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Active IQ, the UK’s leading specialist awarding organisation in the active leisure, learning and wellbeing sector, is helping to drive quality within the industry as well as support the needs of learners through the introduction of its Professional Recognition service.

The service delivers enhanced quality status for non regulated training programmes and can be applied to courses of any length, delivery method and context, as long as they meet Active IQ’s quality guidelines. By using the Active IQ Professional Recognition kitemark, organisations can benefit from increased customer appeal and authentication through the Active IQ brand.

Since Professional Recognition was launched, a growing number of providers have signed up to the service including City of Glasgow College, The Fit Box and The Power Pilates UK Studio. Designed to complement Active IQs accredited qualification offering, Professional Recognition gives organisations the ability to promote their programmes on the Active IQ website and to undergo quality assurance review to ensure programmes continue to meet quality guidelines.

Jenny Patrickson, Managing Director at Active IQ comments: 'Changes to the Qualification and Credit Framework (QCF) have inevitably led to some concerns and confusion over the quality of training delivered within the sector so Active IQ has recognised the need to give organisations the opportunity to have their own bespoke CPD training recognised.'

Active IQ Professional Recognition is available in four packages, ranging from Bronze for one training programme to Platinum which covers 10 or more training programmes. For further information, please visit www.activeiq.co.uk

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An innovative new partnership between Cancer Research UK and bounts, the app that rewards exercise, is set to inspire people to take up exercise and help them achieve their fundraising goals at the same time.

The CRUK Active app, which launched in the App Store last month, will encourage current exercisers to go beyond an annual Race for Life event or charity cycle, to maintain their fundraising efforts and physical activity throughout the year. The app incentivises users with reward points which can be redeemed for cash vouchers from big named brands and high street retailers. It will also motivate inactive individuals to take up a challenge or Cancer Research UK sporting event. Participation levels are found to be 30% higher in people using a fitness reward system, with a recent survey highlighting that over 70% of people believe fitness reward apps would engage and motivate them to do more exercise.

The CRUK Active app, powered by bounts, connects to members’ Just Giving pages, and enables them to receive additional reward points when they hit fundraising goals. The app will allow people to track a range of activities from walking, running, swimming and cycling. Referring friends, reaching fundraising goals, connecting with other tracking apps and entering leisure venues are just some of the ways members can earn points.

Find out more about bounts at www.bounts.it or visit the Android Play store or The App Store, to download the CRUK Active app now.

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Technogym, the world’s leading wellness and fitness company, have announced that its global ‘Let’s Move for a Better World’ challenge will take place for the third year running. From the 1st to the 19th March 2016, gym members in fitness facilities all over the world will challenge each other and join forces to donate their movement in support of promoting wellness and healthy lifestyles in their local community and beyond.

Participants’ MOVEs – Technogym’s unit for measuring movement – will be logged through Technogym’s mywellness cloud, the industry’s first cloud based open platform. The top three most active fitness facilities in each participating country – those which accumulate the highest number of MOVEs – will win the opportunity to help children in the local area get more active by donating Technogym funded equipment to a school of their choice. There will also be prizes awarded to the members who give the best contribution to the challenge. The ‘Let’s Move for a Better World’ challenge is a great opportunity for clubs to attract new members, thanks to both the initiative’s communication campaign through web and social media, as well as the viral effect created by existing members sharing their training sessions online. 'Let’s Move for a Better World' is also a unique and powerful tool to build member loyalty, motivation and footfall through its competitive mechanic. By placing the spotlight on the club’s local community, it creates a positive team spirit that brings people together towards a common objective.

The 2015 edition saw impressive improvements for participating facilities: visits increased by an average of 34%, new memberships increased by 17%, and more than three quarters of participants saw an increase in the engagement and motivation of existing members. Crow Wood Leisure Centre based in Lancashire won the UK national competition coming top of the rankings against 59 other participants completing an impressive 3,126,802 MOVEs.

For further information on the campaign, regulations, and to get involved, get in touch with your local Technogym contact, or get more information at www.technogym.com

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The Exercise, Movement and Dance Partnership (EMDP), the national governing body for dance fitness, was named winner of the ‘Sport England Community Partnership of the Year’ award at this year’s Balfour Beatty London Youth Games Hall of Fame and Awards Evening.

