SNEWS Qs, IHRSA Edition: Executive Director of the President's Council on Exercise Shellie Y. Pfohl

SNEWS chats with Shelly Y. Pfohl, the executive director of the President's Council on Exercise, who will speak at IHRSA in a few weeks, discussing potential partnerships to be made with the volunteer 25-member council that aims to make kids and adults healthier and more active.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

Shellie Y. Pfohl, the executive director of the President's Council on Exercise, will speak at IHRSA in a few weeks, discussing potential partnerships to be made with the volunteer 25-member council that aims to make kids and adults healthier and more active. The event is sponsored by Spri Products.

What do you hope to accomplish at IHRSA?

First of all, I am thrilled about the opportunity for the President's Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition to support the 2012 IHRSA Convention. IHRSA's commitment to the Council's Joining Forces Fitness Initiative, launched last May by the President's Council and First Lady Michelle Obama, has been incredible. IHRSA committed its members to donating 100,000 free health club memberships to the families of deployed National Guard and Reserve members. At this year's convention, the President's Council is looking to show appreciation to the IHRSA members who have signed up their club, and also to inspire more club owners to participate in this great initiative to serve America's military families.



What role do you think the fitness industry, both retailers and health clubs, play in keeping America active?

The fitness industry has a very important role in helping Americans stay active. Retailers and health clubs can provide the environment and the equipment necessary to engage and inspire more people to get fit. Health clubs in particular can be a way for Americans to develop a routine and provide the motivation needed to stick with it. An important thing to consider is that accessibility to health clubs is difficult for many Americans, often due to financial limitations or intimidation factors. Health clubs can strive for the clubs to be welcoming, safe, and health and fitness retailers can offer affordable equipment and apparel to help more Americans stay active.



How can specialty fitness retailers better engage the community to be active?

Specialty fitness retailers can provide necessary resources to communities that help the members live more active lifestyles. Many cities, towns and counties already have a stretched budget with minimal allocation to health and fitness programs, equipment and facilities. The first step is to work with the local leaders to identify the needs and limitations of the community, then by collaborating to eliminate any barriers and provide resources, the fitness retailers can make a positive difference in the community.



How can engaging the community to be more active benefit specialty fitness retailers?

Engaging with the community can enable retailers to develop relationships on a personal level. This allows the community members to associate a positive image with a particular retailer, which is a great marketing opportunity for the fitness industry. It is important to understand that all Americans have a stake in the obesity epidemic, and fitness retailers have the resources to directly impact communities — and the results can last a lifetime.



What are some of the goals you hope to get accomplished during your time as the executive director of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition?

One important project is "modernizing" the youth fitness test. This is the test that many of us took in PE class and many of our kids still take the test. It is in need of updating and we want to move to a health-related test instead of an athletic performance-based assessment. We are working with some key partners to make this happen. I also want to continue to build partnerships with organizations of all types (corporate, community-based, government, etc.) to advance our collective mission of a healthier America. And I want to bring greater attention to the importance of qualified youth sport coaches. Those are a few things and there is so much yet to be done.



What have been some of the highlights of your time on the council?

The biggest highlight for me is visiting the school and community programs. There are so many ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Before and after school walking programs, recess programs, gardens, community programs — the list is endless and the innovation used to get and keep kids and adults on track towards health is inspiring. It gives me real hope that we can turn the tide on obesity and help our kids to grow up to be healthy, vibrant adults.



What have been some of the biggest challenges and how did you overcome them?

Probably the overall lack of resources. So little funding is available for true prevention. But that is why partnerships are so important. We can do so much by sharing and combining resources, financial and creative, for the good of all.



What is the motto you live by?

Go big or go home.

--Ana Trujillo

Related

zumba-logo-vertical.jpg

SNEWS Qs: Zumba founder Beto Perez ahead of his special IHRSA appearance

Zumba founder Beto Perez, who started the Latin dance-infused cardio workout, is gearing up for a Zumbathon fundraising event at IHRSA next week to raise money for Augie’s Quest, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Thursday, March 16. To pre-register (donation required) visit www.zumba.com. ...read more

ClubIndustryIcon.jpg

SNEWS Qs, Fitness Edition: Pam Kufahl and Stuart Goldman, Club Industry

The Club Industry Show will take place Oct. 10-12 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Club Industry editors Pam Kufahl and Stuart Goldman chat about some of the industry's biggest trends and what retailers could get out of attending the show. To register, visit the Club Industry ...read more

SNEWSQsLogo2.jpg

SNEWS Qs, Retailer Edition: Sarah Merrell, Diamond Brand Outdoors

Sarah MerrellDiamond Brand Outdoor Arden, N.C., 828-684-6262 What are some of the most popular items in your store? Osprey packs have been a hot seller for us; we are actually one of only six retailers that have an Osprey Pro Shop.  ENO hammocks are not only popular, but ENO also ...read more

SproingPaulToback.jpg

SNEWS Qs, Paul Toback, CEO Sproing Fitness

The Sproing treadmill sprung onto the fitness scene back in 2011 at IHRSA, and while the concept is still the same (a treadmill that reduces impact on the knees by providing a soft surface to run on), the new models are completely different than the prototype of 2011. SNEWS ...read more

SNEWSQsLogo2.jpg

SNEWS Qs, Jamie Matusek, marketing director at Nexersys

Jamie Matusek Marketing director, Nexersys Tell our readers about the history of your company: Terry Jones, Nexersys CEO, formed Nexersys in September 2009 in Austin, Texas with the intention to develop, manufacture and distribute a unique fitness product for home and gym use ...read more

MarkdeGrasseEvo.jpg

SNEWS Qs: Mark de Grasse, Relay Fitness Group

Until just a few years ago, a lot of stationary cycles didn’t actually mimic the motion of a real bike – the way it sways and moves with the body instead of just staying in one place. But then companies like RealRyder and Relay Fitness Group launched products that did move more ...read more

SNEWSQsLogo2.jpg

SNEWS Qs: Nicholas Pugh, president and CEO of Fit4Sale.com

Nicholas Pugh President and CEO Fit4Sale.com What are some of your current top sellers and why do you think they’re so popular? We’re redirecting some of our focus to consulting, and are finding that a lot of people who call us are opening up small facilities – 3,000 to 5,000 ...read more

SNEWSQsLogo2.jpg

SNEWS Qs, Retailer Edition: Leo Clark, president Fitness Lifestyles

Leo Clark President, Fitness Lifestyles, Inc., Asbury Park, N.J. What are some of the best-selling items at your store right now and why do you think they’re popular? This past winter it seemed that treadmills and elliptical sales were almost even. As for the smaller items, it’s ...read more

SNEWSQsLogo2.jpg

SNEWS Qs, Manufacturer Edition: David Kemble, Rocketlok

David KembleManaging member, Rocketlok 214-271-4727 What makes Rocketlok adjustable kettlebells different from other products on the market? The Rocketlok kettlebell has revolutionized the adjustable kettlebell class. The sleek, patented design retains the traditional shape and ...read more