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Fitness Industry AZ: News – SportOutdoor24

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Fitness Industry AZ: News – SportOutdoor24

The fitness innovations can be summarized in a triptych of “P”: Pact-Personal-Cleaning. Therefore, in 2024, the real innovations to be implemented strategically and tactically in the organization of a Fitness Club are… Always the same. Nail yourself to that wall that no workshop celebrated with New Year’s Eve bangs and aperitif for all with final self-celebration will ever be able to scratch.

Fitness Industry AZ: News

Blessed be AI in certain forms and on some points, but in the end what has an impact is this triplet of factors.

First point: P1-PACT

The (narrative) Pact is the creation and/or valorisation of the main asset of the Fitness Club which is the real, incessant osmosis with the customers, whether users or patrons. Young, senior, addicted, occasional, everyone must not have the feeling of sailing on the same boat but with the necessary and obvious conceptual distances they must even contribute to guiding it.

It has happened to me, not infrequently, to carry out the layout-technology update, involving the users in the field in some way. Obviously the possibilities of doing this operation digitally remain and have their weight, but if you don’t train for a week on the tools, you don’t sit in the middle of customer traffic with a towel in your hand from 6.30pm to 8.30pm, we don’t analyze the flows at different times, we understand each other poorly. Hidden in the management office, we are not struck by the shiver of terror that is transmitted live by a kettlebel raised ballistically and repeatedly one meter from a customer who is performing crunches on the mat. Sooner or later there will be an omelette.

And omelettes are cooked everywhere: from the village gym to the one where the smell spreads forcefully if the “brick” in the spa area is not from Vietri sul Mare. Where smoking matters more than roasting, something we’ve forgotten about for a while. But the customer is asking for the roast again.

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The (narrative) agreement is, to jump from topic to topic, what is established at the beginning of the TV series: the concept is a field of action (designed by the screenwriters and even before that by those who develop the idea) which is what the spectator wants to tread, seasoned with salt and pepper but which takes him exactly where he wants to go. Having taken this concept and transferred it equally into the provision of the fitness service, we will most likely have found the balance between the fitness service proposal and the customer’s latent need. Considering that usually not even the explicit one is satisfied while hunting for AI applications to hit the mark with management, imagine how we are doing.

Second point: P2-STAFF

Everywhere, for reasons felt by companies (few) or for paracul strategies on corporate ethics of: “We are all happy when we are at work” we are full of talk about the importance of human resources. In gyms, the importance of human resources has translated into the reduction of the emolument/hour of room assistance, assistance which ultimately is what matters for the member, given that not everyone can afford a natural life during a personal trainer.

Well, the elimination of the “default” fitness service, as in the gyms of a few years ago, where the trainer was sacrosanctly assigned and available, with a smile and skills, as happens in a good restaurant (not necessarily a starred one), has resulted in an acceleration of the instructor’s profits-from-rents payments. Instructor who is often external to the company strategy. To make a long story short and to get into the mechanism seen from the client side, this happens: “…Why do I have to wait to use the Power Rack since that personal trainer is performing a triple set and has
occupied three stations? So my membership is worth zero…?”

Regarding the doubts that arise from a customer who has already been waiting in traffic, has already been waiting at the supermarket and has just been waiting for the subway, I leave the feelings on this further and tragicomic gym wait to others. Staff, staff, staff: not just the instructor but the reception, a crossroads of information, flows, complaints, turnovers, tours, which juggles between a lost towel and a vending machine that doesn’t give change. It’s no small feat to have a combative reception that lightly faces the joys and sorrows of life behind the counter.

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No one expects you to be the Concierge of a Luxury Hotel, where there is time to provide high performance given the lack of a “critical mass” that assails you. In the constant criticality of the fitness center, with users anxiously waiting and schizophrenia spilled at the desk, there is a great responsibility: that of being slow inside a centrifuge. Which means keeping the bar straight and never giving in, that is, being a winner. As a fitness company and as a fitness team trained in the most noble quality: patience.

Third point: P3-CLEANING

From personal experience we have seen large and bombastic companies operating in the “Cleaning” sector (to say cleaning is politically incorrect), experts in bringing, according to them, all the activity spaces of gyms, swimming pools, changing rooms and reception areas to the maximum decorum. Cleaning groups with high-sounding names with impactful websites and chatbots: and then very high-profile cleaning technologies. We always start at full speed but after six months the performance curve starts to lower like the Mariana Trench, unless agreements are revisited with obvious budget-cleaning doping (oops cleaning service).

Again from personal experience we have also seen the opposite, that is: “A single man in charge” polishing up an entire gym as if it were his. Never miss out on resources like this, but hoard them and reward them. A hair appearing on a shower tray causes ten registrations a week to skip, which in a year amounts to around five hundred. There’s no point in being on the phone with recalling. “The user may not be reachable” if the hair is still crouching there.


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