The annual awards ceremony took place on Thursday 8th October at the Underglobe on London’s Southbank and celebrated the contribution made by volunteers, coaches, participants, officials and partner organisations.

As winner of the Community Partnership of the Year, EMDP was recognised for their great work introducing the London Youth Games Dance Competition in March 2015, which saw 15 London boroughs compete. The inaugural event took place at the Copper Box Arena, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, and featured Warren Russell, member of Britain’s Got Talent’s dance troupe, Diversity, as a guest judge.

As the national governing body for dance fitness, EMDP continues to support the London Youth Games and plans to embed dance activity in schools, focusing on key stage 4 pupils as well as continuing to engage London boroughs in the upcoming London Youth Games Dance Competition. To date, 27 London boroughs have already signed up to take part in next year’s event, which takes place on 3rd February 2016.

Emma Forward, Chief Operating Officer of EMDP, says: 'We’re thrilled to have had the opportunity to work with London Youth Games and celebrate the amazing work young dancers have been doing in London. Receiving the award was a fantastic achievement and we look forward to building on our success in the coming year.'

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With news that takeaway joints are reaching their highest levels in over two decades, the team at MotivatePT has created an infographic designed to highlight the areas of the UK worst affected by the fast food fandom.

Due to the current high obesity rates in the UK, this news is closely linked to the known risks of type 2 diabetes, with much being blamed on the need to get food as quickly and conveniently as possible. In the past 18 years, the volume of establishments per 10,000 has soared to 3.8, as well as a 45% increase in the number of takeaway restaurants in the same time period.

The infographic illustrates cities such Edinburgh, Bury and Leicester, explaining the amount of fast food outlets and giving stark statistics from across the country, with the highest coming in at 198.6 takeaways in the Blackpool area alone. Amazingly, a poll also revealed that 14% of 16-24 year olds claimed that they ate no fruit or vegetables at all, spending an average of £63.65 on food per week despite earning less any other category.

According to the research, more than three million individuals prefer to organise a takeaway meal rather than cook from scratch, and more astonishingly, 74% of men and 64% of women are predicted to be overweight by 2030. Using the infographic as a pinpoint to delve further into the crisis, is it any wonder the name ‘fast food nation’ is being thrown around?

You can view the infographic here: www.motivatept.co.uk/takeaway-uk-infographic/

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Capitalising on the growing interest in Boxercise as a form of personal fitness, research charity Ovarian Cancer Action has launched a new fundraising campaign, Box 2 Beat Cancer, specifically for the Fitness industry.

The campaign, which is endorsed by Apprentice finalist and award winning personal trainer - Katie Bulmer-Cooke, will see Personal Trainers and Boxercise instructors invited to become a Box 2 Beat Cancer Event Organiser and plan an event in their local area.

The events, which are officially endorsed by partners Boxercise, will see participants partake in a gruelling 3 hour class by their Boxercise instructor, to raise much needed funds for Ovarian Cancer Action’s life-saving scientific research.

Emily Legg is Corporate & Events Manager at Ovarian Cancer Action. She said: “In the UK, a woman dies of ovarian cancer every 2 hours. Ovarian Cancer Action is fighting back by funding world-leading scientific research. To ensure we can pack a stronger punch, we need the fitness industry to join us and Box 2 Beat Cancer.”

Katie Bulmer-Cooke said: “I'm so excited to be involved in this campaign. Not only because it is a great cause but also because it gives fitness professionals an opportunity to make a real positive impact on the health and fitness of their local community and their business. The events are going to be buzzing and I'm certain we will smash our fundraising targets in a bid to find a cure for ovarian cancer.”

To get involved, register for a free Box 2 Beat Cancer Event Organisers Pack at www.ovarian.org.uk. You will receive a suggested workout plan including pad and glove workouts, cardio and core exercises, circuits, and team games. You’ll also receive top tips from UK Personal Trainer of the Year 2012 and UK Fitness Professional of the Year 2013, Katie Bulmer-Cooke, on how to maximise business opportunities from your involvement.

