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A first-of-its-kind health club concept has opened its doors in Sydney, Australia – a women-only, virtual-only club designed with the Baby Boomer generation in mind.
Positioned as a lifestyle space, the 400sq m club targets what de Leede calls the “forgotten generation” – older women who have never really engaged with gyms and fitness in the traditional sense.
“Club W is a modern space where women can recharge, restore, connect with others and immerse themselves in wellness,” says de Leede. “I refer to it as a second home – a home that’s based on community and activity, and where you feel comfortable and safe.”
The A$650k club is based around a wellness lounge area, where members can relax and socialise. Employed hosts and volunteer ‘club ambassadors’ are also on-hand to make members feel welcome, comfortable and to buddy them in activities within the club.
In addition to the social spaces, there’s also a strong focus on movement, with four virtual studios offering Move123 classes. These cover nine distinct categories – Yoga, Pilates, Barre, Stretch, Strength, Dance, Fight, Cardio and Meditation – and range in length from five to 30 minutes. A new category, Move Breathe, is also planned.
All classes are delivered exclusively through the Wexer platform, with the timetable featuring an impressive 200+ classes a day.
De Leede is confident that virtual classes are appropriate for, and indeed appealing to, the older Club W target market. “The Baby Boomer generation has already embraced social media platforms and so on – they aren’t afraid of tech,” he says.
“Also, anyone visiting our club quickly sees the benefits of the classes being virtual: it’s this that guarantees so much choice. The sheer size of our timetable means you’re guaranteed to find something that interests you within minutes of arriving at the club.”
Complementing the four virtual studios is an ‘active education’ room – a small gym space kitted out with treadmills and recumbent bikes, where four large screens at the front of the room allow members to access a pre-set schedule of Mind123 educational programmes. These videos, between three and 15 minutes in length, offer lifestyle advice on a wide variety of topics: Health, Nutrition, Self, Relationships, Wealth and Beauty.
There’s also a massage room, plus three consultation pods where local lifestyle businesses – offering services ranging from nutrition to naturopathy, life coaching to manicures – can come in and offer complimentary 20-minute appointments for members.
“I wanted to create somewhere I could imagine my mum or my sister coming to get out of the house – a place that offers not only movement, but also community,” says de Leede. “Club W isn’t about being fit. It’s about living longer, well.”
Through a range of digital products and services Wexer helps club groups connect with members both inside and outside the four walls of the gym. The original product, Wexer Virtual, features world-class exercise content and allows 24h usage of group exercise and cycling studios. The gym floor product, Wexer Trainer, helps clubs activate their functional space. Wexer also offer Wexer Mobile, an app, which allows streaming of both live and pre-recorded classes as well as ‘on-the-fly’ exercise programming which can be used whenever, wherever.