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IHRSA State Fact Sheets Frame Health Clubs as Force for Good

SOURCE: IHRSA

BOSTON, MA—July 8, 2020—To help IHRSA members advocate for their state’s fitness industry, IHRSA, the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association, provides Health Club Industry State Fact Sheets. Each fact sheet gives detailed explanations of health club operations for all 50 states and the District of Columbia. 

The state fact sheets empower IHRSA members to advocate on behalf of their businesses, the industry, and the importance of physical activity. IHRSA suggests that club operators use these fact sheets to educate their local lawmakers and policymakers on the positive impact health clubs and fitness businesses have on their state’s physical and fiscal well-being.

“Lawmakers take actions every day that affect health club operations,” said Helen Durkin, IHRSA’s executive vice president of public policy. “By presenting legislators with information that reinforces the positive impact health clubs have on the quality of life, employment, and tax revenue in state and local communities, IHRSA members can raise further awareness that supports physical activity and health clubs as forces of good.”

As evidenced by the state fact sheets, health club facilities: 

  • employ thousands of individuals in every state, 
  • generate financial support for state economies, 
  • help adults and children become—and remain—physically active, and 
  • reduce high healthcare costs associated with chronic disease spending.

“It’s important to remember that your lawmakers work for you—and they want to hear about the issues that matter most to you,” said Meredith Poppler, IHRSA’s vice president of communications and leadership engagement. “We want IHRSA members to feel comfortable in approaching and speaking with their representatives. These fact sheets provide talking points that help get a conversation started and ensure lawmakers recognize the valuable contributions, whether physical, mental, or financial, that health clubs provide to their communities.” 

Numerous health club businesses across the country have used these fact sheets to lobby on behalf of:

  • financial incentives for active lifestyles, 
  • rule on locker room privacy policies, 
  • prevent sales tax implementations, and 
  • address several other industry issues.

These fact sheets can provide vital information for local health officials in determining COVID-19 reopening guidelines. To ensure health and fitness facilities remain open—and in the hopes of receiving the label as an essential business—the fitness industry needs to continue to show the benefits of exercise. 

To download and use the state fact sheets in conversations with your local legislators: 

  1. Visit this folder and select your state’s sheet.
  2. When meeting in person isn’t possible, schedule a phone or video meeting with your legislator(s) and bring up the fact sheet to help explain the critical role health clubs play in maintaining your state’s physical and fiscal health. Emphasize all the benefits that fitness facilities provide to local communities and stress that clubs should be essential, especially during a time when health and immunity are indispensable.
  3. If you use these fact sheets in a legislative meeting, please amplify the industry’s voice by demonstrating how you used this resource to further the work done by health club businesses. Please take photos during your meetings with legislators, send them to IHRSA, and we will share your efforts and successes. 
  4. Share the data in your club, on social media, etc.

To learn more about your state’s health club industry and to review recent legislative issues impacting state health clubs, visit ihrsa.org/state. IHRSA also provides tips on how to be an informed industry advocate.

For more information or questions, contact IHRSA’s Public Policy team at gr@ihrsa.org, or call 617-316-6790. 

To receive up-to-date information on legal, legislative, and health policy issues affecting your business, subscribe to the IHRSA Advocate.

About IHRSA

The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA) is a not-for-profit trade association representing health and fitness facilities, gyms, spas, sports clubs, and suppliers worldwide. IHRSA and its members are dedicated to making the world healthier through regular exercise and physical activity.

IHRSA maintains a leadership role in advancing physical activity, which is critical to America’s health and the battle against obesity and chronic lifestyle diseases. IHRSA supports policies that promote more active lifestyles to foster a healthier, happier, more prosperous America. 

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