In this podcast, we're excited to bring you two expert guests at the intersection of fitness, technology, and education. So many of the leaders we've had on the show have given us a powerful inside look behind the curtain of what fitness tech apps, platforms, and devices are positively impacting our space, but many in the health, wellness, and fitness worlds still have looming questions about exactly how these technologies will plug in into our healthcare ecosystems.
A bigger and even more specific question around fitness technology is how will the education and integration of these new innovations support long term behavior change for our industry's members?
With the rise of technology, how is the academic world answering the call to create that trusted bridge between the knowing and the doing when it comes to applying technology and facilitating positive health outcomes?
We're answering these questions and much more in this episode with fitness technology expert Ted Vickey, for his return to the show from episode 008, and Jessica Matthews, an award-winning and industry leading health and wellness educator.
You'll also learn about applying evidence-based coaching strategies with behavior change techniques to facilitate meaningful lifestyles, how health and fitness pros can collaborate with colleagues in a wide variety of settings to provide an integrative approach to health, and why Point Loma Nazarene University has created the Kinesiology, M.S., Integrative Wellness, to teach students about using technology that provides lifestyle interventions to prevent and effectively manage chronic disease.
For over 20 years, Ted Vickey has immersed himself in fitness technology. Starting as the Executive Director of the White House Athletic Center through his fitness consulting company, FitWell, and continuing with his latest project as a Ph.D. researcher on Social Networking and Exercise at the National University of Ireland, Galway, Ted has proven to be an early adopter and advocate in technical systems and their applicability to fitness.
Ted believes we can take advantage of technology to not only motivate individuals across the globe to get out the door and move but to be in closer contact with healthcare providers.
He is an emeritus member of the Board of Directors for the American Council on Exercise and has consulted with key organizations such as the Department of Commerce, the Securities and Exchange Commission, Fruit of the Loom, TSA and more. He is an emeritus member of the Board of Directors of the American Council on Exercise, the largest non-profit accredited certification organization in the fitness industry.
In his role as senior advisor for disruptive health technologies with Canyon Ranch Institute, he is committed to improving the health of all people through the use of wellness and fitness technology, including wearable technology, to enhance and further innovate new and existing CRI partnerships, programs, initiatives, and evaluation. Ted's work with the Canyon Ranch Institute catalyzes the possibility of optimal health for all people by translating the best practices of Canyon Ranch and its partners to help educate, inspire, and empower every person to prevent disease and choose a life of wellness. By education, Ted is an Exercise Scientist, by experience an Entrepreneur, and by passion a Connector.
Jessica Matthews, M.S., E-RYT 500 is an award-winning, industry leading health and wellness educator. As a seasoned yoga teacher and innovative college professor, she has developed and implemented graduate degree programs as well as comprehensive 200-and 500-hour yoga teacher training programs at the college level in addition to teaching a variety of associate, undergraduate, and graduate-level health and exercise science courses.
A former exercise physiologist and licensed educator based in San Diego, California, Jessica serves as faculty of kinesiology and integrative wellness at Point Loma Nazarene University where she developed the Master of Kinesiology in Integrative Wellness program. She is also a yoga studies professor at MiraCosta College where she co-created the advanced 300-hour yoga teacher training program.
Jessica has a genuine passion and unique ability for transforming people's lives. Armed with a wealth of practical, proven and science-based information through 17 years of work in the health and fitness field, her mission is to positively shift people's perspectives about themselves, their lives, and what they are capable of achieving.
A well-known and trusted expert in establishing and supporting vibrant, conscious awareness of each dimension of well-being, Jessica's holistic approach to wellness is rooted in mindfulness and includes physical, emotional, mental and spiritual components. Jessica is a top level instructor, accomplished writer, captivating speaker and respected educator.
At the heart of your interest in the study of holistic health and well-being is a passion to serve others in body, mind, and spirit. PLNU’s one-year, online Master of Kinesiology in Integrative Wellness will prepare professionals who can improve health in the U.S. through interventions in behavior change, nutrition, and physical activity.
No matter how the degree is applied, it can become the vehicle that health and wellness professionals will use to apply evidence-based strategies that facilitate sustainable health behavior change that can lead to weight loss, healthy eating, regular physical activity, stress reduction, and overall improvements to health and well-being. The integration of lifestyle medicine within healthcare systems is not just effective, but powerful and life-changing for individuals and society.
"The iPhone 6 is one million times more powerful than the computer used to put the man on the moon. What I suggest is that we as the fitness industry, the health industry, and the healthcare industry realize this is our moonshot. This is how we can make a difference, and that is by using technology to make a difference in the lives of those that we have the opportunity and the privilege to serve." - Ted Vickey on the Fitness + Technology Podcast
"There is certainly a missing piece in our healthcare system, and honestly, a missing piece in the fitness industry. We really have to understand that we work with "whole people," encompassing the body, mind, and spirit. In order to really impact meaningful changes in behavior and improve health outcomes we must understand the dynamics of what it is that motivates people to make these changes and how they can be sustainable. That strategy essentially boils down to our evidence-based practices." - Jessica Matthews on the Fitness + Technology Podcast
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.
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.
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.
"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
For episode 36 we are remembering the dynamic health and fitness career of our friend and industry leader, Michael Scott Scudder.
"As some of you may know, a very well-known fitness industry consultant passed away unexpectedly early in July. He was a dear friend of mine, and a dear friend of many people. He was a colleague that we respected for his trends, views, and research that he shared openly with the industry. For this podcast, we're sharing with you an interview that Michael and I did 6 years ago on what's happening to the fitness industry and what our thoughts were at the time. We're doing this in his honor because many people are mourning his loss, and we thought it would be a good thing to think back on all of the great things that he's done and reflect upon his views and mine of six years ago. Please keep Michael and his family in your prayers, he will be dearly missed." - Bryan O'Rourke
Michael spent over four decades in the fitness business as Salesperson, Trainer, Manager, Executive Director, Owner, Consultant/Advisor, Conference Speaker, Webcaster, Independent Fitness Facility Researcher. His energy and expertise supported building systems to help clubs become more successful and use internet technology to bring these web based strategies to the industry.
