HCM Issue 11 2021

Page 58

S tan d a r d s

All standards are subject to review, addition, updating or change as markets develop and Stage 5 will ensure that – whether clubs are being re-validated for either Stage 3 or Stage 4 – they’re compliant with the standards prevailing at the time. In terms of pricing, there will two tiers of charges, with reduced price to make it fair and achievable for multi-site operators. Individual rates will be €200 for a single site where the operator is a member of a national association and €300 where they are not. Multi-site businesses will be assessed by sampling and there’s an international standard for determining this which is based on a formula of either 10 per cent of the estate or the square root of the number of sites, whichever is the greater. Using this calculation, a chain with nine sites would pay to have three sites assessed, while a chain with 1,000 sites would pay for 100. Sites in the sample are still paid for at the €200 or €300 rates. Upcoming additional standards The Working Group at CEN has also already developed a further set of standards that cover supervision in clubs – both operationally and for fitness instruction – and these will be live from the middle of 2022. We also know that new standards will be developed for the club ‘hybrid’ model and for supervising users exercising in the outdoors. Another area of work coming down the track concerns environmental sustainability where, for example, clubs will be expected 58

Issue 11 2021 ©Cybertrek 2021

to know and understand their current carbon footprint and to plan for reduction and better sustainability. Clubs that are in the FitCert.eu scheme will be kept informed on the progress of new standards and changes, so they have a market lead. Take part in the pilot To get underway the FitCert.eu scheme has entered a test and trial phase for Stage 1 and Stage 2. This is to help us check our systems and software, and to get the scheme ready for a full launch in April 2022. We’re inviting 500 clubs to come into the test phase and to give us an evaluation of the process and they will be able to advance to Stage 3 and Stage 4 next year. The response has been incredible, with clubs from Basic Fit, GoFit, Pure Gym, EVO, Fit for Free, Sport City and others, as well as from many hundreds of independent clubs and leisure centres already signed-up, so we’re nearly at the target of 500. These clubs will have the maximum marketing opportunity as they will lead the sector forward into the scheme as it’s rolled-out. One thing that’s already clear is that the FitCert. eu scheme is going to be successful, and will become the industry’s recognised standard. The expectation is that all clubs will – sooner or later – have to go through at least to Stage 3. It will be the quality standard that will give value to the clubs and much more meaning than a Google or TrustPilot review could achieve. In short, FitCert.eu is a game-changer for the European fitness sector. l

photo: Andrey Popov

The working group is also developing standards for hybrid operations