More than 1,000 Anytime Fitness clubs across the United States will host free outdoor exercise classes on Saturdays during May, the company announced today. The workouts will be led by certified personal trainers, some of whom will donate their time. Workouts might include tug-of-war, relay races, obstacle courses and other workouts designed for people of every fitness level.
"Everyone realizes that exercise is good for you," Dave Mortensen, president of Hastings, MN-based Anytime Fitness, said in the announcement. "But for many people, knowing how and where to get started can be a challenge. Our hope is that the free workout Saturdays will show folks that exercise can be fun—and hopefully they'll find the motivation to continue on their own personal journeys to a healthier lifestyle."
The workouts are open to members and non-members. People will be able to sign up for classes online starting April 20, but they can also register onsite on the day of the workouts.
Each participating club will offer its own unique workout, and in many communities, city officials and public health administrators will join in the effort to get their residents involved. The concept, inspired by grass-roots efforts of a few dozen Anytime Fitness club operators that regularly offer free outdoor boot camps, has grown into a nationwide campaign to promote physical fitness.
The free workouts are being promoted through a video that the company is sharing on YouTube and through social media. The company is encouraging franchisees to share the video with local media and on their own social media platforms, according to Mark Daly, spokesperson for Anytime Fitness. Franchisees have received customizable press releases to share with local media that provide details about their location's free workouts.
"At Anytime Fitness, we're passionate about helping people 'Get to a Healthier Place,'" said Stacy Anderson, chief marketing officer for Anytime Fitness. "That can mean different things to different people. For some it's losing weight or gaining strength. For others it's improving balance or flexibility. The important thing is to find physical activities that you enjoy, so being active is something you look forward to—rather than dread."