Tax Day and the Fitness Industry


There are only a couple of things that are certain in this life – death and taxes.  This is the time of year when a lot of things are upon us that remind us about life including spring time and yes – the dreaded Tax Filing Day.  It is a reminder that we are still alive and since we have been given this reminder each year by our government (at least in the US) J.  Why don’t we look at this a bit differently and ask ourselves, “We are alive but are we really living?”  This is where the fitness piece comes in.  In an ever increasingly stressed, always on, sleep deprived and sedentary society the opportunity for fitness and wellness to step in the forefront of this global health crisis is bigger than ever to help people “live and achieve” what they were created to do.   I got to see this first hand with a bunch of excellent seminars at this year’s 2011 IHRSA event which was held in San Francisco.


I’m fortunate to have played a part in the formation of the Fitness Industry Technology Council which was launched after an industry dinner Intel hosted with several fitness industry leaders with the help of a friend and colleague, Dr. Kevin Steele following the 2010 IHRSA event held in San Diego.  This council, made up of many leading fitness companies, believes that now is the time for the fitness, wellness and medical industry to work together in utilizing technology in greater ways to help address this global health crisis.  Here are the slides on the information we presented at this year’s event.


At IHRSA, the key themes for me were the coordination of medical activity into the industry and integrated embedded computers everywhere.  There were innovative touch screen computers with engaging user interface experiences in use everywhere on various types of equipment that will soon be coming to a club near you.  There were also plenty of examples of companies using innovative approaches with technology.  Here is an example of one innovative company, Respondesign, and what they are doing.

You can see more innovative fitness ideas that companies are using today at


Finally, when you think about what key technologies are going to need to be into place to facilitate this vision, cloud computing and security are the two that come to mind.  You need robust security solutions as the medical, fitness and wellness communities become more tightly integrated.  You want to make sure your data is secure and that only the eyes of who is supposed to see and exchange that information is indeed the eyes that see it.  We’ll need that in the cloud and on the equipment that is used to facilitate these benefits in my opinion extending out to devices that we carry into the gym or home.


What did you see at IHRSA or FIBO that impressed you and what were your key takeaways from there?