• Blog: It's Hard to See a Downside to Hosting Tournaments

    by Mary Helen Sprecher May 2012

    Confession time: I love sports, but I'm actually more of a sports facilities enthusiast. When the pitcher starts kicking at the mound, I'm looking at the dirt and trying to figure out what kind of a blend it is. When I hear about a soccer complex, I want to know how many fields are natural and how many are synthetic. And don't even get me started on Olympic facilities. I turn into the most obsessive know-it-all alive. Nobody wants to be around me.

  • Blog: Balance Training Yes, Checkbook Balancing No

    by Rob Bishop and Barry Klein February 2012

    You've heard of the nanny state? We're feeling a lot like the nanny health club lately.

    It seems that many of our members expect us to balance their checkbooks for them, track their monthly expenses and keep them out of credit card debt. They also expect us to use divine intervention to know when they want to cancel their memberships. These requests aren't by any means new to us, but there sure have been a lot of them over the past few weeks. Some examples:

  • Properly Cleaning and Disinfecting Fitness Equipment

    by Emily Attwood February 2012

    A health club's top-of-the-line fitness equipment, complete with interactive workout monitoring and web access, can be a draw for new members.

  • Blog: Group E-Mail to Our Managers: WTF?

    by Rob Bishop and Barry Klein January 2012

    I walked into the club tonight at approx 5:30 p.m., which of course is the busiest time of the night.

  • Universal Truths in Fitness Facility Management

    by Rob Bishop & Barry Klein December 2011

    We may be showing our age here, but we regularly invoke Bill Murray from Groundhog Day, the 1993 film in which his hapless weatherman, Phil Connors, relives the same day over and over until he gets things right.

  • How to Succeed in Membership Sales

    by Rob Bishop & Barry Klein November 2011

    Your club is terrible at selling memberships. We know this because we're all terrible at selling memberships, and even if you think your club isn't, you are best served by thinking you are.

  • Blog: Club Members Care About Little Things…Like Tissues

    by Rob Bishop and Barry Klein November 2011

    We always try to remember that the most important things to our members are the little things. Years ago, we had three new treadmills delivered on the same day that one of our staffers thought it would be nice to put potpourri in the women's locker room. We never thought that 50 cents worth of potpourri could trump $15,000 worth of fitness equipment, but it did.

  • Blog: Let Homeschoolers Learn in Your Club

    by Mary Helen Sprecher October 2011

    I spent last weekend at the USTA's Tennis on Campus Fall Invitational, which was an amazing experience, with great play and neat kids. But it was actually an overheard conversation that really got my wheels turning, thinking about a potential business opportunity for any club interested in trying something new.

  • 2011 Facility of Merit Winner: Smith Aquatic & Fitness Center, Buford Middle School

    by Andrew Cohen October 2011

    Situated on the Charlottesville, Va., campus of Buford Middle School as part of a recreation complex that includes an adjacent Boys & Girls Club, the LEED Platinum Smith Aquatic Center won praise for a simple rectangular plan enhanced by judicious selection of materials - to cite one notable example, blue-colored glass tile and raised aluminum signage on the two-story east wall of the natatorium. The center "does all the right things," said one judge. "It's simple, monolithic in form but softened with the right materials and detail."

  • Manufacturing Location Impacts Strength Equipment

    by Andrew Cohen September 2011

    People who incorporate new companies seldom expend any energy deciding where to locate them.