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Germ Filled Gym? Problem Solved!

GymValet is proud to be featured in the 2018 Problem Solver edition of Recreation Management magazine.  In the magazine, GymValet provides advice to fitness facility managers and owners who may face a common issue: ineffective cleaning systems that lead to germ-filled gyms. Many of these facilities have inconvenient “cleaning stations” that result in low member compliance when it comes to cleaning. Luckily, there is a simple solution. GymValet provides convenient and effective cleaning; cleaning supplies right on the equipment. If that doesn’t scream “problem solved”, I don’t know what does!

In the article, we discuss how gym cleanliness is often swept under the rug and not prioritized by facility managers/owners. “Keeping your fitness facility clean, especially your fitness equipment, might not be the first thing you think about when considering ways to attract and retain members, but cleanliness is a key driver of the way your gym is perceived. Equipment cleanliness isn’t something you should worry about once in a while, but should be part of your staff’s ongoing daily cleaning regimen.” So how do we make easy, regular cleaning a priority and a reality?

The solution is right at hand with GymValet. It’s all about convenience.  “The key to getting members to clean up after themselves is to make it simple and convenient. Position equipment cleaning supplies to be readily available—within arm’s reach of every piece of equipment.” This is why we made GymValet universally and easily attachable to almost every kind of gym equipment.

But what about cost? The answer is simple. “Combinations of spray bottles and paper towels as well as containers of disposable pre-moistened wipes are popular options, but they are very costly and create a great deal of waste. Providing sanitizing spray bottles and reusable towels generates far less waste and permits members to clean and sanitize at a much lower cost than other options.”

Sounds like a no-brainer! This germ-filled gym problem is solved with GymValet. If you have more questions about how GymValet can help improve the quality of your gym, contact us at 866-435-2009 OR 216-378-4298 (if outside the US).

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40 Years of Running EVERY DAY!

40 Years of Running EVERY DAY! thumbnail

I am so thrilled to share with you a great personal milestone I am about to reach. On May 15, 2018, I will mark 40 years of my running streak.

I have run at least three miles every single day for the last 40 years!

That will mean 14,600 days of consecutive running or 2,100 weeks of running every day without fail!

How many miles can you cover in 40 years of running? 100,000 miles on foot, which is a total of 4 times around the world! This is one of the longest running streaks in the world and I have no intention of slowing down! I am currently #19 on the USA’s list of longest running streaks.

I started my running streak when I was 23. Commitment to a 40-year running streak takes dedication, focus, and just starting small and growing from there. This dedication and passion I have for this personal commitment is a great representation of how I also feel about the GymValet cleaning system that I have developed. 

The Cleveland Jewish News recently posted an article that captures my story quite nicely.

I am so excited to celebrate my 40-year running streak on May 15 and to celebrate many more years of the streak to come!

Thanks for your support and good wishes as I accomplish this personal fitness milestone.

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The Top 3 Reasons to Choose GymValet

Want to save thousands of dollars per year on equipment cleaning costs and benefit from the great reputation that comes with being a clean facility?

The importance of a clean facility and equipment is undeniable. Cleanliness is crucial for sales, marketing, member attraction and retention – as well as a great insurance policy against the spread of germs and viruses that can live on the surfaces of exercise equipment. Remember.. members go to the gm to get healthy, not sick!

In order to maintain a healthy workout environment in your facility, cleaning needs to be prioritized. Frequently touched, body-contacted surfaces need to be sanitized after each use. Without doing so, you run the risk of user-to-user bacteria or virus transmission. Now this frequent and consistent cleaning can sound like quite a burden for gym owners and staff. Well fortunately I, Dr. Bruce Sherman, have designed a cost effective, convenient, and environmentally friendly solution.

GymValet is the industry’s #1 holder for spray bottles and towels. Here’s why:

  1. Cost – Research has shown that in equal-use situations disinfectant spray bottles and towels can save you up to 90-95% versus disposable wipes. For many facilities that represents savings of $5,000-$15,000 per year!

  2. Effectiveness & Convenience – The GymValet holder puts the spray bottle and towel right on the equipment – within one step or arm’s length of the exerciser. This facilitates immediate cleaning before and/or after each use.

  1. Environmental Responsibility: Single-use disposable wipes create a lot of waste. One roll of disposable wipes generates several garbage cans full of wipes waste. Also, wipes are generally made from synthetic fibers that are practically impossible to biodegrade – not very eco-friendly! Yes, towels must be washed on a regular basis, but research shows that gym-quality towels (that cost about $1 each) can be washed several hundreds of times before being “retired”.

