Home of the SoapBox

Welcome to the online archive of John’s SoapBox.

Featuring the leaders in health and fitness club management

A Message From John…As many of you may know, I publish a monthly blog in which I feature the leaders in health and fitness club management. Since my entree into the industry back in 1984, I’ve had the good fortune to cross paths with many knowledgeable, fun, passionate, motivated and caring people.

These special people have changed the lives of their member’s and now via the SoapBox, we have a way to honor them and share their stories.

We hope to share with you what peers in our industry have found to make their operation work better and more efficient. Continue reading “Home of the SoapBox”

Facility Tour, You’re Invited!

Gain Knowledge to Change Lives

The Medical Fitness Tour offers fitness and allied health professionals an opportunity to grow their knowledge in the field of medical fitness. Join us for three days of educational sessions presented by industry experts that cover an array of medical fitness and aging topics. Earn continuing education credits and network with presenters, vendors, and your peers!

Check the below attachments for Session Schedule and other information:

Gain Knowledge to Save Lives
Tour Schedule Phoenix

 

Living Your Well

By Club Northwest in Southern Oregon

There is no standard formula for wellness. And if any theory outlines the concept it may be the butterfly effect, because small simple acts of wellness ripple out into larger more powerful impacts elsewhere. We may not see these impacts as much as we can feel them contributing to our sense of well-being. Wellness is this holistic happiness. Aspects such as lifestyle, physical health, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being comprise the overall feeling of wellness we each experience.

Big moves aren’t necessary for wellness and little moves make triumphant strides. The wonderful thing about it is that you can support someone else’s wellness journey and in turn your own journey will blossom. Support can be something as easy as a smile, a hug or a listening ear. Wellness is contagious. Yes, an aspect of wellness includes attention to physical health, but physical health is not a stand-alone for what makes wellness possible. To achieve the greatest possibilities for well-being, there are other essentials to include other than simply supporting the health of the body. Just as in a loving home, support, encouragement and an atmosphere conducive to growth are equally as important.

To be well is not to find your way into a fixed state of being, it’s not a destination we have to reach, it is a lifestyle supportive of progression. It is a progression toward a healthier life in mind, body and spirit and for each of us that progression takes different forms. There is no prescription for wellness. Navigation of it requires self-awareness and the desire for better. Wellness is within us. It’s an ongoing journey of awakening and releasing positivity into your surroundings. In this act, you are supporting both your own and other’s wellness journeys.

Continue reading “Living Your Well”

We Love Ability 360

By Brielle Carter

The Ability360 Center is a 62,000-square-foot universally designed, accessible and transit-oriented non-profit resources center serving the disability community in the Greater Phoenix Metropolitan area.  A national model for accessible design and collaborative programming, the Ability360 Center is located in the heart of Phoenix, less than two and a half miles from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport and situated conveniently on the Valley Metro light rail system.

Ability360 continues a 35-year tradition offering and promoting programs to empower people with all disabilities to take personal responsibility so that they may achieve or continue independent lifestyles within the community. The independent living philosophy states that people with disabilities should have the same civil rights, options, and control over choices in their own lives as do people without disabilities.

The Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center opened in October of 2011 to provide health, fitness and recreation programs to individuals with disabilities and their families. The spectacular center is co-located with the Ability360 Center in Phoenix, Arizona. In addition to Ability360, eleven other disability services organizations call the Ability360 Center home.

Continue reading “We Love Ability 360”

It’s Thanksgiving WEEK! And There is a lot to be thankful for, so giving away a few “REX Scholarships”

By: John Mickelson

This week we celebrate Thanksgiving and give thanks for the many positive relationships and blessings that have come into our lives.

Wishing you and your loved ones a Happy Thanksgiving and may you reflect/cherish all you have been given over the year and look for opportunities to be able to give back to others that are less fortunate.

I have the best job in the world, to be able to travel and meet club owners who truly have a heart to help their members enjoy a better quality of life. Our industry has changed and its not just about “pumping iron” but its also about providing people a venue where they can meet, spend time together and improve their quality of life.

In the coming months, we will be highlighting club owners and their facilities that think outside the box and work with people with special needs. The “Baby Boomers” are requiring different programs to help with their age related challenges. Parkinson disease is becoming much more common place and in our featured article, Brielle Carter has a 62,000 square foot facility (Ability360 Center is located in the heart of Phoenix) that provides exceptional adaptive sports, recreation, aquatic, and fitness programs that promote the independence, health, and overall well-being of people with disabilities and their family members.

Continuing with the theme of giving back, on February 2-4th the “Medical Fitness Tour” will be held at the above mentioned Ability360 Center. Speakers from all over north America will be presenting with the Keynote and Welcome address provided by industry icon Bill McBride. We have included the “Medical Fitness Tour” invite and speaker schedule for your review.

Continue reading “It’s Thanksgiving WEEK! And There is a lot to be thankful for, so giving away a few “REX Scholarships””

John’s October Musings

By John’s Musings

Greetings from the high mountains of Reno/Tahoe

I’m so blessed with the different people that come into my life. The content for the October Soapbox is provided by people that want to make a difference, that have a “heart” to help others and provide a better membership experience.