Box 2 beat Cancer is officially endorsed by the Registry or Exercise Professionals (REPS). Greg Smalls, Head of Membership said: “With 1 in 54 women in the UK at risk of developing ovarian cancer it is of paramount importance that research and funding is made available for this life changing health issue. REPs fully endorses what Box 2 Beat Cancer is trying to achieve and would urge all members of the public to show up, sign up and box it out with our REPs members. Collectively we can ‘beat’ ovarian cancer into submission.”

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REPS PIC04aYou may not view your lifestyle as sedentary, however a combination of driving, sitting for periods of time at work or at home as well as sleeping, means that most people are off their feet for up to 21 hours each day.

A recent study found that the world’s population could increase their life expectancy by two years if they reduce the amount of time spent sitting to less than three hours a day. Also another 1.38 years can be added by reducing television viewing to less than two hours a day. By sitting less you can live up to 3.38 years longer. The health benefits from sitting less are clear to see; those who sit for five or more hours in a working day have an increased risk of up to 34% for having heart failure than those who stand up more. Other risks include diabetes, depression and even cancer.

Since 1950, sedentary jobs have risen by 83% and most office workers get less than an hour of exercise a week. With this, obesity, heart disease and many variants of cancer have also risen, and could be attributed to a lack of movement each day.

One way that has been highlighted to tackle this is the use of a standing desk, such as the Varidesk,

which allows you to quickly lift and lower your workstation. This in turn enables workers to get in to a routine of standing to work for as little as 15 minutes for every hour seated. There are now even free apps available that remind employees to stand. You can burn an additional 30 calories per day, just by standing 15 minutes per hour. Interestingly, people who use standing desks have higher productivity, by up to 12%.

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Forget fast food and fast living, today’s men are working hard to embrace a healthier lifestyle.

REPS PIC03aAccording to research from natural supplement company Roar Ambition, 55% of those aged 18 to 24 are now actively watching what they eat in a bid to stay fit. As well as adopting a healthy diet, they’re turning to supplements for help too.

The survey, which canvassed the views of 500 gym going males, concluded that men’s desire to look good is fuelling this new passion for healthy living. 55% of participants admitted to taking supplements regularly, with another 69% revealing they’d consider taking a natural option in future.

31% of those surveyed said they hit the gym to help relieve stress, with the most stressed being aged between 35-44.

45% have thought about using steroids to ‘bulk up’, while 59% would think about a fat burner if they could be sure it was safe. Sourcing the right kind of advice is key, and men say they trust other athletes (62%) and their gym (59%) ahead of mates to help them choose a supplement. In the older age ranges, almost 76% of 35–44 years olds would consider taking supplements, the highest in any age range. Partner pressure is felt by 35-44 year olds who revealed that 10% of those who go to the gym do so because their partner makes them do it.

Geographically, men from South East England are the most likely to consider taking a supplement (62%), and they’re also most likely to follow a strict diet (47%), being keener to try a fat burning supplement with 52% saying they’d consider it.

There’s also a social reason for ditching the bars and hitting the barbells, as 15% of those quizzed admitted they used the gym to socialise, with nearly 7% revealing they went to the gym to look for potential partners. Peer pressure played a part too, with just over 4% adding that they went to the gym because all their friends did.

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According to new research from The Gym Group, 38% of people aged 18-29 say they have taken a gym selfie, as social media accelerates an appetite for exercise. 

REPS PIC02aThe Gym Group, one of the UK’s fastest growing gym chains, surveyed more than 1000 consumers and a sample of its membership base, to understand how people see fitness as part of their identity. The research emphasised the role that social media plays in getting us motivated about exercise, with more than one in three young Britons (37%) saying they follow health and fitness accounts and half (52%) revealing that posting their own sporting progress, or seeing their friends’ fitness updates (54%) motivates them to keep fit.

The findings also showed an impressive appetite for sporting events, with 32% of young adults claiming to have completed a 10km race or half marathon, and an impressive one in 10 who say they have completed a marathon; compared to only 11% and 4% respectively, of those over 50 years old. The Gym Group anticipates these numbers will continue to grow as two thirds (66%) say working towards a sporting event is one of their biggest motivations, second to exercising with a friend (63%).

For young consumers, representing their country in a sport (42%) is an achievement they would be most proud of, above winning a Nobel Prize (28%), being in a blockbuster movie (27%) or having a number one hit song (25%). Fitness is now an established credential for young people, as 46% say it is part of their identity. 49% say they include their sporting ability in their CV's or would talk about it on a date (48%). Fitness is also a desirable trait in a potential partner with 68% of young consumers saying an active gym goer makes for a more appealing partner.

