GET HCM
magazine
Sign up for the FREE digital edition of HCM magazine and also get the HCM ezine and breaking news email alerts.
Not right now, thanksclose this window
Technogym
Technogym
Technogym
Follow Health Club Management on Twitter Like Health Club Management on Facebook Join the discussion with Health Club Management on LinkedIn Follow Health Club Management on Instagram
UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
Health Club Management

Health Club Management

features

Everyone's talking about...: Research databases

The spa industry launched a research portal in 2011, making scientific research to support its practices easily accessible. Should the health and fitness industry follow suit?

By Kath Hudson | Published in Health Club Management 2013 issue 6

The spa industry pulled off quite an achievement when it created its research portal – www.spaevidence.com. The site re-badged four selected medical research engines under the spaevidence banner, creating one site that gives access to thousands of clinical studies into 21 of the most common spa and wellness modalities.

This was the first time much of this research was made available to the public. Users can decide on the depth they want to go into, either reading the full research document, or a summary of five research documents per therapy.

When the site was unveiled at the 2011 Global Spa Summit, its creators – Susie Ellis, Dr Kenneth Pelletier, Dr Daniel Friedland, Dr Marc Cohen and web developer Self Optima – were given a standing ovation. Much of the audience was in tears, as they felt their work had finally been given credence.

So should the fitness sector follow the lead of the spa industry? There’s certainly no shortage of research. If we did manage to create a research portal, might this be enough to persuade GPs to prescribe exercise to patients on a wider scale? Could this be the tool to persuade the sedentary population to take action?

Were such a project to go ahead, there would be several practical issues to address. Pulling it all together would be a lot of work: who would do this and who might fund it – might it be a candidate for crowd-funding? And who would govern it on an ongoing basis?

If it’s an industry project, will the public view it suspiciously – will it only work if the healthcare industry, or government, also has a role in its creation?

And if such a website were set up and proved successful, attracting new interest in fitness among the public, would we be ready with the support people might need to change their lifestyles? We ask the experts.....

Susie Ellis

Susie Ellis
Susie Ellis

Chair,

Global Spa and Wellness Summit


“I think the health and fitness industry should definitely follow the lead of the spa industry in creating a portal. We saw a need to communicate all of the evidenced-based research to consumers, the industry, the media and medical professionals. In doing so, we’ve given credence to the people working in the industry.

There have been many studies done, but finding them was not easy. Although it initially seemed like an insurmountable challenge, once we found the databases and worked out that we could pre-populate the searches on the site, we had overcome all of the major challenges. We selected PubMed because it’s readily available, Cochrane because it has a lot of credibility with doctors, TRIP because it’s user-friendly and Natural Standard because it had already curated a lot of information. This is the only database we pay an annual fee to use; the rest were happy to get the extra traffic to their sites.

Global Spa and Wellness Summit funded the portal, which cost around US$50,000 to set up: the figure would have been higher if the doctors hadn’t given their time for free. The portal now costs about US$10,000 a year to run. The way it has been set up means it gets regularly updated, as the databases are updated, so it’s simple to govern.”

Dr Daniel Friedland

Dr Daniel Friedland
Dr Daniel Friedland

CEO & president,

SuperSmartHealth


“T he health and fitness industry should follow our lead. The main aim of spaevidence.com is to help anchor the spa industry with a scientific foundation. The portal highlights science-based wellness choices and reinforces the efforts already being made by spa professionals to bring wellness to people.

There’s more work to be done – making the portal more accessible, for example, and continuing to educate not only practitioners but also health-seekers among the general public to leverage the evidence – but it’s a great first step.

Whereas the spa industry has multiple modalities to deal with, the health and fitness industry has a narrower scope. However, there’s so much research about exercise that to try and present it all would be almost impossible. The fitness industry would need to frame the key questions that the health-seeker might ask if they wanted to engage in a healthy regime. It would then need to look for the key databases and find a cost-effective way to collate, digest and present the evidence and keep the database updated. I fully advocate the health and fitness sector doing this. It would create transparency, giving wellness empowerment to the health-seeker and a powerful tool set to maintain their optimal health.”

