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HEALTH & FITNESS Industry must heed microgym march

Leading figures from the health and fitness indus- try have today warned that companies must adapt to the changing market exemplified by the surge of microgyms to avoid being leſt behind. Speaking during a Q&A

session at the 2014 active- net conference in Coventry, Les Mills customer experi- ence director Martin Franklin said microgyms had proved a “disruptive influence” to the tra- ditional gym model and were indicative of a market shiſt. “Te success of microgyms

DLL teams up with Universal to launch workout music app

David Lloyd Leisure has partneredUniversal Music UK to launch an exclusive music app aimed at boosting exercise performance. Created in conjunction with a sports

psychologist, the David Lloyd Playlist is thought to be the first joint initiative of its kind pairing major companies from the health club and music sectors. Te playlist is compatible with iPhone,

and Android devices. It is designed to enhance workout efficiency and enjoyment by matching a track’s beat with workout pace. Te tracks were selected based on research suggesting that synchronising music and exercise rhythm enhances per- formance. Details:

Microgyms like Fitness First’s BEAT are becoming increasingly popular

such as Psycle in London tells us that both the market and consumer demand is changing - and we as a sector aren’t adapting well enough,” noted Franklin. “We need to anal- yse this success, pick trends and find innovative ways to integrate them into existing operations.” During the same discussion, themed

Innovation outside the box, CEO of Creative Fitness Marketing (CFM) and creator of phys- ical activity monitor Myzone Dave Wright concluded that the traditional gym model had to change in order to thrive in future.

He said gyms must expand beyond their con-

ventional four walls to tap into new markets and said hypocrisy - with industry executives failing to practice what they preach in terms of working out in a gym environment - was another issue. “As technology and innovation move certain

forms of activity outside of the conventional gym model, facilities must look towards becom- ing data-driven so that they may serve as the central hub for these new forms of activity.” Details:

CEO Andy Cosslett is eager for growth in SE Asia Greg Whyte to chair ukactive research board

Celebrity fitness advisor and sports and exercise science expert Professor Greg Whyte is to become the first chair of the ukactive Research Institute’s Scientific Advisory Board (RISAB). The move sees Whyte steering a

team of renowned academics – who will guide the future direction of the institute – provide a sounding board for ideas and ensure the rigour of research and project design. “I’m passionate about building the

evidence base to inform the delivery of physical activity interventions to address the nation’s spiraling health costs and personal wellbeing deficit,” said Whyte, who was awarded an OBE in 2013 for his services to sport, sport science and charity. “There is no greater way of driving this

Whyte is also well-known for his Comic Relief work with celebrities

agenda than at grassroots and I’m delighted at the opportunity to influence this from my new position, alongside some of the most esteemed names in physical activity and health research.” Te news came on the same day (29 April)

as the ukactive Scientific Advisory Board launched its online research hub, providing a free-to-use online centre unlocking the latest


academic thinking and critical insight on phys- ical activity and health for the industry. Developed in response to requests for eas- ier access to the latest intelligence around key issues that govern development strategy, the hub will house open access publications and translate complex academic research into easy to understand, digestible formats. Members of the ukactive’s RISAB include

leading academics Professor Andy Lane, Professor Lynne Kennedy and Professor Alfonso Jimenez. Details:

Read Leisure Opportunities online:

Fitness First eyes ambitious Asian expansion intiative

Fitness First has announced it will invest more than US$140m (€101m, £83m) over the next five years as it bids to grow its foot- print in Asia by around 60 per cent. At present, there are 88 Fitness First

Asia clubs – spread across Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Tailand – and the chain intends to open a further 50 fitness clubs in the region by 2018, expected to cost US$100m (€72m, £59m). A further US$42m (€30m, £25m) will

be invested in upgrading the existing Asia facilities, in a move that chimes with the company’s recently announced global brand makeover. As part of this Asia improvement effort, 4,000 Fitness First staff are currently undergoing specialist training programmes deploying elements of behavioural psychology, sports science and emotional quotient training. Te company sees southeast Asia as a

strong opportunity for growth, estimating that less than 5 per cent of the population are currently members of a health and fit- ness club. Details:

Twitter: @leisureopps © CYBERTREK 2014

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