April 2011 Newsletter

Group Fitness ladies, I’d like to use this month’s April news letter to address you en mass as to various concerns you have within the group fitness area. I hope that I can explain the seemingly ongoing member confusion & some member disharmony hereunder.

I would like to clarify this qualification / insurance requirement leading to your safety & well-being in addition to industry best practice. As you are all too aware some instructors do not hold the required national standard of qualifications for the classes they have instructed over the years. Thus some instructors are prevented from leading your classes until they are up to speed with nationally recognized qualifications. Others are limited to how they instruct & / or what they instruct for the time being.

Rest assured that all the action being taken is in your own best interest & your personal well-being, safety & in line with all Australian governing bodies like Kinect Australia, FIRE Australia & the largest of all Fitness Australia’s national guidelines for best practice.

We as a health club have a responsibility for your safety, well-being & health, after all we are a health club & although we want you to have a great time here & enjoy all the activities we provide & all the classes & equipment we have at your disposal we have a responsibility & a duty of care to mitigate as much exposure to risk of injury & accident as we possibly can.

This leads me to the wonderful work that our Group Fitness Manager Leanne Mansfield has done & is doing on a daily basis for you & for her team of instructors. Leanne is batting in our instructor’s corner & batting hard.

She has helped all the instructors get into line, up to speed & suitably qualified & insured as efficiently & fairly as she can. Contrary to some rumours neither Leanne nor the club have been or are penalizing any instructor for being unqualified, far from it, we have bent over backwards putting on Senior First Aid courses, Free-Cycle Spinning courses & sourcing external courses relevant to each under-qualified instructor’s particular needs. Leanne is also mentoring a number of instructors to reach the required level of competency.

Health & fitness instruction is a professional role & a science & one that requires requisite qualifications. Those instructors still absent from the usual classes or limited in what or how they instruct are under the careful, helpful & educational eye of Leanne Mansfield & other professionals as they meet necessary standards before being permitted free rein with you, our valued members again. It is totally for your benefit & safety, no other reason at all.

On a personal note I am surprised & disappointed to hear of this on-going boycotting of certain class slots to endeavour to bring back an instructor into a certain slot. Your actions will not fast track anyone’s return & are probably not even desired by the instructor you are supposedly trying to help. All classes are led by suitably qualified, experienced instructors who will hopefully provide inspirational, motivational, fun & safe exercise prescription for you. Please do respect Leanne’s professional integrity & her laudable endeavours to do the right thing by the members. Leanne has over 25 years leading group fitness & is a highly regarded group fitness manager with requisite experience, skills set & a sterling track record in national & state wide clubs – we are lucky to have her onboard & helping improve the group fitness product, very lucky.

Onto handbags & giant handbags in the work out zones be that gym, cardio theatre, spinning, stretch or group fitness areas. It is again standard across the industry & in line with Fitness Australia who in turn take their edicts from IHRSA (International Health Racquet Sports Association) that bags, personal hold-alls & other personal clobber in workout zones is dangerous & unnecessary on a number of levels.

This has always been the policy in your club, perhaps just not enforced properly in the past. It is not a new edict, far from it. Again for your personal safety, comfort & well-being bags are prohibited in all workout zones. There should be no need for anyone to carry & leave bags strewn around the floor, draped over cycles, hanging off cardio equipment or dangerously positioned for another unsuspecting member to trip over.

If you need personal inhaler, ventilator, medication, personal hygiene apparel, or a mobile phone with you? Then by all means get yourself a small draw-string pouch & carry your ‘mini-pack’ with you into your workout zone. But handbags, hold-alls, back packs, sports bags, kitchen-sinks are not permitted into any workout areas, sorry.

Please use the lockers provided in the changing rooms or if you must, leave a small personal handbag with reception, but lockers are best & safest. This is so basic & so standard across any club in the country that I am slightly bemused that it is causing such consternation amongst some members.

Yoga & Pilates does permit the individual to take their personal relevant equipment into that particular class with them. These classes are sedentary & safe to have one’s blocks, belts, stretch mat & other apparel next to them for personal use during the class, so safe & indeed encouraged to workout with. Those of you with personal boxing gloves, again you can take your equipment into the workout area you are using them in & do so in a clear netted boxing bag (which is what boxing equipment should be kept in to enable it to breathe).

Gym towels & water bottles are encouraged & the former is a must for hygiene reasons, obviously.

I & the crew wish you happy, enjoyable & indeed safe workouts here at Healthy Life & really hope that the above explanation suitably justifies the rationale of the club. It is part of our ongoing attempt to encourage best practice at every level of the operation. All policies are set to facilitate comfort & safety for you the members, no other reason at all.

Have a safe month as you exercise,