Whilst nearly three quarters of those aged 18-49 (72%) say that intelligence is the most important attribute in a potential partner, 40% say they find someone who is physically fit/athletic particularly attractive, more so than their other half being wealthy (23%) or being up to date with politics and current affairs (25%). Runners and cyclists were deemed most attractive, coming above rowers and skiers.

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According to new research from The Gym Group, 38% of people aged 18-29 say they have taken a gym selfie, as social media accelerates an appetite for exercise. 

REPS PIC02aThe Gym Group, one of the UK’s fastest growing gym chains, surveyed more than 1000 consumers and a sample of its membership base, to understand how people see fitness as part of their identity. The research emphasised the role that social media plays in getting us motivated about exercise, with more than one in three young Britons (37%) saying they follow health and fitness accounts and half (52%) revealing that posting their own sporting progress, or seeing their friends’ fitness updates (54%) motivates them to keep fit.

The findings also showed an impressive appetite for sporting events, with 32% of young adults claiming to have completed a 10km race or half marathon, and an impressive one in 10 who say they have completed a marathon; compared to only 11% and 4% respectively, of those over 50 years old. The Gym Group anticipates these numbers will continue to grow as two thirds (66%) say working towards a sporting event is one of their biggest motivations, second to exercising with a friend (63%).

For young consumers, representing their country in a sport (42%) is an achievement they would be most proud of, above winning a Nobel Prize (28%), being in a blockbuster movie (27%) or having a number one hit song (25%). Fitness is now an established credential for young people, as 46% say it is part of their identity. 49% say they include their sporting ability in their CV's or would talk about it on a date (48%). Fitness is also a desirable trait in a potential partner with 68% of young consumers saying an active gym goer makes for a more appealing partner.

Whilst nearly three quarters of those aged 18-49 (72%) say that intelligence is the most important attribute in a potential partner, 40% say they find someone who is physically fit/athletic particularly attractive, more so than their other half being wealthy (23%) or being up to date with politics and current affairs (25%). Runners and cyclists were deemed most attractive, coming above rowers and skiers.

Read more

According to new research from The Gym Group, 38% of people aged 18-29 say they have taken a gym selfie, as social media accelerates an appetite for exercise. 

REPS PIC02aThe Gym Group, one of the UK’s fastest growing gym chains, surveyed more than 1000 consumers and a sample of its membership base, to understand how people see fitness as part of their identity. The research emphasised the role that social media plays in getting us motivated about exercise, with more than one in three young Britons (37%) saying they follow health and fitness accounts and half (52%) revealing that posting their own sporting progress, or seeing their friends’ fitness updates (54%) motivates them to keep fit.

The findings also showed an impressive appetite for sporting events, with 32% of young adults claiming to have completed a 10km race or half marathon, and an impressive one in 10 who say they have completed a marathon; compared to only 11% and 4% respectively, of those over 50 years old. The Gym Group anticipates these numbers will continue to grow as two thirds (66%) say working towards a sporting event is one of their biggest motivations, second to exercising with a friend (63%).

For young consumers, representing their country in a sport (42%) is an achievement they would be most proud of, above winning a Nobel Prize (28%), being in a blockbuster movie (27%) or having a number one hit song (25%). Fitness is now an established credential for young people, as 46% say it is part of their identity. 49% say they include their sporting ability in their CV's or would talk about it on a date (48%). Fitness is also a desirable trait in a potential partner with 68% of young consumers saying an active gym goer makes for a more appealing partner.

Whilst nearly three quarters of those aged 18-49 (72%) say that intelligence is the most important attribute in a potential partner, 40% say they find someone who is physically fit/athletic particularly attractive, more so than their other half being wealthy (23%) or being up to date with politics and current affairs (25%). Runners and cyclists were deemed most attractive, coming above rowers and skiers.

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REPS PIC01Lifetime Training is partnering with Matrix Fitness to deliver its new Education Programme. The aim of the partnership is to provide Matrix customers with quality training and education so their fitness teams can provide an excellent member focused service to help improve client retention.

