As we celebrate our 39th year, we would like to thank all of our members past and present for making us the Northeast’s leader in the health and fitness industry. You’ve fueled our growth from a single club in 1974, to more than 160 clubs with more than 500,000 members and 8,000 employees in 2013. We look forward to strengthening this partnership and improving lives through exercise for many years to come.
The early years
When our first club opened its doors in 1974, the tennis wave of the 1960’s had crested and interest in squash was on the upswing. This squash-friendly climate fostered the birth of our Fifth Avenue Squash Club. This midtown Manhattan location was an instant success and the first brick in the foundation of current Sports Clubs network.
We recognized very early on that building a great member experience is more than great equipment and convenient locations. It’s important to have people who motivate, support and guide our members to be their best and achieve their goals. Much of our current success can be traced back to the dedicated, forward-thinking employees of those early years. In fact, three original employees, who began as trainers, are still part of the Sports Clubs team. CEO Bob Giardina, Fitness Specialist Neal Read and VP of Fitness Services Ed Trainor continue to lead and guide us today.
Fitness revolution, Sports Clubs evolution
By the late 70’s, squash fever was waning but a growing interest in health and fitness was taking root. New information validating the benefits of exercise, coupled with breakthrough training methods and equipment, began to alter the public’s perception of how exercise fit into their daily lives. Recognizing this trend early on, our new clubs were built to resemble the diverse, full-service gyms we know today.
In the 80’s and 90’s, as healthy living became a greater priority and demand grew, we responded quickly with a host of new clubs. Throughout the Northeast, dozens of new clubs were built in urban and suburban areas with the goal of putting health and fitness within easy reach of our customers. Our all-access Passport membership became the most popular choice as thousands of members enjoyed convenient exercise both where they lived and where they worked.
Inside the clubs our members were treated to the latest breakthrough equipment and the hottest classes. Game-changing equipment like the Nautilus cross-training circuit and the Lifecycle stationary bike made shaping up easy for newcomers and pros alike. Classes like step aerobics and Spinning(r) made “getting physical” fun. Pools, basketball courts and kids programs helped families bond while working up a sweat.
Innovation and investment
Today, building a great member experience through fresh and innovative programs continues to be at the heart of what we do. With that in mind, we launched UXF, The Ultimate Fitness Experience. This cross-training workout blends strength training and cardio conditioning to burn calories, build strength and get big results fast. All clubs currently offer UXF and by the end of 2013, many clubs will be outfitted with a new UXF training area. This dynamic space will be equipped with a unique set of training tools designed to challenge the status quo of conventional fitness equipment.
Our line of Signature Classes, Vbarre and Power Pilates Tower, are finding their way to more and more clubs. Featuring handpicked instructors trained and certified by the world-renowned educators at Apogee, these classes are the exercise choice of Hollywood celebrities like Hilary Swank.
We continue to invest in our facilities and equipment to ensure that your club experience meets or exceeds your expectations. This year, every club in the network will receive an allotment of new and replacement cardio and strength equipment.
The evidence is overwhelming. Countless studies show that regular exercise is a key ingredient to living a long and healthy life. Not only does exercise tone your body so you can fit into your “skinny” jeans, it strengthens your muscles, bones and immune system, helps you sleep better, improves your mood and sharpens your brain. We’re committed to improving lives through exercise and that means we’re committed to you. By delivering fresh and innovative programs, first-class facilities and exceptional customer service we want to put the benefits of exercise within easy reach of our members. Whether you are 18 or 87, we’ll be there to help you live your longest, happiest, healthiest life. Let’s grow stronger together - here’s to another 39!