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Wiping Away Towel Myths

Wiping Away Towel Myths

As I speak with fitness industry professionals around the country, and around the world, I am frequently asked about towels that are used to sanitize fitness equipment.  Or to be more specific:

“Doesn’t a towel that gets used repeatedly to wipe away sweat become germ-laden from all that sweat?”

Actually, the opposite is true. A spray bottle and towel equipment cleaning system proves to be a very effective method for sanitizing just-used exercise equipment surfaces.  Why?  Because the towels are progressively absorbing sanitizing cleaning solution.  In other words, they are continuously refreshed with the disinfectant.  Therefore, there is a concentrated/significant amount of disinfectant that remains on the towel at all times. The reusable spray-towel, when not in use, is sanitized; it is at “work” even while the towel is “at rest.”

Another important point to consider and understand is that per use, the volume of cleaning solution that is sprayed on the surface to be cleaned, or sprayed on the towel prior to wiping the surface, is generally much greater than the volume of body fluids that are wiped up.  The ratio of the volume of disinfectant on the towel to the volume to sweat is generally in favor of the disinfectant!

Still need convincing? Then consider a little sweat science:

  • In a fitness facility setting, equipment surfaces are NEVER exposed to full sweat-laden nude body surface contact (at least now at any club I’ve ever been to).   An exerciser stands on, sits on, or lies on a machine with a relatively small portion of their total body surface area actually contacting that machine.  However, the major point that can’t be overlooked here is…it doesn’t take much contact (sweaty or not, drops or not) to spread germs or viruses.  The good news, on the other hand, is that it doesn’t take much disinfectant solution to effectively kill germs and viruses!

  • Speaking of drops, excessive sweat at any one spot on the body can turn into a “drop.”  What is the volume of a drop?  It is generally accepted that 20 drops equal 1 ml.  Interestingly, the average amount of cleaning solution dispensed with one pull of a trigger-sprayer is approximately 1 mL. The average person pulls the trigger 3 to 4 times to clean a piece of equipment. That’s the equivalent of 60 to 80 drops of sweat – a lot of sweat!

Hopefully you now see the reasons why we say a towel based cleaning system is a safe and effective way to go: 1) The cleaning solution to sweat ratio is strongly in favor of the solution, 2) the cleaning towel is truly clean and safe to reuse—a very effective method for sanitizing just-used exercise equipment surfaces, and 3) a cloth towel-based equipment cleaning system can save you a lot of money versus pre-moistened wipes and paper towel based systems…and don’t forget, you won’t be generating environment polluting paper and wipes waste, either!

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GymValet Appears in Oscar Winning Film!

Plays supporting role in The Big Short.

When The Big Short won the Oscar, on Sunday night, for Best Writing Adapted Screenplay, I celebrated, too, because the GymValet can be seen attached to two Woodway Curve treadmills for almost one minute (in the 56th and 57th minutes of the movie) in the “gym scene” with Ryan Gosling talking on his phone.  Can you imagine my surprise when I saw the movie in the theater and the GymValet appeared on the “Big Screen?”  Very excited and very proud!!

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GymValets Appear in The Biggest Loser Semifinals

A bit battered and worn, but on full display with Colby, Roberto, and Trainer Jen.

As you my know I am a big fan of The Biggest Loser!  I watch it for the fitness “reality?” AND to catch glimpses of the GymValets that are attached to several of the Woodway Curve treadmills in The Biggest Loser Gym.  The four images you see on this post are from this past week’s semi-final episode (air date 2-16-16).  It’s fun to capture close-up images if the GymValets, the contestants and the trainers!  A few comments: 1) Colby’s running form is not the greatest–it’s my assumption that he’s “running” on empty in this semi-final episode, hanging on for dear life to burn a few extra calories, 2) Although the GymValet hook rings are missing, it’s nice to see Roberto using the GymValet to hold his personal water bottle–GymValet at your service, Roberto, 3) Nice to capture a few images with trainer Jen Widerstrom–no doubt that she practices what she preaches, and 4) Back to the GymValets: While I’m not proud/pleased that the hook rings are missing, those GymValets have been attached to the Woodway Curve treadmills for over five years, and they are in, basically, the exact locations where they were originally installed (on the front of the right hand rail).  Good endorsement of the durability and longevity of the GymValet, in a heavy-use, high intensity reality TV setting!