Lifetime will provide a suite of REPs accredited courses. These will enable clubs and centres using Matrix equipment to ensure their team of trainers are fully educated in the delivery and execution of all major programmes, providing the best possible service to members and customers.

With twenty years of experience in training, Matrix customers will benefit from Lifetime’s expertise in quality education for Traineeships, Apprenticeships, and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in addition to leadership and management qualifications. CPD courses include development of instructor communication skills to drive customer experience, and advanced Level 3 training, as well as tailored CPD courses in key topics such as functional training and pre and post natal training. The plethora of versatile courses aims to meet the career requirements and team progression in any facility. 

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REPS PIC04AXA PPP healthcare announce the introduction of two new health and wellbeing digital platforms for consumers. Together, they form an integral part of the healthcare company’s bid to play a leading role in shaping the future of the consumer health technology arena. Designed to satisfy people’s desire for greater control of their health and wellbeing and drive to make the most of new technology, the platforms will be freely available to all.

MyActive+ (www.myactiveplus.com) is an innovative healthcare retail platform providing customers with discounted health technology products, wellbeing services and individually targeted content – all with the intention of making a healthier lifestyle more accessible, simple and affordable. To mark its arrival, all new MyActive+ users will be given £10 off their first purchase when they spend a minimum of £20. Further discounts for loyal members will be offered going forward.

Launched in August, Active Health (www.axappphealthcare.co.uk/activehealth) is a free, secure personalised digital wellbeing service that enables users to manage their everyday health and personal wellbeing goals. More than simple tracking and monitoring, Active Health can synchronise its in-built health age calculator with data from users’ health tech devices to generate personalised assessments and recommendations – backed by AXA PPP healthcare’s expert health Q&A service – for a complete wellbeing picture.

James Freeston, Marketing Director at AXA PPP healthcare, says: 'Our members have been instrumental in the creation of these platforms which we are delighted to make available to all – whether they are an AXA customer or not. We want to help people to make the small, sensible, sustainable changes that will help them to feel healthier and happier – for good!'

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REPS PIC03Places for People Leisure ventured further into a new area of leisure provision last month, with the opening of their second budget gym in Corby. Following the success of the first Places Gym, a refresh of the Sam Jones gym in Sheffield, the second site that opened in May, has been warmly received by local residents.

The award winning social enterprise, who partner with numerous local authorities to manage leisure facilities, were keen to branch out into the budget gym sector and offer a more cost effective alternative to bigger gym environments. The new Places Gym in Corby provides members with over 100 stations to accommodate their exercise needs. Top of the range Precor CV equipment, Matrix resistance equipment, Vplates and a free weights area are also available.

Despite being open for only a month, initial reception has been extremely positive from local Corby residents. The 10,000 sq ft gym, open from 6.30am to 10.30pm weekdays and 8am to 6pm on weekends.

Sandra Dodd, CEO of PfPL says: 'This is a very exciting time for the Places group to be expanding into the budget gym sector. We’re really keen to offer an alternative to the traditional leisure centre facilities that we currently provide and also ensure that we can keep our membership costs down by cutting back on the non-essential items. The reception for both Places Gyms has been particularly encouraging and we look forward to expanding in the future.'

For more information please visit www.placesforpeopleleisure.org or to contact the gym directly go to www.placesgym.co.uk

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REPS PIC02Anytime Fitness North America has called in Retention Guru, Dr. Paul Bedford, to help develop the franchise brands digital retention strategy.

The move will see Dr. Bedford, who is seen as one of the fitness industrys leading authorities on retention, attrition and member experience management, help to create an automated digital approach to membership marketing, which aims to provide consistency of message for the group, allowing owners and managers across the 2,200 franchise clubs in North America to focus on the day to day running of their health clubs.

The four month project is part of a multi-staged approach and will be aligned with the brands new member experience in North America. The strategies will be used to inform retention strategies for the group worldwide.

Chuck Runyon, CEO at Anytime Fitness said: 'Pauls extensive knowledge of member behaviour and his techniques for matching appropriate interventions with available resources, made him a natural choice to support our group in this drive to improve the way we communicate with our members on a digital level. His reputation is strong with our franchisees domestically and internationally and we are excited to harness his knowledge as we move into a new member-centic era of the business.'

