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Health Club Management

Health Club Management

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UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
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Health Club Management

Health Club Management

features

People: Todd Allen, LIVunLtd

Fitness and programme director at LIVunLtd

Published in Health Club Management 2017 issue 9
Todd Allen
Todd Allen
We want to elevate the experience of residential gyms and create a boutique feel, so members don’t need to join an off-site gym

What is LIVunLtd and how did you start working for the company?
We’re a concierge service business, working out of around 200 residential properties in New York City. We run the gyms, swimming pools and other amenity spaces at the properties, such as children’s nurseries and party rooms. We also deal with miscellaneous requests, from finding hairdressers and dog walkers to helping residents find a hotel for their holiday.
It’s a fast paced, improvisational business, making things work in a short space of time – people generally expect things to happen within an hour.

LIV’s chief creative officer, Michael Fazio asked me to join last year, when I was a creative director at Flybarre, the barre programme of Flywheel Sports. I originally joined the health and fitness industry to supplement my income as a modern and contemporary dancer.

How does your gym model work?
Unlike most gyms, we’re not responsible for selling the memberships, as these are usually sold as part of the lease when people move into the buildings. The majority of the gyms are only open to residents. Our role is to mobilise as many people as possible to use the services. In many cases, we bid for the contract to run the gym and amenity spaces and the building owners pay us for the service we provide.

We also partner with other companies where relevant, such as Zeal, to offer massage services.

Zeal is an app that enables people to book a massage therapist on demand – using the same model as Uber. They get a therapist to you within two hours.

What does your role as fitness and programme director involve?
Currently only around 5 per cent of the residents make use of the gyms. My role is a new one and is part of a bid to encourage more residents to use the facilities. I oversee all the fitness and wellbeing offerings to make sure the quality is consistent and to create more of a community among the building’s residents and our instructors at the gyms.

I’m also responsible for creating new content and branded classes. I’m currently working on a new HIIT programme, called LIV Quickfire, which will be a 30-minute high intensity cardio programme to get the heart rate up and burn a ton of calories.

How do residential gyms compare to commercial gyms?
Residential fitness is battling a bad reputation – lots of my friends in New York wouldn’t dream of going to the gym in their building! Often the people who go to the residential gyms are less discerning, as they’re the people who are too intimidated to go to a commercial gym.

We want to elevate the experience of residential gyms and create a boutique feel, so our members feel they don’t need to purchase an off-site gym membership. We want them to find the gym a social experience and make personal connections with their neighbours and with the staff. All fitness junkies have their favourite classes and instructors, and they base their weekly schedule around these classes. My goal is to make the classes offered in each building the favourite class that the residents plan their day around.

What do residents want from the gym experience?
Fitness and amenity space is becoming more important in the residential market. Our residents want the gym to be a one stop, full experience in one building. They want yoga on the roof, quiet space for guided meditation, quiet outdoor space, party space and kid space. They want to get to know their neighbours. They want to be able to get chair massages and everything to be on hand.

We have a lot of requests for parent and child, and nanny and child fitness experiences, including yoga, swimming and creative dance. Also there’s a big demand for all types of yoga, pilates, meditation and tai chi – anything that is calming to the nervous system.

Is there a uniform feel to all the gyms you operate?
All the buildings we operate out of have different price points for their fitness amenities and varying amounts of commitment to them. Some developers are keen to invest and make the best use of the space possible, asking our advice on what is current and popular, to create beautiful, world class gyms. Unfortunately, others are like a hotel gym, with just a treadmill and a few weights.

What are the main challenges to running residential gyms?
Getting accurate data on who is attending is difficult, as we don’t sign members up, they don’t have to check in when they use the gym and there are no receptionists. It’s hard to find out what equipment they use and what are the most popular classes.

Also keeping instructors on track and on brand is a challenge, as we have numerous locations across New York City and no one monitoring them on a daily basis. Traditionally, they have been used to doing their own thing and then going home. Now I’m introducing quality control and working to make more of a team out of the different suppliers, by providing a lot of in house training and regular phone calls to keep in touch.

What location does LIV look for?
There’s a lot of growth potential in concierge services. Our business model needs urban settings in order to service the requests we do – in suburbia there’s less of a pool of suppliers. We’ve started to look beyond New York now for growth, to San Francisco, Los Angeles, Houston, Washington DC, as well as overseas.

What’s the most exciting fitness trend at the moment?
The idea of a workout that meets emotional and mental needs as well as physical needs – so people are pushed physically, which makes them let go emotionally and then also push past a mental barrier. The Class by Taryn Toomey, which combines HIIT, yoga, meditation and primal scream therapy is a great example of this. It takes people on a journey and they experience a release emotionally and spiritually, which is fulfilling and enriching, beyond just a physical workout.

