New computerized treadmills, various workouts on bubbles of air, and fitness accesories galore for a struggling economy will debut at the Health & Fitness Business Expo, Sept. 14-16, 2011, at the Sands Convention Center in Las Vegas.
The show (click here to read the Sept. 2 SNEWS HFB show news update to find links to schedules, events, apps, exhibitor lists, floor maps and more) is also a prime opportunity for industry professionals to network, said Steve Porter of Fitness Source LLC in Longmont, Colo.
"A big part of what helps us at the show is interacting with retailers from different parts of the industry and different parts of the country," he said. "To be able to have a Q&A with people from all over the industry and find out what's working and what's not and what kind of trends are coming instead of being in our own little vacuum is really valuable.”
New and revamped products
Expect to see more technology on much of the new equipment debuting at the show (www.healthandfitnessbiz.com), plus a move to incorporate balance ball-like features into everything from weight benches to excercise bikes to create functional training opportunities. And vibration still seems to be going strong, too.
BH Fitness (#H801) introduces a European-styled LK510 (photo, right) with whole body vibration (MSRP $4,599), which has a quickstart, manual and sport programs (including ones geared for basketball, tennis and climbing, among others). The company also introduces its LK790 treadmill (MSRP $5,499).
Bodyguard Fitness (#H421) will show four new treadmills with its Turbo Training and new “imagine” feature. The treadmills are T260P, T280P Ortho, T520P and T560X all starting at MSRP $3,099.
Diamondback Fitness (#H415) presents the 510Ic computer-controlled resistance indoor cycle (MSRP $699), plus two front-drive ellipticals: the 510Ef (MSRP $1,299, photo, left), and the 910Ef (MSRP $1,699).
Fitness Master (#H909) brings something for the young ones with its XE5 Kid’s Elliptical, featuring a battery-powered (two double-AA batteries) display of time, speed, distance and calories. This will join the company X5 Kid’s Bike that is already doing well.
LeMond Fitness (#H202) adds the brand new Power Pilot data storage device (which allows athletes to measure progress and upload training programs) to its LeMond Revolution cycling trainer. The two items work together in training.
PaceMaster (#H814) shows three treadmills: The ProTouch Elite (MSRP $2,999); The ProTouch VR (MSRP $2,499) which features a negative 3-percent decline to 12-percent incline; and The ProPacer (MSRP $1,999) which offers a smaller frame option.
Power Plate (#H829) presents its my7 (MSRP $7,999) for the first time to the retail market after a debut at the IHRSA show in March. It has an embedded computer, pre-loaded exercises, software to personalize workouts and proMOTION Dynamic Vibration Technology for a guided workout.
Prism Fitness Group (#H642) debuts products from Vicore, Smart and the new BallBike Brand (brought to HFB with partner FitOne. Photo, right). At a show for the first time, Vicore offers a new twist on weight benches with bubbled, stability ball-like seats. Similarly, BallBike uses a ball as a seat on its new exercise bike. And Smart debuts its compact and portable Smart Hurdles for indoor and outdoor training.
Relay Fitness Group (#H529) launches the EVO Indoor Cycle with a rolling, articulating, mounted pivot ("RAMP") frame (photo, left) that sways with user movement engaging riders' core muscles throughout the workout.
Spirit Fitness (#H921) brings its XBU55 Upright Fitness Bike (MSRP $999), with magnetic resistence system and 20 levels of resistence; and its CB900 Commercial Indoor Cycle (MSRP $1,299), which is fully customizable for each individual.
Torque Fitness (#H735) showcases its recently launched F1 (MSRP $9,999) and F2 (MSRP $1,999) home gyms, plus the completely redesigned F7 home gym (MSRP $2,199 without bench), which folds away into a small 3-by-3 cabinet.
Massagers and benches and hoops, oh my!
