Finding fitness: GreatLIFE connects with members seeking healthier lifestyle
It’s not only about increasing endurance, building strength or dropping weight.
Increasingly, GreatLIFE Golf & Fitness is finding members are coming through the door – and coming back – because they realize an active lifestyle has even broader benefits.
“Our membership is as strong as it’s ever been,” president Nick Ovenden said. “I think people have a renewed sense of the importance of being healthy. Taking care of yourself preventatively is a big deal, and not only physical, but mental health awareness has become a lot more prevalent.”
Research has shown a clear increase in people working through mental health concerns in the past two years, and they’re realizing the role that fitness can play, he said.
“They’re realizing they become better people when they work out,” Ovenden said. “You feel better overall, and then you’re able to be a better spouse, parent or co-worker. I think that while it’s unfortunate people are dealing with so many stresses, they’re finding it’s great to be active and reduce stress in a good way.”
GreatLIFE’s unlimited approach to fitness – work out wherever you want, whenever you want – and enhanced programming geared to mindfulness, such as its Awaken program, are meeting people where they’re at.
“We’re realizing in the gyms how lifestyles have changed,” Ovenden said. “We still have our peak times, but we’re steadier throughout the day, which I think is a reflection of increased flexibility.”
Because interest in the gym is great and growing, GreatLIFE is taking a broad look at layout and design to ensure there’s plenty of space for everyone to work out.
“We want you to have enough equipment and be able to access it while we’re optimizing every bit of space we have,” Ovenden said. “We’re looking at equipment that will allow us to further do that while offering something new and different to our members.”
It’s a similar story on the golf courses, where the game’s pandemic-driven resurgence hasn’t slowed.
“While golf is, of course, weather-dependent, whenever they’re able we have so many golfers out on the courses,” Ovenden said.
“We want to remind our golf members to check out courses like Fox Run, Worthington and Rocky Run that are included in your membership if you’re looking for a place with a little more capacity. They’re great courses that will give you something different to play and help you out if you happen to have trouble getting a tee time.”
GreatLIFE also has experienced strong interest from older members, Ovenden said.
“It’s been interesting because our 60-plus membership has tripled in the last two years despite the pandemic, which is great,” he said. “And they are really coming in to work out. Our aqua aerobics classes are very popular as are our newer senior fitness classes. I think they recognize the value proposition and appreciate how much is included in a membership.”
And speaking of value, as households begin spending with more care, GreatLIFE’s offering becomes that much more of a plus, Ovenden added.
“If you’re finding yourself sticking to a tighter budget, your GreatLIFE membership absolutely is going to help you do that,” he said. “You’ll save in so many ways outside the gym and off the golf course, from dining out to basic household services and entertainment. When you put your membership to work in all those ways, the value really adds up.”
With more than 40,000 members, GreatLIFE is focused on how to serve current and future needs even better, he said.
“We’re looking at ways we can engage kids ages 6 to 12 at an even greater level, so watch for more detail soon around that,” he said.
“And big picture, we’re honing our processes to make sure we’re creating raving fans from the inside out. A lot of that involves creating great experiences for our team because they’re providing great experiences to members. And we’re looking for other creative ways for people to become the best version of themselves with us when they walk in the door. Hopefully, they stay long-term, but we want them to walk out the door a better person capable of leading in whatever role they’re in.”