Leisure Industry Week (LIW) returns to Birmingham NEC this month for what promises to be another inspirational and innovative showcase for the industry, with more than 250 exhibitors and over 100 hours of top quality education.
The Health & Fitness section of the show in particular is thriving after a fantastic outing in 2012, which saw the industry thoroughly embrace the London Olympic and Paralympic Games.
LIW provides a platform for the leading fitness companies from across Europe to showcase their latest products and innovations to an audience of UK fitness and leisure professionals, all looking for the next big fitness phenomenon.
CYBEX International UK will return to the show on stand H555, and will launch its new Big Iron Glute Ham bench to the UK market. CYBEX will also be using the Bravo functional trainer to demonstrate its latest fitness programmes: the Bravo Energy Burn Series. Set up in a circuit format, athletes will take part in full circuit workouts throughout the show, using specific movement patterns and cardio blasts to burn calories and build strength.
Gladstone Health and Leisure will be debuting Communicate. This new software programme is designed to improve and drive digital interaction with new and potential clients, while also allowing businesses to measure the effectiveness of individual communication methods and analyse consumers’ perceptions of their brands. Gladstone will be found at stand L110.
Keiser will be showcasing its Functional Trainer. This product offers incredible variety and versatility in a compact, space-saving design, with two adjustable arms to accommodate high and low training positions. Thanks to the intelligent and patented pneumatics of the machine, the user is offered a minimal impact workout with maximum results. Keiser will be on stand H360.
Les Mills’ SMARTSTEP™ has been designed to help users get better results from the same Step workout. Thanks to non-slip risers that lock securely into place, it offers a strong and stable surface. It also uses 20 per cent less storage space than standard steps. Les Mills will also demonstrate SMARTBAR™, a barbell designed to deliver maximum results for users with consideration of the strain on hands and wrists, while at the same time allowing muscle isolation for an optimum workout. Demonstrations will take place on stand H365.
Physical Company will launch two new products: the Resistance Band Systems from Stroops Performance, for sports-specific power, strength and agility training; and X-Lab, the customisable, modular functional training rig from Torque Fitness. Physical Company will be on stand H420, where eight demonstrations will take place each day.
Performance Health Systems will showcase three commercial Power Plate models on stand H565: the Power Plate pro7, Power Plate pro5 and Power Plate pro5 AIRdaptive High Performance model. The pro7 is the first commercial vibration training machine to feature an integrated LCD touch-screen with Functional Interactive Training (F.I.T) software, which acts as an inbuilt personal trainer, taking users through every stage of their workout. Expert advice will be available on post-natal vibration training.
Precor will showcase its new RFID ‘Preva Tokens’, the latest technology allowing Precor account users to log their achievements, goals and personal workouts easily. Using these small tokens removes the hassle of carrying a key or entering a pin number, with users able to log into their account using swipe technology. The Precor team will be available on stand H350.
Xn Leisure Solutions’ software allows club members to book or purchase classes, courses and activities from your company via a personalised application adapted to each company’s needs, which can be accessed via smartphone. Xn Leisure Solutions will be at stand L140.
Other exhibitors in the Health & Fitness section of the show will include Technogym, Matrix Fitness, Escape, Life Fitness, Pavigym, Queenax, Ruff Tuff Stuffs, Pulse Fitness and Star Trac.
Pool & Spa
This section of the show will also deliver plenty of food for thought for health club operators. SkillsActive is set to launch RAPs, the Register of Aquatics Professionals, while the STA will run a new feature called the STA Swim Zone – a fully operational swimming pool on the show floor, with a full programme of education taking place in and around it.
The national governing body for swimming, the ASA (Amateur Swimming Association), will present a keynote about the British Gas Swimfit initiative. This explores the benefits of viewing the pool as a ‘studio full of water’, and will look into similarities between gym space and pools for fitness solutions.
