23 Nov 2017 | Digital editions, magazines, websites, e-zines, handbooks and contract publishing for the leisure industry

Health Club Management issue 11, 2017 is now out!

Blogs:

Health Club Management bloggers:

Liz Terry
CEO,
Leisure Media

Kate Cracknell
editor-at-large,
Health Club Management

Ian Taylor
CEO,
SkillsActive

Gareth Edwards
Director of Education,
Springboard

John Goodbody
Sports Journalist

Peter Ducker
Chief executive,
Institute of Hospitality

Suki Kalirai
Interim CEO,
SkillsActive

Sam Coulstock
Customer Relationship Director,
Springboard

Leah De Silva
Business development director,
Springboard

Peter Moody
Partner,
Brook Street des Roches LLP

David Stalker
CEO,
ukactive

Charles Wilford
Co-Head, Leisure Team,
Gerald Eve

Active Every Day

01 Oct 2015
by Kate Cracknell, editor-at-large, Health Club Management
The goal is ensuring the public have two powerful health mantras to live by: Five a Day, and Active Every Day

The health and fitness industry is failing to capitalise on one of the greatest opportunities it’s ever had, according to Liz Terry, editor of Health Club Management’s sister magazine Leisure Management.

Writing in the current edition of Leisure Management, Terry points to Public Health England’s Everybody Active, Every Day framework, asking why more hasn’t been made of this. Launched in October 2014 in a bid to combat obesity, it marked the first time government had advised the public to be active on a daily basis – don’t worry how much, just do something. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity for the activity sector to seize with both hands – quite possibly the sector’s biggest ever opportunity to enter the mainstream.

Yet while food manufacturers leapt on their version of this governmental gift – the recommendation to eat five daily portions of fruit and veg – and used every channel at their disposal to embed the Five a Day message in the nation’s psyche, the activity sector has done precisely nothing with Active Every Day.

That’s particularly shocking given its huge efforts to get government on board over recent years. What a wasted effort.

This failure to recognise and embrace such a huge opportunity is a symptom of a bigger problem, however, and that’s the fitness sector’s general introspection and lack of focus on the end user: it has never really organised itself to build a direct relationship with the consumer. Yes, we open the doors of our gyms to the public, but few operators have quality conversations with their own members, let alone the wider population. And although the sector has dabbled in awareness campaigns – Change4Life, for example – in general it’s inward-looking, focusing more on government, trade bodies and partners than on directly influencing consumers’ beliefs and behaviours.

That’s perhaps why this gem of a PHE report has been overlooked.

The good news is it isn’t too late: the advice is still current. But we do have to act now, taking ownership of the message, shouting it from the rooftops and giving it so much airtime that it becomes an unquestionable truth among the public. If not, it can be taken away – unused, unowned and forgotten – as quickly as it was gifted to us.

So how do we go about this? First of all, the campaign needs a name – we like Active Every Day – and a brand identity. It also needs strong, sustainable routes to market, so consumers are compelled and constantly reminded to act.

This can be done on many levels, from a stronger focus on consumer PR through to better use of partnerships.

Coca-Cola now sits on the ukactive Membership Council, for example, so how about getting the Active Every Day logo on all Coca-Cola packaging?

We also need a concerted, sector-level push to engage all consumer media, harnessing their power to help drive home this one clear, powerful message.

And what about government itself? The NHS has much to gain from an increase in public activity levels, so could Active Every Day find its way onto hospital letters, prescription slips and so on?

The goal is ensuring the public have two powerful health mantras to live by: Five a Day, and Active Every Day. Let’s act now to make that a reality.



Tags: Health Club Management  executive  health & fitness  public sector  suppliers 

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