Around the World – Exercisers Want 24 Hour Fitness
Technology has made it easier than ever to connect people all over the world. Whether you are giving a presentation to your Paris-based management team from your Sao Paulo office, or instant messaging with a sibling in Sydney from your laptop in London, it’s pretty clear that our daily lives are no longer constrained by location or time. So why should fitness centers operate on the old 9-5 schedule?
The 24-hour fitness center trend began in the U.S., where it has remained a popular way to cater to the niche market of nocturnal exercisers, but over the past few years, many international facilities have adopted the 24-hour schedule to capitalize on the opportunity to increase member retention and aquisition. For example, popular 24-hour franchise chain Anytime Fitness has experienced tremendous growth over the past several years. Their focus on smaller facilities, high-quality equipment and of course, 24-hour convenience, has allowed them to expand outside of the U.S. with stunning locations in Australia, England and now India, Spain, New Zealand, Qatar and the Netherlands – you can be sure there are many more planned.
The “always on” mentality that many attribute to U.S. culture is no longer bound state-side. Increasingly, people around the world expect their world on-demand, and they expect no less of their gym.
If you are a facility owner or operator, consider a 24-hour policy today (or tonight). Even if you are only catering to a few new members, the operating cost is negligible.
The benefits of a 24-hour schedule cost a lot less than you probably think, thanks to advancements in security technology and energy-efficient equipment that saves you on your electricity bill. Many always-open fitness centers utilize keycard or fob entry and exit points to avoid the cost of having to employ front desk staff in the wee hours. Security cameras, well-lit walkways and locker rooms, and push-button access to an emergency-alert system will all contribute to making late-night members feel safe.
Most 24-hour fitness centers report that their gyms are not very crowded at night, so you do not have to keep all of your machines powered on overnight; updated asset management programs from the Life Fitness cloud computing solution, LFconnect, will help you determine which machines to keep powered on and how many of them. Using motion-sensors in lower-traffic workout areas will also contribute to electricity savings and power conservation.
Tell us what you think. Have you decided to keep the doors open around the clock? How has it helped grow your business?