Interview With My Fitness Agent

The Checkfit team met with Jase from My Fitness Agent to find out more about the annual fitness professional awards he has been hosting for the past few years. The awards have grown massively since they started and this year has seen the awards have the most interest with there being more votes and nominations than any other year. This year, Checkfit have been nominated for the 'best industry newcomer' award.

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Why Did You Start My Fitness Agent?

I started it because I was writing for the guide, and at the end of each year they would do awards for a range of categories like best restaurant etc. They told me to do a fitness award a few years ago, so I thought I’d just do it and give it a go. Then the interest I got back from it was huge. From the interest I knew I had got onto something, so the following year I put it back out there for people to nominate. I was getting loads of messages off people asking me where the venue for the awards is, at the time I hadn’t thought of anything like that as I had been running the awards online. So I had to quickly find a venue and set up the awards night, so for me and the awards, last year was massive. Compared to other award nights you see I wouldn’t say ours was as big as that but considering it was the first year I had planned an awards night and got a venue, it was pretty big. For this year’s awards I had interest as soon as the awards night finished last year. I can say also that the votes for this year’s awards have already gone over the number of votes we had for last year’s awards.

What Are The Aims & Goals For My Fitness Agent?

The goal is to get Liverpool the most active city in the UK by 2020. We are starting by motivating the professionals themselves with the awards, once they get competitive with each other and wanting to win then they start doing more within the city. At the same time, we help to bring the industry together, at the award night when we are all together and sitting at the same table’s people get speaking to each other and start talking about the industry and how they can help each other.

We also have something in the pipe line that’s to do with working with schools, we want to help them get the children more active, but instead of going in and saying you have to do this and that, we want to give them an incentive.

Why Do You Want To Help Our City Become More Active?

I think there is that much information out there at the minute, a lot of it gets twisted or people with it all. So I want to bring everyone together to sort of say ‘look, this is the one thing we need to be doing’. As long as we are getting people more active then I’m happy, but at the minute the statistics are shocking. We was with the NHS recently and they mentioned how so many people are unedcuted in this industry and on way to keep healthy.

Why Is It Important For Children To Get Involved In Physical Activity?

As the generations are going on, they are getting less active, as supposed to when I was little and would spend hours in the street playing out. I have even seen some three years olds just sat there playing on their ipad. So they grow up staying like this and hardly do any physical activity. Even in schools, I have been into some schools and took some classes, from my experience, they are doing PE just for the sake of it, there’s no effort involved in the class. The kids aren’t getting anything out of it and are left to do their own thing. That’s just down to primary school teachers having limited knowledge on fitness classes because that’s not their profession. Want I would like to do is to get some PT’s to go into schools and take a PE class, also they can educate the children on physical activity and nutrition. If we can get them learning from an early age, it can help prevent them becoming unhealthy at a later stage.

How Do You Pick The Finalists For The Awards?

The first year it was people I had seen in the industry, and the second year was similar. But this year it was all from nominations, but each person who got nominated had to have a reason why. Last year some people were saying that the awards where just a popularity contest, and it could of looked like that, because there was no reason why they were there in the first place. I think that’s why the standard this year has gone up, you couldn’t just nominate someone for nothing, there had to be a reason. We had a lot of people nominated so to make the final list smaller we had to look into each reason why. This year we have changed a few of the category names. Our best industry newcomer has been made to help new compaines in the industry. I know when I was a PT and first started it was a bit of a shock to me, so by these new-comers being nominated or even winning the award it should give them some confidence and recognition with the public.

Do You Think PT’s & Clubs Should Be Able To Market Themselves On Social Media?

I think it is important but I think a lot of people base social media on what they look like. You see a lot of new personal trainers with 6-packs and stuff like that, that can put some people off. You don’t need a 6-pack to be a good personal trainer; it does help, but as long as you practise what you preach. I think if you show that you are like the people that are going to be coming to you, and you know what you are talking about then thats the most important thing. For me that’s more important than showing what you look like on social media. 

What Is Active School League?

Active school league is a way we are going to target getting kids more active. It is going to be a kind of premier league between the schools in the city, for example if they do two sessions in a week they will get a certain amount of points, but if they do three they will get more. We are going to work with companies who want to reward the schools, so the top four schools in the league will get a prize of some sort.

What Types Of Things Do You Do For The Community?

This year as part of the awards, we are doing a thing called charity road show. With the finalists we are going to send out an email asking them if they want to take part. We are going to do a tour of different charity events. We are raising money for zoe’s place, so we will try and get everyone involved. Even if a PT could come down and put on a spin session, that would be enough for me. I would also like to get the entire finalist down to Zoe’s place and help out for a day. 

Do You Think The Awards Will Help Bring The Fitness Industry Together?

At the awards when all or the nominees are sat together, they get to know each other. They start to build relationships from there and come up with ideas together. Up until I started the awards, the fitness industry was the only one that didn’t do any awards in our city. You have the beauty awards, the health awards and pet awards. What I have seen with those industries is that all of the people link in with each other and work together. I think that’s why the fitness industry was so apart, because they never had anything like these awards to bring them together.

Do You See The Fitness Industry Growing In The City?

Yeah, I think it is still going to grow. But at the same time I think it needs to raise its standards.  If the standards are raised that might stop the growth because you will probably get rid of the people who are in this industry just for the money and who aren’t passionate about it, but that would be a good thing. The industry is in demand though so it is always going to grow.

What’s Next For My Fitness Agent?

The awards are going to carry on, each year they have grown so hopefully it carries on that way. We are hoping to start the active school league soon; we would also like to work with other businesses in the city to get some events going, like fun runs or other things along them lines. Just want to have things going on in the city that can keep people active. By 2020, we want to have some sort of proof that we are the most active city.

I think eventually I may bring the awards nationwide but for now I want to just keep them for my city.

 

If you would like to check out the finalists for the awards in November, you can see the list here.

If you would like to vote for anyone then click the link here.