Leisure centers are attractive for members due to their vast offering of wellness resources. However, nowadays customers are looking for convenient means to become healthier.
As mobile solutions, such as to-your-door massage therapists, home-visit personal trainers, and subscription-delivered fit lunchboxes begin to gain popularity, people don’t have to leave the comfort of their homes to work on their wellness.
This new ‘to-your-door’ demand is problematic for the holistic leisure center. Leisure centers are a place for communities and families to visit, get fit and enjoy time together. However mobiles, while isolating people, are also delivering wellness services and goods directly to the consumer.
In order to compete with the changing wellness landscape, club managers need to look at implementing popular leisure center activities to help incentivize members back into their club and turn them into a wellness community.
It is not enough for leisure centers to simply offer recreational or fitness tools and space to their members anymore. To revitalize their community, club managers will need to elevate their offer by providing fun fitness class ideas and trendy leisure club activities sutible for all members to partake in.
As it stands today, the most popular fitness activities do not allow people to simply improve physically, the best workouts also benefit the emotional and mental state of participants. Stress relief, mindfulness, and increasing brain power are also now popular incentives for people to work out.
In this article, we will take you through the most common and trendy leisure club activities you can incorporate into your facility to maximize member happiness, appeal to new markets and reduce your membership churn.
We will focus on analysing popular leisure club activities for:
- Pool facilities
- Studio's and classes
- Fitness centers
- Indoor & outdoor sports arenas
Activities for Pool Facilities
It is widely known that swimming is a great activity for all ages. Due to water resistance, aqua activities engage the whole body while decreasing weight bearing by up to 90%. Because of this, exercises completed in a pool are much easier than when they are completed in a studio.
It has now become common to increase the resistance but lower the impact of many common land-based activities, such as cycling and yoga, by creating aquatic versions of them. Leisure center managers can attract more members into their pool facility by introducing new twists on popular leisure center activities.
Pool activities such as aqua yoga, aqua therapy, and aqua Zumba are useful in providing members with coordination and balance training, making it a useful sport for those recovering from injuries, too.
For example, aquatic therapy has become a trendy leisure center activity for elderly people who are looking for a low impact yet difficult workout. Water rests the joints and massages the muscles, while at the same time providing resistance which improves both strength and stamina.
Another attractive element of leisure center pool activities is not only effective workout it gives, but also it’s stress relieving benefits.
Aqua yoga, in particular, leverages the calming capabilities of water to help de-stress participants, while at the same time, increasing the difficulty of the yoga poses due to the balance needed for the yoga board. The fusion of a beloved and well known exercise, such as yoga, with a new aquatic environment is what makes it such a popular leisure center activity.
Trendy Leisure Club Classes
Leisure center managers can foster an inclusive ‘tribe’ atmosphere within their facilities by concentrating their efforts into setting up trendy fitness classes.
Exercise classes are a wonderful way for members to challenge themselves, find a new hobby, support and grow together. But, the most popular leisure club classes don’t focus solely on fitness, they focus more on learning new skills, having fun or relieving stress.
Martial Arts Classes
A common fitness hobby, martial arts demands mental focus as well as physical agility and power, making them a perfect mind body leisure activity.
For untrained members, martial arts can be intimidating to join in with, however now there are trending fighting styles which reject hierarchical (and excluding) belting systems, making them suitable for all levels to try.
As the national sport of Thailand steeped in centuries of tradition, Muay Thai is by no means a ‘new sport’ but it is, however, riding a new wave of popularity in the west. Specialist boutique gyms, in particular, have been creating classes based on the ancient fighting techniques.
Unlike boxing or kickboxing, the Eastern fighting technique focuses on using eight points (arms, elbows, knees, legs) of the body as both offensive and defensive tools in close combat.
The quick sparring techniques and use of all limbs make Muay Thai excellent for those members seeking an intense full-body cardio workout.
