header splash April 4th, 2017

    Featured News


Fitness Industry Leadership Award Presented to Don Longwell

The Canadian Fitness Industry Leadership Award is Fitness Industry Council of Canada’s most prestigious honour. It is given annually to an FIC member who has proven to be a passionate industry leader and who has contributed significantly to the Canadian fitness industry for many years.

This year’s winner is Don Longwell, founder of Mill Pond Publishing and founding editor of Fitness Business Canada magazine. The award was presented at the Canadian VIP reception at this year’s IHRSA Convention and Trade Show.

buy now

    Association News


IHRSA Publishes Industry Compensation Report

IHRSA 2017 Health Club Employee Compensation & Benefits Report Details Compensation Data for Nearly 60 Job Titles

Last month, IHRSA released The 2017 IHRSA Health Club Employee Compensation & Benefits Report, a detailed analysis of compensation and benefits practices for the health club industry. Salary and compensation results provided in the report are based on data from more than 200 North American facilities.

“Payroll is one of the largest expenses among health clubs, as hiring and investing in staff plays a critical role in serving and retaining members,” said Jay Ablondi, IHRSA’s executive vice president of global products. “IHRSA has regularly conducted employee compensation research for more than 15 years to help club operators analyze and gauge their compensation practices against other club businesses.”

The new report provides compensation data for nearly 60 job titles, including base salary and total compensation for club and executive-level staff as well as hourly pay and commissions data for club-level employees. Data on medical insurance, retirement plans, leave days, and other benefits are also analyzed in the report.

Key findings:
• 91% of participating clubs provide medical insurance to salaried employees
• Clubs reported an average health insurance premium increase of 8.9% from 2015-2016
• 66% of clubs offer a retirement plan
• 62% of clubs match employee contributions to retirement plans
• Clubs provide an average of 8 paid leave days to salaried employees with less than one year on the job

“New to this year’s report is an infographic snapshot of benefits practices as well as graphics summarizing compensation data for the most commonly requested job titles,” said Melissa Rodriguez, IHRSA Senior Research Manager. “Along with the in-depth report data across various levels of the organization, club operators can refer to these snapshots for a quick overview of pay for CEO, general manager, personal trainer, and group exercise instructor job titles.”

The report also provides a brief macroeconomic outlook on compensation and unemployment. According to a separate nationwide WorldatWork Salary Budget Survey, companies offered salary increases of roughly 3% to employees in 2016. In 2017, firms are projecting similar salary budget increases of 3%.

The 2017 IHRSA Health Club Employee Compensation & Benefits Report is based on voluntary survey data provided by IHRSA member clubs in the United States and Canada. The report provides compensation information for senior management/corporate staff, salaried club-level employees, and hourly club-level employees. Salary information for job titles is provided by geographical region, club type, and size in total annual revenues.

The 2017 IHRSA Health Club Employee Compensation & Benefits Report is available at ihrsa.org/compensation-report. The PDF can be purchased either in full for $399.95 ($199.95 for IHRSA members) or in three separate parts for $149.95 each ($79.95 each for IHRSA members). Contact IHRSA Research at research@ihrsa.org or +1-617-951-0055 ext. 194 with any questions.










pic5Atlantis Adds Octane to the Quebec Market

Atlantis Inc. recently became a distributor for Octane Fitness in the province of Quebec.

In addition to manufacturing an exceptional line of strength equipment, Atlantis distributes several high-quality brands in Quebec. Based in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, and a Nautilus, Inc. brand, Octane Fitness is the No. 1 brand of zero-impact cardiovascular equipment, recognized worldwide for its multiple innovations and commitment to excellence. “After watching Octane grow over the last 10 years, I have been very impressed," said Yosi Knecht, the director of sales and marketing for Atlantis. "My research with other distributors confirmed that Octane has an impressive reputation for quality and support. Ellipticals are a very important product category, and we’re excited to add Octane to our offering.” Adds Dan Rehmann, dealer sales manager for North America for Octane Fitness, "Atlantis has a terrific reputation in the industry, especially in its home province, with legendary status and relationships that have lasted several decades.”

pic5Watts for Wishes at IHRSA LA 2017

Watts For Wishes was a huge success at IHRSA 2017!

