Fitness: Did you hear?... Star Trac adds new product manager, plus Gaiam, H&F Biz and California's Govinator

Star Trac appoints new indoor bikes product manager, Gaiam cleans up at Telly Awards, California's Govinator drops fitness magazine consulting gig, plus more...
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For the week of July 19-25

>> Star Trac has added Jeff Dilts to its team as of July 11. Dilts, formerly of NASM, Cybex and FreeMotion Fitness, will handle product management for Star Trac's indoor bikes. He has two decades of experience in the fitness industry. According to Terry Woods, director of product development, "His experience in the industry combining education, knowledge of strength, and sales obviously speaks for itself, and it will lend another great element to our team. We are excited at the caliber of individuals that are joining the organization."

>> Several of Gaiam's DVD titles picked up 12 Telly Awards for quality and innovation in this year's competition. In the "How to Instructional" category, a Silver Telly, the highest honor, was given to Gaiam's "Qigong Beginning Practice" and Bronze Tellys were bestowed upon top seller "Budokon Beginning Practice with Cameron Shayne," "Vinyasa Flow Yoga II with Seane Corn," "Lower Body Yoga for Beginners with Suzanne Deason," "Postnatal Yoga with Shiva Rea," "Yoga for Flexibility with Patricia Walden," and "Trampoline Training Workout with Jonathan Roche." Several Gaiam DVDs that won Bronze Telly Awards feature acclaimed yogi, Rodney Yee, including "Power Yoga: Strength," "Power Yoga: Stamina," "Power Yoga: Flexibility," "Intermediate Yoga," and "Yoga for Back Care." The Telly Awards honors excellence in local, regional and cable TV commercials and non-broadcast video and TV programs, with entries coming from five continents and all 50 U.S. states. All Telly judges are past winners of the Silver Telly and are top industry professionals.

>> California's Govinator is in the news again, but this time it's politics of a different sort. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said he will pull out of his contract with two fitness magazines, and suspend his title as executive editor of Muscle and Fitness and Flex magazines and forego any compensation. Schwarzenegger's affiliation with the magazines came under scrutiny after it was revealed recently that he would be paid at least $1 million a year for five years to act as a consultant. The consulting deal was originally disclosed in March 2004, but the amount he was being paid wasn't made public until the company filed documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

>> After seven years, Stanwood & Partners PR has resigned from the VNU Sports Group account, which includes the Health & Fitness Business Expo. To aid VNU in the transition, Stanwood & Partners will handle PR duties for next month's Health & Fitness trade show in Denver, Aug. 25-27. Two weeks ago, Stanwood & Partners was retained by SnowSports Industries America to represent the SIA trade show.

>> You've heard all the excuses before for not joining a fitness program: The gym's too far, it's too expensive, or I'm too darn busy. One personal trainer has figured out a way to get around all those excuses, according to an article in the Metro West Daily News. Kathleen Ekdahl started Personal Best Personal Training in Hudson, Mass., and not only works with customers in their homes or at a local gym, but also on the phone and via the Internet. Ekdahl's Internet service, which she incorporated into her business in May 2004, offers customized, one-on-one training programs and allows clients to see her less frequently, thus saving them money. The Internet service has become an integral part of Ekdahl's business, with 75 percent of her clients using it. To read the entire article, click here.

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