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
The LIV gym model aims to get more residents involved
The LIV gym model aims to get more residents involved
The LIV gym model aims to get more residents involved
The LIV gym model aims to get more residents involved
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/465814_150372.jpg
"We want to create a boutique feel in residential gyms, so residents feel they don't need to purchase an offsite gym membership" – Todd Allen, LIVunLtd
People
HCM people

Debra Wein

founder and CEO, Wellness Workdays
I’ve always felt that if individuals had more education and understanding of nutrition and healthy lifestyle principles, we could literally change lives
People
HCM people

Dan Bond

Owner, CrossFit Fort Ashton
We’d explained leading up to the lockdown that if everyone decided to freeze or cancel, then there would be a possibility of not having a gym to come back to
People
Operators should start with the home fitness journey, working out how to gain a competitive advantage here, before working out how to dovetail physical visits into this
Features
Strength
Fitness enthusiasts are on the hunt for new ways to elevate their workouts. Fusion fitness is fitting the bill by making strength training more accessible
Features
Finance
Change is coming, with consolidation likely in the market – especially in the boutique sector. Nadim Meer advises operators how to position themselves for investment
Features
Insight
As some of the UK’s top gym operators unveil their reopening videos, insight specialists, Paul Roberts and Mike Evans, analyse members’ reactions on social media
Features
Supplier showcase
Speedflex has created a synergistic partnership with Everyone Active to deliver a new boutique concept – FORTIS Powered by Speedflex
Features
US stats
New research from the US shows Millennials and Gen Z may be slow to return to gyms, while women are more hesitant than men. Club Intel’s Steve Tharrett reports
Features
Accessibility
Sport England has teamed up with 15 health and social care charities to find ways to support people living with 10 different health conditions to be physically active. Kath Hudson finds out more
Features
Editor's letter
The pandemic is stretching the industry to the limit and it’s a time none of us will ever forget. Moving forward, we need to make a plan to ensure we’re better prepared to represent ourselves in the corridors of power
Features
Latest News
Industry body, ukactive, has questioned the decision to close gyms and health clubs as part ...
Latest News
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has paid a surprise visit to a branch of The Gym ...
Latest News
Planet Fitness' share price on the New York Stock Exchange has remained steady at between ...
Latest News
Two of the largest health club operators in the US have announced that members and ...
Latest News
If you're a personal trainer working in the UK, you can now get online PT ...
Latest News
A member of SAGE, the government’s independent group of scientific advisers, has said gyms, pubs ...
Latest News
Following approval to build a £250mn wellbeing resort in Manchester, Therme Group has revealed plans ...
Latest News
Europe's largest gym chain, Basic-Fit, has provided the European fitness sector with some optimism, after ...
Opinion
promotion
Evidence suggests that over many years personal trainers have been forced to leave the fitness industry because employment patterns are erratic, earnings are inconsistent and it is difficult to build up value needed to secure an appropriate lifestyle.
Opinion: Personal trainers need support as employment opportunities diminish: FREE on-demand webinar
Opinion
promotion
Data-driven businesses are some of today’s greatest global success stories, providing blueprints for success.
Opinion: Up your ‘data game’ to successfully relaunch your fitness business
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Gympass partners with F45 Training to bring functional team training to world's largest corporate fitness platform
Gympass, the world’s largest corporate fitness platform, has announced a partnership with F45 Training, one of the world’s fastest-growing fitness franchisors that will give its corporate members access to their global network of workout facilities.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Fisikal chosen as tech partner for ‘JP4’; new health app from fitness expert, Jessie Pavelka
Fitness expert and television host, Jessie Pavelka has collaborated with Fisikal, experts in digital management solutions, to create the new JP4 app, a premium 12-week personal health and fitness transformation programme that takes the user on a journey of change through four key elements of health.
Company profiles
Company profile: Premier Software Solutions Ltd
Premier Software was founded in 1994 and has proven experience developing business management solutions specifically ...
Company profiles
Company profile: fibodo Limited
fibodo is the digital solution helping people lead healthier and happier lives. From grassroots individual ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Flooring
Total Vibration Solutions / TVS Sports Surfaces: Flooring
Fitness software
Go Do.Fitness: Fitness software
Exercise equipment
Matrix Fitness: Exercise equipment
Trade associations
International SPA Association - iSPA: Trade associations
Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Kemitron GmbH: Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Skincare
Sothys: Skincare
Wearable technology solutions
MyZone: Wearable technology solutions
Lockers/interior design
Fitlockers: Lockers/interior design
Locking solutions
Monster Padlocks: Locking solutions
Design consultants
Zynk Design Consultants: Design consultants
Property & Tenders
Waltham Abbey, Essex
Lee Valley Regional Park Authority
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, United States
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Messe Stuttgart, Germany
Diary dates
22-23 Sep 2020
Heythrop Park, United Kingdom
Diary dates
17-23 Oct 2020
Pinggu, Beijing, China
Diary dates
03-06 Nov 2020
Online,
Diary dates
27-28 Nov 2020
Athena, Leicester, United Kingdom
Diary dates
23-26 Feb 2021
IFEMA, Madrid, Spain
Diary dates
03-04 Mar 2021
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
03-06 Jun 2021
Expo Centre & Riviera di Rimini, Italy
Diary dates
16-17 Jun 2021
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates

features

People: Todd Allen, LIVunLtd

Fitness and programme director at LIVunLtd

Published in Health Club Management 2017 issue 9
Todd Allen
Todd Allen
We want to elevate the experience of residential gyms and create a boutique feel, so members don’t need to join an off-site gym

What is LIVunLtd and how did you start working for the company?
We’re a concierge service business, working out of around 200 residential properties in New York City. We run the gyms, swimming pools and other amenity spaces at the properties, such as children’s nurseries and party rooms. We also deal with miscellaneous requests, from finding hairdressers and dog walkers to helping residents find a hotel for their holiday.
It’s a fast paced, improvisational business, making things work in a short space of time – people generally expect things to happen within an hour.

LIV’s chief creative officer, Michael Fazio asked me to join last year, when I was a creative director at Flybarre, the barre programme of Flywheel Sports. I originally joined the health and fitness industry to supplement my income as a modern and contemporary dancer.

How does your gym model work?
Unlike most gyms, we’re not responsible for selling the memberships, as these are usually sold as part of the lease when people move into the buildings. The majority of the gyms are only open to residents. Our role is to mobilise as many people as possible to use the services. In many cases, we bid for the contract to run the gym and amenity spaces and the building owners pay us for the service we provide.

We also partner with other companies where relevant, such as Zeal, to offer massage services.

Zeal is an app that enables people to book a massage therapist on demand – using the same model as Uber. They get a therapist to you within two hours.

What does your role as fitness and programme director involve?
Currently only around 5 per cent of the residents make use of the gyms. My role is a new one and is part of a bid to encourage more residents to use the facilities. I oversee all the fitness and wellbeing offerings to make sure the quality is consistent and to create more of a community among the building’s residents and our instructors at the gyms.

I’m also responsible for creating new content and branded classes. I’m currently working on a new HIIT programme, called LIV Quickfire, which will be a 30-minute high intensity cardio programme to get the heart rate up and burn a ton of calories.

How do residential gyms compare to commercial gyms?
Residential fitness is battling a bad reputation – lots of my friends in New York wouldn’t dream of going to the gym in their building! Often the people who go to the residential gyms are less discerning, as they’re the people who are too intimidated to go to a commercial gym.

We want to elevate the experience of residential gyms and create a boutique feel, so our members feel they don’t need to purchase an off-site gym membership. We want them to find the gym a social experience and make personal connections with their neighbours and with the staff. All fitness junkies have their favourite classes and instructors, and they base their weekly schedule around these classes. My goal is to make the classes offered in each building the favourite class that the residents plan their day around.

What do residents want from the gym experience?
Fitness and amenity space is becoming more important in the residential market. Our residents want the gym to be a one stop, full experience in one building. They want yoga on the roof, quiet space for guided meditation, quiet outdoor space, party space and kid space. They want to get to know their neighbours. They want to be able to get chair massages and everything to be on hand.

We have a lot of requests for parent and child, and nanny and child fitness experiences, including yoga, swimming and creative dance. Also there’s a big demand for all types of yoga, pilates, meditation and tai chi – anything that is calming to the nervous system.

Is there a uniform feel to all the gyms you operate?
All the buildings we operate out of have different price points for their fitness amenities and varying amounts of commitment to them. Some developers are keen to invest and make the best use of the space possible, asking our advice on what is current and popular, to create beautiful, world class gyms. Unfortunately, others are like a hotel gym, with just a treadmill and a few weights.

What are the main challenges to running residential gyms?
Getting accurate data on who is attending is difficult, as we don’t sign members up, they don’t have to check in when they use the gym and there are no receptionists. It’s hard to find out what equipment they use and what are the most popular classes.

Also keeping instructors on track and on brand is a challenge, as we have numerous locations across New York City and no one monitoring them on a daily basis. Traditionally, they have been used to doing their own thing and then going home. Now I’m introducing quality control and working to make more of a team out of the different suppliers, by providing a lot of in house training and regular phone calls to keep in touch.

