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UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
Health Club Management

Health Club Management

features

Editor’s letter: Join the meditation club

Mindfulness and meditation represents a huge opportunity for health clubs – and now a new breed of boutique studio is leading the way, showing how meditation can be packaged in a way that really engages today’s wellness consumer

By Kate Cracknell | Published in Health Club Management 2017 issue 3
Studios such as Unplug offer ‘drive-by meditation’
Studios such as Unplug offer ‘drive-by meditation’

There’s a new studio concept hitting the market, only this time the offering isn’t physical fitness – it’s mental wellbeing. And it’s being given the full boutique treatment: see page 46 of this month’s HCM for our report into the emerging trend of boutique meditation studios.

Given the rapid growth of the fitness boutiques, it’s hardly surprising that other aligned sectors have started to eye up the model and ask whether it could work for them too. But the extent to which the new-style meditation studios have mirrored the fitness boutiques is eye-catching, with their premium pay-as-you-go offering; an uber-cool, design-led experience; top quality sessions led by world-class instructors; and a focus on building a community around the brand.

Readers will be familiar with how all the above looks in a fitness boutique, but how does it translate into the meditation space?

Let’s start with the pay-per-class aspect, which is perhaps even more beneficial for meditation than it is for fitness. Previously, people would have had to commit to a regular course to learn to meditate; not always easy to find the time. But now they don’t have to worry. The new model is all about drop-in sessions – or what Unplug Meditation founder Suze Yalof calls ‘drive-by meditation’.

With consumers increasingly expecting the delivery of wellbeing to be experiential and high-end, these new operators have also recognised the importance of venue design. They’ve taken meditation out of its traditional environment – people’s homes, village halls and complementary medicine clinics – and are serving it up in beautifully crafted spaces with a serious ‘dwell factor’.

They’ve also recognised the role of community in a successful boutique; Tal Rabinowitz of Den Meditation in Los Angeles explains how her venue is designed “a bit like a hip, cool living room where people feel comfortable hanging out”; they serve tea and coffee during the day and wine in the evenings. This is meditation, but it’s meditation in the mainstream – normalised (indeed, the new “in” thing to do) and made accessible and social.

And all of this is important for health club operators, because for the most part it’s something they could replicate.

In our trend-spotting Fitness ForesightTM 2017 (see page 12 of the HCM Handbook 2017), we identified dedicated meditation spaces as an exciting opportunity for health clubs; the emergence of meditation boutiques adds further weight to this. Members already see their clubs as places to exercise out the stresses of the day; why not also cater for those who prefer to quietly decompress and wind down?

There’s certainly a good business case for doing so, both in terms of giving existing members another reason to visit and attracting new users – people who aren’t overly interested in honing their physique, but who would welcome an opportunity to unwind after work. Given that meditation boutiques are charging around US$25 per session, there’s also a secondary revenue opportunity here.

So how best to implement this? One option would be to create meditation zones in the club – quiet spaces where people could simply sit, undistracted by the TV or their list of household chores.

But as the new boutiques are proving, people are keen for guidance in their meditation. Another option might therefore be to create ‘club in club’ meditation boutiques, in the same way we’re seeing operators create ‘club in club’ cycling boutiques.

But there’s also a halfway house. Fitness industry veteran Tony de Leede recently launched ‘Move 123’ virtual classes – with virtual meditation included on the list of programmes (see p24). With these sessions available on-demand, clubs really do have the opportunity to deliver a ‘drive-by’ approach to meditation.

It’s time to get fully on-board with meditation and mindfulness.

[email protected]

@healthclubkate

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
https://www.leisureopportunities.co.uk/images/50393_125675.jpg
Health clubs can learn from boutique meditation studios, which are leading the way in packaging the discipline so that it appeals to today's consumer.
Kate Cracknell, Editor, Health club Management,boutique studio, meditation, mindfulness, Kate Cracknell, Unplug meditation, Suze Yalof, Tal Rabinowitz, Den Meditation, Tony de Leede, Move 123,
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features

Editor’s letter: Join the meditation club

Mindfulness and meditation represents a huge opportunity for health clubs – and now a new breed of boutique studio is leading the way, showing how meditation can be packaged in a way that really engages today’s wellness consumer

By Kate Cracknell | Published in Health Club Management 2017 issue 3
Studios such as Unplug offer ‘drive-by meditation’
Studios such as Unplug offer ‘drive-by meditation’

There’s a new studio concept hitting the market, only this time the offering isn’t physical fitness – it’s mental wellbeing. And it’s being given the full boutique treatment: see page 46 of this month’s HCM for our report into the emerging trend of boutique meditation studios.

Given the rapid growth of the fitness boutiques, it’s hardly surprising that other aligned sectors have started to eye up the model and ask whether it could work for them too. But the extent to which the new-style meditation studios have mirrored the fitness boutiques is eye-catching, with their premium pay-as-you-go offering; an uber-cool, design-led experience; top quality sessions led by world-class instructors; and a focus on building a community around the brand.

Readers will be familiar with how all the above looks in a fitness boutique, but how does it translate into the meditation space?

