23 Oct 2018 Health Club Management Handbook
 

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Health Club Management Handbook - Independents’ day

Who's who

Independents’ day


We showcase a selection of recent projects where independent operators and leading suppliers have worked together to bring genuine innovation to the table

The Biggest Loser

Operator: Think Fitness 4 Less, Scotland
Supplier: MYZONE

Think Fitness 4 Less has helped 10 local people transform their lives with help from MYZONE.

The 650sq m (7,000sq ft) gym in Hawick in the Scottish Borders has some 600 members. For the last three years it has run The Biggest Loser weight loss challenge, in conjunction with the local paper, to help non-members incorporate exercise and healthy eating into their lives and try to lose two stone or more.  

After installing MYZONE in 2013, the gym used the technology in the challenge for the first time in 2014. The contestants invested in a MYZONE belt and followed an exercise programme based on government exercise guidelines, which was adjusted as they progressed over the 19 weeks. In addition to gym workouts, the gym ran classes for the contestants, allowing them to exercise together to build their confidence. This was supplemented by healthy eating advice.

“In the past, we couldn’t tell if contestants were working hard enough or even too hard. With MYZONE, we could see how much effort they were exerting, both in and outside of the gym,” says Greg Dalgleish, co-owner of Think Fitness 4 Less.  

“The contestants took part in challenges as a group and with the rest of the gym, to earn MYZONE Effort Points, and they’d receive a report after each workout. MYZONE gave them accountability and was hugely motivating.”

So much so that the contestants achieved a record total weight loss of 24st 5lbs – the biggest weight loss in three years – with the winner losing 4st albs.

Based on the success of the challenge and the ability to provide statistics on exercise, the gym is now working with the local NHS Trust delivering 12-week programmes to other members of the local community with MYZONE.

“We’ve been trying to engage with the NHS Trust for years. Having MYZONE and the data it provides has helped us get a foot in the door,” says Dalgleish.

 



In 2014, The Biggest Loser contestants achieved a record total weight loss of 24st 5lbs
Nightclub feel

Operator: The Gym Way club, London
Supplier: Physical Company

The Gym Way opened its second club in September 2014 at the London Marriott Hotel in South Kensington, London – open to both members and hotel guests.
The funky design and LED lighting immediately make an impression, welcoming you into a space that’s a far cry from a traditional gym. The Gym Way’s unique vision for the club was created in partnership with fitness equipment supplier Physical Company. “We wanted to achieve an environment that was similar to a nightclub,” says Elaine Coulthard, group director of The Gym Way. “We chose to work with Physical Company in part thanks to its many colour options, which allowed us to enhance our design concept.”

Clever use of mirrors and LED lighting create a disco effect throughout the club. From reception, glass partitions allow visitors to see all the way through the ground floor level.  Brightly coloured equipment with flashes of neon is on display throughout. A winding staircase leads up to the functional training level, where an eye-catching 21-foot custom-built rig forms the focal point of the space. The rig has monkey bars and a wide range of brightly coloured equipment, including SandRopes, wall balls, medicine balls and powerbags. A weighted sled pull on a sprint track also stands out in the centre of the room.

“The design of The Gym Way was really important to us,” says Coulthard. “We wanted to create a space that was fun and functional for our members to work out in. We focused on every aspect of the design – from the floor to the walls, and from the lighting to the cutting-edge equipment – to achieve the results we wanted.”

 



The functional floor is on a separate level from the nightclub-feel gym, with a 21-foot custom-built rig standing alongside a sprint track
Personalised training

Operator: The Fitness Space, Hughenden Valley
Supplier: Technogym

Opened in September 2014, The Fitness Space Hughenden Valley is the second Fitness Space gym led by former Olympic athlete Tim Benjamin. Inspired by his experience in athletic training methods, the club focuses strongly on the individual needs of each member – an approach that’s proven to be very successful in raising programme compliance and member retention rates.

To help drive its service-led approach, the club chose Technogym’s connected ARTIS machines and mywellness cloud technology, with the member journey structured around Technogym’s Prescribe application – a professional application on the mywellness cloud computing platform.

Each new member receives a dedicated personal consultation that discovers his or her exercise and health history, preferences, diet and aspirations. The trainer then sets goals with them and creates a custom-designed programme – supported by reference pictures and videos – via Prescribe.

At every workout, members log on to their mywellness account on the ARTIS machines to check their training programme, track their current session and access their favourite content while working out. Currently the facility has 171 members, and 159 of them already actively engage with a customised programme created via Prescribe.
Says Benjamin: “Our customised approach has worked wonders in growing interaction and transparency between trainer and member, and this is all enabled by the smart equipment and technology we’ve installed. All details – programme compliance, gym usage, equipment use and workouts completed – are automatically tracked on the ARTIS machines, allowing the trainers to monitor progress and give real guidance to each member during their monthly review session.

“The interactivity and simplicity of the programmes also helps to motivate deconditioned users, structuring their workouts into small steps that make the exercises less daunting and giving them a sense of ownership over their training.”

 



The new facility is the second Fitness Space opened by former Olympian Tim Benjamin
 


Most of the members already engage with a customised programme created via Prescribe
 
Visualising success

Operator: The Reynolds Group
Supplier: Matrix Fitness?

Victorian country property Basted House, in Sevenoaks, has been transformed into an £8m luxury retreat and health spa, and is the fourth gym in the Reynolds Group portfolio to be equipped by Matrix Fitness.

With a tendency to opt for unique venue choices, The Reynolds Group blends period properties with top-of-the-range fitness equipment, to offer members a luxurious and comfortable experience in a non-intimidating environment. Historic Basted House, set in 16 acres of parkland grounds, is no exception: the ambitions of husband and wife duo Emma Reynolds and Jason Hall – who set out to create a residential facility, training centre and Michelin-starred restaurant that deliver a truly unforgettable experience – have now been realised, with the new retreat opening in October 2014.

Matrix Fitness has supplied the club with a range of fitness equipment from its 7xe series, including treadmills, Ascent Trainers and cycles – all of which feature Virtual Active technology, the forward-motion video experience designed to enhance cardio workouts. Strength equipment has also been supplied, including pieces from Matrix’s premier Ultra Series.

But the project’s success didn’t just rest with the provision of fitness equipment, as Hall explains: “We had a very clear idea of how we wanted the facility to look, and it was critical that Matrix was able to interpret this vision. The Matrix CAD team excelled themselves, taking the time to visit the site and discuss our requirements in detail, which ensured they understood exactly what we wanted to achieve.

“The building has undergone such a massive transformation that the 3D walkthrough they produced proved an invaluable resource for our architects. The level of detail was incredible, and it’s fair to say that Matrix’s involvement enabled us to realise our dream.”

 



The 3D walkthrough produced by Matrix’s CAD team proved invaluable to the architects

Originally published in Health Club Handbook 2015 issue 1

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