Thursday, June 5, 2008

More Kids Work Out At Gyms

“‘What we're seeing now is kids taking on what normally would be considered adult exercises,’ says Dr. Bob Duggan, a foot and ankle surgeon in Orlando, Fla., who specializes in sports medicine. According to the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association, which represents about 9,100 health clubs worldwide, 4.1 million kids (ages 6 to 17) belonged to health clubs in 2006, the latest year for which statistics are available. That's up 28 percent since 2000 and a more than twofold increase over 1987, when the association began tracking kid memberships. The group reports that health clubs are responding to the teen trend as they did a couple of decades ago when there was a new demand for women-oriented clubs. ‘Whether health clubs for teens ever rack up the numbers or achieve the success of single-sex express workout clubs remains to be seen,’ the Boston-based association reports in its online newsletter. But, it adds, with the nation's teens having an estimated $200 billion in spending power -- a number ‘expected to more than double within the next five years’ -- the clubs are doing their best to find out.”

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