Niles fitness centers resolve to meet new members’ needs
Regina Mundt, right, leads a Zumba class at the Niles Family Fitness Center. | Joel Lerner~Sun-Times Media
Updated: March 4, 2013 1:50AM
NILES — Each year as people celebrate together and ring in a new year, many also make New Year’s resolutions.
A popular one is to start working out and eating healthier.
“Generally, if they make it through the first month, they’re going to be successful,” said Carl Maniscalco, director of the Niles Family Fitness Center that is located at 987 Civic Center Dr.
Maniscalco said that in January the number of members increases because there is a new wave of people who want to kick-off the new year by getting physically active.
To meet their needs, the Niles Family Fitness Center is starting a new program in January to try to encourage new members to interact more with the staff and ask them questions about how to become more fit in 2013.
The new Passport to Fitness program will encourage members to ask six different staff members questions about how to lose weight, eat healthier, etc. The goal of the program is to have members get connected with the fitness center staff and the program also features a drawing and prizes.
The current membership at the Niles Fitness Center is about 2,600 and Maniscalco said that number has been pretty stable over the past few years.
Maniscalco added that the center has created a private Pilates room and now holds popular aerobics classes, such as Zumba, in the gymnasium. Spinning, yoga and Pilates are also popular fitness classes offered at the center.
“We’re continuing to find space for our growing programs,” Maniscalco said.
The Niles Family Fitness Center is a 70,000 square-foot facility that opened in December 1998. The center offers a gymnasium, cardio equipment, an indoor track, indoor aquatic center, an 1,800 square-foot fitness studio and more.
In December the center offered one extra month for new members and one extra month for those who are members and refer someone new to the center.
XSport Fitness, 9210 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Niles, also offered a special membership deal. Those who purchased one year of membership received another year free.
“Every club sees an increase in people in January,” said Zach Ford, fitness manager at XSport.
Ford said that if new customers start working with a personal trainer one on one they typically continue to work out about three times longer than if they did not have a trainer.
Without a trainer, the number of people who join a fitness center in January starts to drop off after about eight weeks, he said.
“Anytime where you have somebody helping you it’s really going to increase your chances of succeeding,” Ford noted.
According to the XSport Fitness website, personal training helps with goal setting, nutritional guidance, accountability, consistency, motivation, proper technique and creating a personal program design.
Ford said people also make New Year’s resolutions to eat healthier and XSport staff will help them reach that goal also, by using food logs, creating meal plans and recipes.
“Nutrition is 80 percent of your results,” Ford said.