Social media is a necessary part of branding an athletic facility and yourself. In today’s fitness industry, you need to distinguish yourself from your competitors and cultivating your brand via social media is one way to do so. Amanda Vogel is a fitness expert and speaker that educates decision makers on group exercise, social media, fitness writing and blogging. In this Soapbox issue she shares with us her latest podcast on “Your Guide to Guest Blogging as a Fitness Expert”. In her podcast she talks about  1)What is guest blogging  2) Does blogging benefit your business 3) How do you know if a blog accepts guest bloggers? 4) How can you make your blog stand out from the crowd 5) Common do’s and don’ts and other topics you should find of interest. Take 30 minutes out of your busy schedule and listen to her blog which I believe will give you insight on burnishing your brand and highlighting your facility and yourself.

Continue reading “John’s October Musings”

A recap of Club Industries with Bill McBride

By: Bill McBride

Club Industry was an amazing event.  Marty McCallen and Pam Kufahl did an incredible job with Penton Media in producing a spectacular conference and trade show.  I was honored to be inducted as a Faculty Member of the Medical Wellness Association and to be able to deliver the Leadership Mastery Track with Brent Darden, Allison Flatley and Myself.  We had very good attendance throughout the five session Certificate Program.  Leadership – Management – People – Sales Management – The Product.  Attendees came to learn and were engaging and inspiring.  The entire Club Industry event was full of energy and a who’s who in the industry.  This show is back in full force and firing on all cylinders.  The venue of all events under one roof (The Hilton & Towers, Chicago) was perfect.  No one will want to miss the education, vendor exhibits, connection and networking next year – if they do, it will definitely be their loss.  The CEO Summit was also amazing with the leading CEOs in our Industry.  The feedback has been great.  I highly recommend everyone in our industry consider attending next year.  It is very worthwhile.  And for those of you that are budget conscious: “It’s better to train someone and have them leave, then not to train them and have them stay” – just saying 🙂

-Bill McBride

President & CEO, Active Wellness & BMC3

Hurricane Harvey Update with Brent Darden

By: Brent Darden

As of October 12th, 2017, Brent Darden’s Campaign Raised $37,860! This is an amazing testament to how generous and supportive the fitness community is and we want to share one such example of that generosity:

Luke Carlson has done the best job of involving his club, staff, and members. See below what he did …It would be nice to share this example and acknowledge Luke’s leadership.

Here is what we did:

Our facilities are small personal training studios that focus on 1-on-1 and semi-private training.  When Brent reached out to us, we decided to organize what we call a “Large Group Variety Workout.”  We had trainers from all three of our locations donate their time and we planned a workout for late Saturday afternoon (after our normal closing time).  We marketed to our clients that if they came in for that workout, all revenue would go to relief for this group of Houston clubs.  Our trainers loved donating their time and talent, our clients received awesome workouts, and all of the revenue went to this important cause.  Discover Strength then matched this revenue generated from the workout as well.

Wyoming Athletic Club gets a ‘lift’ from Copper Weights

By: Angela Woody

WAC is among first full service health and fitness centers in U.S. to enlist copper alloys to fight against the spread of infection-causing bacteria.

Casper, WY, August 15, 2017 – The Wyoming Athletic Club (WAC) here has become one of the first full service health and fitness centers in the U.S. to enlist the help of antimicrobial copper alloys to help protect customers from the spread of infectious bacteria.

The Club is using Black Iron Strength’s CuLEAN® line of weight lifting equipment. The line is made with EPA-registered CuVerro®, a copper alloy that continuously kills 99.9% of infectious bacteria it touches.

According to Lou Quint, founder of Health Club Management, Inc. which owns and manages two WAC facilities, infection control is a big concern for customers of health clubs.

“Knowing 80% of germs are spread by touch, we ran tests on our traditional weight equipment using a hand-held microbe measurement tool,” Quint says. “‘Clean’ is any reading below 300. The bacteria readings on our grips at WAC were over 7,000.”

Continue reading “Wyoming Athletic Club gets a ‘lift’ from Copper Weights”

Can you spare a cup of soap?

By: Don Miller
St Vincent de Paul of North Central Montana

When you picture a typical business or customer of PETRA products, you probably see health clubs and their members. Let me tell you that nearly all of our customers can’t afford their next meal, let alone a refreshing day at the spa. We serve our clients living on the streets and in the local prison. Beyond the necessities of food and shelter, we have found the gift of a shower and some clean clothes to be medicine for people needing hope. The volunteers of our group visit jails and homeless camps with a few treats and nutrition, but one of the most appreciated gifts we can share is cleanliness.

We have found that body wash and shampoo are a blessing to those struggling through life each day. In the jail, we give writing paper, a bit of candy and a small cup of shampoo. That shampoo gives a nice aroma in their cell, it helps them stay healthier in the over-crowded cell blocks, and it even doubles as laundry soap so they can clean their uniforms more than once per week.

Continue reading “Can you spare a cup of soap?”

Amanda Vogel: Your Guide to Guest Blogging as a Fitness Expert

By: Amanda Vogel

Amanda Vogel has a Master’s degree in human kinetics and is a certified fitness instructor. She regularly speaks at top fitness conferences–including IDEA World, NASM Optima, canfitpro and IHRSA–where she educates fitness pros on group exercise, social media, fitness writing and blogging. She recently completed her role as the Social Media and Technology Track Captain for the American College of Sports Medicine’s annual summit meeting. In addition to being a social media consultant for fitness brands and public figures, Amanda reviews fitness technology, exercise gear and workout wear on her blog FitnessTestDrive.com. As a professional writer, she has contributed to many popular publications—including IDEA Fitness Journal, Shape and Women’s Health—and guest blogged for the American Council on Exercise, NASM, AFAA and more. Amanda lives in Vancouver, B.C., Canada.