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Fitness + Technology

Welcome to the Fitness + Technology Podcast for club owners, operators, and fitness professionals! This show is your #1 trusted resource for the accelerating world of fitness technology. Each week, we bring you an expert interview with a global influencer at the crossroads of fitness and technology. You’ll get the insights, tools, and inspiration you need to stay connected to the pulse of what matters most for your fitness business in the age of exponential technologies. This podcast is brought to you by the Fitness Industry Technology Council, who is mobilizing resources to drive the fitness industry forward, and representing leading companies and organizations to success through collaboration. This show is supported by Vedere Ventures, a boutique investment and advisory firm helping early mature and late stage enterprises succeed in a new era. Hosted by wellness influencer and founder of Wellness Force, Josh Trent.
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Jul 18, 2017

For episode 37 we're learning about the exponential benefits and current progress of the #PHITAct, and why it is so vital to fitness industry growth, with the Vice-Chair of IHRSA and the Owner of Newtown Athletic Club, Jim Worthington.

After the recent report published by PHIT America In 2017 - "The Inactivity Pandemic," it should not come as a surprise that Nike, The Cooper Institute, The American Heart Institute, Shape America, & Pop Warner Football are all joining forces to pass the #PHITAct through both the Senate and Congress.

As you'll hear on today's show with Jim, this legislation has the potential to massively uplevel our industry reach and help put prevention in our healthcare system. Earlier in 2017, you heard from Bryan O'Rourke in F+T episode #020, about how even with as much as we're doing collectively in the fitness industry to help fight the obesity epidemic, the reality is that the current healthcare model is broken. 

What we have now isn’t healthcare, it's sick care, and the passage of the #PHITAct will bring legislative power to help change that by getting more people active and healthy than ever before. With this turning of the tide, the #PHITAct will also help Americans save 20-30% on yearly expenses related to physical activity.

As an industry professional, we need your help today to make this bill pass.

Be sure to tap on your show artwork and click the link: "Ask Congress To Pass #PHITAct."

What simple yet effective actions can thousands of fitness leaders in our space take to create more revenue and serve large numbers of brand new members?

The answer to that question and much more takeaways for club owners, operators, and fitness professionals in this episode with Jim Worthington.

About Jim Worthington

Jim Worthington is the owner of the Newtown Athletic Club (NAC) a 250,000 square foot lifestyle club on 22 acres established in 1978 in Newtown, PA. He is also a real-estate developer and a supporter of start-up entrepreneurs. After earning a Bachelor’s degree in 1978 from West Chester University and working as a racquetball pro and club manager, Jim took on an ownership role at the NAC in 1981, building the club to its current status as a Top 100 Club in America for the past 20 years.   

Mr. Worthington is now the sole owner of the club which is considered the third largest privately owned individual health club in the nation. As a 40-year industry veteran and a member of IHRSA (International Health Racquetball and Sports Association) since its inception, Jim has contributed to countless industry publications, attended every IHRSA conference and now serves on the IHRSA Board of Directors as the Vice Chair. He has pioneered many club concepts such as bundling membership fees, membership integration initiatives and all-inclusive programming.  

His club has received numerous local and national honors as a reflection of his maverick leadership and vision. Jim has also founded the Delaware Valley alliance of Health and Sports Clubs and the NAC Have a Heart Foundation (501c3) which handles all of the NAC’s charitable initiatives and oversees the “My Right To Try” advocacy work to help terminally ill patients receive FDA Phase 2 and 3 potentially life-saving trial drugs earlier.

Jim is a visionary and leader not only in the fitness industry but also in his community donating to many charitable causes and generally making the world a better place.

Listen To Episode 037 As Jim Uncovers

  • What the PHIT Act will do for the future of the fitness industry space 
  • Why the PHIT Act is so vital to our industry growth
  • What is the current status of progress for the PHIT Act in Congress
  • What is IHRSA doing to support the PHIT Act passage in Congress
  • What are the detailed benefits of the PHIT Act for the fitness industry and other sports, health, and wellness industries such as massage, DCT, chiropractic and many more
  • How industry professionals can take appropriate actions to help support IHRSA and the PHIT Act in 2017
  • Why it becomes easy for busy fitness industry professionals to get involved in their day- to-day roles and miss the "big picture" of how bills like the PHIT Act can help them help more people 
  • What new possibilities Jim Worthington sees on the horizon at the intersection of fitness and technology
  • How club owners, operators, and fitness professionals can leverage their members and networks to spark change 
  • How to ask your congressional representative to support the passage of PHIT America

Top 3 Takeaways From The Show

  • Jim reminds us that our Congressional representatives work for us. As a fitness industry professional, it may feel somewhat overwhelming to believe your vote will create impact for this bill, but the truth is that the IHRSA organization is here to support getting your voice heard. Be sure to tap on the show artwork today right from your phone, and click here: "Ask Congress To Pass #PHITAct."
  • IHRSA can only do so much. When it comes to relationships with your Local Senators, State Senators, and Local Congressmen, it's really the obligation of the people in the industry, the club owners, and the operators, to reach out and make this a priority for their representatives. Jim believes this is the biggest opportunity we've ever seen for the fitness industry to grow its participants and change more people's lives.
  • The #PHITAct is far bigger than just our space, it's a way to bring fitness down to the levels of the less fortunate and to those who can't afford a health club membership. It allows for lower-economic citizens to have access to more of the same things that everyone else does. The reality is that not everyone has the ability to attend a fitness facility, and the #PHTAct will make a huge difference for the health of so many who need it most.

Power Quotes From Jim

"IHRSA can only do so much. When it comes to relationships with your Local Senators or your State Senators and Local Congressmen, it's really the obligation of the people in the industry, the club owners and the operators, to reach out and make this a priority to get them on board with the PHIT Act. Frankly, that's where my frustration lies. I feel like this could be the biggest opportunity for our fitness industry to grow the amount of participants and change people's lives."  -  Jim Worthington on the Fitness + Technology Podcast

"I urge everyone to get out there and make that call to push the PHIT Act over the goal line. If we don't do it this year, I don't know if we're ever going to because we've been talking about this for 10 years." - Jim Worthington on the Fitness + Technology Podcast

Resources Mentioned From Jim

Thanks To Our Outstanding Sponsors

  • Bryan O’Rourke and his family of companies including Vedere VenturesIntegerus Advisors, and many more. If you are looking for unmatched guidance, capital, insights or a great speaker or facilitator, Bryan and his partners are the go to resource for your organization. To learn more visit bryankorourke.com
  • The Fitness Industry Technology Council, your non-profit resource for reliable technology information supported by forward looking brands who are seeking to drive increased technology adoption in the fitness industry. Make a difference and join FIT-C at fittechcouncil.org today
  • Check out Bryan and his partner Robert Dyer's recent book "9 Partnership Principles: A Story of Life Lessons" which is available now on Amazon.com
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