Dive In: Hosting Engaging Pool Events
It’s officially summer, and health clubs with pools are seeing a spike in the amount of members that visit on a daily basis — and rightfully so. Not only is it refreshing for members to take a dip after their workout, it’s a way for them to get out in the sun and relax. Having a nice pool at your club ultimately adds value, and may even be the deciding factor that makes someone agree to join.
When looking at planning events for your club’s pool, there are really two audiences you need to cater to: adults and children. Unfortunately, these two seem to clash in terms of interests when it comes to a pool day, seeing as adults may want to sit back, eat lunch, have a few frozen drinks and relax; while children need to stay entertained and busy.
Life Time Fitness recognized these two separate needs and targets events and activities to fit both demographics— hosting everything from “Fun in the Sun” for children, where they get to participate in activities such as board games and face-painting; to “Cabana Nights” for adults, where the club brings out salsa dancers, fire dancers and appetizers.
“There’s a great balance about the daytime being about the family, and then switching it over to night to make it more adult for the parents to get a chance to do things,” said Danielle Maur, the director of racquet sports and member event experiences at Life Time Fitness.
Maur said “Cabana Nights” is one of the most popular events for “Parent’s Night Out,” averaging anywhere from 200 to 300 people. During that time, there is an area away from the event for children to be entertained and supervised, so parents don’t have to worry about the hassle of trying to find a babysitter. Other popular events for adults by the pool are the “Summer Solstice” event and “Caribbean Night.”
“What we really do is work to create a resort-like experience at our club, and not just with the swimming, but with activities at the pool or at night that get members to come back and participate in a social gathering, and just to enjoy the club in more ways than one,” said Maur.
Dive-in movies and “Fun in the Sun” are two of the company’s other very popular events. “They’re meant to help mom and dad take a moment and relax if their kids don’t want to be in the water, so their entire day can be about lounging, excitement and engagement,” said Maur.
Feedback on the pool has been great, with member surveys showing a lot of satisfaction with the events. “Members are extremely happy and appreciative of what we’re doing,” said Maur. “It just adds value to what they’re paying for, so we try to go above and beyond to be innovative and entertaining.”
Along with going above and beyond to be innovative and entertaining — the club has taken big steps with accommodation efforts as well, recently launching a program that allows members to order food that will be delivered to them poolside, from Life Time Fitness’ Bistro menu from a mobile app. “It’s just a great convenience for the parents who want to keep an eye on their kids at the pool,” explained Maur. “This way they don’t have to run up and get food.”
Maur added the pools drive more memberships and ultimately add value to the club, and that she prefers Life Time’s pool over her own neighborhood’s pool, due to the experience.
“In my subdivision I have a pool, but I’d never choose that pool over a Life Time Fitness pool where I can go eat, and where there’s music playing, and my kids are having fun,” said Maur. “It just adds more value. In the summer, it’s just a full-throttle of sights, senses and sounds to entertain you.”