Chris Beedie

Chris Beedie
Chris Beedie

Director,

ukactive Research Institute


chris beedie
ukactive Research Institute • Director
“Y es, the health and fitness industry should have a database of research. However, I think on a political and business level this is likely to be a non-starter. Beyond the immediate vast scope of the task from a scientific perspective, the biggest problems are those of who would host it and who would fund it. ukactive would be the obvious host, and the industry the obvious funder. However, the ‘industry’ is a nebulous entity, and there will be plenty of people unwilling to fund the project while being happy to benefit from it.
For a resource of this type to be truly effective, we do not need a portal to existing databases, but rather a regularly updated database of relevant research supported by expert commentaries. There also needs to be a clear distinction between useful and poor quality research.
At the ukactive Research Institute, we’re currently focusing on writing papers that synthesise published research in specific areas (for example, exercise and insulin sensitivity, exercise and lipid profile) – papers that also provide exercise prescription guidelines based on these syntheses. As a result of these processes, we anticipate that a useful research database will develop organically.”

Dr Lucy Goundry

Dr Lucy Goundry
Dr Lucy Goundry

Medical director, wellbeing ,

Nuffield Health


“Creating a resource like this would be a huge step forward. As GPs, we’re trying our best to engage and educate people about the benefits of regular exercise. However, patients have to take responsibility themselves, so anything we can do to support them is fantastic.

For this to gain the support of the medical industry, it would need to be peer-reviewed medical evidence and be carefully monitored by a clinical expert. Assuming the content was evidence-based, I think both patients and GPs would use it. To gain credibility, either the NHS or a not-for-profit healthcare charity partnership should support the project, rather than a commercial organisation which might appear to have bias.

It isn’t easy to prescribe exercise to people, especially if they have one or more chronic diseases. But the evidence for exercise is compelling. Recent Nuffield Health research with the London School of Economics highlighted the health and financial benefits of exercising, suggesting that if the average person did just 12 minutes’ more exercise a day, they could make substantial reductions in their risk of developing lifestyle-related diseases. If the facts are clearly explained, and in context, people will most likely be more inclined to exercise, especially if there is support available to guide them.”

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
https://www.leisureopportunities.co.uk/images/HCM2013_6talk.gif
Should the fitness industry follow the example of the spa sector and launch a central research portal?
Global Spa and Wellness, Rancho Palos Verdes, SuperSmartHealth, ukactive, Nuffield Health ,spa sector, fitness industry
HCM magazine
Choosing the right flooring is critical for gym and health club operators. Suppliers share their latest news, tips and product launches to help you choose wisely
HCM magazine
HCM people