What location does LIV look for?
There’s a lot of growth potential in concierge services. Our business model needs urban settings in order to service the requests we do – in suburbia there’s less of a pool of suppliers. We’ve started to look beyond New York now for growth, to San Francisco, Los Angeles, Houston, Washington DC, as well as overseas.

What’s the most exciting fitness trend at the moment?
The idea of a workout that meets emotional and mental needs as well as physical needs – so people are pushed physically, which makes them let go emotionally and then also push past a mental barrier. The Class by Taryn Toomey, which combines HIIT, yoga, meditation and primal scream therapy is a great example of this. It takes people on a journey and they experience a release emotionally and spiritually, which is fulfilling and enriching, beyond just a physical workout.

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
The LIV gym model aims to get more residents involved
The LIV gym model aims to get more residents involved
The LIV gym model aims to get more residents involved
The LIV gym model aims to get more residents involved
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/465814_150372.jpg
"We want to create a boutique feel in residential gyms, so residents feel they don't need to purchase an offsite gym membership" – Todd Allen, LIVunLtd
Latest News
Industry body, ukactive, has questioned the decision to close gyms and health clubs as part ...
Latest News
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has paid a surprise visit to a branch of The Gym ...
Latest News
Planet Fitness' share price on the New York Stock Exchange has remained steady at between ...
Latest News
Two of the largest health club operators in the US have announced that members and ...
Latest News
If you're a personal trainer working in the UK, you can now get online PT ...
Latest News
A member of SAGE, the government’s independent group of scientific advisers, has said gyms, pubs ...
Latest News
Following approval to build a £250mn wellbeing resort in Manchester, Therme Group has revealed plans ...
Latest News
Europe's largest gym chain, Basic-Fit, has provided the European fitness sector with some optimism, after ...
Latest News
DW Sports is going into administration saying it's working to save its 73-strong gym portfolio. ...
Latest News
The American Council on Exercise (ACE) is urging US Congress to pass a new law ...
Latest News
Equipment giant Technogym has introduced its new Excite line of fully-connected cardio kit that has ...
Opinion
promotion
Evidence suggests that over many years personal trainers have been forced to leave the fitness industry because employment patterns are erratic, earnings are inconsistent and it is difficult to build up value needed to secure an appropriate lifestyle.
Opinion: Personal trainers need support as employment opportunities diminish: FREE on-demand webinar
Opinion
promotion
Data-driven businesses are some of today’s greatest global success stories, providing blueprints for success.
Opinion: Up your ‘data game’ to successfully relaunch your fitness business
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Gympass partners with F45 Training to bring functional team training to world's largest corporate fitness platform
Gympass, the world’s largest corporate fitness platform, has announced a partnership with F45 Training, one of the world’s fastest-growing fitness franchisors that will give its corporate members access to their global network of workout facilities.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Fisikal chosen as tech partner for ‘JP4’; new health app from fitness expert, Jessie Pavelka
Fitness expert and television host, Jessie Pavelka has collaborated with Fisikal, experts in digital management solutions, to create the new JP4 app, a premium 12-week personal health and fitness transformation programme that takes the user on a journey of change through four key elements of health.
Company profiles
Company profile: Premier Software Solutions Ltd
Premier Software was founded in 1994 and has proven experience developing business management solutions specifically ...
Company profiles
Company profile: fibodo Limited
fibodo is the digital solution helping people lead healthier and happier lives. From grassroots individual ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Flooring
Total Vibration Solutions / TVS Sports Surfaces: Flooring
Fitness software
Go Do.Fitness: Fitness software
Exercise equipment
Matrix Fitness: Exercise equipment
Trade associations
International SPA Association - iSPA: Trade associations
Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Kemitron GmbH: Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Skincare
Sothys: Skincare
Wearable technology solutions
MyZone: Wearable technology solutions
Lockers/interior design
Fitlockers: Lockers/interior design
Locking solutions
Monster Padlocks: Locking solutions
Design consultants
Zynk Design Consultants: Design consultants
Property & Tenders
Waltham Abbey, Essex
Lee Valley Regional Park Authority
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, United States
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Messe Stuttgart, Germany
Diary dates
22-23 Sep 2020
Heythrop Park, United Kingdom
Diary dates
17-23 Oct 2020
Pinggu, Beijing, China
Diary dates
03-06 Nov 2020
Online,
Diary dates
27-28 Nov 2020
Athena, Leicester, United Kingdom
Diary dates
23-26 Feb 2021
IFEMA, Madrid, Spain
Diary dates
03-04 Mar 2021
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
03-06 Jun 2021
Expo Centre & Riviera di Rimini, Italy
Diary dates
16-17 Jun 2021
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
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