Michael began his MSS network as "Fitness Focus" in 1991. This morphed into Fitness Business Council in 2002 which eventually became MSS Network in 2012. His Network Donating Memberships presently represent more than 1,600 North American independent health and fitness businesses.
Some of Michael's Accolades:
Bryan O’Rourke is a CEO, board member, advisor, keynote speaker, author and investor, who has successfully expanded global brands for over 30 years. He guides and works with many fitness and health club brands and serves on the IHRSA board of directors. He launched Vedere Ventures, a boutique private equity firm in 2016 and is President of the Fitness Industry Technology Councilwhich supports the Fitness + Technology Podcast . Check it out today. Get his recent book the 9 Partnership Principles written with his partner Robert Dyer and other top fitness industry leaders. Bryan also released with Europe Active the book Customer Engagement and Experience In The Fitness Sector. To learn more visit bryankorourke.com or follow him @bryankorourke .
The Fitness Industry Technology Council in concert with the late Michael Scott Scudder conducted a survey on fitness facility technology Adoption with nearly 1,600 facilities represented in the late Spring of 2017.
The report will be released via the fittechcouncil.org monthly newsletter.
Here are two findings: Only 30% of respondents think they have enough information to make educated decisions about technologies while 42% are not really concerned about falling behind to more technologically savvy competitors.
"Michael would stand on tables and scream at the various industry events where he was presenting at times because he cared so much. A few people thought he was crazy but he was also well connected and quite knowledgable. He could put things in context and always asked great questions. Our calls and talks sometimes were the stuff of William F. Buckley Jr.’s Firing Line; intellectual, rhetorical and quite stimulating if you like that sort of thing; I certainly did. He was also funny and we laughed often together. - Bryan O'Rourke, written in his LinkedIn post honoring Michael.
"There's something that many the veterans of this industry have known for a long time that works, and that is the 20/80 rule. Twenty percent of you customer-base is going to provide you with eighty percent or more of your ancillary revenue." - Michael Scott Scudder
On episode 35 were spotlighting two industry leaders, whom together along with the newly founded Women In Fitness Association, are creating a vibrant space for female leadership in the fitness world.
We're talking to Lindsey Rainwater, an experienced advisor and consultant to the fitness and wellness industry, and Debra Siena, President of Midtown Health. This is a timely subject as the habits, needs, considerations and consumer behaviors of women are so important in the digital age for club owners and operators to understand.
With over 80% of purchase decisions being made by women, we're uncovering in this show how the different segments of technology relate to and how they plug into the way operators and clubs will interact with women inside and outside the club, both today and in the future.
What are women really asking for at the crossroads of fitness and technology? What will the Women In Fitness Association do to support professional women in the fitness industry?
The answers to those questions and much more takeaways for club owners, operators, and fitness professionals with Lindsey Rainwater & Debra Siena in this podcast.
Lindsey, also known as Lindsey Rainh2o is a sought after Business Advisor and Consultant, Writer and Presenter. Lindsey loves helping people and organizations enjoy transformational change. Her enthusiasm for leadership, conscious living, and wellness amplified by technology drives the majority of her writing. Lindsey’s intuitive and intentional form of communication facilitates unimaginable shifts in the unconscious mind resulting in powerful written, verbal and presentation skills.
As a well thought of advisor to the professionals supporting the fitness industry, she is known for her work in business development, business strategy, digital marketing, content creation and change management. Lindsey is also the Founder of The Women in Fitness Association, an association focused on supporting the professional Women in the Fitness Industry. She flows gracefully within a continually changing environment offering consistent effectiveness while delivering creative results. Her entrepreneurial spirit and drive has created a track record of consistent over-achievements throughout her career.
Debra Siena joined the Midtown Athletic Clubs and Midtown Health, in 1986. She is currently President of Midtown Health, a leader in customized fitness center management and employee health and wellbeing solutions nationwide. During her career with Midtown, Ms. Siena has been involved in health club development, acquisition and management of multiple clubs, ranging from 1,200 to 200,000 sq. ft.
Debra has been a featured speaker at wellness industry conventions since 1989, including the International Health Racquet and Sportsclub Association (IHRSA), Club Industry, the Medical Fitness Association, and the World Fitness IDEA convention, having presented in North America, Europe, South America and Asia. Ms. Siena served on the IHRSA board of Directors from 2003 through 2007, and Co-Chaired the Worksite Wellness Committee for Building a Healthier Chicago from 2006 through 2012. Debra received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree “with Honors” from the University of Illinois in Champaign and taught Kinesiology at Columbia College.
"There's no question that women like a virtual fitness community. This has been built off of the group exercise phenomenon and how the majority of women are in classes taking advantage of that community in person, and they've extrapolated that connection into a virtual community where we have more women that check in in the clubs than men, we have more women that follow us under social media than men, I think that there is no question that women like the idea of being connected to a group whether it's competitively or just socially." - Debra Siena on the Fitness + Technology Podcast
"There's things that only women track, whether it's body temperature or the relationship to a female specific needs, or even heart rate relative to being nine months pregnant like myself. Whatever it is that we want to track, I don't think that the wearable market or sensor market has totally honed in on how to support us. We've come a ways forward, but I think there's still a big opportunity here." - Lindsey Rainwater on the Fitness + Technology Podcast