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Community Challenges: Who Doesn’t Love Competition?

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Community Challenges

Keep members engaged with your club, each other, and their community by offering challenges and goals to work towards.

The world of fitness and physical activity is steeped in overcoming challenges and obstacles, both figuratively and literally. Whether it’s the endorphin rush after achieving a distance record, or the shared high fives after an exciting class experience, there’s little that feels better than getting through the hard work and coming out the other side as a better person.

Everyone that’s ever achieved their goals knows how much reward comes from every effort. What’s more, we as professionals understand the difference that these achievements make to the lives of members, and the biggest sense of pride comes from helping others grow and continue to push themselves further every day.

With this in mind, gyms and fitness facilities can find simple ways to offer their member base more value by creating and hosting community challenges every month at a local level to create a buzz that’s more than just about getting a regular workout in.

While many gyms and studios are already doing this, it doesn’t have to be left down to the go-to number of themes that apply throughout the year. Creating a culture of healthy competition can be just as effective when you keep it simple and easy to understand for all — a challenge for the sole purpose of encouraging movement. The main thing to remember is work from the same metric each month when it comes to the leaderboard.

Involve other community businesses in the endeavour by partnering with retailers, restaurants or complementary activity providers, advertising their name on the promo material and gathering prizes for the top spots at the end of the month. Just as we’re stronger together as a community in the gym, we also need to grasp the opportunities to forge new relationships within the areas around us to be real health providers and not just somewhere people go to get six packs.

Not only do these competitions and challenges drive footfall and engagement through competitive communication between participants, but it also draws more people into your facility by way of referrals and penetrates deeper into your community at large — those who may not have heard about you otherwise.

Don’t be afraid to challenge other gyms, either. Some of the most exciting and engaging social media threads — and therefore brand awareness — have come from entrepreneurs and fitpros that have come together for the benefit of both communities. We’re all pushing for the same result, and a league table has never looked so exciting as when it’s gym versus gym, in a battle of positivity and physical activity. Pick your method of rewarding effort, set the ground rules and watch your members work for you in promoting your brand, your community and your leadership in bringing more people to move more often.

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Ben Hackney-Williams

Ben Hackney-Williams is head of content at Myzone. Follow him @_BenHW or email him at ben.hackney@myzone.org.

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