Going out of Body Combat™

by Mathias Knöfel, Enterprise Analyst

My local gym is closing!

This blog was supposed to be about HP’s purchase of Aruba, the possible effect on their position in the market, and how well (or not) they will be able to integrate the acquisition. I guess that time will tell if they manage to do this successfully.

At present, I am preoccupied with the closure of the VA gym in Putney.

I guess there might be people that see a gym as a place they dread going to, and hearing about the closure of their gym might even be celebrated by them, giving them another reason NOT to go. For me, it’s a sad situation. This gym has been a social hotspot for me over the past 14 years, where I have made many friends, on top of exercising and keeping fit.

And I am not the only one who feels like this. Many people who used to come regularly to gym classes also enjoyed the social aspect, as well as the group enthusiasm for exercise… and the occasional night out! As we were left high and dry, been given only two weeks’ notice before closure, and one week to transfer to another gym (much further away), there is a group of us that want to maintain the spirit and social aspect, even if we have to transfer. As one of my friends has put it: “unless you’ve been to Putney gym, you just don’t get it”!

We started to mobilise ourselves, creating a web-page for information, and an online spreadsheet to record people’s names to show to the management of the next club that we are serious about this. Also, many of us have taken to social media, sharing thoughts, memories, pictures, and grief!

This activity has made me realise that all of this is readily available today, and we have come to expect it. The mobility aspect of this shows the importance of accessing information and social media wherever we are, through devices from smartphones to notebooks.

Telcos want us to use their networks, but these are not always available (besides, 4G is still somewhat expensive). We have seen an uptake in powerline adaptors for consumers and SMBs, as they want to make the most of the mobile devices they own, whether at home or in the office. When you are out shopping, or go for a meal, many places provide free Wi-Fi. In the corporate space, more and more offices are fitted with wireless access points.

With this demand growing as we become more mobile still, the purchase of Aruba by HP would appear to be a step into the right direction.

Unfortunately I cannot say that about the decision of VA headquarters – at least not from a members’ point of view.

*Body Combat™ is one of many classes offered by Les Mills at Virgin Active

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