ccd news update - California Clubs of Distinction



ccd news update - California Clubs of Distinction
First Quarter • 2014
East Bay Area Club Owners/Managers Meeting
See “Regional Meetings” On Page 2
Back row, left to right: Rod Heckleman, Mt. Tam Racquet Club; Kim Fuller, Livermore Valley Tennis Club; Steve Squire, Chabot Canyon Racquet Club;
Keith Wheeler, Orindawoods Tennis Club; and, Bruce Thomas, Lakeridge Athletic Club. Front row, left to right: Victor Ingrassia, Chabot Canyon;
Rigo Headley, Berkeley Tennis Club; Michelle Moir, Oakland Hills Tennis Club; Ernesto Chamorro, The Hills Tennis & Swim Club;
and, Jim Thompson, Oakland Hills Tennis Club. Location was Campo di Bocce, Livermore, CA
Good Design Can Influence Membership
Child Care Safety Must Be A Priority At Clubs
Employee Termination, Counseling, And Disciplinary Actions
Are Women Walking In Your Door?
Boost Your Search Engine Optimization With Video
14 How The Affordable Care Act Is Affecting
The Health Club Industry
16 Co-Training Clients: How Sharing Clients
Among Trainers Boosts Business Revenues
18 Engagement Or Spam?
Good News For 2014 CCD Members
Regional Meetings
e picture on the cover was taken during
the East Bay club owners/managers
meeting organized by club owner
Jim ompson (Oakland Hills Tennis
Club). is group of clubs meets quarterly
to share news, new products, programming
and much more. CCD provides insurance
updates, legal news, human resource alerts,
and legislative challenges. ere's always
Lin Conrad
one or two guest speakers. e meetings
Executive Director
take place (12-2PM) at a host club and
lunch is provided.
CCD understands that many of you find it challenging to attend
conferences and workshops. But, sadly, you miss out on networking
with fellow owners and general managers. If you are interested in
joining the East Bay group or developing a group of clubs for your
area, contact me, [email protected] CCD will organize,
market, and design your quarterly meetings. Quarterly too much for
now? Try every 6 months to begin.
CCD Workers’ Compensation Program
Our workers’ comp program is 39 years old! Fitness Pak/InterWest
has been our endorsed broker for more than half that time. ey are
in constant contact with multiple carriers and perform "test rating"
continuously. ey have determined that AmTrust/Sequoia is still our
best workers’ compensation choice for service and rates. AmTrust
Financial (Rated “A” Excellent by A.M. Best) acquired CCD’s
workers’ comp program carrier Sequoia Insurance last year.
e transition has gone smoothly and AmTrust remains committed to
its partnership with CCD. I urge you to take advantage of this
successful group program. Contact Jim Foley at [email protected] or
530-897-3133 for more information.
Fire Sprinkler Inspections Required
For General Liability Insurance
Anyone with a sprinkled building must conduct monthly and
quarterly inspections and keep a log. National Fire Protection
Association Standard 25 is the baseline for inspection, testing, and
maintenance of water-based fire protection systems. Compliance helps
maximize system integrity to avoid failure and ensure fast, effective
response in a fire emergency. Every automatic fire extinguishing
system, including, but not limited to, fire sprinkler systems,
engineered and pre-engineered fixed extinguishing systems, standpipe
systems, and alarm and supervisory equipment attached to those
systems shall be serviced, tested, and maintained in accordance with
the regulations and building standards adopted by the State Fire
Marshal pursuant to Section 13195. Not only does your insurance
carrier require this, but it's the right thing to do for the safety of your
members and employees.
CCD Legal Advisors
is program has been extremely successful. To allow more member
clubs greater access to legal advice, CCD welcomes Gary Bradley,
partner, Bradley and Gmelich, as the advisor for clubs south of Paso
Robles. Contact Mr. Bradley at 818-243-5200, [email protected] Jeffery Long, partner, Prout LeVangie, will continue to
cover current clients and new clients north of Paso Robles.
Contact Mr. Long at 916-443-4849, jeff[email protected]
e benefits are the same. Included in your CCD membership:
Receive 15 minutes a month legal advice via telephone or email;
annual, review of your contracts and waivers; annual, a 30 minute sit
down meeting at the IHRSA convention; hourly rate discount for
CCD members who retain legal services.
Labor Laws for 2014
ere are too many laws to print in the UpDate. An email blast will
go out in February detailing the new laws. If you have not received
these notices in the past, forward your email address to me at
[email protected] to be added to the blast list.
CCD members can join our partnership with the CalChamber, your
quick business reference for complying with California employment
and labor laws. Look no further than and
CalChamber to handle your everyday HR questions. Take full
advantage of the tools on HRCalifornia Express to quickly navigate
complex employment law compliance issues and protect your club
from potential fines and lawsuits.
Access CCD/Cal Chamber ONLINE HR HELP. helps you protect your business from
compliance problems by providing quick, accurate answers to
California and federal employment law questions. HRCalifornia
Express was designed to help you get the answers you need fast:
HR Basics gives you a “quick view” of popular HR topics; Tools and
Resources lets you access employment law forms and checklists to get
answers to common questions; powerful search capability powered by
Google™ gets you what you need immediately. Use this valuable
resource to access the Chamber’s library of information on HR
topics including: Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA); COBRA;
Exempt and nonexempt employees; Meal and rest breaks; Sexual
harassment. ONLINE HR NEWSLETTERS: CCD will e-mail their
highly rated newsletter to you each month. HRCalifornia Extra
features the latest news on changing laws and HR developments.
To participate in this partnership program contact CCD for the
details, [email protected]
Monthly Webinars: See The Calendar On Page 24
"e webinar was very beneficial. We started our small group fee based
training classes last summer. It was good to see that we were already
applying about 85% of what they recommended. WE did pick up a few
good ideas as well. As always, I want to thank you for the educational
webinars CCD offers." Capitol Athletic Club. ere is not enough space
to share all of the kind comments about our webinars. But,
I promise, if you attend them, you will be pleased. We offer one a
month on the second Wednesday from 12 - 1 PM. e topics vary.
Notices are sent out via email blast for registration. e schedule is
posted on our website ( and right here in the CCD
News UpDate. However, the only way to register is via email.
One registration affords as many attendees as you choose to view the
webinar. Not on our list? Contact CCD to add your name, club, and
email address. Member and non-member clubs welcome.
ank you to new member clubs, current (renewed) member clubs,
and, future member clubs as well our vendor members, for choosing
CCD as your California club association.
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
Come see us on the web at
Good Design Can Influence Membership
One of the most important club changes in
the past few years is the move away
from an owner-centric business to one
where the member is the true focus.
e member-centric business model means
that instead of the design pleasing the
owner’s sensibility, the design of a club is
clearly positioned to deliver to the
members what they want and need.
is may sound obvious, but if you have
By Rudy Fabiano AIA been in this industry long enough, it was
clear that this simply has not been the case.
Even though a club is well designed, we have been providing what the
owner considers is important, rather than what is truly important to
the client.
It’s not just about making someone a member of your club.
It is about making your club a part of your members’ lives.
Putting great importance on the individual member’s
experience, with the highest priority toward making clubs
relevant, is clearly becoming the road map to success.
Our club not only has to deliver its key component, a great and
healthy workout, but an intangible element as well. is intangible
element is not measured in bricks, mortar or equipment, but in the
spiritual, social and physical influences we offer our members that
will emotionally connect them to our clubs. ere is a kind of
seduction in a hard workout and sweat almost becomes glamorous.
Not glamorous in the thin, tall, sexy dress way, but in a real inner
feeling that we all strive for, hope for and dream about, the feeling we
get from doing something good.
The challenge is to design spaces that engage and bring our
members closer to this feeling.
In designing fitness clubs for the past 24 years, we have looked
outside this industry for inspiration and lessons. Successful
restaurants, public plazas, and great hotels all have that element of
sexiness that allows us to enjoy our time there. ere is great lighting,
interesting designs, smiles from the hostess, and even the other
patrons contribute to the overall experience of a great space. All these
layers work together to build that emotional connection. A space will
quickly become stale if the main influence is only one layer.
ese spaces are decidedly not glamorous and miss what the
members are really looking for. After all, if we just wanted to be fit, we
could workout almost anywhere: run around the block many times or
do pushups and situps in the privacy of one’s room. We are a
social animal, and we need more.
It is only by layering the multiple facets of a complete experience, that
we can create that timeless space that will linger in our minds as
somewhere we want to belong, and where we need to be. All clubs
need to have spiritual, social and physical design elements that speak
to the users. ey all need to be articulated and designed together in
order to deliver that elevated experience to the mundane task of
working out.
The Physical Component
e first layer is providing the physical space and all the programming
and components that truly deliver a diverse and exceptional exercise
experience. is is the counter balance to the spiritual and social layer
in club design. e physical engagement, the beauty of sweat, all need
to be housed in a legitimate area or room that works exceedingly well.
ese programming areas need to be well designed in advance: proper
room proportions; correct airflow and other environmental
conditions; easy storage appropriately placed to make it easy to get
and put things away; well designed sound systems and lighting are all
critically important.
e rooms and spaces that your members will use for programming,
for taking showers, and using the club need to be well designed.
e physical space should be appropriate for the activities intended,
at the highest level we can afford. Deliver more than expected and you
will create fans. At the end of the day, if I don’t get a great workout,
take a great shower and get ready for work, the club has failed at the
most basic level. Whether you have a low cost model, functional
training only, or a full service sports club, the reason your members are
there is to get results. Making the spaces easy and convenient to use
must become the natural extension of members’ everyday lives.
The Emotional and Spiritual Component
ere are at least five different areas of a club that combine to deliver
a complete emotional experience. e energy level of a club varies
significantly: from a Zumba class, or stretching, or the sauna.
e mood, lighting, and the materials need to reflect and respect those
very different aspects of the experience. Understanding that
recuperation and recovery is an important element of
fitness - offering a spa feeling “yang” along with the high energy of
the exercise “ying” - is just as important. It is about accommodating
the emotional and spiritual mood of the members as they journey
through the entire experience that your club has to offer. As we
further analyze the individual member experience in terms of layers,
spiritual, and emotional, we can establish the five different design
points at play; from entering the club, to socializing and observing, to
getting into a workout groove, to showering, and then the experience
of leaving. Abstractly, we have labeled these points Awaken, Inspire,
Energize, Rejuvenate, and Relax. ese points represent different
aspects of the member experience that we, as designers, can focus on
and elaborate artistically. ey correspond to the entry, the movement
though the club, the exercise experience, the recovery points and the
concept of leaving.
Social Engagement
We have come to understand that social connections and retention
are very closely tied. Group programming is a means to long
term retention. e element of fun as a means to bond with people
and form connections is a key element in many clubs’ success. People
make friends and stay. I believe this still is one of the most
relevant elements we can provide to our members. By recognizing and
providing both obvious and spontaneous opportunities to foster social
engagement - areas where members could make friends, connections,
and acquaintances - one of our most successful strategies in making
our clubs relevant. Ultimately, these social connections form to
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
become the culture of the club. Considering your members’ needs and
what you can do to accommodate their rhythms, goals and social
connections will truly make your club a trusted partner in their
wellness plan.