Check out my previous posts with screen shots from The Biggest Loser.  There you’ll see the various trainers and contestants that have had close encounters with the GymValet, thanks to the Woodway Curve treadmills.

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GymValets Close to Home @ MIM Software

MIM Opens On-Site Fitness Center.  GymValets Will Keep Equipment Clean and Safe.

While GymValets are helping to keep fitness equipment clean and safe across the US, Canada and around the world, it’s always a treat when I get a call from a facility that’s close to home, or GymValet World Headquarters as I like to call it.  So, I was thrilled to get a call from Drew Sulzer who was putting the finishing touches on the Employee Fitness/Wellness Center at MIM Software, Inc., in Beachwood, OH,  less than 1.5 miles from “home-base,” that now makes MIM GymValet’s closest customer!  Drew has assembled a great assortment of strength and cardio equipment in a bright, “pie-shaped” area of the office complex–well done!  A Google search had led Drew to the GymValet web site, as he looked for equipment cleaning/sanitizing supplies and accessories–the most-important “finishing touches.” Wasn’t he surprised when he discovered that GymValet was right around the corner!  With MIM’s GymValet system hand delivered and installed, the Fitness Center was ready to open at Noon yesterday (Feb. 15th).  As you’ll note, MIM has decided to use paper towels instead of cloth towels.  Smart/practical decision since there are no laundry facilities on site.  GymValets positioned throughout the gym will make it more convenient and effective for MIM’s exercisers to clean the equipment, before and/or after use, by having the sanitizing solution closer to the equipment.  In addition, that makes it easier and more practical to re-use a piece of paper towel by refreshing it with sanitizing solution because the GymValets place the solution “right at hand” convenient to every piece of equipment.

Proud to share a few pictures of Drew with MIM’s great new equipment, with GymValet poised and ready to go to work!

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GymValet Spreads Wings in Planet Fitness Universe

GymValet Equipment Cleaning System in place at grand opening of new Planet Fitness in Mentor, Ohio.

While GymValets are helping to keep exercise equipment clean and safe in fitness facilities across the US, Canada and around the world, it is always fun to actually see GymValets in action at local gyms.  This week I had the opportunity to visit the newest Planet Fitness in the Greater Cleveland area, during their grand opening ceremonies.  Planet Fitness was buzzing with both  local “luminaries” and, most importantly, hundreds of new members  who were generating a lot of human energy pumping-out their cardio and strength workouts.  And there, at the ready, strategically placed all over the gym floor were over 100 GymValets–placing the sanitizing spray bottles and wiping towels conveniently right at hand, within arm’s reach or a step or two, to every piece of equipment!  With vigorous exercise comes “vigorous” sweat and a lot of body contact with machine surfaces!  I was very impressed to see how naturally and easily the members wiped off and sanitized their just-used equipment, making it clean and safe for use by the next exerciser.  A beautiful marriage of the convenient access, to equipment cleaning supplies, the GymValet holder provides, and pride and respect Planet Fitness members have for their fellow members and their beautiful club.

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I recently had thee opportunity to present the GymValet story to the Craig Zamary’s Speaker Series class, in the Kent State University College of Business Administration.  As a proud graduate of KSU (M.A. 1983, and Ph.D. 1987) it was my honor to pay my entrepreneurial experience forward–especially since the KSU Rec. Center is a GymValet customer.  The title of my presentation was, “My Entrepreneurial Journey.”  Speaker Series is a class offered to Entrepreneurial Studies majors so they can hear real-life entrepreneurial stories form members of the Northern Ohio business community–what could be more real life than hearing the story of a product they see and use every time thy visit the Rec. Center.  However, Speaker Series lectures are not just limited to students enrolled in the class.  Series talks are open to the entire KSU community as evidenced by the promotional screen that advertised my presentation campus wide on the day of my talk.

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GymValets in Planet Fitness, Lansing, MI

Piggy-backing on winning the Tri-County Environmental leadership Award, I visited (one of) the Planet Fitness gyms in the Lansing, MI area.  Vibrant and busy gym–in the middle of the afternoon!  Check out what I consider to be one of the most thoughtfully–for the members–configured GymValet Equipment Cleaning System gyms I’ve ever seen.  Convenient and safe equipment cleaning for the members; saving $25,000 per year on disposable paper (waste) costs for the club – Win-Win!

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