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the term ‘spa
experience’ is
often associated with pure relaxation,
excluding result-orientated treatment:
people tend to go to a therapist
or practitioner to be treated for a
condition, and to a spa for relaxation.
However, through education and the
media we’re now moving away from
the ‘have a spa treatment, it will relax
you’ era and towards the ‘improve
your health and wellbeing, strength and
performance at our facilities’ era. This is
important as, if you offer only relaxation,
you miss out on a large proportion of
your potential market, including most
male clients; men often want results, so
tend not to go to a regular spa.
Health clubs are in an enviable
revenue-generating position because
people already come to them wanting
more than just relaxation. Operators
can therefore focus on clients’ needs and
desires as a whole package. Consultations
to evaluate each client’s issues should Operators need to
lead to a package of appropriate educate consumers in
treatment and training that uses all the preventative health
the services on-site, from treatments benefi ts of using a spa,
to gym programmes and classes. This says Berni Hawkins
keeps income within the organisation,
rather than diverting revenue to external
treatment specialists such as physios. BERNI HAWKINS
By adopting this broad-based SPA CONSULTANT is cheaper than cure, whether
approach, health clubs can attract a wide
variety of clientele without the expensive
aesthetics that other spas may need to R
esearch recently through water therapies,
commissioned by massage, therapies to enhance
SPATEC EU, from recovery after sporting activity
attract business. By investing wisely, Leisure-net Solutions, states that or therapies to help build a
a health club can offer outstanding the top three reasons why people foundation for peak performance.
treatments in a nice environment that don’t go to a spa are: the perception Companies in the fi tness sector that
members and locals will call on as their that it’s too expensive/not value for already do this well are Bannatyne and
needs present themselves – but with a money (58 per cent); that they don’t Fitness Express. Bannatyne has almost a
much smaller initial investment. need to, or see no benefit (26 per ‘spa concierge’ service, calling the client
The quality of therapists is becoming cent); and that they don’t feel they to let them know what to expect; by
the most important factor in supporting would fit in or enjoy it (17 per cent). informing the client that they’re coming
clients’ needs: your staff need to be To create a spa experience, therefore, for treatments and services in a health
knowledgeable and enthusiastic about not only does the operator need to club, expectations are managed – and in
their role and about the company. Much- be true to its own brand or type of most instances exceeded, with clients
needed revenue generation can often operation, but it also needs to create able to use the full range of fi tness and
be accessed through staff enhancement an offering that’s appropriate for its wellness facilities.
training – for example, therapists client base, and it needs to educate the Meanwhile, Imagine Spa by Fitness
learning results-focused techniques that consumer in the value of spa. Express follows a more traditional
can help recovery from, say, back pain or In the case of health club spas – approach to spa. The starter package
injury. Encouraging therapists through although some of the more superfi cial focuses on the use of the thermal
further education and into a consultant ‘feelgood’ treatments should also be experiences, fi rst educating the
role will also help them feel comfortable available – this education could focus consumer on the benefi ts of thermal
spending time talking to clients, thereby on the true interpretation of spa, and water therapies before up-selling
ensuring clients receive the most communicating the health benefi ts and them to additional services such as
appropriate treatment and advice. highlighting the notion that prevention massage and facials.
february 2010 © cybertrek 2010 Read Health Club Management online 69
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