It is important to remember that different design elements affect
members in profoundly different ways. e prospective member
touring the club has a very different perception factor and experience
than that of a current member coming in for a regular Monday night
workout. Both perceptions are valid and need to be respected, but
somewhat differently.
ere are three groups that need to be understood; e Prospect,
e Regular, and e Enthusiast. Each need and respond to different
design considerations and will require different strategies and
dedicated efforts to keep each in that happy zone. Design can help
motivate the prospect to become a new member, encourage the new
member to become a regular, and ultimately provide the right
environment to allow the easy transition from a regular to
an enthusiast.
Prospect to Member
e prospect, for example, never really uses your club. Most of what
they will be excited about will come from the visual - what they see
and hear. is can be a great canvas for the sales team to paint a
picture of the prospect’s life in the club. It is important that they can
see themselves belonging to your club. While touring the club,
prospects are thinking, “Do I like this place?”, “Do I belong here?”,
“How easy or hard will it be to come here?” “Do I feel safe here?”
“What does this place remind me of?” is group critically needs
overwhelming positive feelings to overcome the stress of joining.
First impressions are very important, so a nice lobby, in this case, will
sell. e design should get them excited as they move through the
club. e most important design feature for this group is the tour,
which should be carefully designated and choreographed.
Predetermined pathways that clearly and naturally show off the best
attributes of the club are the best way to sell.
Member to Regular
e level of design detail should evolve to a high level to
accommodate this group. We want members to enjoy the club and
use it often. ey use the showers, wait for a treadmill, and
experience the environment in a very different way. e design features
that help with this transition have more to do with flow, accessibility
and social ability. We want to make it easy to navigate from point
A to point B. ey will appreciate legitimate studio space and
programming without waiting in tight hallways and stairways.
e experience of being able to take a shower and get dressed for work
becomes important. Any hassles associated with using the club need
to be eliminated. Hassles equal negative emotions; remember we need
three positives to negate one negative to just be perceived as average.
is design strategy is about comfort, convenience, options, and less
about the look. Two cardio decks give members options and different
energy levels. Social nodes that encourage meeting new people offer
incentives for members to come back. Certainly programming and
classes will play a big part, although not design based, but easy in and
out for storage in well designed rooms do make a difference.
Come see us on the web at
Childcare Safety Must Be A Priority At Clubs
Health and fitness clubs routinely provide
child care services to their clients as a
benefit of membership. Fitness clientele
with young children clearly value that
service in a facility that they perceive as
attractive, safe and well-supervised.
Parents will look to a center for fun
activities for their children and convenient
hours of operation. As club leadership
knows, the safety of their children trumps
all other issues.
Mr. Makimoto who indicates that, from a claims perspective,
“the main theory of liability centers around the staff’s supervision
of children.”
Clubs providing childcare for their membership must fully integrate
that amenity into their overall risk management program. Safety in the
child care setting is multi-faceted with moving parts – children, staff,
parents and facilities. is article will focus on safety issues that have
impacted multiple clubs in the Hanover Insurance program from a
frequency standpoint.
Adequate adult-to-child ratios are critical to maintain appropriate
supervision for young children. Mr. McKay advises an average of no
less than one adult for eight children overall – much lower ratios for
infants and perhaps higher for the oldest children. While most fitness
club child care centers are “license exempt” in California, club
management may want to reference California licensing guidelines
when making staffing decisions. Whatever staffing model is chosen,
club management should avoid placing an employee in a room alone
with children while he/she is concurrently managing check-ins/
check-outs or performing other non-supervisory functions. It is
important to remember that toileting and other like activities require
specific policies and procedures to avoid abuse and molestation
exposures and accusations.
By Sandra Burke
Input was solicited from three other key insurance professionals who
routinely work with our fitness center clients: Jeffery Long of
Prout-Levange Law Firm and William Makimoto, Hanover Claims
Unit Manager manage the more complex claims among our Hanover
fitness insureds; and Ken McKay of InterWest Insurance Services, Inc.
and the FitPak program. We hope these suggestions will reduce your
club’s accident exposure.
Common Accidents
Falls are by far the leading accident type with claims for this group.
e Centers for Disease Control (CDC) provides data which mirrors
our data, advising that falls are the leading non-fatal accident type for
children. For Hanover insureds who operate fitness clubs, falls
occurred among all ages but were much more frequent among
toddlers. ese children have just started walking and are less than
3-4 years of age. e fall accidents vary in circumstances but with
more serious cases are more often associated with falls off of soft
contained play structures and similar equipment (think tubes and
netting); falls attempting to climb on items such as free standing
plastic structures (such as play kitchens); and furniture.
In several cases, the equipment that was associated with the accident
was not age appropriate. One claim involved a play structure that was
improperly assembled, thus allowing a child to fall from the
equipment through an opening that was inadvertently created by the
improper assembly. Falls also occurred in the form of “trip and falls”
on objects such as toys and rugs.
Inadequate supervision was identified as a common factor in
child care related accidents regardless of accident type. As an
attorney, Mr. Long routinely reviews the videotapes of the accidents
that he investigates and/or litigates. He commented that when he
reviews these videos, he can visually observe a very large physical area
of the accident scene. In most of these cases, according to Mr. Long,
no adult is visible in the video or near the child who has the accident.
e apparent lack of direct supervision in accident events is echoed by
Mr. Long also finds that training is minimal for employees who are
working at the time of the accident. He indicates that it is not
uncommon for these employees to have as little as two to three hours
of documented training in a year or even two-year period. Based on
our discussion, we identified impactful risk improvement
opportunities for club management to consider in their risk
management and safety programs.
Even with good planning, there are simply times when the child care
area becomes so busy that the most experienced and well-trained
employee is taxed. Anticipate those situations and appropriately
respond before an incident occurs. Give your employees explicit
procedures, training, communication capability and resources for
those occasions when they need additional staff and support.
Electronic devices should be prohibited while employees are on duty.
Staff should be aware and frequently reminded that, when an
incident does occur, video coverage will be reviewed with a potentially
wide audience. Club management should review video coverage
routinely to identify situations, circumstances, operational challenges
or behaviors that increase risk for the club. Appropriate interventions
should be identified and implemented where a need exists.
Employee Training
Training for employees in a child care environment is broad and could
be a stand-alone topic. For the purposes of this article, remember,
child-related safety is a significant risk exposure to your business if not
well managed. Employees are the first line of defense – train them,
train again and document, document, document. In general, club
management should evaluate their training programs to assure
adequacy based on the operations and management model of their
specific child care facility. Some training topics are required by law,
such as child abuse recognition and prevention, mandatory reporters,
etc. CPR (for children and infants) and first aid training must be
provided to enough key club staff to provide adequate coverage.
Most training needs do not require
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
Come see us on the web at
Employee Termination, Counseling,
And Disciplinary Actions
One of the best things about working in
the fitness club environment is being
surrounded by positive health-minded
people, whether they be members or staff.
When management comes to work, they
can expect an uplifting and enlightening
day. en of course, you remember that
your club is in California where we have
more protected categories and more federal
and state agencies governing the
By Gary Bradley
employment relationship than any other
jurisdiction. Every action management
undertakes with respect to its employees is subject to complex rules,
regulations, and heightened scrutiny. Among the most challenging
employee relations issues are terminations, counseling, and
disciplinary action.
Most of the employment-related questions I receive start with: “I have
this employee who [insert bad act]. It happened three weeks ago, and
I have not yet addressed the problem. What should I do?” As a
preliminary matter, remember that when you become aware of a
workplace violation, immediate action is required. In almost all
circumstances, delay is detrimental. Time is of the essence in not only
gathering facts and avoiding escalation of any problems, but also when
the matter is reviewed in retrospect by a jury or government
investigator, delays will always be questioned. Read on to discover how
to establish good practices.
First, it is imperative to have good processes and written policies.
Deferring the time and expense of establishing formal policies and
procedures is short-sighted. By waiting until a problem arises, the cost
of your time, the risk of inconsistent enforcement, and the legal fees
will be far greater than if you take a preventative approach. Take some
time to review your employee policies and practices now.
Good terminations and disciplinary actions start when the employee
applies for the position. A well designed hiring process can go a long
way towards weeding out potential problem employees and
establishing the company culture. Train your hiring staff to ask the
right questions. Even if you just buy a book or do some online
research, these skills are invaluable in recognizing problems
in advance. Also, trust your intuition and do your best not to settle for
a questionable candidate. A bad hire is a mistake that will drain both
your time and your bank account. It is better to incur a bit of
overtime or ask staff to pick up extra tasks than to make a bad hire.
Both employers and employees like certainty. If everyone knows the
rules of the game before starting, it makes it easier when it comes time
to advise an employee of unacceptable conduct. ese rules are
essentially communicated in three ways: 1) the employee policy
manual; 2) the job description; and 3) the company’s custom and
practice. Regarding the first two, the advice is simple. If you do not
have a policy manual, prepare one. If you have one and it has not been
updated in a few years, get it reviewed by a competent professional.
If you do not have job descriptions, write them.
A policy manual should describe what is expected of employees and
the type of conduct that is prohibited (e.g., arriving on time,
refraining from harassment, etc.). You should also have a job
description for each position at your club. A job description, if well
written, serves as both the road map and measuring stick that you and
the employee can rely on when assessing job performance.
e third area, custom and practice, is where most employers get into
trouble. Even with the best policy manual and clear job descriptions,
if the management team does not consistently and uniformly enforce
the rules, employees are left to guess as to why they were subjected to
an adverse employment decision. I find that many employers manage
by exception and their decisions lack a consistent framework.
Failure to demonstrate consistent practice in the disciplinary process
creates a fertile environment for discrimination claims.
When it comes to the discipline process, the two biggest errors
I typically encounter are: 1) failure to start the process immediately
after the employee acts; and 2) failure to document the process.
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
No one likes conducting counseling sessions or taking disciplinary
actions against employees. However, if you have an effective policy
manual, clear job descriptions, and a consistent practice for enforcing
those rules, disciplinary actions and terminations will be, if not easier,
at least less stressful.
Here Are Some Guidelines For
Dealing With Employee Problems:
1. Address the problem immediately. Delay leads to uncertainty
and feelings of unfairness in both the affected employee and other
employees. Prompt action also lets other employees know that the
club takes any violations seriously and dictates club culture.
2. Get the story. Note that I did not write: “Get the facts.” It is rare
that you will ever get the whole, real story, especially if the situation
involves two or more employees. At some point, you will have to make
a credibility decision. Start by explaining the infraction to the
employee and give him or her a chance to explain. You should advise
the employee of the specific provisions of the policy manual or job
description that were violated. Remind the employee he/she agreed
to abide by the rules when he/she was hired. Interview
relevant witnesses.
3. Document it! Take
notes of your interviews with both witnesses
and the employee. My clients know that when they call to talk about
a disciplinary issue, or harassment or discrimination allegations, I first
want to see the documents. Remember, if it is not in writing, it
didn’t happen. When it comes to terminations, I always ask my clients
how thick the employee file is. Unless a very recent hire commits an
egregious act, an empty file indicates that the employer has not done
its job in documenting the problem and preparing the employee.
