In the past few issues, IDEA Fitness Journal has reported on the link between exercise and scholastic performance. A study published in the Recreational Sports Journal. (2014; 38 [1], 14–22) looks specifically at the important role that fitness facility membership plays in academic success at the college level.

The study featured 4,843 freshmen attending Michigan State University. Students were divided into two groups: those who purchased “recreational sports facility” memberships in the first semester, and those who did not. The researchers then compiled the participants’ grade point averages and facility enrollment rates. Results showed that individuals with gym memberships tended to have higher high-school GPAs than nonmembers. Further, students in the same group were more likely to maintain higher GPAs throughout the first 2 years of college, and they completed more credits than the nonmembership group. The researchers also learned that fitness facility members had higher rates of enrollment at the 2-year mark than nonmembers.

Do you work in a college fitness facility? What unique ideas do you have for attracting more student members? Send your responses to [email protected].

Ryan Halvorson

Ryan Halvorson is an award-winning writer and editor. He is a long-time author and presenter for IDEA Health & Fitness Association, fitness industry consultant and former director of group training for Bird Rock Fit. He is also a Master Trainer for TriggerPoint.

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