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>> Life Fitness founder Augie Nieto will introduce a new business venture at the IHRSA conference in San Francisco, IHRSA has announced. Calling him an “industry legend,” IHRSA said in a brief announcement that Nieto will develop a nationwide system of medically based weight-loss centers that will serve both the public and health clubs. He is slated to divulge details Feb. 28 in a talk at 4:30 p.m. SNEWS View: OK, Augie is Augie, but industry legend? Isn’t that pushing things?
>>Take note fitness industry: The Outdoor Industry Association is kicking off a public awareness and fund-raising campaign for outdoor pursuits that includes “man-on-the-street” interviews asking the provocative question, “When was your first time?” Stop, wait — That means to go outdoors for adventure… Fitness could take-away a message about those sorts of questions and ask, “Does the earth move for you too?” Stop, wait — when you workout… Details on the outdoors endeavor in the outdoor news section.
>> Kurt Salomon Associates’ annual sporting goods industry awards will be given to retailer Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc. for general management excellence and Under Armour Performance Apparel for consumer-focused innovation.
>> Puma AG has entered a licensing agreement for bodywear with Schliesser Lifestyle GmbH. Schliesser will produce an independent collection with the Puma name to be available in European markets in Fall 2003.
>> Yahoo! Inc. will launch the “Get Healthy Now” initiative on Yahoo! Health. Beginning Jan. 22, Yahoo! will feature tips for weight loss from leading health and fitness personalities including Richard Simmons, Dr. Deepak Chopra, Kathy Smith, Karen Voight, Denise Austin, Jared Fogle, Dr. Barry Sears, Billy Blanks, Drs. Richard and Rachael Heller, Joy Bauer, Sarah Ferguson, Dr. Robert Atkins and Suzanne Somers. In another sage of our ‘leading personalities” against your “leading personalities,” Jamieson Laboratories — maker of diet supplements and drinks — says it too has enlisted the aide of some “top fitness oriented celebrities” and Olympic Gold Medal athletes, all of whom will offer events across the country in January to promote weight loss. Jamieson’s celebs include: model and actress Daisy Fuentes, Olympic Gold Medal winners Bruce Jenner and Mitch Gaylord, and Olympic medallist figure skater Rosalynn Sumners. SNEWS View: Well, lookee here at these “leading” personalities. Their words, not ours. We just love it (sic) when everybody suddenly becomes a fitness expert come January.
>> Contact Sports Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Alfa International Corp., has signed a two-year consulting agreement with Jack A. Smith, founder and former CEO of The Sports Authority. Smith was chairman of the board and CEO of TSA from the time he founded it in 1987 until retiring in April 1999. TSA went public in November 1994.
>> Life Fitness has named David Weatherly, 61, as the company’s vice president of Atlantic subsidiaries. In this newly created position, Weatherly is responsible for the continued development of the Austrian, Benelux, German, Italian, Spanish and UK subsidiaries’ strategic objectives, business processes and management team.
>> The National Recycling Coalition (NRC) has announced a partnership with Nike that expands the Reuse-A-Shoe program to 25 communities across the United States. For the first time, community recycling centers will be able to add used athletic footwear to existing recycling programs. Since the launch of the Reuse-A-Shoe expansion to NRC members in November 2002, 19 recycling organizations, from Portland, Ore., to Atlanta, Ga., already have committed to collecting a minimum of 5,000 pairs of old athletic shoes by June 2003. The pilot program hopes to collect more than 125,000 pairs of used athletic shoes.
>> Seems our story about the Marshmallow Peep fan club a couple of weeks back (about how fit and healthy members consider themselves) made a big hit. Boy, it’s nice to know people appreciate our hard news stories (ah-em!). Linda Buchanan at GU Sports told SNEWS she’s the proud owner of a Peep t-shirt (she actually volunteered this information), which you get when you join the fan club. Oh, and make sure any Peeps you offer her are stale. No Peep arguments or Peep-throwing now, OK?