4. Conduct a fair and impartial investigation. e law does not
require that conclusions drawn from your investigation be absolutely
correct - only that your investigation was reasonable and thorough
(i.e., you do not have to be right, just reasonable under the
circumstances). e investigation is also the portion of the process
where you separate this incident from any unrelated complaints the
employee may be making in his or her attempt to set up a retaliation
claim. If this happens, tell the employee that you want to discuss the
original issue and schedule another time to address anything else.
5. Implement a resolution quickly. Unless there are extenuating
circumstances, the discipline process should be implemented no more
than 72 hours after the incident. Determining the appropriate
disciplinary action is always situation specific. Many clubs have
progressive discipline policies. Such policies are fine, as long as they
give the club freedom to terminate an employee on a first offense.
A progressive discipline policy that does not allow for flexibility can
be very problematic. For harassment claims, consider putting both
parties on paid administrative leave during the investigation.
When it comes time for an actual termination, our employment law
team has a motto: “No good termination comes as a surprise.”
is practice also applies to counseling and disciplinary actions.
Quite simply, you know you did your job as a supervisor when
an employee does not express surprise in response to a
disciplinary action.
Come see us on the web at
Are Women Walking In Your Door?
Do you know the demographics of your
club mix and what your members are after?
By understanding who’s using your club,
and who isn’t, you can further define your
programming demands and even potential
equipment needs.
Based on the recent 2013 IHRSA Health
Club Consumer Report, the genders are
split about even when it comes to active
club memberships. If that’s true for
By Stacey Penney
your club, or you want to balance the
membership numbers, do you know what draws them in?
Not surprising, men are typically more inclined toward sports-related
pursuits along with resistance training activities, especially free
weights. Men use the cardio machines less than women.
Women typically gravitate to the group activities, ranging from the
more traditional group exercise classes that include high-impact,
low-impact, step (or any combination of), to aquatic exercise, Pilates,
and yoga. Of interest, a 2011 study (Multiple Influences Affecting the
Women's Choice of a Fitness Club) indicated a group fitness
instructor’s qualifications had a dominating impact on choosing a
club, more so than promotional offerings. Does your club highlight
your group fitness instructor’s professional qualifications
and specializations?
Making an assumption here, but it would seem plausible that posting
your personal training team’s credentials may just have the same
positive impact on usage on those services. Personal training also has
a demographic twist between the men and women. Men are more
likely to try at least one session, but it’s the women who become the
core personal training clients, using the service at least 20 times
per year.
Women are the influencers when it comes to health-related care
choices. ey could be your best influencers to get their friends,
spouses, and family members to join your club. Women will tell their
networks not only their negative experiences, but the positive
experiences as well. According to a 2013 Pew Internet report on social
media usage, 73% of all online adults use some sort of social
networking site, and Facebook still ranks at the top with
1,310,000,000 active users, each with an average of 130 friends
( Social media is
the go-to hub for personal recommendations for just about any
service or product. From choosing a doctor to getting your tires
rotated, to choosing what club to join or personal trainer to select,
the odds are someone in your network will detail their
personal experience.
By appealing to women on different levels, perhaps your club can
boost its membership. So what does it mean to appeal to different
levels? Physical? Emotional? Actually, it’s both. is appeal includes
customer service, club cleanliness, qualified and educated staff (not to
mention empathetic and experienced), and programs targeting various
life stages. Also offering shorter classes or training sessions along with
services that support family needs such as daycare or kids programs
can alleviate the often cited lack of time barrier to exercise.
For younger women, joining a club and exercising tends to be
motivated by physical appearance. For the mid-life and more seasoned
women, maintaining and managing their health tends to be
the motivation. For the younger woman, focusing on a well-rounded
exercise program and realistic goals will be key. Since physical
appearance is the motivator, consider offering body composition
assessment and personal training packages, focusing on safe
approaches to weight loss and weight maintenance. Now is also a time
to encourage strength training if they aren’t already participating in
this activity. Strength training assists in building and maintaining peak
bone mineral density. is helps prevent osteoporosis later in life,
a disease that affects women more often than men. Another
programming option is group training programs that focus on a
common goal or theme. Some ideas, beyond the typical bikini slim
down, include bridal boot camps, vacation training (e.g., skiing,
hiking, SUP), or running related team preparation for a 10K,
half-marathon, or an obstacle race. According to Running USA,
women are out-participating men in road races at every distance
except the full marathon. One of the benefits of group training is the
increased accountability members have to each other.
Pre-natal exercise programs can benefit the mother and the fetus, but
there are important cautions. For your club, having staff with
specializations in the area of pre and post-natal fitness is important if
you are going to pursue this group. During pregnancy a woman’s
posture will change as the fetus develops, shifting her center of
gravity, affecting her posture and balance. ere are also changes in the
cardiovascular system, increased ligament laxity due to circulating
hormones, and thermoregulatory issues. Exercise in prone or supine
positions after the first trimester should be avoided, as should
plyometric moves. Pregnant women, if previously exercising, (and
with their physician’s approval,) may continue with moderate levels of
exercise until the third trimester when a reduction of activity
is recommended. If they were sedentary prior to becoming pregnant,
they should consult with their physician prior to beginning an
exercise program.
Postnatal exercise programming shouldn’t be a rush to return to
pre-pregnancy status. During this recovery time, it’s ideal to have
women focus on posture, joint alignment, stability, motor skills, and
recruitment of the deep core stabilizers. Options for club
programming could include offering “baby and me” type classes
during the slower mid-day hours.
Some of the physical changes and challenges faced by many women
entering “middle age” include: weight gain, decreased muscle mass,
decreased energy levels, sleep issues, mood changes, let alone the
wrinkles, declining vision, gray hair.... Lets look at how exercise can
help make positive changes for some of these challenges.
It’s estimated that we lose between 3% and 5% of muscle mass each
decade after age 25. As muscle mass
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
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Boost Your Search Engine Optimization With Video
We all know the importance of search
engine optimization (SEO) in business.
e more optimized your website is, the
greater the chance that new prospects will
find you during their search for a solution
to their fitness challenges and concerns.
photos into a streaming video collage. You can easily add voice, music
and subtitles to make it quite compelling. It comes free with your
Windows applications when you buy a computer or your Microsoft
Office software, and both are quite simple to work with. Each offers
lots of options for creating fades, subtitles and fancy transitions, but
sticking with the basics can produce a really nice video.
Unfortunately, although there is a high
level regarding the need (and desire) for
good SEO, there is a lot of confusion as to
how to attain it. Let’s face it, internet
By Casey Conrad
marketing is complicated and, to make
matters worse, is constantly changing. Keywords and phrases,
metatags, quality and timing of posted content as well as word order
all play a significant role in whether or not you achieve better
optimization and how quickly it can happen.
If you have a Mac, you can use iMovie or Keynote the same way.
One benefit to using any of these “still picture” formats is that it
completely avoids the “Lights, Camera, Action” element which often
causes people to freeze as soon as they try to record themselves.
One strategy that is critical to today’s search engine optimization
is video. Google, the world’s largest search engine, is video friendly.
One reason is that their goal is to make searchers happy. Because of its
interactive nature, video gets more clicks and typically keeps viewers
longer. A second and obvious reason as to why Google likes video is
because they own YouTube, the world’s largest video uploading site.
From a business owner’s perspective, aside from video being preferred
by Google, video will obtain better search rank as consumers and
prospects love video. Videos get shared on social media platforms like
Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest and have a greater chance of
receiving back-links from other sites. Video is more personal, which
allows a business to create a greater connection with both prospects
and members. And video can create a level of credibility on the
internet that doesn’t happen with blog postings alone. All of this
means it is important that your club is leveraging the power of video
in your internet marketing efforts. In order to maximize your videos
quality and effectiveness, let’s go through a checklist of the things you
must pay attention to when creating your video.
Camera Choice
Smart phones and iPads have revolutionized video creating. iPhone
users can take HD video footage and with Apps like iMovie, Magisto,
Video Editor, Reel Director and Splice, edit right on their device
(albeit a small screen to work with on a phone). If for some reason
you don’t have or don’t want to use a phone or smart device for
recording the video, USB video cameras are inexpensive and simple to
use. (Of course, for those of us who are Baby Boomers there is a bit
of a learning curve!) e bottom line is that you want to record with
any device that A) allows for high definition quality (HD) and B) can
easily be edited to mix clips, remove footage you don’t want, and
quickly add music, voice overs and intro’s and outro’s.
Screen Capture
ere are times when clients will say to me, “I can’t get anyone at the
club who is willing to be recorded and put up on the internet.” If that
is the case and you don’t want to be the star, no problem; screen
capture software will make your life easy. Simple software programs
make it easy to create online movies from still pictures. For example,
Windows Movie Maker or Power Point both allow you to turn your
Another option is to use screen-capture software, which is exactly what
it sounds like: software that lets you record the images on your screen
along with your voice. Anyone who follows Casey’s blog
( is already familiar with this format.
With this software you can record a Power Point presentation, a
tutorial of how to log in and use the club’s member portal for
reserving classes or a series of pictures that create an
instructional video.
You can record anything you want, for example: suppose we wanted
to show you how to log onto your Facebook account. With the screen
capture software, we can record the screen in real time, showing you
all the steps taken. at recording can be saved and then formatted
into a movie.
As is the case with all technology, you have many different options to
accomplish screen captures. If your recordings are five minutes or less,
you may use free software called Jing (
For projects that run longer or need more editing and production, we
use a popular program called Camtasia, which has both a Windows
and a Mac version. You have to purchase this, but it is invaluable if
you’re going to produce longer informational products.
Audio Quality Is Key
Regardless of whether you choose to shoot live footage or use some
kind of screen capture software, one component to making good video
is audio quality. Use a line-in microphone or keep the person
speaking very close to the camera’s microphone. A line-in microphone
is a device that feeds your audio directly into the recorder, ensuring the
highest quality sound. You can buy an inexpensive line-input
microphone from Radio Shack or Amazon for less than $25 or buy a
more expensive model from Audio Technica for a professional
quality sound. We suggest that you use cameras, phones and iPads
that have line-in microphone capability.
Have the recording level high enough so that sound can easily be heard
on the playback. ese tips are particularly important because when
you publish a video online using YouTube, the file size will be reduced
to permit quick streaming. is automatically reduces the sound
quality somewhat; starting with poor quality sound will be frustrating
for the listener.
Time Considerations
As a general rule you should be making videos that are 2-3 minutes in
length because viewers’ attention spans are notoriously short. You want
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
to get your point across and make a call to action quickly. Of course,
there may be times when you create longer videos. In situations where
you are providing valuable content—answering your prospects’ and
customers’ specific questions—they might listen, even for long
periods of time.
Lighting Makes A Difference
Bad lighting results in really poor video. e easiest way to ensure
good lighting is to shoot outdoors during daytime, in good light.