Such a class would be highly appealing to teenage and young adult members. The skills, once taught are easy to acquire, making it more accessible to improve with. Other benefits of Muay Thai include:
- Increased cardiovascular conditioning
- Increased hip mobility
- Stress relief
In addition to this, the techniques used in the sport are highly effective when used in self-defense, especially for women, as the moves first focus on stamina and landing strategic blows.
Kickboxing pairs the classic techniques of boxing with agile kicking moves. In the classes, members typically go through a combination of moves done in the style of HIIT, as well as learning kicking and punching techniques which focus on form and balance.
As both a cardio and balance related workout, the sport can also help strengthen neuromuscular control in people to improve balance, mobility, and dual-tasking activities, making it a challenging and very beneficial workout for older members of your leisure facility.
Dance workouts have been a wildly popular leisure center activity for decades. Highly effective as a means of cardio and flexibility training, many workouts have become popular simply by adding a ‘dance’ element to them. For some members, moving in time to a beat and listening to a rhythm adds more motivation and fun to their fitness routine than any other workout might.
Heralded as a difficult yet empowering workout for women, pole dancing is not an easy talent to master. The sheer amount of strength and flexibility needed for the pole means gaining the skills is a long-term commitment, therefore a big attraction of pole dancing classes is the focus on a person’s self-determination. Members have to become 100% attuned to feeling their own bodies as they grow and become stronger and more flexible, which is why in the long term, pole has become such a trendy fitness class.
Adding a pole dancing class to your facility’s class schedule can give your members a chance to build their confidence and find a body-positive, and enthusiastic community to workout with.
A new dance workout on the rise. Bokwa can offer a more unique workout for your members than the over-marketed Zumba class. Taking inspiration from hip-hop and South African dance styles, a Bokwa class can give rhythmically inspired leisure members something different to try. Like Zumba, Bokwa has been developed primarily as a fitness workout, therefore trainers need to be Bokwa certified to teach the class.
In a Bokwa class, the steps resemble letters and numbers and participants are encouraged to improvise on their own alongside the instructor’s directions.
Unlike pole dancing, which requires discipline, focus and dedication, Bowka’s appeal lies in the fact it encourages members to play with the steps. The focus is first fun and then fitness.
As there are move modifications for everyone, so all ages and levels can experiment with this dance class, making it a fun leisure center activity for families to try out together.
Aerial Fitness Classes
A new craze which is taking off in studios around the globe, aerial fitness. It works by fitting strong hammocks from a studio ceiling which can support up to 1,000 lbs. Members are then hoisted into the air to contort themselves, stretch, flip and extend themselves into several positions under the watchful eye of an instructor.
While aerial fitness isn’t as dynamic as other floor-based studio workouts, the main aim is to produce mindful and graceful moves which are powerful in building core strength.
In addition, the use of aerial fitness offers a completely new environment for members to unwind themselves in. The novelty of the aerial trend has already seen it reach into the top 5 yoga experiences people want to try.
The beauty of aerial fitness for leisure clubs is that, not only is the workout popular, but aerial hammocks can also be used for a multitude of other trendy fitness activities, making them suitable for many members; from members looking for workouts to align their joints to members looking for an exciting, new hobby.
Examples of aerial fitness classes include:
- Aerial yoga
- Aerial barre
- Aerial hoop
Popular Activities for Leisure Center Sport Arenas
Beloved childhood games such as Capture the Flag, Dodgeball, or British Bulldog, along with pop culture inspired games such as Quidditch and the Hunger Games have re-emerged as a popular fitness activity by changing gruelling exercise into playtime for adults.
From a leisure facility perspective, offering playground games at your club is a cost-effective way to draw in families, adults who dislike workouts and children.
Very little equipment is needed to play, as playground games rely on imagination, communication and strategy to work. Fitness or form isn’t focused on at all while playing, thus making playground gaming a very alluring alternative to traditional class workouts.
Activities for the Fitness Center
On the other end of the sporting spectrum, there are members who prefer working out alone, training diligently and motivating themselves. For these people, seeing quantifiable results can really help them feel validated and drive them forward.
