‘This Panel will help to validate our claims and provide an external vote of confidence. The independent scrutiny is very welcome to keep our perspective outward looking and far reaching while also avoiding any risk of us marking our own homework,’ she explains.
Parkwood Holdings Appoints New Group Head Of Retail Active IQ - the UK’s leading Ofqual-recognised Awarding Organisation for the Active Leisure, Learning and Wellbeing Sector – has formed an independent Advisory Panel to challenge and scrutinize its work and claims of regulatory compliance. The Active IQ Advisory Panel was formed by Sarah Edmonds, Active IQ Director of Quality and Standards, to ensure Active IQ’s claims of high quality, compliance and regulatory approaches and processes stand up to external expert scrutiny. The Panel comprises three highly experienced people from across the fields of vocational and technical education who also have sector expertise and includes: David Monkhouse - a Chartered Fellow of CIMSPA who has just completed the first International Sports Management MBA at Loughborough University. With 35 years’ experience in the industry, David has a clear insight into health and safety, human resource, customer experience and quality management. Jill Lanning – who has enjoyed a long and illustrious career within the awarding and qualifications industry, having worked at Edexcel (Pearson) and the Learning and Skills Network prior to becoming the Chief Executive of the Federation of Awarding Bodies (FAB) between 2010-2014. She is currently a governor at City College Norwich and a trustee for a couple of other awarding organisations.
Parkwood Holdings has strengthened its senior team with the appointment of Alex Alley as its new Group Head of Retail. The Parkwood Holdings portfolio includes leisure management, green space management, healthcare, consultancy and PFI projects. Alex Alley will be responsible for diversifying the retail offering across the business, developing supply chains to working with some of the bestknown brands in the leisure market.
Alex brings a strong retail background to the role having worked in the industry for 30 years across a range of sectors. A specialist in retail excellence and profitability, Alex also has international experience having worked across Asia, Europe and the Americas. Alex joins Parkwood from E-Cigarette where he was Head of Retail for two years. Prior to that, Alex worked as Global Retail Manager at Natuzzi SPA, the world’s largest leather upholstery manufacturer. In his five years in this role, Alex was responsible for the Retail Management and development within the Americas and then Worldwide. He was instrumental in the transition from Manufacturer to successful Retailer. Alex has also worked in retail for DFS Furniture, World of Leather and Cargo Home Shops. Commenting on his appointment, Alex said: “It’s a fantastic opportunity to be joining Parkwood, a company with a reputation for high quality management and customer-focused service provision. Our sites have millions of visitors each year and it’s paramount that we find a way to engage and add value for these people in different ways. This could be anything from food choices to sports apparel and gym equipment. ‘Working with the strong team already in place, we’ll ensure that Parkwood facilities provide the best possible services to the community and makes our centres local hubs of convenience.’ Peter Fitzboydon, Managing Director of Parkwood Leisure, adds: ‘We are delighted to add someone of Alex's calibre to Parkwood, bringing in skills from outside the traditional leisure sector to achieve our ambitious plans in retail. We want to expand our excellent relationship with Zoggs to reach into other products and services that our millions of customers may enjoy, both within centres and online. Parkwood has enjoyed much growth over recent years and diversified into new areas such as theatres and cultural sites, and Alex's appointment is a statement of intent to drive further growth in both our existing and new areas of work.’
British Rowing Appoints Four New Master Trainers To Meet The High Demand For Go Row Indoor Instructor Training British Rowing has appointed four indoor rowing Master Trainers to deliver training for fitness professionals as part of Go Row Indoor, British Rowing’s mass participation indoor rowing programme.
This week, the new Master Trainers took part in two days of training at British Rowing HQ. The new appointees are; Kate Ingles, Level 3 PT and CYQ Fitness Instructor of the Year 2014; Matt Gleed, PT, TRX Master Trainer and Power Plate Master Trainer; John Healey, PT, S&C coach and Concept2 qualified instructor; Denise Page, a fitness professional with 25 years in the industry. The four new Master Trainers will be joining the four who were previously appointed in 2017, helping to meet the demand for Go Row Indoor training for fitness professionals across the country. The Master Trainers will assist in delivering British Rowing’s instructor training programme which has been accredited by CIMSPA and REPs and requires participants to be a minimum Level 2 fitness instructor. Along with learning the fundamentals of instructing correct rowing technique, instructors will learn about a range of training plans for members and clients and how to deliver three indoor rowing class formats. These include two gym floor classes lasting 20 and 30 minutes, along with a 45-minute studio session combining circuit exercises and indoor rowing. The classes have been designed by British Rowing to offer a full-body cardiovascular workout for gym members. Master Trainer, Matt Gleed said: ‘I’ve really enjoyed the training. It’s been exciting to get an understanding of the current participation levels and how we can inspire people to use the indoor rowing machine to get fitter and stronger, with it being such an effective full body exercise. I’m looking forward to delivering the workshop to young personal trainers to help them professionally develop and provide the best possible experience for their clients.’
wireless power transfer technologies. Other notable posts have included marketing manager for Babylon Health, the GP app. Packman said: ‘There are very interesting parallels between Babylon and Wexer, in that the Babylon app was viewed by some GPs as a threat both to their jobs and to the level of care offered to patients. We had to help them understand that it was there to complement their service, not to replace it – that a GP in combination with capable technology would actually lead to even higher levels of care and efficiency.’ ‘We now need to set out a similar narrative around virtual fitness. There’s a fear among some clubs and instructors that digital fitness offerings are a threat to their survival, but Wexer’s technology is designed to work with trainers and gym chains, not to replace them.’ ‘It’s about enhancing the member experience and maximising the impact of great instructors, helping clubs deliver an even better service to their members. This is just one of the many reasons why I’m excited to be joining Wexer.’
Denise Page added: ‘It’s been great to learn the technique and walk away confident that I know what I’m doing and I’m looking forward to sharing that information.’ John Healey said: ‘I can’t wait to get out there. I really love the idea of passing on my knowledge from the training and my experience as a personal trainer and keen indoor Rower.’
Paul Bowman, Wexer CEO, added: ‘Our vision at Wexer is to lead the fitness industry through this crucial phase of digital transformation, ensuring health clubs remain at the very heart of things even as the fitness world becomes more hi-tech.’ ‘Throughout David’s career, he has worked for the companies that were leading the digital transformation of their respective industries, from the evolution of healthcare to the switch towards pay TV. This experience makes him an invaluable addition to our team.’
Tim Messent, Education and Training Manager for British Rowing said: ‘It’s been great to spend time with the new Master Trainers during their two-day training in London. They are true professionals and industry experts. They bring a huge amount of knowledge, experience and energy to the role and we’re excited to have them on board increasing our ability to run Go Row Indoor workshops for fitness professionals, which have been in high demand.’
Digital Transformation Expert Packman Joins Wexer Digital fitness market leader Wexer has appointed David Packman as marketing director – a newly created senior team role that reflects the growth not only of Wexer, but of the virtual fitness sector as a whole. Packman joins Wexer from his position as head of marketing at Freevolt (Drayson Technologies) – a business unit dedicated to industry-leading energy harvesting and
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