When shooting indoors, find a brightly lit room with high, overhead
lighting. Canister lights recessed into the ceiling are perhaps the worst,
because they can leave light and dark sides to your face.
You can supplement poor lighting with something as inexpensive as
shop lights or portable painter’s lights. If you plan on lots of indoor
shooting, your local camera shop sells entry-level umbrella lights for
around $150. But shooting indoors, even with supplemental lighting,
you’ll often get shadows. We know from personal experience that if the
content and presentation are the best you can do, they will
compensate for the “home-grown” style video.
If you are focusing on one person for a long time, it’s a good idea to
use a tripod to hold the camera steady, making it less distracting to the
viewer. But if you’re shooting any type of movement outside, a
handheld camera sometimes offers more authenticity. If you question
which style would be better, try both ways and see which one looks
better on your computer screen.
Upload And Share
Now that you have taken the time to create your masterpiece, it’s time
to let it do its magic on the internet. at means uploading your video
and sharing it on as many platforms as possible so you get views.
Be careful to title and name your video correctly, using the proper
keywords and phrases you are trying to optimize. Next, make sure you
upload it onto your YouTube channel (or Vimeo if for some reasone
that is what you use) and share it across as many platforms as you can.
Embed it into your website blog, post it on Pinterest, Facebook,
Twitter, etc. and be sure to ask others to share it as well. It is the views
that drive the optimization.
Personally, I find making video easier than writing. In some ways,
video is much more forgiving. If you post an eBook with any errors,
an endless number of people will email you, “this word on page 97 is
spelled wrong.” But seeing a goofy mistake on video, people seem
more apt to laugh and actually support you. At the end of the day,
your goal is to connect with viewers who like your video, share it with
others and ultimately help your search engine optimization.
By following this recipe for success and consistently creating new
content, you will be on your way to higher SEO rankings.
If you would like a copy of my newest book, Internet Marketing for
Health & Fitness Clubs, please visit
Casey Conrad has been a sales and marketing consultant in the health
and fitness industry for 25 years. In addition to her new book, she has
many other publications and products. Visit for
more information. Casey will be at IHRSA and people can reach her
at [email protected] to set up a free consultation via phone or at
the show.
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How The Affordable Care Act Is
Affecting The Health Club Industry
As the Affordable Care Act (ACA)
continues to get implemented throughout
2014, certain aspects of the law will have a
significant impact on the health club
industry. One of the principal components
of the ACA is a set of initiatives that
increase the focus on wellness promotion.
Based on a growing body of empirical
evidence that supports the economic
benefits of maintaining wellness over
primarily focusing on disease treatment,
By Michael Rucker
the ACA hopes to shift the paradigm of
America’s predominantly disease-centered
approach to healthcare to one that helps people stay well. is shift has
the potential to bode well for allied health professionals, integrated
health providers, wellness centers, and health clubs.
How Are Things Changing?
No matter which side of the fence you sit on regarding the ACA, the
reality is much of the legislation of the ACA is likely to be
implemented. Putting rhetoric and opinion aside for a moment, few
would argue that moving towards a system that reaches people before
they fall ill is a worthy pursuit. What is still being determined is the
proper way to reengineer our system to support this ideology.
Practitioners who are focused on sustaining health, traditional roles
prevalent in integrated and allied health professions, will
undoubtedly play an expanded role within this new paradigm.
is also means that the “scope of practice” for certifications within
these fields (many of which can be found in health clubs, i.e., exercise
physiologists, nutritionists, physical therapists, etc.) will likely expand
to service a population that is now being more effectively encouraged
to stay well.
Upcoming Opportunities
e United States Department of Labor has committed, starting in
2014, to promote evolving employer wellness programs as a
mechanism to control health care spending ( According to the Department of
Labor, in conjunction with the Department of Health and Human
Services (HHS) and the Treasury, the ACA will empower lawmakers
to introduce new incentives and help expand wellness program
policies. Many of these measures pertain to "participatory wellness
programs" which refers to programs that can generally be applied to
the entire population. ese types of participatory programs include
economic incentives like fitness center membership reimbursement
and monetary rewards for coming into a health club to complete a
health risk assessment.
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
Also expanding in 2014 are "health-contingent wellness programs".
ese programs are meant for participants who are usually subsets of
the general population. However, this does not diminish the
opportunity for health clubs to benefit from catering to these specific
groups. For instance, subsidized wellness programs targeting Baby
Boomers that service the aging-well are an advantageous revenue
stream for health clubs that are able to create innovative programming
specific to keeping seniors active. Other avenues, such as weight
control programs, are also candidates for this type of reimbursement.
Some might have read ( how Miramont
Lifestyle Fitness in Colorado has been profiting from these types of
The Current Economics
Although much of the lasting effects of the ACA is still uncertain due
to active challenges by policymakers, as it currently stands, rewards
associated with health-contingent wellness programs will increase
from 20 percent to 30 percent this year, and could eventually increase
to 50 percent for certain groups over time. Furthermore, this year
through the ACA $200 million in wellness grants has been earmarked
for wellness program development.
Early Innovators
Although some of the ways for operators to capitalize on these
opportunities require creativity, those willing to do the work are
already benefiting. For example MINDBODY – who has stated that
less than 10% of most company employees are aware they can use
their health savings accounts (HSAs) and/or flex spending accounts
(FSAs) to pay for traditional health club services such as yoga and
massage – has developed a product to streamline the processing of
substantiation making it easier for members to purchase these types of
services with pre-tax dollars. Companies such as Bravo Wellness offer
products and services to help organizations keep track of improved
health metrics while complying with Health Insurance Portability and
Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations. By pairing traditional health
services with the monitoring of health metrics that are tied to the
reward benefits now offered through the ACA, health clubs will be
able to add another level of member motivation which will
undoubtedly lead to better retention rates. ere are even lobbyists
like Active Policy Solutions, as well as the efforts of American
College of Sports Medicine’s Exercise is Medicine division, that are
working with health clubs directly to create new opportunities based
on the ACA. Lastly, you will soon be reading about progressive health
clubs that have carved out some of the $200 million dollars in grant
money through innovative programs aimed at helping entire
municipalities with their residents’ health concerns.
Ounce Of Prevention Is Worth A Pound Of Cure
Despite the ongoing debates regarding the ACA, it is clear that big
business recognizes that small upfront investments like health club
memberships for their employees mean future cost savings with
significant returns on investment down the road. In addition to this
growing sentiment, there are strong, powerful interest groups that
believe that keeping populations healthy is not just good for people,
but good for business too. Gary Loveman, who is the CEO of
Caesars Entertainment Corporation and also the Chair of the Business
Roundtable’s Health and Retirement Committee, wrote in an open
letter to the White House’s Office of Information and Regulatory
Affairs (OIRA), “Wellness programs work. CONTINUED ON PAGE 19
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Co-Training Clients: How Sharing Clients
Among Trainers Boosts Business Revenues
Have you ever thought of encouraging the
personal trainers and health coaches in
your club to share clients?
By Megan Senger
A growing number of studios nationwide
are moving to a policy of non-exclusivity
among trainers, effectively “sharing” clients
among staff. us a member may work
one-on-one with one trainer on Mondays
and another trainer on Wednesdays.
Some independent trainers are following
suit, using colleagues to cover their
vacation days.
“Sharing clients simply translates into better results for our clients,
which in turn makes us more successful business owners and
trainers,” said Tony Chemer, owner of Paradise Springs Spa & Fitness
in West Bend, Wisconsin. “e most successful trainers and training
facilities in the country share clients.”
So how does sharing among personal trainers and health coaches
multiply revenue and results for your members?
Sharing Boosts Profitability
By sharing clients, your business maintains more consistent revenue
even if members of your staff take a few days off, said Chemer.
At Evolution Trainers in Mountain View, California, home to nearly
30 independent fitness professionals, it’s a common practice.
“Our trainers occasionally have other trainers cover their clients when
they go on vacation or (they’re) out sick,” said owner Ashley Selman.
Sharing Inspires Both Clients And Trainers
No one trainer can know or teach it all. “Everyone has a slightly
different style (of training) and sometimes the way my other
instructors do things resonates better with the clients than what I do
and vice versa,” said Janet Sunderland, an ACE-certified professional
and owner of Soma Pilates in Redmond, Washington.
Sunderland regularly co-teaches one-on-one clients with other
instructors on staff. For example, a client may work with Sunderland
on Tuesdays and a colleague on ursdays, on an ongoing basis.
“It’s nice to have more than one set of eyes on a body to figure out
what will best meet his or her needs,” she said. An added bonus?
is style of job share, like co-training, allows a small business owner
to maintain personal contact with as many individual clients as
possible, yet also find time to complete other administrative duties.
Sharing Creates Workout Consistency
Having access to multiple trainers is a boon to client results, said
Selman. When a customer’s regular trainer is away, the client can still
continue the planned fitness program without interruption. is
means that members get results they otherwise might have missed out
on, Chemer said.
Sharing Dumps “Divas”
A policy of regularly sharing members prevents client poaching by
weeding out non-team players. It also cultivates customer loyalty for
your business rather than to a single trainer. For this reason, sharing
customers is foundational in many studios that are based on
small-group training systems (wherein one trainer works with client
groups of three to 10 clients at a time).
“e trainers at our facility don’t have exclusive clients,” said Josh
Proch, co-owner of Defined Fitness in Wexford, Pennsylvania.
All customers are considered “clients of the gym” and the instructors
simply coach them through their workout programs. As a result,
members eventually work with all of the trainers on staff.
Putting A Client-Share Into Place
If not introduced correctly, a shared-client system might create
confusion or lack exercise design accountability. Here are five keys to
making the switch smoothly:
1. Hire the right people. In a shared-client situation, personality and
attitude are key, says Proch. “Our trainers need to be willing to learn
and follow a system,” he said. “e trainer who wants to come in and
do his or her own thing is not going to work in our environment. We
are a team and we all work together to deliver the programs.”
2. Keep staff informed. All your instructors must be on the same
page about the goals and practical exercises used, Chemer said.
At weekly meetings, his team will “practice exercises, give each other
props and work together on ideas to improve our training services.”
is ensures participants receive consistent terminology and
logical workouts from every staff member.
3. Create a collaborative culture. For shared-client success, you
must foster and support an open, team environment, where everyone
respects one another, Selman said. “ere needs to be a spirit of
collaboration among the trainers, rather than competition. is is not
something that happens overnight, but must be a key component of
the culture instilled by the business’ leadership team from day one.”
4. Confirm compatibility. Team members may be concerned that a
colleague you select to co-train a client could lack the requisite
technical or motivational skills. And you clearly don’t want to co-teach
with someone interested in “stealing” your customers away from you.
Such concerns are valid. Sunderland recounts a misadventure
involving an under-qualified instructor with whom she briefly
co-trained clients. Her hard-won advice? Ensure that the “other”
trainer has a personality and teaching style compatible with yours
before you begin.
5. Convert cautiously. Being shared among trainers “won’t appeal
to everyone and clients shouldn’t be forced,” notes Chemer. “Like all
facilities, we have participants who
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
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Managing social media communities in the
health club industry creates certain
temptations. rough our various
channels, we have developed an audience.