Let’s start with the pay-per-class aspect, which is perhaps even more beneficial for meditation than it is for fitness. Previously, people would have had to commit to a regular course to learn to meditate; not always easy to find the time. But now they don’t have to worry. The new model is all about drop-in sessions – or what Unplug Meditation founder Suze Yalof calls ‘drive-by meditation’.

With consumers increasingly expecting the delivery of wellbeing to be experiential and high-end, these new operators have also recognised the importance of venue design. They’ve taken meditation out of its traditional environment – people’s homes, village halls and complementary medicine clinics – and are serving it up in beautifully crafted spaces with a serious ‘dwell factor’.

They’ve also recognised the role of community in a successful boutique; Tal Rabinowitz of Den Meditation in Los Angeles explains how her venue is designed “a bit like a hip, cool living room where people feel comfortable hanging out”; they serve tea and coffee during the day and wine in the evenings. This is meditation, but it’s meditation in the mainstream – normalised (indeed, the new “in” thing to do) and made accessible and social.

And all of this is important for health club operators, because for the most part it’s something they could replicate.

In our trend-spotting Fitness ForesightTM 2017 (see page 12 of the HCM Handbook 2017), we identified dedicated meditation spaces as an exciting opportunity for health clubs; the emergence of meditation boutiques adds further weight to this. Members already see their clubs as places to exercise out the stresses of the day; why not also cater for those who prefer to quietly decompress and wind down?

There’s certainly a good business case for doing so, both in terms of giving existing members another reason to visit and attracting new users – people who aren’t overly interested in honing their physique, but who would welcome an opportunity to unwind after work. Given that meditation boutiques are charging around US$25 per session, there’s also a secondary revenue opportunity here.

So how best to implement this? One option would be to create meditation zones in the club – quiet spaces where people could simply sit, undistracted by the TV or their list of household chores.

But as the new boutiques are proving, people are keen for guidance in their meditation. Another option might therefore be to create ‘club in club’ meditation boutiques, in the same way we’re seeing operators create ‘club in club’ cycling boutiques.

But there’s also a halfway house. Fitness industry veteran Tony de Leede recently launched ‘Move 123’ virtual classes – with virtual meditation included on the list of programmes (see p24). With these sessions available on-demand, clubs really do have the opportunity to deliver a ‘drive-by’ approach to meditation.

It’s time to get fully on-board with meditation and mindfulness.

[email protected]

@healthclubkate

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
https://www.leisureopportunities.co.uk/images/50393_125675.jpg
Health clubs can learn from boutique meditation studios, which are leading the way in packaging the discipline so that it appeals to today's consumer.
Kate Cracknell, Editor, Health club Management,boutique studio, meditation, mindfulness, Kate Cracknell, Unplug meditation, Suze Yalof, Tal Rabinowitz, Den Meditation, Tony de Leede, Move 123,
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Peloton is expanding its reach within the online fitness market with the launch of a ...
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People with depression should be prescribed exercise and then monitored for the first 12 weeks ...
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Opinion
promotion
While much of the fitness industry has reopened its doors across the UK over the past weeks, many members are yet to return.
Opinion: Re-engaging your post-lockdown absent members
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier news: Celebrating the return of group exercise – Les Mills to host free ‘Fastest Way Back’ livestream event for the industry
Last month (May) saw the welcomed return of group exercise classes. Group exercise is the heartbeat for so many clubs, with in-studio and instructor-led live experiences at the pinnacle.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier news: Is broken gym equipment killing your business potential?
You’re pumped and ready for your workout. Then you see it, the dreaded ‘out of order’ signs hanging from treadmills, weight machines or cross-trainers.
Featured operators news
Featured operator news: Everyone Active generates £342m in social value
Award-winning leisure operator Everyone Active generated £342million in social value at its sites across the country in 2019/20.
Featured operators news
Featured operator news: Everyone Active bolsters Everyone on Demand and enters second year with five new partnerships
Everyone Active has signed a number of new deals which will see the operator strengthen its digital product offering, Everyone on Demand.
Video Gallery
FreeMotion Fitness
Pendex
MyZone Group Ltd
Company profiles
Company profile: Proinsight Mystery Shopping
We take time at the outset to understand your unique customer journey. Then we work ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Mediana Co., Ltd.
Mediana specialises in the manufacture of medical and health care devices, such as body composition ...
Supplier Showcases
Supplier showcase - Safe Space: Changing concept
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Uniforms
Service Sport: Uniforms
Lockers/interior design
Safe Space Lockers Ltd: Lockers/interior design
Trade associations
International SPA Association - iSPA: Trade associations
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Management software
fibodo Limited: Management software
Fitness equipment
Octane Fitness: Fitness equipment
Architects/designers
Zynk Design Consultants: Architects/designers
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SpaBooker: Spa software
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Diary dates
01-04 Jul 2021
Expo Centre & Riviera di Rimini, Italy
Diary dates
18-19 Sep 2021
Locations worldwide,
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2021
Messe Stuttgart, Germany
Diary dates
28-29 Sep 2021
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
04-07 Nov 2021
Exhibition Centre , Cologne, Germany
Diary dates
01-03 Feb 2022
Coventry Building Society Arena, Coventry, United Kingdom
Diary dates
01-07 Dec 2022
tbc, Dunedin, New Zealand
Diary dates
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