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Gym membership is a casual affair
Fitness Australia has released research showing that consumers have nothing to fear from the fitness industry and long-term membership contracts.
According to the industry peak body's 2008 Fitness Industry Profile, 73% of fitness businesses offer affordable casual visit passes and 53% offer multi-visit passes - meaning consumers can exercise freely before entering into membership contracts.
As Fitness Australia General Manager = Operations Robert Barnes explains "a variety of membership types are used across the industry with something that suits the majority of consumers despite media criticism over just one offering being membership contracts paid for by direct debit.
"If you (consumers) are thinking about starting exercising for the first time why not pay casual visits to a few different fitness businesses first before starting to talk membership contracts with the one you choose."
Fitness Australia's research shows that the majority of the industry also offers terms from as little as one month to the maximum allowable 12 months. Three in ten businesses will negotiate flexible terms to suit the individual.
Barnes adds "this is a far cry from the mediaâs criticism of the industry which takes aim at gym membership when in fact it is more likely to be an issue of the consumer having chosen to pay for their membership by direct debit like they do for their Pay TV, mobile phone and magazine subscriptions."
The fitness industry is working for a fitter, healthier Australia and experienced 15% growth in customers in 2008. However, 50% of the industryâs businesses have less than 250 active customers. Only 37% of customers are male with 59% falling into the 25-44 year age category.
As the industry expands different types of fitness services are being offered so the opportunity to start exercising is easier, affordable and offers a wide range of payment options to suit everybody.
Fitness Australia is the national health and fitness industry association working for a fitter, healthier Australia. Fitness Australia is a not-for-profit, member-based association with over 900 registered fitness business members and 20,000 registered exercise professionals Australia-wide.
For more information go to www.fitness.org.au
4th November 2008 - IHRSA REPORTS ON EUROPEAN FITNESS MARKET
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