RECENT ARTICLES
  • Rob & Barry: We Couldn't Care More About Our Members

    by Rob Bishop & Barry Klein September 2012

    Imagine that you've just tested your pool water and found it to be - the actual numbers are irrelevant to the story - just fine. A member approaches you 10 minutes later, still in her bathing suit, dripping water on your shoes, and says, "The pH in the pool is high." You say, "I just checked it and it seemed fine, but I'm happy to look into it," even though you'd rather say, "Really? You must be a human chemical testing kit, because the water is actually perfect!" At that moment, would you rather be in the fitness business, or on a beach someplace?

  • Blog: Damned Either Way on Cancellations

    by Rob Bishop and Barry Klein August 2012

    Recently, we posed five real scenarios regarding members who asked for special treatment regarding membership cancellations. What we didn't mention is that in each of those cases, we resolved the issue in the member's favor. What we also didn't mention is how little business value we see in those resolutions because those members had no appreciation for the fact that they were asking us for an exception. They just wanted us to do what they wanted.

  • Five Questions to Ask When Purchasing Fitness Equipment

    by Rob Bishop & Barry Klein June 2012

    After years of trying out new fitness equipment, weighing the many options out there and regularly pulling the trigger on breathtakingly high-priced purchases, we feel like we have a handle on the process.

  • The Challenge Faced by Mid-Priced Clubs

    by Rob Bishop & Barry Klein May 2012

    So, let's say you operate a fitness facility that's about 15,000 square feet in size. You offer a little bit of everything — weights, cardio, personal training, classes of all kinds.

  • 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.