Andy McGlynn

Founder, GSquared
Once we grow beyond Manchester we’ll go head to head with Equinox and Third Space
HCM magazine
When we questioned our customers on what they liked about The Claremont Club, they all mentioned that we were helping people who were in dire need
HCM Magazine
Supplier showcase
An ongoing partnership between Active Leeds and Hussle has created exciting results in the form of increased usage and memberships
HCM Magazine
Sponsored
As the UK’s first dedicated development framework for leisure comes to the end of its initial four-year term, Jamie Groves and Sarah Watts discuss the impact
HCM Magazine
Supplier showcase
Safe Space Lockers has extended its partnership with boutique fitness franchise TRIB3, in a new 10-site supplier agreement, following the recent installation at TRIB3 Edinburgh
HCM Magazine
Insight
As the industry enters a phase of regrowth following the loss of members during lockdown, it’s crucial to understand customer acquisition cost versus the lifetime value of each customer, as Paul Bedford and Jamie Owens explain
HCM Magazine
Interview
The co-founder of Pure Group is now growing the Bricks Group, a new business based on student wellness accommodation, fitness, and hospitality, with a new gym chain currently launching in the UK and Europe, as he explains to Liz Terry
HCM Magazine
Talking Point
Consumer research has shown a population-wide surge in interest in reducing lockdown weight gain and getting fitter. Is the industry ready and willing to put its hand up to help people with weight loss? Kath Hudson reports
HCM Magazine
Sponsored
Come join the party!
HCM Magazine
Latest News
People with depression should be prescribed exercise and then monitored for the first 12 weeks ...
Latest News
Frequent strenuous exercise increases the risk of developing motor neurone disease (MND) in people with ...
Latest News
The UK government has extended the ban on commercial evictions until 25 March 2022. Announcing ...
Latest News
Operating a further four weeks at reduced capacity will place serious pressure on English fitness ...
Latest News
People experiencing homelessness are being offered free access to leisure centres by Oxford City Council. ...
Latest News
IHRSA has appointed Elizabeth Clark as its new president and CEO. Clark joins the industry ...
Latest News
Boutique studio operator TRIB3 has launched its own-brand range of luxury toiletries. The operator, which ...
Latest News
Rainer Schaller's RSG Group is bringing its John Reed brand of health clubs to the ...
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: INEOS: The future of hand-sanitising
As gyms begin to reopen, cleanliness and hygiene remain an essential part of ensuring staff and members are confident to return.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier news: First digital ecosystem for fitness equipment is launched after £300,000 funding boost
Orbit4 is the first digital ecosystem that manages and facilitates the entire commercial fitness product cycle.
Featured operators news
Featured operator news: Being active helps Parkwood Leisure customers save the NHS £16m
Parkwood Leisure, one of the UK’s leading public leisure facilities operators, helped prevent more than 7,000 cases of stroke, dementia, depression and type 2 diabetes in 2019, saving the NHS £16 million, a new social value report has shown.
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.
Company profiles
Company profile: Crown Sports Lockers
Crown Sports Lockers has designed, crafted and fitted bespoke timber furniture for spas, hotels and ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Indigofitness Ltd
We Create Training Spaces! We've been designing and delivering high quality training spaces for almost ...
Supplier Showcases
Supplier showcase - Funxtion
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Red Light Therapy
 Red Light Rising: Red Light Therapy
Uniforms
Service Sport: Uniforms
Whole body cryotherapy
Art of Cryo: Whole body cryotherapy
Exercise equipment
Matrix Fitness: Exercise equipment
Lockers/interior design
Crown Sports Lockers: Lockers/interior design
Independent service & maintenance
Servicesport UK Limited: Independent service & maintenance
Spa software
SpaBooker: Spa software
Architects/designers
Zynk Design Consultants: Architects/designers
Flooring
Total Vibration Solutions / TVS Sports Surfaces: Flooring
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Property & Tenders
Pendine Sands, Carmarthenshire
Carmarthenshire County Council
Property & Tenders
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
01-07 Dec 2022
tbc, Dunedin, New Zealand
Diary dates

features

Everyone's talking about...: Research databases

The spa industry launched a research portal in 2011, making scientific research to support its practices easily accessible. Should the health and fitness industry follow suit?

By Kath Hudson | Published in Health Club Management 2013 issue 6

The spa industry pulled off quite an achievement when it created its research portal – www.spaevidence.com. The site re-badged four selected medical research engines under the spaevidence banner, creating one site that gives access to thousands of clinical studies into 21 of the most common spa and wellness modalities.

This was the first time much of this research was made available to the public. Users can decide on the depth they want to go into, either reading the full research document, or a summary of five research documents per therapy.

When the site was unveiled at the 2011 Global Spa Summit, its creators – Susie Ellis, Dr Kenneth Pelletier, Dr Daniel Friedland, Dr Marc Cohen and web developer Self Optima – were given a standing ovation. Much of the audience was in tears, as they felt their work had finally been given credence.

So should the fitness sector follow the lead of the spa industry? There’s certainly no shortage of research. If we did manage to create a research portal, might this be enough to persuade GPs to prescribe exercise to patients on a wider scale? Could this be the tool to persuade the sedentary population to take action?

