Network Blog

Reflections on fitness, wellness, health and more

Network celebrates three decades of leading the way

At the recent FILEX 2017 fitness industry convention, Australian Fitness Network celebrated three decades of leading the way in the fitness industry.

During the event’s Opening Ceremony, Network’s CEO, Ryan Hogan, took the company’s directors by surprise when he went off-script to present an emotive film celebrating their achievements over the past 30 years.

Nigel Champion, Lisa Champion and Greg Hurst accepted a bespoke 30th Anniversary book to commemorate the occasion, as an auditorium packed with their industry peers and protégés gratefully acknowledged the impact that their leadership has had on the Australian, and global, fitness scene.

From the vantage point of 2017, where fitness pervades all aspects of our lives, from wearable tech and Instagram fitspiration to reality television, it’s easy to forget that ‘fitness’ hasn’t always enjoyed such a high profile.

In 1987 the fitness ‘industry’ in Australia was in its infancy. Along with old-school boxing gyms and sports clubs, ‘exercise to music’ classes were springing up in community halls, inspired by the Jane Fonda-led aerobics explosion in the US. While there was boundless passion on the part of those teaching classes and running gyms, there was no coherency of message, standard of qualification, or opportunity for professional development.

The need for a leader with the vision to unite, support and develop the industry in a way that would benefit both those working in it and those they served – the Australian public – was met by the team that created The Fitness Leader Network, as it was originally known. Since its formation thirty years ago, Network has played a pivotal role in equipping the nation’s army of fitness professionals with the qualifications, skills and confidence to become the diverse and mature industry that it is today.

Throughout FILEX 2017, which was held at the brand new ICC Sydney after its 3-year relocation to Melbourne, members of the industry, both old and new, overwhelmed the company’s directors with their congratulations and expressions of gratitude. From stories of lifelong careers inspired and enabled by Network, to personal health and life transformations, the influence of the fitness industry’s leaders was evident for all to see. Watch the film and view the online version of the book commemorating Network’s 30 years of leading the way.
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