Press Releases

NSGA and SNEWS Announce Formation of Fitness Industry Dealers Assn.

An advisory council has been formed to identify the needs of specialty fitness dealers and chart the new association's direction.

MOUNT PROSPECT, IL (July 20, 2010) – The National Sporting Goods Association (NSGA), working with SNEWS®, is pleased to announce the formation of the Fitness Industry Dealers Association (FIDA), which will be a division of NSGA. FIDA will focus purely on the needs of retailers and dealers.

A founding Advisory Council of long-time industry dealers and retailers has been selected to chart the direction of the new association. Members of the founding Advisory Council are:

— David Burrus, Fitness Gallery, Merriam, Kan.;
— Mark Jeffrey, Fitness Depot, Toronto, Ont., Canada;
— Albert Kessler, HEST Fitness, Corpus Christi, Texas;
— David Kutler, Body Basics Fitness Equipment, Omaha, Neb.;
— Rodney Rice, Jr., Fitness Expo, Metairie, La.;
— Dave Sheriff, HealthStyles Exercise Equipment, Glenwood Springs, Colo.; and
— Ron Wilkins, Wilkins Fitness, Charleston, S.C.

The Advisory Council will evaluate and prioritize the services and programs that fitness dealers want and need, as well as help set a vision, mission and other goals – both short- and long-term.

FIDA is being established in part to:
— Create a platform for fitness dealers to share views and ideas;
— Provide information services and market research; and
— Create a collective voice regarding vendor relations and industry promotions.

“Information, fitness-specific market research, a cost-of-doing-business benchmarking survey for fitness dealers, peer social networking, and a members-only website are important elements that would be available to FIDA members,” said NSGA President & CEO Matt Carlson. “Our discussions with fitness dealers gave us a clear message that an association devoted exclusively to fitness dealers was needed, and NSGA has the structure already in place to effectively manage such an association.”

As a major impetus for the founding of the association, SNEWS® will give support via its industry news, appearance at trade shows, and knowledge of the industry, as well as provide news as a member benefit.

“Once we began to hear the outcry in our stories and columns from retailers and dealers about the need for a common voice, it seemed clear with their trust in us, that we needed to help make this happen,” said Therese Iknoian, SNEWS® editor in chief. “NSGA was the perfect group.”

For membership information, please contact NSGA’s Sue Wenderski, (800) 815-5422, ext. 102; or e-mail:

About NSGA:
NSGA, which has served the sporting goods industry since 1929, supports its members’ efforts to be more profitable and advocates on their behalf. NSGA organizes and hosts the annual NSGA Management Conference & Team Dealer Summit, the sporting goods industry’s premier educational and networking event (Next: May 1-4, 2011, at Loews Ventana Canyon, Tucson, Ariz.).

About SNEWS® (Specialty News)
Founded in 1984, SNEWS® is an independent, insider news service for trade professionals in both the fitness and outdoor industries. Praised for its journalistic values and ethics, news and education services, and community-building mission, SNEWS® is frequently referred to as “the voice of the industry” by its subscribers. For more information, call 530-268-8295, or go to

For more information on NSGA member services, visit the Association home page (; call Darlene Plunkett at NSGA, (847) 296-6742, Ext. 131; e-mail:; or fax (847) 391-9827.