24 Hour Fitness Worldwide made headlines when it announced a partnership with the Yankee captain for its entry into the New York market. This coming Tuesday, Derek Jeter will welcome New Yorkers into its sleek 24 Hour Fitness facility on Fifth Avenue at Madison Square Park for the first time.
The company reports they have found that attaching the name of a high-profile athlete to a club helps attract members. While off to a good start, Gym membership declined unexpectedly last year from 2006, falling nearly 1% in New York state and 3% nationally, to 41.5 million members, according to the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association.
“Derek has a loyal following in Manhattan,” says 24 Hour Fitness Chief Executive Carl Liebert. “He stands for a lot of things we aspire to do.”
Though fees at its clubs are on the steep side—from $109 to $129 a month in the city—24 Hour Fitness differentiates itself from traditional gyms with its celebrity and Olympic affiliations, as well as with product placements on such programs as NBC’s The Biggest Loser.
Looks like celebrity power can make all the difference.
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