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Head of the Class: IHRSA Award Honorees are Making the World Healthier One Individual, One Club, and One Community at a Time

IHRSA to Honor 2010 Award Recipients at 29th Annual International Convention & Trade Show

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Boston – March 05, 2010

The International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association (IHRSA) is pleased to announce the award honorees for the 29th Annual Convention and Trade Show to be held March 10-13 at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, California:

  • Jasmin Kirstein, owner of My Sportlady, Munich, Germany
  • Balanced Body®, the world's largest manufacturer of Pilates equipment, Sacramento, California
  • Lloyd and Roberta Gainsboro, co-owners of the Dedham Health and Athletic Complex, Dedham, Massachusetts
  • Phil Wendel, owner of Atlantic Coast Athletic Clubs (ACAC) Fitness & Wellness Centers in Virginia and co-owner, Maryland Athletic Clubs
  • Mike Motta, founder, president, and CEO of Plus One Health Management, Inc., New York, New York
  • Patricia Laus, CEO of the Atlantic Club in New Jersey and founder of Clubs for the Cure

“This year’s class of award honorees are true visionaries and leaders,” said Joe Moore President and CEO of IHRSA. “They have challenged the industry to be the best it can be for the millions of people it serves worldwide. On behalf of IHRSA and the industry, I would like to thank each of them for their dedication to the advancement of a healthier world one individual, one club, and one community at a time.”

On Wednesday, March 10, the Second Annual Julie Main Emerging Woman Leader Scholarship will be awarded to the individual woman who exemplifies what Ms. Main stood for - courage, perseverance, excellence, professionalism and contribution to the industry and community. Julie Main, who passed away on May 4, 2009 following a long and courageous battle with cancer, was the co-owner and president of the West Coast Athletic Clubs in California, founder of the Cancer WellFit Program, a former IHRSA Board of Directors member and past president, and industry speaker. Jasmin Kirstein, owner of My Sportlady in Munich, Germany, was chosen as the recipient of the scholarship, in recognition for her efforts over the past 25 years to enrich the live of women and children in Germany and throughout the world through a holistic approach to fitness. My Sportlady, opened in 1984 was the first women-only club in Germany. Last year’s First Annual winner was Karen Jashinsky, founder and CEO of O2 Max Fitness.

The IHRSA Associate Member of the Year, also to be awarded on Wednesday, March 10, honors an Associate Member for their outstanding contribution to IHRSA and to the fitness industry. Balanced Body was chosen for its innovation and for its commitment to the integrity of Joseph Pilates equipment, which it provides to studios, health clubs, rehabilitation facilities, and individual consumers globally. Through Balanced Body University®, the company provides access to Pilates instructor training programs as well as continuing education opportunities, offering a network of more than 50 educators for assistance with Pilates programming and certification. SPRI, a leading supplier of rubberized resistance exercise products was last year’s recipient.

The John McCarthy Industry Visionary Of The Year Award is presented to the individual(s) who has made an unprecedented or unique contribution to the advancement of the club industry as a whole. On Thursday, March 11, IHRSA will honor Lloyd and Roberta Gainsboro along with Phil Wendel, who have been working to bridge the gap between the fitness industry and medical community. Lloyd and Roberta Gainsboro, are co-owners of the Dedham Health and Athletic Complex in Dedham, Massachusetts (DHAC). Through innovative partnerships with leading medical providers such as Beth Israel Deaconess Hospitals, New England Baptist Hospital, and the Joslin Diabetes Center, among others, DHAC is at the forefront of a national movement toward combining health, fitness and medical services.

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Phil Wendel is the owner of Atlantic Coast Athletic Clubs Fitness & Wellness Centers (ACAC) in Virginia, co-owner of Maryland Athletic Clubs, and a pioneer in the development of medical fitness and wellness programs that address the needs of people with chronic diseases. ACAC’s model “General Physician Referred Exercise Program (PREP)” allows any patient with a physician referral to enroll for 60 days for $60 in a personalized exercise program based on the physician’s recommendations. Both Wendel and Lloyd Gainsboro served together on IHRSA’s Board of Directors. Past recipients of this award include Jeff Klinger and Chuck Runyon of Anytime Fitness (2009), Pete Kight of Checkfree (2006), and Joe Cirulli of the Gainsville Health and Fitness Center (2005).

The Dale S. Dibble Distinguished Service Award will be given on Friday, March 12, to an individual within the Association who has excelled in their contributions to the industry and IHRSA. Mike Motta is the founder, president, and CEO of Plus One Health Management, Inc., Under Motta’s leadership, Plus One was named one of Inc. magazine’s fastest-growing private companies for three consecutive years: in 2007, 2008, and 2009. From 2004 to 2008, Motta was a member of IHRSA’s Board of Directors where he served as chair of the Standards Committee. Mike has spoken at IHRSA Annual Conventions, numerous industry events, and continues to contribute his knowledge and time to IHRSA and the industry. Past honorees include Herb Lipsman, President and CEO of the Health Club Company (2009), Geoff Dyer of Lifetime Family Fitness (2008), and Greg Lappin of the Rochester Athletic Club (2007).

The award for Outstanding Community Service will be presented on Friday, March 12, to an individual who has made a longstanding commitment to making a difference in, and beyond, his or her community. Patricia Laus, CEO of the Atlantic Clubs in Manasquan and Red Bank, New Jersey, is a savvy businesswoman with a natural ability to rally her community, her club, and the industry to participate in grassroots causes that benefit the greater good. She started Clubs for the Cure, a national fundraising campaign in partnership with health and fitness clubs across the country. The clubs are asked to coordinate fundraisers to support Augie’s Quest, to help find a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Laus has served on IHRSA’s Board of Directors and was honored with IHRSA’s Distinguished Service Award for outstanding contributions to the growth of the health and fitness industry. Last year, the First Annual award for Outstanding Community Service was presented to Dave Patchell (Patch) Evans, founder and CEO of The GoodLife Clubs, and IHRSA board chairman.

For more information about this year’s IHRSA award recipients, please contact Pam O‘Donnell,, or 617-951-0055.

The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA) is a not-for-profit trade association representing health and fitness facilities, gyms, spas, sports clubs, and suppliers worldwide. The association’s membership includes over 9,000 clubs in 75 countries, along with over 650 industry suppliers.

Kara Thompson, IHRSA

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