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ClassPass Puts Consumers in the Drivers Seat! #TotallyTrendyTuesday

Over the past decade consumer choices have changed tremendously around how to join a Health Club.  In the old days, health club memberships were sold in small closing offices with big contracts, often scary closing pitches and a no way out clause.  Thank goodness those days are over, the softer and friendlier "month to month" agreements are now in place, but now an even more progressive consumer controlled way of joining clubs has come along. 

Check out ClassPass, if you have not already heard of this show stopper of a platform, check it out! 

"For $79, you'll have your pick of classes to choose from, including cycling, yoga, Pilates, barre, strength training, bootcamp, dance, and so much more. Plus, we’re adding new studios and classes each and every week.  
Commitment not your thing? Cancel anytime". -ClassPass

I am not the only one talking about the platform, visionary Bryan O'Rourke had this to say.

"Technology is creating a tsunami of business model innovation and Class Pass is but one example. Competitors in the health club and fitness space should prepare for the opportunities and threats that are arising because significant change is upon us all. We have certainly entered a new era". -Bryan O'Rourke 

I could not agree more with what Bryan is saying here! the traditional health club membership model is changing significantly. As consumers are more and more empowered to have what they want when they want it, as an industry we are going to continue to see consumers create the reality of the market. 

What do you think, how will classpass and membership models like this impact our industry?

Reply here, send me your thoughts! 

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Lindsey Rainwater is an experienced consultant and coach  to the fitness and wellness industry.  She specializes in business development and leadership. Currently she is working with the Fitmarc Team helping Health Club owners all over the south central region of the united states propel their business forward via group exercise solutions.  For more information about Lindsey, follow her @lindseyrainh2o 

what's in a name, absolutely everything, actually!

Lindsey Rainwater, Consultant and Coach to the Fitness and Wellness Industry

What's your favorite restaurant?  And why do you go there?  

The other night my boyfriend and I were firming up our evening plans, we were feeling low key and decided dinner and movie sounded like the perfect evening.  We enjoy going out for Pho and go to our favorite little hole in the wall family owned spot about once a week.  

The movie theatre we were planning to go to was next door to another pho spot, but we did not eat there.  We drove across town and went to the pho spot where we know Tony, and he knows us.  You see, every time I am out of town he asks where I was and how my trip was, we have a relationship with these folks.  I find it fascinating that we will drive across town to visit Tony, for Pho vs. go wherever is most convenient.

Relationships really do influence our purchasing decisions, and more over the consistency of the combination of service and relationships usually makes a lasting relationship between business and customer. 

So how did the relationship start?

Well that is a simple answer, Tony asked us our names, and we asked him what his was.

Our names are our identity, the title we offer the world and one of the most personal ways to go from stranger to friend.  

I had to laugh thinking about the fact that we went so far out of our way for a bowl of soup just to be in the environment we preferred.

Why? Because Tony creates an experience for us at his restaurant simply by knowing our names and addressing us when we visit him.

I ask you today, how many new members or strangers can you make friends by asking their name?  

Better yet- how many staff members can you inspire to do the same?   

A little food for thought- make names a priority. 

Let me know, Lindsey Rainwater what your experiences are around learning names. 

so many options, so little time... Creating an incredible Group Fitness Studio, part 3


P90X, TRX, Suspension training, Barre, Spinning, Indo-row, Kettleworx, Piloxing, Turbokick, Bodypump, Freestyle insturcor's, Zumba, Bootcamp, Crossfit, virtual classes... and much much more...

Lindsey Rainwater, Consultant to the Fitness Industry I remember when I started working in health clubs, I was 17 years old, had just graduated from High School and worked in an all women's private health club.  We had a 'full' group fitness studio schedule. Our class offerings were Aerobics, Step, Kick boxing and Guts & Butts.  It was simple, strait forward, and the instructors created their routines and play lists (at the time with cassette tapes, oy vey) for the most part, it was all freestyle choreography. 

Fast forward to now, oh my goodness! We are so spoiled, the industry has advanced to a place were we are chin deep in options. What a gift!

We have extremely intelligent, scientifically backed choreography and well researched workouts that have been established, tested and tried so that our members get incredible experiences time and time again.

So as an owner of a club, how in the world to you go about deciding what programming to offer?  What will your members enjoy and keep coming back for? where are you going to find instructors? 

I would love to share with you a few of the best practices that club owners and operators have shared with me, from all over the United States.  I am in on average, fifteen different Health clubs a week covering for profit, non profit, ymca and recreation center verticals.  Here is what the collective is saying...

1. Solicit member feedback- don't be afraid to ask them what they would enjoy.  I have heard more than one owner/operator tell me they ask what their members think, I would say this is your most influential tool. You might have the 1 or 2 that use the feedback forum as an opportunity to tell you everything you did not ask to hear about, but don't let that stop you from the other 50 that are going to provide you with valuable insight.  

2. Study your age demographics- closely, pay attention to your time selections and go with the flow of the lifestyles you are attracting.  Know their schedules and accommodate their schedules vs. instructors favorite time to teach.

3. Follow trends, don't try to be ultra unique- as industry leaders, we love the innovative, barefoot, fancy newest trend...If the club across the street from you offers the same class, that's OK- have you ever noticed that there can be 2 starbucks in the same parking lot, and they both have a line... plus the average health seeker that needs to move from the coach to your treadmill, doesn't know the difference. We are the ones that care, they don't. So offer the staples that get them moving, they will gain results and once they are ready for more, advancing them to private training and small group training is a seamless transition, that also stimulates revenue.  

