Globalism's Impact On The Fitness & Health Club Industries

Its already May and with nearly half of 2011 over I've had the fortune of traveling to China, Australia and across the U.S. visiting major players and participants in the global health and fitness industry. This has led me to a question, "How is globalization impacting the health club and fitness industries?" But more importantly, I ask "are our leaders and organizations doing enough to work together globally ?"

In speaking with business and industry leaders there certainly is great variety on their view points regarding collaboration globally in health clubs, fitness and even wellness. Some of these leaders are doing the hard work and heavy lifting while I think others are more focused on maintaining the status quo, often out of fear.

As a fitness industry expert, I reflect on trends and seek to understand how these will impact our businesses and organizations. In his recent book, World 3.0, Global Prosperity and How To Achieve It , Professor Pankaj Ghemawat explains some important concepts that resonated with me. I wonder, is all of the global leadership in the fitness and health club industries collaborating in a manner to best grow the global pie ?  Are we adopting the World 3.0 view ? (Take this test to see what your view is). Watch the video below and tell me, Bryan O'Rourke, are the leaders in the fitness and health club industries working together well enough ? Is this helping or hurting the growth potential for fitness, health clubs and wellness in general ? P.S. My thanks to Will Phillips for our chat at IHRSA 2011 around this and other topics that inspired me to do something about it.

Jim Rodgers' "A Bull in China"

A%20Bull%20in%20China.jpgExcerpts from a recent interview with Jim Rogers, co-founder of the Quantum Fund and one of the most successful Global Macro investors in history. He tells why he's so bullish on China, sour on America and will raise his family in Singapore.

So, why China?

A big change is taking place. Most people do not understand the full breadth and depth of what's happening there. All Americans are spending a lot of money in China now, so why don't we get something back? They're among the best capitalists in the world. Massachusetts is more communist than China is these days. You can benefit too; you don't have to sit back and moan and say, "What do we do?" Investing in the U.S. in 1907 was a brilliant thing to do. Investing in China in 2007 is a brilliant thing to do. Just call your broker. It's that easy.

How are you preparing for Chinese dominance in the next century?

My daughter is 4-and-a-half. She has two native languages. One is Mandarin. When she was born, we got a Chinese nanny from China who moved in with us, and I told her you only speak Mandarin to her. She speaks Chinese like a native. We've moved to Singapore to insure that it continues. We're having another daughter in March, and she'll be brought up the same way. There are 1.5 billion people who speak Chinese every day. That most Americans are monolingual I see as a bad situation.

You've no doubt been told you're being alarmist and that despite China's rapid growth it's a small part of the world economy.

Nobody quite understood in 1907 that the U.S. was the next great country in the world. The U.S. was a debtor nation, we were lawless, we had a huge Civil War and presidents were assassinated. We didn't have human rights. We had massacres, people would demonstrate and they would call the army and the Pinkertons. As recently as 1945, the British still thought they were the greatest country in the world and they could prevent America from growing.