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Curves is designed to provide a welcoming,

supportive, non-intimidating environment for women

assurance we can provide them. In the fi tness industry, I believe our evidence is the FIA Code of Practice. “One of my core skills is managing

different people from different sectors to work towards a common goal. In my new role on the FIA board, I want to engage with the healthcare sector, giving them a point of reference and assuring them of the service they’ll get if they enter into a partnership with our industry.”

first-hand experience

So how did Keene come to be involved in the fitness industry? “I’d moved away from feeling I was having an impact,” she explains. “I was writing lots of policies but I missed being able to influence quality of services myself. That’s my passion and I really wanted to get back out there. “But my journey with Curves began

on a more personal level. I joined as a member four years ago following a trip to the States with my ex-husband, for his cousin’s surprise 50th birthday. She’d joined a Curves club near where she lived and was really enthusiastic about it. “At that time I was at my heaviest –

almost 20 stone – and I was incredibly uncomfortable on the plane home. I struggled to get the seatbelt on and was actually offered the extender belt

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without even asking for it. You don’t necessarily have an image of yourself as being large, but when other people see it, the penny starts to drop. And it was really spooky because, a week later, a leafl et from my local Curves came through the door – something I’d specifi cally been recommended by someone I trusted. It was at that moment I knew I needed to do something. “From the moment I walked into

Curves, I felt cared for. It was very non-threatening and there was no judgement – just an acceptance of the fact that I wanted to take a step towards doing something about it, with all the help and support I needed. “For a large woman to allow

herself to be weighed and measured… I think it’s phenomenal for a fi tness professional to be able put you suffi ciently at ease that you’d allow her to do that. But then the training of Curves has a very, very clear message: it’s about guest service, service with a purpose, the fact that each woman has given herself to you and it’s your

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