Canadian Body Works Fitness is the largest fitness center in its market.

Canadian Body Works Fitness

East Brampton, Ont., Canada; 905 452-7800; www.canadianbodyworks.com

Canadian Body Works Fitness is the largest fitness center in its market, at 48,000 square feet, serving 8,000 members, and is open 24 hours a day. Its success, according to Owner Craig Hawksworth, "is really quite simple: It is found in our reinvestment policy. We are constantly reinvesting our money back into the fitness center, which gives the members a reason to stay. Who wants to be part of a club that's the same as it was five years ago?"

As part of the reinvestment policy, the facility is always adding new equipment and services, says Hawksworth. "We determine what to buy by what our members want - it's really up to them."

One of those things is a strength circuit. The facility is the only fitness center in Canada that has a MedX circuit-training line. "When our members come into the club, our highly trained floor instructors set weights and adjust machines, while encouraging the members through their workout, all at no extra charge," says Hawksworth. This unique service is another reason why members keep coming back. "Give back to your members, and you will get more in return," Hawksworth says.

Another unique feature of the fitness center is the free weight area, which is "the largest and most comprehensive in Canada," according to Hawksworth. This allows the fitness center to cater to a broad market. "We have everyone from national bodybuilders to grandmothers, all working out in the same place," he says.

The facility also offers a full group exercise program, massage therapy, a juice bar, and dry and steam saunas. The juice bar is one of the fitness center's best profit centers. "Since we have a lot of daily visits, our juice has become quite popular and, therefore, is one of our most successful profit centers," says Hawksworth. "Our members know the value of post-workout nutrition; therefore, having it readily available after a workout makes it quite convenient."

Canadian Body Works has an owner - Hawksworth - who is hands-on, which, he feels, "gives us a competitive advantage. How many clubs do you know of that has an owner who is in the facility more than 100 hours a week?"

All of his hard work has paid off for Hawksworth - enough so that the fitness center doesn't need to advertise very much. "We let our members speak for themselves, and they do. We have a great reputation in our city, and I think that goes a long way," says Hawksworth.

The proof is also in the numbers. Canadian Body Works has "a very high usage rate, and I am proud to say that we cover a broad spectrum of the population - young right through to old." Bodybuilders to grandmothers.

FACILITY STATS

Date fitness facility opened: August 1993

Fitness facility size: 48,000 square feet

Number of members: 8,000

Strength equipment: Atlantis, Flex, Body Masters, Nautilus, MedX, Hammer Strength, Cybex, Icarian, Ivanko

Cardio equipment: Life Fitness, Star Trac, StairMaster, Precor

Group exercise classes: More than 50 classes per week: Cardio Kick Box, Athletic Training, Ashtanga Yoga, Sport Spin, Power Pump, Boxing

Circuit, Six-Pack Abs, Step 'N Groove and more

Management software: Aphelion