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Potential for Massive Closures & Bankruptcies to Fitness Industry Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Posted On March 30, 2020 @ 9: 00 am / Updated On August 11, 2020 @ 11: 48 pm

By: Trisha Sarker

+ Dealing with Government-Sanctioned Closures and no Cash Flow,
FIC Members Seek Temporary Rent Relief


Edmonton – (March 30, 2020) Fitness Industry Council of Canada (FIC), the trade association representing over 5,000 fitness businesses who serve over 4 million members nationwide, is issuing an urgent appeal to government at all levels across Canada for emergency support.

In the wake of unprecedented fitness business closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, FIC members are asking provincial governments for help in the form of rent abatement until facilities can responsibly be reopened.  With clubs closed and membership dues suspended, many facility owners will have difficulty paying end-of-month operational expenses, including rent, and seek temporary abatement to help them financially survive.

“Our members responsibly agreed to close their doors to limit the spread of COVID-19 earlier this month,” noted Scott Wildeman, President of FIC. “However, as the timeline around business returning to normal becomes less and less clear, we are pleading with government to assist our members from closing permanently. If fitness clubs are all forced into bankruptcy, the social impact to society will be devastating,” added Wildeman. 

Health and wellness have never been more important.  Physical fitness helps support a strong immune system, which is critical to staving off or recovering from COVID-19. Studies have shown that getting lots of sleep, eating healthy foods, and regular exercise are cornerstones of today’s recommended best practices, especially as we traverse the unknown landscape of global pandemic.  The fitness professionals of FIC are committed to helping foster a healthy population – both physically and mentally.

“Members of FIC are united in this appeal. The fitness industry needs urgent assistance in order to survive. With rents due imminently, owners and operators of fitness facilities across Canada will be reaching out to MPPs and MLAs to press for relief,” noted Wildeman. 

FIC members recognize that government’s initial priority is focused on ensuring Canadians have enough money to pay their household bills and feed their families. Yet important community businesses like gyms and fitness clubs will be critically important for Canadians when they’re able to get back to regular day-to-day routines and regular physical activity.

+   HOW TO WRITE TO YOUR MLA OR MPP:

+   FIND YOUR MLA OR MPP:  

Fitness Industry Council of Canada (FIC) represents the voice of the fitness industry in Canada. Representing over 5,000 fitness businesses with over 4 million members, FIC pursues a legislative agenda of protecting and promoting the fitness industry. FIC is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors and Provincial Council members who are all industry leaders with representation from big box gyms, group ex/studios/boutiques, private training, education, and technology.

For more information, please contact:

Scott Wildeman, President
Fitness Industry Council of Canada
swildeman@ficdn.ca

Trisha Sarker, Executive Director
Fitness Industry Council of Canada
tsarker@ficdn.ca

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Trisha Sarker

As the executive director of FIC, Trisha provides strategic counsel for Fitness Industry Canada's corporate affairs and professional communications. She also produces articles for various publications, manages event coordination, and executes national campaigns. 

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