If we are good at fan/follower recruiting,
we have a big audience. Social media
platforms create a huge cost mitigation
credit on your advertising budget balance
sheet compared to traditional media.
We know we have a great service to offer so
why not utilize your Facebook page to
By Bob Shoulders
continually offer membership specials, sell
training and ask for referrals?
For starters, your members/fans/followers are looking for engagement
with your club outside of the time they actually spend there working
out. Would your customers feel comfortable visiting your gym if they
knew every time they showed up for a workout they were going to be
badgered about buying training packages and being asked to refer their
friends? OK, so some of us still do some of that but generally, your
members want to be welcomed, recognized and shown respect rather
than being constantly hit with sales pressure. Why would we treat our
online club any different?
A fabulous Retention Management client (a small club in London)
and I were discussing the goodwill we had created the past year by
building a fan base of 550+ on Facebook. He saw the retention value
of our content marketing through motivation, humor, news, tagged
photos and fitness tips but was looking for a little late winter
membership boost. e question became; how do we leverage this
goodwill without risking the relationship we have built around our
online social engagement and trust?
In listening to our fans (BTW- listening is an incredibly valuable tool
that social media provides us), we noticed that many of them have
become active brand advocates. ey WANT to recommend the club
to their friends but often times they are looking for the proper means
of doing so. We researched various apps and third party tools for
mining the goodwill of our ambassadors and finally settled on
utilizing Facebook’s Promoted Post program.
We offered a free 14 day trial membership that was redeemable both
online and at the club. Rather than our everyday posts’ reach of 200
to 500, this “promoted post” attained a reach of almost 12,000, was
shared 36 times, and redeemed 143 times. is was done at a cost of
£78 or about $115. We will know more regarding the exact Return on
Investment (ROI) as these passes become trial memberships and the
trials are converted into dues payers.
If you like number crunching, let’s assume we convert 25% of the
redeemed claims, netting 36 new dues paying memberships. e club
averages 2.5 years average length per dues paying membership @ $100
per month or $3,000 X 36 new members = $108,000 return.
To further quantify the value of the community building, the 12,000
reach was broken down by FB analytics as to paid vs. viral views at a
66-34 split. erefore our anticipated ROI sits at $71,204 -$115 for
promoted ad = $71,089 which leaves a Return on Relationship (ROR)
of $36,911.
Since Facebook went public last year, we know there has been an
increased emphasis on sponsored stories, paid ads and promoted posts.
ese revenue generators are getting more views on newsfeeds and
this Edgerank trend is the inevitable train that has left the station.
What is important to note in our case study is the fact that we had
already built the relationship and loyalty level among the online gym
members to the degree that our fans were completely comfortable
sharing the post. ey became our advocates and our Return on
Relationship (ROR-thx Ted Rubin) allowed us to leverage our online
brand equity at scale.
So how often do you try to sell something to your online audience as
opposed to speaking with them in a conversational mode? It really
depends on the amount of engagement your content generates; but
generally we would suggest only 10-20% of total content
be promotional. For more information on the concept of Return on
Relationship strategies, check out Return on Relationship by Ted
Rubin at
Bob Shoulders began his career in the fitness industry in sales at the
Little Rock Athletic Club in the early 80s and rose to be President and
CEO of LRAC’s parent company. In 1995, Bob and Katherine Shoulders
developed the Fayetteville Athletic Club into a 120,000 square foot
full-service facility. Bob served on the Board of Directors of IHRSA from
2005 to 2010. Bob left FAC in 2011to create the Social Media division
of Retention Management, directing comprehensive social media strategies
for health clubs in the US and UK.
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
Good Design Can Influence...
Co-Training Clients...
Regular to Enthusiast
As we further involve the member, design influence around imagery
becomes less critical, but design intelligence that supports the
workout remains important. Success and accomplishments will create
an enthusiast. Is your facility designed to accommodate these
amateur athletes? Is the lighting in one’s eyes while doing benches?
Do you have the diversity of programming necessary to keep this
group engaged? Yes, great water pressure is a bonus, but also provide
enough room for individual or small group training. is group
requires you to keep up with the latest fitness trends. e facility must
be flexible enough to accommodate them. With this group, I like to
look at the facility as equipment. How integrated are all the fitness
toys with the building design? If the newest trend is shoehorned in a
hallway, the “athlete” may look elsewhere.
just want to be with that one trainer, even after that trainer has tried
to persuade them to work out with someone else while they’re gone,”
Chemer said. To enhance client comfort levels, let customers know
they can always refuse being “shared.”
Design has much more influence in your club than what you may
expect. Good design that moves members beyond the simple act of
working out to seeing their facility as a place that holds social
significance will elevate and encourage their spiritual awakening, and
give reasons to fell glamorous and good.
Chemer’s studio model is similar. “Our Director of Training meets
with (all) members (when they first join the studio) and then comes
up with an exercise plan to meet that client’s needs,” Chemer says.
“Because of this, any trainer can step in and continue forward with
any participant toward his/her goals.”
Rudy Fabiano, a registered Architect and Interior Designer
is president of Fabiano Designs © Fabiano Designs 2014.
[email protected] 973-746-5100. See Rudy Fabiano at IHRSA
booth 1448.
How The Affordable Care Act...
ey lower healthcare costs by keeping workers and their families
healthier.” He continued on with quantifiable data to support his
claim using health statistics from Caesars that showed the positive
results of investing in employee health. is is just one example of a
growing body of empirical evidence that supports the argument that
wellness programs, when administered properly, reduce healthcare
costs and improve population health. e current ACA rules are vague
in defining the parameters of how wellness programs can be designed
and administered. Like most new frontiers, this provides an
unprecedented opportunity – especially within the health club
industry – to strengthen our voice in this ongoing conversation as
well as benefit from increasing our role in preventative care.
If you would like to join in on the conversation, please visit
my roundtable discussion on the role of health clubs in the era
of health care reform at this year’s IHRSA convention in San
Diego on Friday, March 14th from 1:30pm to 3:00pm.
Before joining Club One, Mike provided online strategy for
companies such as Universal Studios, Sony, Red Bull, and
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate. He is currently
pursuing his Ph.D in Organizational Psychology at Alliant
University with a focus on corporate wellness and positive behavior
change. [email protected]
Exercise Design In A Sharing-Centric Business
ere are different ways to create exercise plans when two or more
trainers share the same client. Instead of individual trainers writing
custom programs, at Proch’s facility a single staff member—called a
Director of Personal Training—writes each program based on
movement patterns that individual small-group clients are to follow.
Floor trainers then lead clients in these set workouts, further
customizing the exercises when necessary.
Other studios elect to pursue a different practice. When Selman’s
personal trainers and health coaches share a trainee, harmonious
program design is only discussed between the two instructors involved.
“e challenge with sharing a client between trainers is primarily in
making sure the program design makes sense and is being balanced
between the different trainers,” she said. “However, this can easily be
accomplished through quick communications between the trainers.”
Of course, in some facilities there is a single trainer with more
experience and education than the other professionals on staff.
Your approach to shared workout design should therefore align with
both your business philosophy and trainers’ abilities.
Sharing The Wealth
Client sharing, when done correctly, enhances your members’
exercise experiences and your business’ goals. “I sometimes think that
we can make our clients too dependent (on us as individual trainers),”
Sunderland said. “Part of my goal is to have my clients be confident
and comfortable about exercising in many different situations,
including without me.”
Megan Senger has had a long-term love affair with her passport and
backpack. She spent many years traveling the world as a fitness instructor,
including extended stints teaching in England, Iceland, Bermuda and
Senegal, plus many years on cruise ships. She enjoys trying new yoga poses
and overseas air travel (although not at the same time). Contact her at
Come see us on the web at
Child Care Safety Must Be A Priority...
massive resources to complete. Training and information resources are
provided at the end of this article.
Play Equipment and Facility
Play equipment (as well as all toys) should be selected specifically for
the age group that will have access to the equipment. e Consumer
Product Safety Commission and the manufacturer’s instructions
should be closely referenced when choosing and placing structures in
club facilities. We strongly encourage segregation of children by age.
Crib infants, toddlers and older children require vastly different
settings, supervision and equipment. Remember to periodically check
the equipment in your center since areas are often re-arranged and
toys may migrate into inappropriate areas. We suggest that outside
toys should not be allowed into the center. Employees should be
trained to recognize toys that are choking hazards, toys with cords and
defective toys. e Consumer Product Safety Commission is a great
resource for information and training. Ongoing inspections should
be performed and carefully documented. ere are a variety of
checklists that can be used to augment the inspection process.
Inspections should be performed in part from the vantage point of a
small child – on hands and knees.
Consider using a manufacturer’s representative for complex
equipment assembly and installation. Installation by a knowledgeable
third party is more likely to be accomplished as intended by the
manufacturer. If the product is found to have a manufacturing defect
that creates a hazard, it is easier to work with the manufacturer for
repairs or placement if the installation was performed by someone
they authorized. If an accident occurs that is associated with the
manufacture, third party installation or assembly, there may well be
subrogation potential (and may also help buffer reputational risk to
a club).
Furniture should be selected based on the age and size of the children
who use it. A child should be able to touch the floor when seated.
Furniture that requires a child to climb for access or seating is far more
likely to result in a fall. Avoid sharp corners on furniture to reduce
injuries when falls do occur. Rounded or padded edges are best.
Windows can create a huge fall exposure for children. Windows
should open no more than four inches and can be limited with the use
of window stops and/or window guards. Inadequately secured play
structures and equipment can create falls and struck-by injuries to
children. Mr. McKay indicated that he periodically observes
unsecured or inadequately secured equipment in the clubs he visits.
is includes play equipment as well as mounted flat-screen
televisions, cabinets and tall furniture. is is also an issue due to
earthquake activity that can topple objects with no warning.
Play equipment must be inspected and cleaned periodically according
to manufacturer instructions. e Consumer Product Safety
Commission has developed a safety checklist for the Soft Contained
Play equipment as well as guidance regarding the safe use of these
devices. For clubs that have these structures in their facilities, I highly
recommend that the checklist is downloaded, reviewed and used for
staff training and inspection.
A wide variety of tools and resources is available at little or no cost for
fitness clubs who have child care amenities to enhance their risk
management and safety program. A partial listing is available below.
For additional information or resources please contact me at
[email protected] or by cell phone at 469.744.9585.
Sandra Burke is a Senior Loss Control Consultant with Hanover
Insurance Group in San Francisco, CA. She is a Board Certified Safety
Professional with 25 years of experience. Sandra holds both a BS in
Industrial Safety/Fire Prevention and a MS in Public Service.
She supports loss control services for the Fitness Pak Program and their
customers who are insured by the Hanover Group on behalf of Interwest
Insurance Services.
Consumer Product Safety Commission Links
Soft Contained Play Structures:
Hanover Insurance:
ree online courses currently available:
• Child Protection – Abuse and Neglect
• Child Protection – Prevention and Response Strategies
• Mandated Reporter Responsibilities
Safe Kids World Wide:
Website includes child safety information and was founded by
Dr. Marty Eichelberger of the Children’s National Medical Center.
