Monday, February 4, 2008

At 24-Hour Clubs, You Make Your Own Hours

“For people itching to work out in the wee hours, a crop of new gyms is giving fitness-seekers unfettered access 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Alabama entrepreneurs are opening franchises that operate around the clock. Snap Fitness, a large Minnesota-based franchise, lists six Alabama locations on its Web site, with 11 more ‘coming soon.’ Anytime Fitness, another 24-hour fitness franchise headquartered in Minnesota, lists eight Alabama gyms, with 25 more on the way. Rosemary Lavery, a spokeswoman for the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association, said more than 1,000 24-hour health clubs are operating in the United States. The fitness industry is always evolving, Lavery said. The 24-hour model focuses on convenience and accessibility. Many 24-hour clubs locate near major manufacturing plants, universities or densely populated areas, she said. According to the association, the number of health clubs in Alabama has grown from 275 in 2000 to 399 as of September, an increase of 45 percent.”

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