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REPS PIC01Dance fitness classes are more popular than ever, with thousands of people choosing dancing as their way of keeping fit. Dance fitness crazes come and go but the best thing about them is they welcome all levels – so whether you’re a trained dancer or a complete beginner, a dance fitness class is a fun way to work out. DancingClasses.biz has released its top seven dance workouts.

Without a doubt, the top dance inspired workout class, which is now world famous, is Zumba. The cardio workout with an element of toning fuses many different styles of dance, mainly South American, including salsa, cumbia, merengue, hip hop and reggaeton. It is one of the most popular dance workouts worldwide with an array of merchandise including clothing, DVDs and video games.

One dance style which you probably wouldn’t expect to take off as a dance based workout is ballet. Ballet barre classes, which focus on repetitive toning exercises using a barre and light weights, are coming to the UK after being successful in the US and Australia. Some classes also have elements of yoga and pilates to increase flexibility.

Next on the list of dance inspired workouts was one of the first to get us moving – Jazzercise. Founded in 1969, the classes use a mix of music and dance styles mixing jazz, hip hop and even kickboxing moves to ensure the dance party burns 800 calories an hour.

Belly dance fitness classes take the number four spot, which are growing in momentum and even claim studio space in some of the UK’s biggest chain gyms such as Fitness First. Pole fitness is also a very popular workout which people are starting to take more seriously. Combining gymnastics, acrobatics and pole dancing, pole fitness strengthens and tones the entire body while also improving flexibility and coordination.

At number six, Masala Bhangra offers a combination of low impact exercises mixed with Bollywood dance moves. Finally at number seven it’s the latest cardio workout – twerking. This infamous booty move is now at the centre of a new 'twerkout' but the experts predict this one might be a passing phase.

To find out more about DancingClasses.biz visit the website at www.dancingclasses.biz

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Make fitness fun, sociable and more approachable, a new guide by Sport England today recommends. Aimed at the people who create opportunities for women to get active, ‘Helping Women & Girls to Get Active: A Practical Guide’ offers advice on how to break down barriers which are stopping women and young girls from getting active, and keep them coming back for more.

Rejecting a ‘one size fits all’ approach, this guide encourages facilitators to consider a range of barriers which may be preventing women and young girls from signing up. For example, research found that many women find mirrors in exercise studios intimidating and are often fearful of appearing to be the odd one out in classes. The guide also includes common sense solutions to encourage repeat visits to classes, such as teaming up with a local business to offer a free coffee as a reward for completion of a certain number of sessions. Some of the other top tips include:

  • Make sure the changing rooms have full length mirrors and good quality hairdryers
  • Mirrors in studios can make some women feel self-conscious
  • Selling the sport or activity doesn’t always work, instead sell the benefit, promoting the fun, friendship, social aspects, as well as de-stressing effect
  • Consider alternatives to sporty images, ads with women in relaxed clothing having fun can resonate better
  • Avoid stock photos, people prefer to see either local women or women who feel like them in marketing material
  • Images of women exercising on their own or in small groups appeal more than images of large groups
  • Record a quick video demonstrating the class and post online so possible attendees can see what the activity is like and the people taking part
  • Reduce the fear factor by advising women what to wear, what to bring, how much it is, and that there will be other people at a similar level to them there either on your website, Facebook page or by talking to them

Despite 13 million women and girls saying they want to play more sport, in reality only half that number actually do. This free online guide sets out to change this. Targeting women specifically, it aims to close the gender divide which currently sees two million more men than women exercising per week.

This new guide brings together all the results of Sport England's female-focused campaigns including I Will If You Will*, and This Girl Can*, and research study, Go Where Women Are*. I Will If You Will, a project delivered by Bury Council, has seen the number of local women doing sport and physical activity in the town double in the last two years. The multi award-winning This Girl Can campaign is transforming the way sport and physical activity is marketed to women and how women talk and feel about being active.

Sport England Director of Business Partnerships, Tanya Joseph, said, “We know that men and women think about sport differently, and encouraging women and girls to get involved requires more work

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Places for People snag top award

Places for People Leisure recently received the coveted Multi Site Approved Training Centre of the Year (15+ sites) at the IQL UK Awards 2015. This award recognises a training centre with 15 or more sites who demonstrates a clear dedication to the provision of pool lifeguard training, career development and the promotion of wider water safety messages.