When making programming decisions, remember that ultimately you provide the environment to help support and motivate your members to gain results and meet their goals, what an honor to help facilitate that experience.  

Share with me, Lindsey Rainwater- how are your programming selections going? Having a magical group fitness space combined with incredible programming truly unlocks incredible power for your members!


What legacy will we leave?

My dear friend and colleague Jeni Morrison and I were talking last week about the importance of Legacy and the impact we have in our environments.  The conversation was born out of a few site visits I had made last week and the conversations that birthed out of them, I asked her to share with us her thoughts on legacy, see below for her perspective, I know I certainly enjoyed it!

We often ask this question when great leaders like Nelson Mandela pass away. Sometimes we ask when the holiday spirit sweeps over to ignite acts of giving. In the fitness industry, we may learn of  instructors or clubs that simply inspire. This week, an instructor in Texas and two health clubs in Colorado have lead me to the question of legacy.

Drew Suprenant is a Group X Instructor and co-worker of mine. Earlier this week, he posted on his Facebook page after teaching a Les Mills BODYCOMBAT class, “A single moment of tear jerking joy came tonight. About half way through warm up in BODYCOMBAT tonight, I looked past the back row and noticed a women in the window…in a wheelchair. She was just a punching and going! Caught me off guard. Then I realized, this is what I'm here for - my purpose. We take so many things for granted...some just want to try… she touched my heart. Live for others because life is too short to not impact at least one life.”  If you know Drew, you know that posts like these are not uncommon. Drew often writes of experiences and uplifting messages. As a result, he has gained many followers from all over the world. Although he has never met many, they are positively impacted by his posts. He takes the time to respond to each and every one. Drew will leave a legacy of humility, hope, & humanity.

Southeast Fitness is a club in Aurora, Colorado. Dalene acquired ownership last year although the club has been open much longer. The previous owner had some choice operational ideas leaving the club in financial ruin. The day the doors were being shut, Dalene assumed ownership, with a large amount of financial obligation that came along with.  Over the past year, Southeast Fitness has gone from 300 to 1000 members. Acquisition didn’t come from top dollar marketing or social media exposure. Dalene walked door to door through Aurora and made homemade signs to post around town. Although the membership has increased greatly, Dalene has yet to draw a paycheck. When asked why she keeps the doors open, she turned and waved to an overweight man entering the club and said, “I do this because of people like him. When he first joined, he had to stop and sit down on this couch to catch his breath before attempting the stairs to the work out room. He can now walk in and make it up the stairs.” I know the legacy Dalene will leave. Unselfishness, sacrifice, and giving to her community.

Slated to open in 2014, Women of Ruffhouse is also located in Aurora is a women’s only health club. The first thing seen upon entering the website is, “The Only One Who Can Beat Me is Me.” Former police officer Sherrel Roland, is the founder of Ruffhouse. Two years ago, her 17 year old daughter was sexually assaulted. She chose to turn her feelings of helplessness into a call to action. Her mission is to provide a safe fitness environment for all girls and women, many who have been victims of sexual assault. Along with Group Fitness classes, Ruffhouse will also offer motivational speakers and educational programs. The building may still be under construction but the foundation for the legacy has already been set. Sherrel will leave a legacy of empowerment, restoration, and service.

As I think about Drew, Dalene, & Sherrel, one of my favorite quotes came to mind from Mandela, A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.” While he wasn’t referring to our industry specifically, we all know that this applies to instructors, managers, club owners, and anyone who serves in our industry. I have always found a perfect time to reflect is when the year is coming to a close. Have I served our industry in a way that I want to be remembered as? What did we provide as a company? How were others impacted?

With the anticipation of what 2014 will hold, I ask you to consider …..what legacy will you leave?


Jeni Morrison has been part of the Fitness Industry for over 10 years.  Born and raised in Texas, her passion to positively impact people’s livesdeveloped into a career where she has worked at the YMCA, 24 Hour Fitness,and PUR-FIT and currently works in Business Development at Les Mills South Central.

Kick your shoes off and get busy!

I love highlighting the clubs that I discover out there that are offering fun, fresh new takes on fitness. The Denver metro area has many fun spins on the boutique club environment, and I had the pleasure of visiting one of them recently. 

I met with Mr. Bradley Cooley, owner/operator at the studio, Bradley has been in the industry for years with a collective background that allows him to truly serve his membership base with a passion for fitness.  See Bradley's description of the facility and images below. 


"FIIT WERX is a unique functional training studio in the heart of downtown Denver, next to Coors Field.  Training barefoot and using the MYZONE heart rate training system, they've created a two week circuit of exercises consisting of a day of pushing exercises and a day of pulling exercises.  The FIIT circuits are structured by way of a 12 station routine, creating an effective 36 minute total body "werkout".  Each exercise is performed for an intense minute before resting for 30 seconds, as you rotate through a series of stations combining aerobic and resistance exercises.   Everyone is encouraged to reach their own level of “Full Intensity” and every exercise can be adjusted to accommodate one’s personal ability".-Bradley Cooley

While I was there, of course I had the chance to participate!  I worked through a 36 minute workout, barefoot!  What a BLAST the workouts are at FIIT WERX!  I would encourage you, if you are in the Denver area and want to check out something new, stop in and try out their unique spin on barefoot training.

 And while you are at it, stay for a Will Power and Grace class, they share a studio space with the the Will Power Method.  Talk about a dynamic duo, Willpower FIT studio and FIIT WERX under one roof!