WATCH: A day after customers and staff found doors locked at VI fitness centres across the island, others in the industry say it’s a reminder of the competitive nature of the business. Technology and social media are forcing companies to keep up with rapidly changing trends. Isabelle Raghem reports.
A disco ball helps makes the workout feel more like a party than a chore at Victoria’s Spinco. It’s one of the ways the studio is staying competitive in fierce industry.
“Keeping up with trends, playlists, good music,” says the studio’s manager Alyssa Halpenny.”We have one team, one bike, a lot of people make friends and based on community. I don’t know that gyms offer that same kind of feel.”
Just a day ago , the Island gym chain VI Fitness shut all its doors after filing for bankruptcy.
B.C. supreme court documents show the gyms were at the centre of a lawsuit, with the owners of the company suing each other.
“It’s always a shock to hear and sad to hear when these things happen I do believe the fitness industry is always changing, what people are looking for in a workout is changing,” adds Halpenny.
Alanna Kit, a UVic researcher in exercise physiology and the creator of the Kit Movement, says because there is so much free exercise content that providing a unique experience is the key to getting people to pay.
“It’s sort of getting back, back in time to how leisure started. [Fitness is now] meant to bring people together and that sense of community,” says Kit.
Staaf at Moksha Yoga Victoria say they too have noticed customers are looking for more than just a sweat.
“It’s less of a get it done and just working out at the gym but rather really exploring a more all-encompassing fitness, more well rounded fitness,” adds Amy Haysom, manager at Moksha Yoga Victoria.