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10 oN IHRSa 2010
sean Kirby, national sales director, asf gale landers, ceo, fitness formula,
international, highlands ranch, colorado ltd., chicago, illinois
“IHRSA is the biggest show of the “The IHRSA convention presents a great opportunity to
year for ASF International and for learn, to share, to network with other industry veterans,
our entire industry,” posits Kirby. and to take advantage of the industry’s finest fitness-
“If you’re going to attend any equipment trade show,” reflects Landers. “Attending the
show—this one has to be at the convention allows you to view your business more
top of your list. It’s important for broadly. It gives you the dedicated time required to seri-
us to brand our corporate identity ously consider a wide range of options and weigh them
industry-wide and to bring new in a more expansive, open-minded way. Club opera-
advancements to market effec- tors need to seek out the opin-
tively, and the convention allows ions of others. They tend to get
us to do so. We’re an exhibiting trapped by their context.
company, a sponsor, and a for- When they get into trouble, it’s
mer IHRSA Associate Member of often because they didn’t see,
the Year. I’m always amazed by didn’t recognize, what was
the people I find myself speaking with and learning happening; other people, with
from. I’ve met more influential individuals at IHRSA a different perspective, can
shows than I have at any other event, and, each year, offer constructive input.
hear about new business practices, workout routines, “Several of our staff,” Land-
advancements in equipment, etc. I never miss the key- ers continues, “have grown up
note speakers or luncheons. The IHRSA trade show is in this industry by virtue of
a perfect venue.” participating in convention
forums and activities that
stretched and challenged them professionally. As a
My ‘WOW!’Moment: past president and former board member of IHRSA, I
“About four years ago, I was at one of the
can attest that it’s certainly done the same for me.”
early-morning workouts, trying out new
equipment—like a kid playing with new toys.
My ‘WOW!’Moment:
Bill Pearl, a former Mr. Olympia and Life Fit-
“There have been a few. One the most memo-
ness spokesperson, walked up and started
rable was my first IHRSA convention, in the
chatting with me. During the course of our
mid-1980s. At the time, the fitness industry
conversation, I mentioned that I’d just turned
was, relatively speaking, in its infancy, and
40, had been diagnosed with blood-clotting
I’d just launched Fitness Formula. Attending
issues, and, as a result, was revamping my
that convention immediately confirmed for
workouts—trying to keep up with the kids in
me that this was an industry that, as it grew,
this business. Pearl was incredibly nice and
was going to make a positive difference in the
sincere with his support and encouragement.
lives of millions of Americans. The hotel,
It was a 10-minute segment in my profes-
meeting rooms, and trade-show floor were
sional life that I’ll never forget.”
full of passionate entrepreneurs who were
eager to learn from, and to share best prac-
tices with, one another—for the greater good
of all. It was equally clear that IHRSA was
going to be the gatekeeper when it came to
educating and serving the industry. That con-
vention was a huge eye-opener! I knew I was
in the right industry at the right time.”
40
Club Business International | JANUARY 2010 | www.ihrsa.org
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