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service's Family
and Consumer Sciences:
Free training courses for child care providers.
e recommendation(s), advice and contents of this material are provided for
informational purposes only and do not purport to address every possible legal obligation,
hazard, code violation, loss potential or exception to good practice. e Hanover Insurance
Company and its affiliates and subsidiaries (“eHanover”) specifically disclaim any
warranty or representation that acceptance of any recommendations or advice contained
herein will make any premises, property or operation safe or in compliance with any law
or regulation. Under no circumstances should this material or your acceptance of any
recommendations or advice contained herein be construed as establishing the existence or
availability of any insurance coverage with e Hanover. By providing this information
to you, e Hanover does not assume (and specifically disclaims) any duty, undertaking
or responsibility to you. e decision to accept or implement any recommendation(s) or
advice contained in this material must be made by you.
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
Are Women Walking In Your Door?
decreases, body fat typically increases. is is further compounded
by decreased activity levels, leading to decreased muscle strength and
endurance. Less muscle mass means there is a decrease in metabolic
rate and caloric needs. Strength training can improve and preserve
muscle mass, thus improving the balance of calories consumed to
calories burned. It also improves muscle endurance so that women
can do more for longer periods of time without fatiguing as quickly.
Additionally, strong muscles can improve bone composition, an
important component in preventing osteoporosis. For the decreased
energy levels and sleep issues, exercise has been shown to improve
quality of sleep and energy levels.
Mood changes, also fondly referred to as mood swings and
irritability, can be caused by hormonal changes associated with
perimenopause compounded by the myriad of major life changes
many women experience in their forties. Changes such as a house full
of teenagers going through their own hormonal fluctuations, an
evolving marriage for better or for worse, work challenges, aging
parents with care issues, along with assessing what they have or have
not accomplished in their own lives. is “sandwich generation” needs
an exercise plan developed to meet their demanding schedule and
responsibilities so they can receive the emotional, as well as the
physical benefits exercise has been shown to offer. Exercise has been
shown to improve mood, decrease fatigue, improve libido, combat
depression, and improve the ability to perform daily tasks.
If you are interested in learning more about women’s fitness, NASM
offers the Women’s Fitness Specialist. is resource takes you through
the physiological and psychological issues and needs of women
throughout life’s many phases and provides exercise programming
guidelines and techniques to deliver safe, effective exercise solutions.
Stacey Penney, Contributing Content Strategist with the National
Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), holds a master’s degree in exercise
science and health promotion from California University of Pennsylvania,
a degree in Athletic Training from San Diego State University, along with
credentials in Health Promotion Management and Consulting (UCSD),
and Instructional Technology (SDSU). She holds certifications from
NASM and ACE in personal training, corrective exercise, sports
performance, group exercise, fitness nutrition, and health coaching.
Previous San Diego Fall Prevention Task Force Chair, she develops
continuing education curriculum for many fitness organizations in
addition to personal training, writing, and helping coach youth soccer.
[email protected]
All California Clubs are welcome to attend the
Regional's Reception at IHRSA Convention at Fox
Sports Grill, Hilton Bay front.
All CCD members can receive $100 off a full
registration for the IHRSA convention. To do so
contact Lin Conrad, 510-243-1532.
e “older women” in your club include those menopausal and
beyond. As you’ll notice, women are often classified based on their
hormonal status. Menopause, the time when a woman produces less
estrogen and progesterone, typically occurs between 45 and 55.
is hormone reduction negatively impacts body composition,
changes in bone mineral density and even cardiorespiratory fitness.
In 1998, Drs. Rowe and Kahn defined three characteristics of
successful aging based on their research:
1. Low risk of disease and disease-related disability
2. High cognitive and physical functioning
3. Active engagement with life
As also seen with middle age women, these characteristics can all be
positively influenced by exercise. e current CDC guidelines
recommend older adults participate in at least 150 minutes of
moderate aerobic activity weekly, along with strength training the
major muscle groups at least twice a week.
According to a 2010 study (Resistance Training and Executive
Functions), strength training can improve and sustain cognitive
function in older adults, and this is with as little as one strength
session per week! is same group also experienced fewer falls in a one
year follow up. CDC statistics indicate that one in three older adults
over 65 will fall within the year. A fear of falling may even keep older
adults from engaging in activities they once enjoyed.
Developing and maintaining leg strength and balance are key areas to
address for reducing the risk of falls for older adults.
Come see us on the web at
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
We charge one flat monthly fee, so you know exactly what the cost is.
e fee is based on the number of EFT transactions, thus it’s known
in advance what it will be. is approach incentivizes us to help
maintain a consistent and ever-growing dues line. No percentages or
hidden costs.
We strive to be the smart cost provider with the top notch products
and services. In almost all cases, our clients saved money by switching
and found their administrative tasks to be much easier and a lot less
time consuming.
Rick Hersom, Brian Bugnacki, Carole Oat and David Porter
Twin Oaks Software in Berlin, Connecticut was started 23 years ago
by two fitness industry veterans “with a mission to create the service
they couldn’t find when they were operators on the club side of the
business”. Eric Schuler, former controller of Twin Oaks Sports and
Fitness in Vermont and Peter Kroon, originally of Club Corp and then
CFO of Healthtrax, Inc., Glastonbury, CT. began their careers in the
fitness industry in the early 80s.
In 1991, the company was created based on providing club owners
and staff three simple things: 1) reliable service, 2) reliable products,
and 3) a reliable dues line. It’s a commitment that still guides the
company today. As a result, Twin Oaks Software leads the industry
with a 98% customer retention rate.
e Twin Oaks management team is comprised of many former club
owners and operators who have lived through the rewards and
challenges of running a facility. With that in mind, they have
developed software and services from a unique perspective – yours.
We hire quality professionals and provide them with an enjoyable
work environment, so they stay with us for the long haul. at commitment gives continuity of service to our clients.
e software and services are simple yet sophisticated. ey include all
the basics, plus a lot of features that other software simply doesn’t have.
Twin Oaks Software is one of only a handful of providers in this
industry that is certified by the credit card industry as PCI DSS
compliant and has structured all data storage and processing functions
to safeguard member account information.
Key Strengths
We believe in one-stop shopping. When people have to use different
vendors for their technologies, the result is often disjointed and
unreliable. We consider Twin Oaks to be a ‘best-of-both-worlds’
solution that employs replication to marry online accessibility and the
speed of a local network.
As a result, the software is never ‘down,’ and a club’s data is stored in
two places, reducing the risk of catastrophic loss. In addition to
standard functions, Twin Oaks also offers a variety of cutting-edge
features, such as paperless contracts, personal training alerts to
mobile devices, sophisticated e-mailing capabilities, a fully featured
member portal and much more.
Twin Oaks is unique in that we follow-up on delinquent accounts
in-house, with our own licensed and bonded returns management
department. ere’s no outsourcing to third-party agencies, which
eliminates data-exchange hassles and minimizes costs.
Visit for more information. Carole Oat, an
industry veteran, is the National Sales Manager for Twin Oaks Software
and is a former club owner/operator. Carole and her staff have written
over 200 published articles, specifically regarding managing club based
facilities. She can be reached at [email protected], or 860-829-6000 x281.
Come see us on the web at
2014 Event Calendar
All 1 Hour Webinars Begin At 12 PM
Register Online At
Webinar: Evolution Of e Circuit
Bonnie Lee; Total Gym Fitness
Reception at the San Diego IHRSA Convention
March 13
Fox Sports Grill, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. All California Clubs welcome.
Badges required for entry.
Feb 19
March 26
April 9
April 21
Webinar: Labor Law - Employment Best Practices
"Hiring rough Termination"
Gary Bradley, Partner, Bradley and Gmelich
Webinar: Marketing For Client Retention
Dana Auriemma, Business Training For Fitness Studios
Bay Area Club Meeting - All Clubs Welcome
Mt. Tam Racquet Club
May 14
Webinar: Legal - TBA
Jeffery Long
June 11
Webinar: Using e Affordable Care Act To Your Advantage
Mike Rucker, Director of Digital Products, Club One
Webinar: Managing Relations At e Club
Rod Heckelman, Owner, Mt. Tam Racquet Club
Sept 10
Oct 8
Webinar: Legal - Manage Your Worker's Comp Risk
Robyn Park Freiberg, Senior Associate, Manning, Kass, Ellrod,
Ramirez, Trester
Oct 29
Webinar: Legal - Code Compliance
“Know e Laws Governing Your Industry”
Anthony Ellrod, Partner, Manning, Kass, Ellrod, Ramirez, Trester
Nov 12
Webinar: Designing & Delivering On Membership Enrollment
Bill McBride, BMC:3
Dec 10
Webinar: Networking Group For Kid’s Department Managers
Jeffery Long
Need to train new supervisors or retrain current
supervisors on "Avoiding Sexual Harassment in
the Workplace For Supervisors”?
(Required every two years.) If you are in need of a training and have a
minimum of seven workers to be trained Lin Conrad will travel to your club.
If you would like to volunteer your location for a training but don't have
seven workers call Ms. Conrad to establish a date. In-class training has been
proven to be the most effective means of subject comprehension.
It allows for lively discussion and questions.
Contact Lin Conrad for information and registration:
510-243-1532, [email protected]
Webinars are $39 for CCD members and $79 for non-members.
CCD Webinars sponsored by
To be placed on the email list for notification of these events contact
Lin Conrad, tel:510-243-1532 mail to:[email protected]
Employee Termination...
I am often asked whether an employer has to have specific cause to fire
an employee. California is an at-will employment state. at is, unless
the employee has an agreement for employment for a specified period
of time, either the employee or the employer can terminate the
employment relationship at any time, with or without cause. At-will
employment is a well-established legal principal. However, most
terminated employees (and their attorneys) like to argue that despite
the at-will nature of employment, juries really do not like arbitrary
terminations. In fact, employers have an obligation to act in good faith
and not engage in arbitrary or unfair employment decisions.
Even though you can terminate an at-will employee without cause,
you should always have cause. e cleanest terminations, and the ones
least likely to result in a lawsuit, occur when the employer can point
to a specific violation of a provision of the employee handbook or the
job description and where the employer has a history of similar
enforcement practices (and of course, good documentation).
Finally, you should always consider offering the employee a
separation agreement. In exchange for some amount of money, the
employee gives a full and complete release of all claims. So far, courts
are generally upholding these releases. However, there are few caveats.
If you start offering separation agreements, you might be establishing
a de facto policy such that you may need to offer them to all
terminated employees. Additionally, the terms of the release can be
complex and you want to make sure you have the appropriate
language to effectuate a full release of all claims. For example, the
timing of releases for employees over 40 can be tricky. You should
consult your attorney before offering a separation agreement.
Gary J. Bradley, Esq. is a partner in the law firm of Bradley & Gmelich,
in Glendale, California, which is a CCD Partner. Gary manages the firm’s
health and fitness club, employment law, and business practice teams.
