Fitness Redefined

The exercising public has taken our lead to become more knowledgeable about the process of acquiring health and fitness. The term “fitness” itself has evolved to include a variety of activities and sports, indoors and out. More than a predictable three-hour-a-week indoor commitment, fitness has become a lifestyle for many consumers, and for fitness professionals. Simplicity is key, and health clubs open to offering a variety of group activities will prosper in the years to come with a consistently more loyal member base.

Butterfield, of the Las Vegas Athletic Clubs adds, “No matter how innovative your group fitness classes are, people still have the same old excuses for not working out. We’re making progress though. Years ago, people really didn’t know how to get fit. Partially through group exercise, we taught them. Today, even if they aren’t coming into the health club, people know they should work out. That’s a start.” FM
Instructor Savvy

Kathie Davis, executive director of IDEA, The Health & Fitness Source, San Diego, Calif., wants to continue to encourage group fitness instructors to diversify to meet the changing demands of club members. Here are some of her suggestions:

* Stop using the word “aerobics”; it pigeonholes you into a small slot on the schedule. It also misrepresents programming on the whole. Call yourselves group fitness leaders.

* Develop programs for beginners, the largest populations we haven’t yet touched with our expertise.

* Stop continuing to make things complicated! Go easy on participants. Let them leave feeling 100 percent successful.

* Get out into your communities in other health and fitness venues to reach those who may not be walking into your club.

* Continue your education to reflect new research, programming and technology.

* Concentrate on your business skills, too. More and more fitness professionals are in business for themselves.