JC Leisure Solutions will also be exhibiting its latest pool, spa, sauna and steam equipment for commercial and private use. Other exhibitors in the Pool & Spa section include PS Pool Cleaners, Aquamat, Certikin International, HeatPumps4Pools, Monkeys Inc, Plastica, RLSS and Zoggs UK.
Each year, LIW delivers a schedule of free-to-attend education, offering insights into industry developments.
This year, the Keynote Theatre will feature updates from Les Mills’ physiotherapist, research and operations manager Bryce Hastings, who will talk about group fitness and high-intensity training, and retention expert Dr Paul Bedford, who will outline the results of The National Retention Report 2013.
David Stalker, ukactive CEO, will also present the annual ukactive keynote, with other sessions including presentations by RoSPA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents), and SkillsActive on the launch of RAPs.
The educational content will also feature a dedicated programme for independent operators, designed by LIW and ukactive specifically with that group of fitness professionals in mind. The full education timetable is available to view on the LIW website: www.liw.co.uk
REPS National Convention
LIW will once again play host to the REPs National Convention on 25–26 September (Wednesday and Thursday).
The first of the two headlining keynotes will be presented by Dr Ian Campbell MBE, expert on obesity and weight, who will speak on the Wednesday about ‘Weight loss - what works, what doesn’t and why!’ This session will look at understanding the multi-faceted problem of obesity, encouraging self-management and long-term behaviour change, and the use of internet and mobile tools to support an individual’s weight loss efforts.
On Thursday, Keith Smith, master trainer at Life Fitness, will present on the topic: ‘The biggest market for the fitness industry in the next 20 years – the independent older adult’. Smith will provide an understanding of who this client group is, the benefits of working with them, and why it’s important for the fitness industry to embrace these individuals. He will also investigate some of the key physiological changes that happen with age, and some of the many factors to consider when planning and delivering a session to this market.
Additional programme highlights include a choice of 30 practical and informative workshops, with topics including GP referral, posture and movement correction, nutrition advice, strongman training, new equipment and social media marketing.
LIW 2013 will challenge fitness professionals to compete with one another across the three days with the launch of a new feature: Power Hour.
Power Hour will rank LIW attendees against one another in unique challenges taking place across the show’s buzzing Health & Fitness section. The challenges have been designed by some of the leading fitness suppliers in Europe, with performance data measured by Power Hour partner MYZONE.
Exhibitors taking part include Matrix, Escape Fitness, Physical Company, Queenax and Precor. Each company has designed special 15-minute group exercise challenges which visitors can sign up for in advance of the event. All challenges will take place within the Power Hour of 2.00pm–3.00pm each day. The MYZONE heart rate monitoring system will provide live feedback on training intensity, calories and MYZONE Effort Points (MEPs), with a leader board highlighting the winner at the end of every day – and ultimately an overall winner, who will be crowned Power Hour champion.
“This challenge has been designed to take advantage of the fantastic array of fitness equipment on show at LIW,” says event director James Samuel. “Visitors to LIW have always been encouraged to discover the equipment by actually having a go, and this Power Hour challenge is a natural progression from that. We’re delighted with the response we’ve had from the exhibitors taking part and expect a really competitive atmosphere during the challenges.”
The winners will be announced via social media at the end of Thursday 26 September, using #LIWPowerHour. Participants can sign up for Power Hour in advance of the event by visiting www.liw.co.uk/powerhour
LIW Live enjoyed a hugely successful launch at the 2012 event, featuring interviews with sporting superstars including Olympians Greg Searle, Gail Emms, Beth Tweddle and Kate Dennison, celebrities from TV’s The Biggest Loser and The Apprentice, and household name Frank Bruno.
LIW Live returns this year with another fantastic line-up, including interactive demonstrations and interviews. Confirmed for the stage this year is Wasps and England rugby star James Haskell, who will be promoting his Bodyfire and Angry Squirrel brands. Andre Agassi will also appear, and will be available to answer questions on the BILT by Agassi and Reyes equipment range, which is new to the UK and set to be exhibited on stand H575.
Many other presenters are top secret at the time of going to print, but the entire programme will be made available on the LIW website.