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Is A Juice Bar Right For My Health Club-

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					The Juice Bar business is one of the fastest growing and profitable components of
today's busy health club industry. Consequently, many owners and managers
interested in starting a juice bar have a number of basic questions to begin their
research.

Is a Juice Bar Right for My Club?

Every fitness club, gym and yoga studio are different, however there is a juice bar
application that can be customized to every situation. For larger applications, some
clubs find that a café concept is the best fit for them, while others feel that a
kiosk fits their needs. Regardless, there is a customized application for every business.
In short, any health club or fitness facility with members is a great candidate for a
juice bar.

Why Do I Need a Juice Bar?

Juice bars provide an additional amenity to members and generate additional profit for
the operator. More than ever, prospective members choose clubs based on the
available amenities; surveys show that the availability of healthy fitness smoothies
and post-workout snacks is highly valued. Time-pressed members appreciate having a
healthy alternative. In addition, a healthy smoothie juice bar is an excellent source of
recurring revenue. After membership dues are paid, offering "recovery shakes," or just
a delicious, healthy smoothie is an excellent way to generate continuing revenue
while satisfying members wants and needs.

Juice bars are good for two reasons:

1. Beverage and snack sales can strengthen the bottom line. There are only a few ways
to bring new revenue into your health club and selling delicious, healthy drinks does
not require hard-selling to your members.

2. Juice bars help members reach fitness goals. Total fitness requires good nutrition,
so members with fitness goals need healthy smoothies, juice drinks, snacks and
supplements to achieve those goals. Also, they taste great, create a relaxed
environment and cultivate relationships the improve member retention.

Will I Have Enough Customers?

Simply put: It Depends. The number of members that regularly make purchases at a
juice bar varies with every club. The ratio of smoothie consumers to club members is
referred to as the "Penetration Level" and factors that affect this include initial
investment and ongoing labor expense. Nationally, a Penetration Level of 5% seems
to be normal, however there is often no real program or focus in driving juice bar
sales. Performance like this is unacceptable; there are strategies to achieve Penetration
Levels of up to 25%, which is critical with a limited customer base.

Do I Have the Space to Build a Juice Bar?

Yes. There are many ways to introduce a juice bar from the simplest carts and kiosks
to a total café build-out. Generally, all economic and space restrictions can be
accommodated, including electrical and plumbing constraints. From a merchandising
perspective, focus should be placed on the area between the locker rooms and the exit
door. Busy members may not take the time to go out of their way to buy a healthy
fitness smoothie - that is, unless it hits them in the face on the way out the door.

What Kind of Capital Investment Do I Need?

The capital investment required to start a juice bar business varies as much as the
types of concepts themselves. From a simple countertop blender, ice machine and
dry-erase menu board to a $35,000 franchise, it's best to consult with a company
experienced in all facets of juice bar business and health club environments. Many
prospective owners often find that the costliest option is not the best option. In
addition, an experienced business consultant may uncover other factors that
dramatically increase the profitability that will help the decision making process.

In closing, there is a juice bar concept appropriate for every type and size of health
club. Selecting a good consultant is crucial in finding the most profitable option for
each facility. That company should have extensive experience in both juice bar and
the fitness industry, as well as an excellent record of performance. Finally, every
company of any quality should offer support before, during and after a decision is
made.

				
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posted:1/23/2011
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