Many of the watts generated came from Nadia Ruiz, a LA Marathoner, who ran a full 26.2 miles on the ECO-POWR treadmill, and Sara Krist, founder of the Cancer Warrior Foundation, who lead a total of 15 classes over 2 days on SportsArt’s G510 indoor cycles. With their help and the efforts of everyone who stopped by the booth, the team was able to meet their goal of producing 10,000 watts on the IHRSA floor.

The total number of participants is unavailable as many people tried out multiple machines. SportsArt also just kept track of the cumulative power generation, not the amount produced per workout.

Thanks to a final push at the end by staff and booth attendees SportsArt reached a goal of 10,000 watts generated!

SportsArt generated 10,000 watts totaling $10,000 for the charity! The evening before the IHRSA show opened they also held a party benefiting the watts for wishes which was able to raise about $1500.

pic5ASF Adds KidCheck to its Software

ASF Payment Solutions is pleased to announce its software now integrates with KidCheck, a secure children’s check-in system. This integration offers ASF customers easy access to KidCheck’s full-featured children’s check-in system, while still maintaining a single member database.

ASF is a leading provider of gym management software and payment solutions. KidCheck, a leader in children’s check-in, focuses specifically on delivering easy-to-use, innovative, secure check-in solutions, including its Express Check-in mobile solution.

The integration offers fitness centers, martial arts schools, and other organizations using ASF a “best-in-class” child care check-in solution. Via the integration, key check-in and member information is synced and seamlessly shared between the platforms, creating a positive member family experience.

buy now

pic5TRX® Inks Strategic Partnerships

TRX®, a provider of holistic functional training ecosystem for gyms, health clubs and fitness facilities, recently announced a strategic partnerships with Alloy Personal Training Solutions and Humane Flooring.

TRX’s partnership with Alloy brings additional expertise in critical aspects of their commercial fitness business. Alloy’s wealth of knowledge in the creation of pricing structures, development and definition of a group personal training business and their ability to assess and rejuvenate the physical space of a gym or fitness facility, will work seamlessly in TRX’s commercial fitness organization.

“Partnerships in the commercial space can be tricky endeavors, but when working with preeminent category leaders, it becomes a no brainer. We’re excited about working hand-in-hand with Alloy and Humane Flooring,” said Nick Vay, Director, North American Sales. “These strategic partnerships enable TRX to streamline processes that make functional training a better business opportunity for club and gym owners, and create high-tech, state-of-the-art functional training zones that help members move better.”

buy now

pic5Aktiv Partners with Fitness Educators

Aktiv Solutions recently announced a new programming and education platform designed to power the spaces they create on behalf of clients. The new programming and educational platform is enabled by alliances with the industry’s most relevant and innovative sources for training methodology and certification, including WeckMethod®, Anti-Gravity® Fitness, Alloy Personal Training™, Go-Flo®, CorMax® Fitness and more.

As facilities choose the desired training methodologies to be performed within the functional training space, Aktiv will curate a comprehensive education program designed to support the operational model. The integration of planned programming allows clients to fully activate the functional training environment, maximizing the inherent member engagement and revenue-generating potential it presents.

“Aktiv brings a unique understanding of the critical relationship between different training methodologies and the physical training environments they require,” said Marty Shannon, CEO of WeckMethod/BOSU. “We are excited to be partnering with Aktiv in combining their capabilities in structural and flooring solutions with our programming.”

buy now



pic1 Overcoming Objections

by Yosi Knecht

Overcoming objections is a key component of the sales process. Salespeople are trained on how to do this and keep the prospect moving down the line towards the sale. If the customer says “your price is too high” then you say “blah, blah, blah”…you get the picture. This is the dance, the back-and-forth that salespeople engage in with their prospects. While there is no doubt that in order to make a sale you have to remove doubt in the prospect’s mind, there is a different way to look at objections, and a better way of dealing with them.