The struggling U.S. economy has helpled to make accessories a staple in the fitness retail world. This year’s Health & Fitness Business Expo continues the trend with new weights, massagers and training devices mostly under $100 MSRP:
Body Solid (#H301) shows itscommercial flat, incline and decline bench SFID325 (MSRP $479), which has a weight capacity of more than 1,000 pounds tested. The company also brings its line of chrome-handled KBC Kettlebells (MSRP $2.99 per pound).
Empower Fitness (#H628) and its brand Cardio Core & More (photo, right) feature a transferrable weight hoop that lets you mix and match weighted and non-weighted sections to create three different workouts.
Fitterfirst (#H318) showcases Soft Boards (MSRP starting at $39.95), which provides a cushion of air to workout on; and Rocker Boards (MSRP $79.95), which are good for strengthening ACLs; and the Travel Roller (MSRP $39.95), a self-massager for sore muscles.
GoFit (#H614) teams up withThe Biggest Loser co-host Bob Harper to debut three items at HFB: The Bob Harper Massage Bar (MSRP $24.99); Ultimate Massage Roller (MSRP $39.99); and the Bob Harper Stretch rope (MSRP $14.99).
Octane Fitness (#H608) releases six, 20-minute DVDs to accompany its exclusive Cross Circuit, which combines intervals of cardio on the elliptical and strength training, for its home ellipticals.
Rocktape (#H649) presents its Rocktape H2O (MSRP $20), which is claimed as twice as sticky and specifically designed for demanding environments like surfing, swimming, water polo and wake boarding.
Sequoia Fitness Products USA (#H338) brings the Chinook Lung Trainer, a respiratory training device enabling users to expand lung capacity through inspiration and expiration breathing exercises. Sequoia also features the new Avenger Body Composition Analyzer.
StairMaster (#H320) shows its TwistLock Dumbbells (photo, left) to the retail market after showing an early prototype at the IHRSA show. The weights have a patented TwistLock technology, allowing for quick and easy weight adjustments with a one-handed twist of each dumbbell handle.
Stick-e Products (#H834) launchesseveral items including its Yoga Mat with Lasso Strap (MSRP $49.95), more sizes in its non-slip yoga towels (MSRP $19.95-$49.95), Knee Savers (MSRP $19.95) to join its Wrist Savers, and the new Beamfit Balance and Exercise Beam (MSRP $99.95).
Thumper Massagers (#H922) debuts its full-sized Flexor Pro (MSRP $109) and travel-sized Companion Active (MSRP $49) back support products, both featuring the company's “True-Fit” positioning system, which incorporates an inflatable air chamber that allows the user to set the desired level of support required.
TRAINERbrands (#H928) bringsThe Gym in a Box (MSRP $79.99), including a 65-centimeter TRAINERball for Core Strength, TRAINERroller Foam Roller, TRAINERband Resistance Band and the TRAINERmat, which includes the TRAINERmat for Abs on the reverse side.
While new products and accessories are the bread and butter of the show, many manufacturers are using the show to showcase deals, dealer programs, or new wellness programs.
In an attempt to increase its dealer base, Lenny Snyderman, inventor of the Helix Lateral Trainer, (#H935) will offer a demo special in which new dealers that buy a Helix Lateral Trainer will get a new one for demonstrations at its store free. Current dealers will have an opportunity to get one Helix free if they buy two.
Productive Fitness (#H434) will launch a new drop ship program for retail stores for its fitness posters. The company has developed a binder featuring all of its posters which retail stores can place on its showroom floor to let customers browse through and choose posters they want. The store can then charge the customer on the spot and the posters are shipped directly to the customer. The store is then charged the wholesale price, meaning it can carry the posters without actually having them all in inventory.
The Ab CoasterCompany (#H328) is launching its Preferred Dealer program, which will help dealers feature products and services unavailable to traditional retailers. Membership to the program will come with extended warranties, access to exclusive products, and exclusive point of sale materials for sales associates.
Empower Fitness (#H628) is launching its Make Your Move campaign, which is designed to motivate and empower women of all ages, shapes and colors to get in shape.