Were such a project to go ahead, there would be several practical issues to address. Pulling it all together would be a lot of work: who would do this and who might fund it – might it be a candidate for crowd-funding? And who would govern it on an ongoing basis?

If it’s an industry project, will the public view it suspiciously – will it only work if the healthcare industry, or government, also has a role in its creation?

And if such a website were set up and proved successful, attracting new interest in fitness among the public, would we be ready with the support people might need to change their lifestyles? We ask the experts.....

Susie Ellis

Susie Ellis
Susie Ellis

Chair,

Global Spa and Wellness Summit


“I think the health and fitness industry should definitely follow the lead of the spa industry in creating a portal. We saw a need to communicate all of the evidenced-based research to consumers, the industry, the media and medical professionals. In doing so, we’ve given credence to the people working in the industry.

There have been many studies done, but finding them was not easy. Although it initially seemed like an insurmountable challenge, once we found the databases and worked out that we could pre-populate the searches on the site, we had overcome all of the major challenges. We selected PubMed because it’s readily available, Cochrane because it has a lot of credibility with doctors, TRIP because it’s user-friendly and Natural Standard because it had already curated a lot of information. This is the only database we pay an annual fee to use; the rest were happy to get the extra traffic to their sites.

Global Spa and Wellness Summit funded the portal, which cost around US$50,000 to set up: the figure would have been higher if the doctors hadn’t given their time for free. The portal now costs about US$10,000 a year to run. The way it has been set up means it gets regularly updated, as the databases are updated, so it’s simple to govern.”

Dr Daniel Friedland

Dr Daniel Friedland
Dr Daniel Friedland

CEO & president,

SuperSmartHealth


“T he health and fitness industry should follow our lead. The main aim of spaevidence.com is to help anchor the spa industry with a scientific foundation. The portal highlights science-based wellness choices and reinforces the efforts already being made by spa professionals to bring wellness to people.

There’s more work to be done – making the portal more accessible, for example, and continuing to educate not only practitioners but also health-seekers among the general public to leverage the evidence – but it’s a great first step.

Whereas the spa industry has multiple modalities to deal with, the health and fitness industry has a narrower scope. However, there’s so much research about exercise that to try and present it all would be almost impossible. The fitness industry would need to frame the key questions that the health-seeker might ask if they wanted to engage in a healthy regime. It would then need to look for the key databases and find a cost-effective way to collate, digest and present the evidence and keep the database updated. I fully advocate the health and fitness sector doing this. It would create transparency, giving wellness empowerment to the health-seeker and a powerful tool set to maintain their optimal health.”

Chris Beedie

Chris Beedie
Chris Beedie

Director,

ukactive Research Institute


chris beedie
ukactive Research Institute • Director
“Y es, the health and fitness industry should have a database of research. However, I think on a political and business level this is likely to be a non-starter. Beyond the immediate vast scope of the task from a scientific perspective, the biggest problems are those of who would host it and who would fund it. ukactive would be the obvious host, and the industry the obvious funder. However, the ‘industry’ is a nebulous entity, and there will be plenty of people unwilling to fund the project while being happy to benefit from it.
For a resource of this type to be truly effective, we do not need a portal to existing databases, but rather a regularly updated database of relevant research supported by expert commentaries. There also needs to be a clear distinction between useful and poor quality research.
At the ukactive Research Institute, we’re currently focusing on writing papers that synthesise published research in specific areas (for example, exercise and insulin sensitivity, exercise and lipid profile) – papers that also provide exercise prescription guidelines based on these syntheses. As a result of these processes, we anticipate that a useful research database will develop organically.”

Dr Lucy Goundry

Dr Lucy Goundry
Dr Lucy Goundry

Medical director, wellbeing ,

Nuffield Health


“Creating a resource like this would be a huge step forward. As GPs, we’re trying our best to engage and educate people about the benefits of regular exercise. However, patients have to take responsibility themselves, so anything we can do to support them is fantastic.