He is also a guest lecturer and member of the Advisory Board for the
California State University at Dominguez Hills Human Resource
Management Training Program. He represents numerous health and
fitness facilities throughout California. Gary may be reached by telephone
at (818) 243- 5200, or by email: [email protected]
CCD News Update is published by
California Clubs of Distinction
5382 Coach Dr. • El Sobrante, CA 94803
Editor: Barbara Mathew
(707) 483-4444
[email protected]
Art Director: Corrine Lane
(916) 952-7837
[email protected]
CCD DISCLAIMER: CCD News Update contains facts, views, opinions, statements, recommendations, advertisements,
and other content not owned or controlled by CCD or any of its affiliates. CCD uses reasonable efforts to include
accurate, current information in this publication. However, CCD makes no warranties or representations as to the
accuracy, safety or value of any content in this publication, nor shall CCD be responsible for any non-factual information. CCD assumes no liability or responsibility for errors or omissions in this publication. The content in this
publication does not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, or recommendations of CCD, its employees, officers, or
directors. The opinions expressed in the articles are solely those of the authors. Nothing in this publication may be
reproduced in any form without express written permission from CCD. All contributors must ensure the accuracy of
their claims and that they are submitting original work. CCD does not tolerate the practice of plagiarism.
Any persons attempting to earn credit for work that is not their own will lose all publishing privileges with CCD.
Contents of this publication cannot be reproduced without written permission from CCD.
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
CCD Associate Members
Joel B. Cantor • AIA Architect
415-957-9755 • [email protected]•
Serving the fitness industry since 1977, offers a full range of architectural, planning
& consulting services for new facilities, additions & extensive remodeling.
Fabiano & Associates
Rudy Fabiano • 973-746-5100 • [email protected] •
Architects and interior designers providing smart, efficient and creative designs that
will help your club’s project or renovation to be successful and within your budget.
Our services are affordable and our experienced staff of 20 years will develop design
solutions that will satisfy your business plan as well as your programming needs. Our
spaces are designed to keep people motivated, happy and most importantly healthy.
GPPA Architects • Certified Access Specialists
510.526.6226 • [email protected] •
Gilda Puente-Peters Architects are experts in assisting health clubs to make their
facilities accessible and thereby avoid costly litigation! We can evaluate your club for
compliance with the new ADA recreational facility regulations. e deadline for
compliance with these new regulations was March 15, 2012. We can also provide a
CASp survey report and certificate that provides important legal protection if your
business gets served with a lawsuit. Be proactive and schedule your inspection today!
FISA (Fitness Industry Suppliers Assoc.) • 858-509-0034
Dave Dinerman, Ex. Director • [email protected]
★ IDEA Health & Fitness Association
Kelly Nakai • 858-535-8979 • [email protected] • For info visit
e world’s leading membership organization of fitness and wellness professionals
with over 23,000 members in over 80 countries. Since 1982, IDEA has provided
personal trainers, group exercise instructors, fitness program directors, mind-body
teachers, health club owners and fitness center managers with pertinent information,
educational opportunities, career development programs and industry leadership.
★ IHRSA • 800-228-4277
Pam O’Donnell, Member Services • [email protected] •
e international non-profit association of Health, Racquet and Sports Clubs.
★ ACE (American Council on Exercise)
Camron Yahyapour • 800-825-3636 ext 771 • [email protected]
ACE is the world’s largest non-profit fitness certifying organization and provider of
fitness education. ACE sets standards and protects the public against unqualified
fitness professionals and unsafe or ineffective fitness products, programs and trends.
Call about our certification classes or contact
National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM)
800-460-6276 • [email protected]
Brad Tucker, VP Sales • [email protected]
David Correia • 818-595-1210 • [email protected]
NASM also offers a progressive career track with access to specializations in Fitness
Nutrition (FNS), Sports Performance (PES), and Injury Prevention (CES),
Continuing Education courses and accredited Bachelor and Master Degree programs.
Merrithew Health Fitness/STOTT PILATES
Carol Tricoche • 800-910-0001 ext 203. See full listing under Fitness Equipment.
Bill McBride (BMC3)
415-299-9482 • [email protected] •
BMC3 is an agency specializing in consulting, coaching & club management.
We focus on operational strategy, operational excellence, sales & marketing, fitness
program design, class schedule optimization and staff training. Additionally, we are
building a full club intranet to deliver everything operators need to know about
optimally running their businesses with content and video trainings. We have
strategically partnered with affiliates to deliver a turnkey solution for new and
existing clubs. Our online community offers membership for $15 per month
(Leadership Council) that gives full access to all materials and training programs as
well as a complimentary monthly consult to Leadership Council Members.
★ CCD Partnership discount
Come see us on the web at
CCD Associate Members
Faust Management Corp. • 858-674-2400
Dr. Gerry Faust • [email protected]
Management consulting, executive coaching, speeches
and seminars, managementdevelopment programs,
GM and Club Owner Roundtables, all that help
leaders and their teams succeed.
Premium Performance Training • 303-417-0653
Karen Woodard-Chavez • [email protected]
Karen has owned & operated clubs since 1985 and
now consults and trains club staff worldwide in
marketing, selling, service and management skills.
Services available on-site, online, by phone, books,
tapes, and manuals.
Court/Club Equipment
Athletix Products • 702-539-1270
Michael T. Myers • [email protected]
Disinfectant Wipes and Sprays (kills MRSA),
Equipment Cleaning Wipes, Lubrication and
Maintenance Wipes, Odor Neutralizers for locker
room environments.
★ First Service • 800-227-1742
Dan Goldblatt • [email protected]
First Service is privileged to be a longstanding CCD
associate member and preferred supplier. Look to us
for top quality athletic equipment (tennis, basketball,
volleyball, wall padding, gym curtains and scoreboards), specialty flooring (weight room, gymnasium,
aerobic, water draining, locker room and protective
floor covers), and club furnishings (lockers, bleachers,
benches, stools, outdoor tables and benches). Take
advantage of our 35 years of industry experience!
Communication Consultants WBS, Inc.
Take It Off weight loss • Casey Conrad
401-932-9407 • takeitoff[email protected]
is is a complete, turn-key, in-club weight
loss program.
Diet-to-Go • 800-743-7546
Lauren Hartung • [email protected]
Diet-to-Go is a food based, turnkey, nutritional
program offering everything a premier fitness club
needs to launch a lucrative profit center. With commercial kitchens in Virginia and Los Angeles, we have
a 22 year proven track record of providing an effective
and affordable nutrition option for customers
nationwide. We offer Low Fat, Vegetarian or Low Carb
menu options. Diet-to-Go partners with fitness clubs
to deliver their food options to members at the club.
Fitness Equipment
Balanced Body Pilates • 800-Pilates (745-2837)
Dave Littman • [email protected]
Tony Tran x206 • [email protected]
Balanced Body® believes that mindful movement can
change your members’ lives. We are the leading
resource of Pilates and mindful movement equipment,
information and training for CCD member clubs.
Start or expand your program with high quality on-site
training. Mat, Reformer, apparatus, CoreAlign® and
additional courses are available.
Commercial Fitness Exchange, Inc.
Justin Fortune • 415-246-7841
[email protected]
Fitness equipment dealer offering new, used and
remanufactured equipment.
★ Iron Grip Barbell Company • 800-664-4766
Tiffany Lea • [email protected] • 714-850-6900
We are the largest provider of commercial free weight
equipment worldwide and the only manufacturer with
a line of exclusively American-made free weight
equipment. Iron Grip is the equipment of choice for
premier fitness facilities worldwide, including major
health club chains, professional and university sports
training programs, corporate fitness facilities and all
branches of the US military. Ask us about our special
pricing for CCD members.
Keiser Equipment • 800-253-6568
Gary Klein • [email protected]
Keiser air powered exercise machines create the power
in human performance via strength training and
functional training. We offer group cycling rear wheel
drive bikes, the Total Body Trainer, M5 Strider,
M3+Megnetic bike with front to back adjustable bars
and back-lit display, Air Power Racks, special programs
for senior training (STEP) and athletic performance
plus power testing for athletes. Keiser is known for our
Institute on Aging and Xpress 30 minute workouts.
Life Fitness
Jon orsell ,VP of Sales
800-449-6017 • [email protected]
Joe Harris, Sales Rep Northern California
925-584-5077 cell • 530-550-8977 office
[email protected]
Michael Pooler, Sales Rep Southern California
714-224-6866 cell • 562-694-0075 office
[email protected]
Nathan Green, Sales Rep Southern California
619-550-6788 cell • [email protected]
Over 30 years of research, development and expertise
in the fitness world has put Life Fitness in the unique
position to offer you what no other company can innovative products with unparalleled support. As the
leader in commercial exercise equipment, we’re able to
provide over 300 different cardiovascular and
strength-training products, including the renowned
Hammer Strength brand.
Nautilus® Commercial Fitness/Med-Fit Systems, Inc.
Bruce Kaplan, Director of National Accounts and GSA
• 760.814.7513 • [email protected]
For over 40 years, Nautilus® commercial fitness
equipment has been known for superior biomechanics
and better, safer results. Today, we continue to be the
#1 name in fitness equipment. With numerous
international patents, our passion for innovation and
our pursuit of perfection is unmatched by any other
fitness equipment manufacturer. Our commercial
strength and cardio products combine cutting-edge
technology, superb craftsmanship, heavy-duty club
quality materials and are made in the USA. Nautilus®
strength frames carry a lifetime warranty. We apply
permanently bonding, EPA registered antimicrobials to
all strength and cardio equipment surfaces to prevent
cross-contamination by multiple users. Contact us
about our innovative equipment and programming.
Merrithew Health & Fitness/STOTT PILATES
Carol Tricoche, VP Education Sales
800-910-0001 ext 0991
[email protected]
For 25 years, Merrithew Health & Fitness™, the
company behind STOTT PILATES® , CORE™
Athletic Conditioning & Performance Training™, and
ZEN•GA™ Mindful Movement, have built their
business on the philosophy that effective and
responsible exercise is the foundation to a better
lifestyle. We have trained over 36,000 students, from
over 118 countries.
Paramount • 800-721-2121
Chris Babecky, Director of Sales North America
[email protected]
Evan Darling, West Coast Sales Mgr. • 206-715-8739
[email protected]
After 56 years, the leading manufacturer of commercial
strength products: single, dual and multi-station
machines; plate-loaded and modular systems; free
weight benches and racks plus functional training
Power Systems • 800-321-6975 ext 7893
Patty Daugherty • [email protected]
Power Systems was founded by Bruno and Julie
Pauletto over 25 years ago and we are a leading
supplier of fitness and sports performance training
equipment. Our product line covers over 2000
strength and conditioning products for Health and
Fitness Clubs pertaining to Group Fitness, Functional
Training and Personal Training. We are located in
Knoxville, TN and utilize over 300,000 sq. ft. of office
and warehouse space. Our Mission is to advance
health, fitness and physical performance for everyone.
Jason Blair (Central Calif )
866-205-2063 • [email protected]
Jarred Willis, Sr. Key Acct Mgr
503-528-6061 • [email protected]
Adam Guier (Southern Calif )
619.315.9914 • [email protected]
Precor designs and builds premium fitness equipment
for effective workouts that feel smooth and natural.