The prestigious Royal Life Saving Society UK (RLSS UK) and IQL UK National Awards returned this year with the addition of six new categories. The event, which took place on Friday 12th June 2015, gave Pool Lifeguards, Trainer Assessors, National Trainer Assessors and Approved Training Centres the chance to recognise and celebrate those who continually raise standards and make such a valuable contribution to pool safety and drowning prevention.

In addition Places for People Leisure were also finalists in the Trainer Assessor of the Year category with both James Dumper from Gosport Leisure Centre and Paul Kelly from Farnham Leisure Centre recognised and members of staff at Kings Leisure Centre were also nominated for Lifeguard Team of the Year.

Andy Read, Safety and Quest Manager at Places for People Leisure who oversees Lifeguarding, adds: ‘We are delighted to have received the RLSS's award for Approved Training Centre of the Year, as an acknowledgement of all the hard work and passion which has gone into drowning prevention and water safety. Receiving this award is a credit to all our team who educate and keep millions of people safe every year.'

For more information please visit www.placesforpeopleleisure.org

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PTs gather to learn at UK’s first Meeting of the Minds

‘Don’t stop learning’. That was the verdict from some of the industry’s top Personal Trainers and thought leaders at this year’s Meeting of the Minds, hosted by FitPro and Lifetime Training, who almost unanimously voted on the importance of ongoing education and training beyond becoming a Level 3 Personal Trainer.

The day-long educational event - Movement, Mindset and Metabolism - was the UK’s first Meeting of the Minds (MOTM), which originated more than seven years ago in Colorado under FitPro’s PTontheNet, and saw around 160 leading industry professionals receive exclusive invites to attend ExCel in London and learn from world-renowned speakers and authors.

Presenters included Rodney Corn, Annette Lang and Anatomy Trains author Thomas Myers, as well as industry innovators such as Bobby Cappuccio, who explained that ‘all successful fitness trends are community driven’ and Douglas Heel, who believes ‘if a client isn't ready to do the work it's not your job to fix them’.

Brian St Pierre advised the audience to ‘only make nutrition as complicated as it needs to be, not as complicated as it can be’, whilst Ian O’Dwyer controversially claimed our industry is lacking direction and leadership, and Anthony Carey posed the question: if tissue heals why does pain remain? and explained it's bio-psycho-social - not all in the mind or all in the body.

On registration, attendees filled in a questionnaire and, throughout the event, took part in an interactive wall survey giving their opinion on sector specific issues, such as ‘how is technology changing the way you work with clients?’, ‘do you believe the health and fitness industry is evolving at a fast enough pace?’ and ‘what would be your top tip to becoming a successful PT?’. Not surprisingly, the registration questionnaire also showed there was an overwhelming importance placed on the client and client relationships, with attendees citing the most important factor to being a successful PT as listening, communicating and interpersonal skills (36%), while deciding another top tip to being a successful PT was all about building and maintaining good client relationships (35%).

Brent Hallo, FitPro’s Founder and Chairman said: 'The event was an altruistic effort to gather top industry experts together to deliver cutting-edge information in a TED Talk format to selected individuals who represent the pinnacle of practical leadership in the region in a bid to further enhance their knowledge and training base.'

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Slo-mo running helps to burn fat

New research from TomTom reveals that nearly 40% of Brits believe High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) will see fast fat burn results, but less than 20% actually know that slow and steady running can be just as effective.

Weight loss is the reason that 60% of the nation starts a new training regime and more than one in 10 (13%) plans to pull on their trainers and head out for a run to lose the pounds. With 69% of Brits considering themselves overweight, a quarter are seeing the summer months as a reason to adopt a new fitness routine, with 20% adding that a forthcoming holiday is enough motivation to get exercising. Almost a fifth said that using a heart rate monitor to analyse their training had helped them lose weight.

Notably nearly a fifth (18%) of those who had used a heart rate monitor to train stated that it had helped them lose weight. 57% also believed it had helped them to understand how their body responds to exercise and 29% felt it helped hone their technique and achieve their goals.

For more information visit www.tomtom.com/en_gb/sports/running/heart-rate-training

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