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Industry Outtakes

  • American Leisure Corp. has appointed of Mark Natale, M.S. to the position of executive vice president. Natale will be responsible for overseeing the operations of more than 60 residential, commercial and corporate fitness centers located in New York, New Jersey and Florida.

  • The Principal Financial Group, a 401(k) leader and provider of employee benefits, has received the Platinum Well Workplace award from the Wellness Councils of America (WELCOA) for its commitment to worksite wellness. The Principal provides a comprehensive wellness program for its nearly 15,000 employees worldwide. The company provides four onsite fitness centers on its corporate campus, as well as a variety of wellness programs, classes and consulting services.

  • Iron Grip Barbell Co. has recently signed a limited license agreement with Gill Athletics for a line of Olympic weight plates with handgrips. The plates will be sold through Gill Athletics and its distributors. Additionally, the company — which just moved to a new, larger facility — also announced two new members to the Iron Grip sales team, Monica Leigh, account executive for the Northeastern U.S., and Megan Feuerborn, account executive for the Southeastern U.S. Iron Grip has also named Sara Hansen marketing manager.

  • With claims video sales are in the millions the last four months, Zumba Fitness, which combines Latin dancing and aerobics, teamed up with Dark Dog the energy drink company, to hold the first Zumba Fitness Festival at the Fontainebleau Hilton, Nov. 30, on Miami Beach.

  • The General Mills Foundation, the American Dietetic Association (ADA) Foundation and the President's Challenge are partnering to improve youth nutrition and fitness. The initiative, “General Mills Champions,” will consist of grants to community-based groups. Additional components of the initiative include sponsorship of the Presidential Active Lifestyle Awards (PALA), developing nutrition and fitness mentoring models, and sharing best practices.

  • HeartFlex, a new flexible tube that is reportedly light and soft yet provides powerful muscle building resistance when bent or twisted, is now available for exercise programs in health clubs, Y's, gyms and wellness centers.

  • American WholeHealth Inc., the exclusive provider for the AARP Alternative Health and Wellness Network, released new information regarding the health benefits of integrative health services. The two-year follow-up study of patients' self-assessment of their health status was reported at a meeting held in conjunction with AARP's Life@50 + member event in San Diego. According to the study, patients seeking complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) services had health status significantly below the normal population. Health status improved significantly after patients received CAM treatments and lifestyle advice. Of special note was the data showing that study participants in the 55 and older age group reported reaching health status.

  • Fitness center operator Spectrum Athletic Clubs announced the appointment of two new members to its board of directors — Terdema Ussery and Roger H. Bates. Both men will provide strategic vision and direction to Spectrum Clubs as it continues the expansion of its business. Ussery is the president and CEO of the Dallas Mavericks NBA team, as well as the CEO of HDNet, the nation's first high-definition television network. Meanwhile, Bates is an executive vice president of HealthCare Dimensions, which created the successful Silver Sneakers Fitness Program. He also was co-founder of Frogs, a southern California-based health and fitness club network.

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