Our equipment is chosen by health clubs, hotels, spas,
universities, and individuals all over the world. For
nearly three decades, we've driven fitness forward with
a passionate focus on ergonomic motion, proven
science, and superior engineering. We constantly study
and anticipate the needs of the people and
organizations we serve, and continually redefine the
levels of innovation, quality, and service necessary to
deliver the very best fitness experiences – all with the
goal of improving the ways people improve themselves.
Star Trac
Rick Nelson, Dir. Western Regional Sales
714-801-5527 • [email protected]
Mike Westcott, Nor CA Territory Manager
714- 936-1027 • [email protected]
David Summers, So CA Territory
480-584-9638 • [email protected]
Complete line of best-in-class commercial cardio
equipment including treadmills, bikes, crosstrainers,
steppers and Spinner® bikes, and a full range of
strength training equipment.
Total Gym
Bonnie Lee • 858-764-0004 • [email protected]
Total Gym® is the world's leading privately-held
manufacturer of functional and bodyweight training
equipment for home consumers, fitness professionals,
athletic trainers and rehabilitation specialists. Founded
in 1974, the San Diego-based company's Total Gym®
equipment is used in 14,000 physical therapy clinics,
athletic training facilities, hospitals, universities,
professional sports teams and health clubs worldwide.
Total Gym continues to lead the industry with
innovative functional training products and the
award-winning GRAVITYSystem® commercial fitness
TRX (formerly Fitness Anywhere)
Roy Lin, So Cal, NV, AZ, HI Territory Sales Manager
415-230-6030 • [email protected]
Mike Cole, No Calif Sales Manager
415-983-3260 • [email protected]
TRX produces and sells Suspension Training
equipment and programs to trainers, clubs, athletes,
physical therapists and the military. Suspension
Training bodyweight exercise develops strength,
balance, flexibility and core stability simultaneously.
★ CCD Partnership discount
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California
CCD Associate Members
Vicore Fitness
Greg Nigro • 310-877-4216
[email protected]
Vicore Fitness is the industry’s leading developer of
Soft-Surface training equipment. All Vicore benches
and equipment feature the patented Vicore Body Link
System which creates instability and forces the user to
engage additional core muscles while doing traditional
Health Assessment & Equipment
Fit3D • 888.428.0001
[email protected] •
Greg Moore • 650-275-3483 • [email protected]
Are you looking for a turnkey technology to help you
differentiate your services, drive more personal training
sales and retain members? Finally, do you want this
without a heavy operations burden on your already
taxed team? Fit3D is the only safe, affordable, and absolutely motivating 3D Imaging technology and online
platform that gives your club a leg up on your competitors. With our technology you can give your users
a unique set of anthropometric based risk assessments,
track their progress, and literally show them how their
body is changing as a result of your great services. You
can't afford not to differentiate your club in this competitive market! Find out how to become a Fit3D partner today!!
MicroFit, Inc.
Rob Rideout • 559-475-7007 • [email protected]
For over 25 years quality fitness centers around the
world have used MicroFit fitness assessment products
to offer a unique member service program not found
in most low cost exercise shops. A MicroFit
fitness/wellness assessment allows trainers to meet new
members, gain their trust, understand their goals,
recommend programs, and track their progress. is
experience helps members achieve better health. Our
fitness assessment software measures over 30 physical
fitness characteristics and can be interfaced to the
testing equipment for computer-controlled assessments
of weight, body fat, blood pressure, flexibility, strength
and cardiovascular fitness.
★ FitnessPak: CCD Endorsed Provider
Jim Foley • 800-873-3725 • [email protected]
Ken McKay • 800-444-4134 • [email protected]
Tony Pozas • 530-895-1010 • [email protected]
Matt Bauer • 800-873-3725 • [email protected]
Club insurance specialists.
ISU Insurance Brokers of San Diego
Bart Castellitto • 858-391-0282
[email protected]
ISU Insurance Brokers of San Diego is a full service
insurance broker providing all lines of insurance
products with over 25 years of experience in the fitness
industry. Allow us to be your “risk coach”: we will have
your insurance program in shape in no time.
Bradley & Gmelich • 818-243-5200
Tom Gmelich • [email protected]
Gary Bradley • [email protected]
General counsel for health and fitness centers
throughout California. Bradley & Gmelich specializes
in membership agreements, employment matters,
business counseling and litigation, and general liability
matters. Our holistic approach to practicing law
benefits your entire operation. Please call for a
free consultation.
General Legal Counsel • 925-558-2786
Joseph Freschi recently opened his own law practice
after 15 years of representing two of the largest fitness
companies in the US - 24 Hour Fitness and Planet
Fitness. After successfully growing and guiding both
companies through majority buyouts, Joseph is
available to represent fitness and health clubs. Joseph's
fitness experience spans three decades and all aspects of
the industry, including owning and operating health
clubs. Joseph can provide a wide range of practical
legal advice including out-sourced general counsel
services. All CCD members are entitled to a
free consultation.
Manning & Kass, Ellrod, Ramirez, Trester LLP
Anthony Ellrod • 213-624-6900 •
[email protected] •
Legal counsel with a focus on the health club industry,
including drafting membership agreements and other
contracts, providing risk management and general
counsel services, and advising on and litigating business, commercial, personal injury, employment, and
workers compensation matters. Offices in Los Angeles,
Orange County, San Diego, San Francisco, and
★ Prout, LeVangie LLP: CCD Endorsed Provider
Jeffery Long • jeff[email protected]
Specializing in conducting risk management analysis
for health clubs, preparing valid waiver and releases,
and general health club litigation.
Locker Room Amenities
★ Petra Hygienic Systems: CCD Endorsed Provider
John Mickelson • 877-888-6655 ext 3
[email protected]
Matt Anderson • 877-888-6655 ext 6
[email protected]
Personal care products for the locker room and club.
Pronto Marketing
Alma Rodoni • 800-270-3440
[email protected]
We create and manage all the moving parts of your
internet presence without it costing a fortune.
Pronto manages a website, social media and all of the
components that go into a well orchestrated internet
presence to meet your business goals. We set up and
take care of all aspects of your online presence:
Website Design and Copywriting; Search Engine
Optimization; Social Media Management; Local
Business Directory Listings.
Reach Sports Group
James Brough
916-716-0316 • [email protected]
W. Brent Arnold
541-915-8428 • [email protected]
Reach has its own digital signage network that is in
over 500 athletic, health and fitness clubs, university
fitness and recreation centers, ice arenas, YMCAs and
JCCs throughout the United States. e
advertising-supported Reach Network features large
high-definition flat screen digital televisions, with flash
screen technology, that inform, entertain and educate
members and visitors at partner facilities.
Susan K Bailey • 888-349-4598 •
MaryBeth Bradley • [email protected]
Creates effective direct marketing pieces that cut
through the clutter and let you target market.
Advertising that works out!
Les Mills West Coast •
[email protected] • 888.669.8876
Steven Renata, CEO Les Mills West Coast,
[email protected]
Provides the world’s best Group Fitness System that
drives club membership and profitability.
Our programs are: BODYPUMP™, BODYFLOW™,
TRX (formerly Fitness Anywhere)
Roy Lin, So Cal, NV, AZ, HI Territory Sales Manager
415-230-6030 • [email protected]
Mike Cole, No Calif Sales Manager
415-983-3260 • [email protected]
TRX produces and sells Suspension Training
equipment and programs to trainers, clubs, athletes,
physical therapists and the military. Suspension
Training bodyweight exercise develops strength,
balance, flexibility and core stability simultaneously.
Retention & Reward Programs
Retention Management • 800-951-8048
John Heppenstall • [email protected]
Retention Management helps fitness centers increase
retention, ancillary revenues, sales and profitability.
Our Email Services deliver automated email targeting
every segment of their membership and marketing
broadcast emails to promote club services and program
utilization. Our Social Media Services create and
actively manage a club’s Social Media presence;
maximizing fan recruitment and interaction,
marketing initiatives and profitability.
Software/Internet Programs
ABC Financial Services • 800.622.6290 ext 1166
Steve Ayers, Vice President of Sales & Marketing
501.515.5066 • [email protected]
ABC Financial is the leading service provider of key
financial services including software, billing, payment
processing, and merchant services for the health and
fitness industry. In addition, ABC provides
comprehensive on-site training and club marketing.
Jonas Fitness
Jan Harms • [email protected] •
A comprehensive and scalable solution that combines
the best of club management software, managed
member data services and payment services. When
these three vital club functions are fully integrated,
your club reaches the peak in profitability and
operational efficiency.
MembersFirst • 508-310-2360
Dawn Taylor • 401-289-0745 •
[email protected]
Internet-based marketing and member communication
solutions to the Health & Fitness Industry. We build,
design and manage club web sites to support all aspects
of membership from acquisition, activation,
engagement and retention.
Twin Oaks
Carole Oat • 860-829-6000x281 • [email protected]
We developed software and services from a unique
perspective — yours. As former club owners and
operators, we’ve lived through the rewards and
challenges of running a facility, the tedium of
processing billings, and the fine line you walk trying to
collect on declined EFTs while keeping those
members, well… members.
★ CCD Partnership discount
Come see us on the web at
California Clubs of Distinction
5382 Coach Drive
El Sobrante, CA 94803
U.S. Postage
Petaluma, CA
Permit #138
Membership Application
Membership in CCD is open to health, racquet, and fitness facilities which pay
property taxes and do not accept tax-deductible contributions of capital or
operating costs, e.g., 501 c(3)’s, government agencies and their subsidiaries.
Applicant facilities must sign the Pledge below to activate a membership. Your club
will be reviewed by the Executive Director upon application, change of ownership,
or if a questionable ethic is brought before the Board. If you have any questions,
please contact Lin Conrad, the Executive Director, at 510-243-1532. CCD reserves
the right to make final decisions on applications for membership.
Membership Pledge
As a member of CCD, I agree to operate my club in the best interest of the
consumer and the industry by: • Assuring that my club is a service driven club
• Abiding by all federal, state, and local consumer protection laws and all other
applicable legislation • Engaging in a positive sales approach
• Opening membership to persons of all races, creeds and places of origin.
I agree to abide by this Membership Pledge:
Please mark the appropriate box for annual dues:
Club Name:
Street Address:
Zip Code:
e-mail address (for CCD use only):
1 club with 2,000 sq. ft. or less = $225
1-4 clubs = $360 each facility (all clubs must be members)
5-9 clubs = $300 each facility (all clubs must be members)
10-14 clubs = $280 each facility (all clubs must be members)
15+ clubs = corporate membership (contact CCD for dues)
IHRSA Members receive a 5% discount.
Web site: www.
Number of Clubs:
Amount enclosed: $
Mail check to: CCD, 5382 Coach Drive, El Sobrante, CA 94803
CCD, a non-profit association, is the voice of the club industry in California. CCD’s purpose is to
promote responsible growth of the California club industry and to enhance the professionalism, effectiveness
and profitability of its members through networking, education and positive legislative change.
The Trade Association of Health, Racquet & Fitness Clubs in California