For this to gain the support of the medical industry, it would need to be peer-reviewed medical evidence and be carefully monitored by a clinical expert. Assuming the content was evidence-based, I think both patients and GPs would use it. To gain credibility, either the NHS or a not-for-profit healthcare charity partnership should support the project, rather than a commercial organisation which might appear to have bias.

It isn’t easy to prescribe exercise to people, especially if they have one or more chronic diseases. But the evidence for exercise is compelling. Recent Nuffield Health research with the London School of Economics highlighted the health and financial benefits of exercising, suggesting that if the average person did just 12 minutes’ more exercise a day, they could make substantial reductions in their risk of developing lifestyle-related diseases. If the facts are clearly explained, and in context, people will most likely be more inclined to exercise, especially if there is support available to guide them.”

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
https://www.leisureopportunities.co.uk/images/HCM2013_6talk.gif
Should the fitness industry follow the example of the spa sector and launch a central research portal?
Global Spa and Wellness, Rancho Palos Verdes, SuperSmartHealth, ukactive, Nuffield Health ,spa sector, fitness industry
Latest News
People with depression should be prescribed exercise and then monitored for the first 12 weeks ...
Latest News
Frequent strenuous exercise increases the risk of developing motor neurone disease (MND) in people with ...
Latest News
The UK government has extended the ban on commercial evictions until 25 March 2022. Announcing ...
Latest News
Operating a further four weeks at reduced capacity will place serious pressure on English fitness ...
Latest News
People experiencing homelessness are being offered free access to leisure centres by Oxford City Council. ...
Latest News
IHRSA has appointed Elizabeth Clark as its new president and CEO. Clark joins the industry ...
Latest News
Boutique studio operator TRIB3 has launched its own-brand range of luxury toiletries. The operator, which ...
Latest News
Rainer Schaller's RSG Group is bringing its John Reed brand of health clubs to the ...
Latest News
The government needs to urgently set out its plans to support physical activity and fitness ...
Latest News
Glofox will begin offering health clubs, gyms and fitness studios instant access to financing, following ...
Latest News
Hong Kong-based Bricks Group has revealed plans to launch its health club chain, U Time, ...
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: INEOS: The future of hand-sanitising
As gyms begin to reopen, cleanliness and hygiene remain an essential part of ensuring staff and members are confident to return.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier news: First digital ecosystem for fitness equipment is launched after £300,000 funding boost
Orbit4 is the first digital ecosystem that manages and facilitates the entire commercial fitness product cycle.
Featured operators news
Featured operator news: Being active helps Parkwood Leisure customers save the NHS £16m
Parkwood Leisure, one of the UK’s leading public leisure facilities operators, helped prevent more than 7,000 cases of stroke, dementia, depression and type 2 diabetes in 2019, saving the NHS £16 million, a new social value report has shown.
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.
Company profiles
Company profile: Crown Sports Lockers
Crown Sports Lockers has designed, crafted and fitted bespoke timber furniture for spas, hotels and ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Indigofitness Ltd
We Create Training Spaces! We've been designing and delivering high quality training spaces for almost ...
Supplier Showcases
Supplier showcase - Funxtion
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Red Light Therapy
 Red Light Rising: Red Light Therapy
Uniforms
Service Sport: Uniforms
Whole body cryotherapy
Art of Cryo: Whole body cryotherapy
Exercise equipment
Matrix Fitness: Exercise equipment
Lockers/interior design
Crown Sports Lockers: Lockers/interior design
Independent service & maintenance
Servicesport UK Limited: Independent service & maintenance
Spa software
SpaBooker: Spa software
Architects/designers
Zynk Design Consultants: Architects/designers
Flooring
Total Vibration Solutions / TVS Sports Surfaces: Flooring
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Property & Tenders
Pendine Sands, Carmarthenshire
Carmarthenshire County Council
Property & Tenders
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
01-07 Dec 2022
tbc, Dunedin, New Zealand
Diary dates
Search news, features & products:
Find a supplier:
Technogym
Technogym