Implementing a monthly fitness challenge in your leisure center can shake up workouts for those members who prefer to exercise alone, but who still crave a good competition.
Fitness challenges are put in place to push your members harder and they help create a community feeling even for the most independent of members. To work correctly fitness challenges must be clear and quantifiable. Some ideas for a fitness challenge include:
- Most visits to the gym in 6 weeks
- Longest distance cycled over 1 month
- Beat your personal best by 10% in a month
- Most weight lost in 2 months
With the vast membership base many leisure centers have, it can be difficult to measure the success of each member who joins the challenge. And here is where digital can come into play.
For example, by creating a club app with an open API, you can create your fitness challenge registration, track and quantify the results. The open API can allow you to integrate your app with various other popular fitness tracker apps. This way your members can log their steps, time or calories within your club’s app. You can then collect all the information and easily assess who the winner of the challenge is.
Pro Tip: Providing rewards for the victor, such as coupons and free PT or spa sessions will help incentivize more members to join up and compete.
Virtual reality is one of the newest and most exciting work out trends to emerge in 2019. By using virtual reality headsets and sensors, members can immerse themselves in recreational gaming, all the while reaping the benefits of a good workout.
With the limitless concepts of gaming scenarios on offer, members are able to choose ‘realities’ which can help train certain disciplines, such as mindfulness, balance, power, coordination, and agility.
In order to deliver more VR experiences to their members, there has also been a rise in immersive VR studios, in which huge screens and powerful speakers line the walls of the room, allowing an entire class to be sucked into a new world as they work out.
Through merging thrilling and flexible gaming concepts with workouts, virtual reality has big potential to become a trendy leisure club activity.
Leisure Center Activity Management Tips
Keeping your leisure facility and the vast array of activities on offer working smoothly is a complex task. Leisure managers, however, can make their lives easier by utilizing a club management software which allows the club to conveniently book facilities and market their activities easier.
With an online leisure facility booking system, you can have a comprehensive overview of your months to see which rooms are booked up regularly and which are left empty.
Perfect Gym offers a comprehensive and intuitive facility and class booking tool as part of our leisure management software suite. With our facility booking tools, staff can book classes and rooms for members. The PG system also comes with an automated feature and will reject multiple requests for the same time slots at the same room, ensuring double booking doesn’t occur.
Our leisure management software also gives club managers a client portal, which syncs up automatically when used with Perfect Gym’s back office system. With a client portal, leisure club members have the power to book and cancel facility rooms and classes as they please from their home. This allows your members to enjoy your facility on their terms.
In addition to this, if a facility or class is booked to capacity, the member can opt to be put on a waiting list. Our software will then swap in members from the waiting list if cancellations happen.
Marketing your new activities, events and classes to your facility’s members can be an operational pain, especially when you are using an automation center which runs separately from your leisure club management platform.
To effectively upsell your new activities and classes, you can use a club management software which comes with a built in communication automation tool so you can craft and schedule friendly, incentivizing messages to your client base.
Such a holistic software can reduce the effort needed to upsell to your members. According to McKinsey and Company, email marketing performs 40x better than social media marketing in terms of conversion rates.
In the PG automation center, you can deliver leisure facility news, explain about the benefits of the popular leisure center activities and promote club deals, thus keeping your members in the know.
In a Nutshell...
In conclusion, leisure facilities have a tough job of maintaining and distributing a steady flow of interest in their various facilities. Unused facilities mean a loss of revenue for leisure clubs. To help end this, leisure managers should try to add new and inventive classes and activities into their facility schedule to entice members back into their club.
Adding popular fitness activities which offer care for both mind and body allows your members to fulfill all their wellness needs in one place, keeping their satisfaction high.
However, running new classes and creating new activities can become burdensome from a management angle. To ease this, leisure club managers should invest in a powerful and holistic club management platform, one which empowers the customer to make their own bookings and reduces the organizational effort of facility staff.