Customers today are aware that you have been trained on how to overcome objections, they know that your questions are part of a process aimed at getting to a close. This type of process does two things. It puts you in a position where it’s you against the prospect, rather than being on the same side as them, and it makes it more difficult for the prospect to fully trust you. It’s important to understand that behind every stated objection there is an underlying objection, the one based on trust. People don’t completely trust someone that is trying to sell them something. This is based on the stigma associated with sales; which is not unfounded, as there are so many terrible salespeople out there. Even if you’re not one of those salespeople, the fact that you are paid to make a sale effects your ability to objectively evaluate the prospects’ needs. In the world of gym membership or personal training sales, this is even more challenging because the sales process is so short. Most of the time you have one meeting with the prospect, which makes it even more difficult to establish real trust. So while you’re focused on volleying back-and-forth, using your tactics for overcoming objections, asking questions to lead the prospect down the path to a close, you’re neglecting the real issue.

buy now


pic1 David versus Goliath - Surviving 16 years from scratch - Part 11: 3 basics

by Gino Arcaro

Today is the 16th anniversary of X Fitness, a 24-hour independent gym that I started from scratch. Planet Earth has dramatically changed since 2001. There are thousands of real-life lessons I’ve learned to win the David versus Goliath battle in order to survive in the fitness business as a start-up independent but there are three basic real-life lessons that stand above the rest:

1. Retention is more difficult than recruitment
2. There is nothing harder to sell than fitness.
3. Never forget 4 words – I can’t afford it.

#1. Recruiting and retaining customers is the heart and soul of surviving as an independent startup. However, customer retention is far more difficult than customer recruitment. Coaching football and coordinating two college law enforcement programs taught me Real-Life Lesson #4,118 – finders are not keepers. It’s easier to find customers than keeping them. The same applies to our gym. We have conducted a 16-year internal investigation about customer recruitment and retention. We discovered extensive evidence of what works out and what doesn’t work out, literally and figuratively. Those findings will be published in future articles. As a result, I never have and never will use the phrase ‘customer loyalty’ because we have concluded customers are not retained out of loyalty to a business. They either need you or they don’t. It’s not an issue of loyalty. It’s a matter of fit. Retention is an outcome of fitting together, of being a match. You fit as long as you make them fit. What works out for us will be explained in future articles.

buy now




Selling Used Fitness Equipment?
Looking for Staff?

Post free in our Classifieds Section (B2B Only)

Post your free classified here: fitnessbusinesscanada.com/contact

Check out our Classifieds here: fitnessbusinesscanada.com/category/classifieds

    What's New

whatsnewThe Tork Stainless Washroom Upgrade Solutions collection launched on February 1 and features the Tork Matic® Hand Towel Dispenser Recessed–with Intuition™ Sensor. The dispenser easily fits into existing recessed infrastructure, providing a touch-free roll towel system. This easy-to-install system won’t hurt existing infrastructure or take restrooms out of play for long periods, ensuring upgrades to existing units are easier and more cost effective than extensive renovations. Our online guide helps facility managers determine which products from the portfolio will work best for their facility. For more information, visit www.torkusa.com/washroomupgrade/.


CPTN 2017–Excel. Then Dominate! Conference

June 2 & 3, 2017

Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre, Toronto

For Personal Trainers, Strength Coaches, Kinesiologists and anyone interested in learning more about Fitness Conditioning.


For more information visit: cptn.com

    About FBC

FBC 2017Fitness Business Canada (FBC), first published in January 2000, is the primary trade magazine for owners, managers and staff of health and fitness facilities across Canada. To get your copy, call our office at 888-920-6537, email us at fbc@fitnet.ca or click here to subscribe online.

Next Issue: May / Jun 2017
Editorial: Club Financial Review
Q & A:Club Improvements
Special: TapOut Fitness

plus much more...look for it in May!

» Get Fitness Business Canada