Optimizing energy consumption for the fitness and leisure industries

Optimizing energy consumption for the fitness and leisure industries

In recent blogs, we’ve taken a deep dive into the question of HVAC optimization to manage energy consumption in several different vertical industries. Whether restaurants or warehouses, banks, or gas stations, what they’ve all had in common is that HVAC optimization is primarily concerned with addressing the nature of the facility itself (in other words, what’s in it and its dimensions).

When it comes to the domain covered in this blog, the fitness and leisure industries, things are different. Here, it’s the customer and not just the facility itself that’s front and center when it comes to understanding energy consumption requirements. Gyms are places where we exert ourselves – get hot and sweaty – and we need the right environment to do that for a variety of reasons! So, it’s the user’s comfort that must come first.

The key considerations for HVAC

What drives optimal HVAC in the fitness and leisure industries? What are the primary considerations? Four core parameters that impact energy consumption need to be considered. They are:

  1. User comfort

In a gym, there’s more than one reason HVAC is critical. A comfortable environment to work out in is the obvious one. But optimal ventilation is also a sales tool; no one will buy a membership in a hot, stuffy fitness facility. Whether explicitly so or not, optimal HVAC performance directly influences commercial success!

  1. Health And Safety

A gym packed with fitness enthusiasts working out full tilt can quickly see temperatures rise to a point that can be detrimental to health and well-being. Think about headaches, cramps, dehydration, and heat exhaustion, all of which can be the result of the wrong temperature. Managing temperature isn’t just a comfort issue but also a health and safety concern.

  1. Performance

In fitness, the environment influences performance. Just as we now accept that stretching before exercise reduces injury and optimizes performance, core body temperature is also essential in a similar way. Room temperature affects core body temperature, and the wrong settings reduce workout results, particularly in cardio-based exercises. It stands to reason that a facility with a comfortable environment more conducive to positive results will attract more members.

  1. Zoning

What fitness and leisure facilities have in common with other industries is that they often combine several different spaces under one roof. These may include open-plan weight areas, swimming pools, changing areas, beauty or spa treatment rooms, and more. Each will need to meet different heating and ventilation requirements.

Gym equipment may come first but, HVAC runs a close second!

The reality is that for gym members, while the facility’s equipment may be the first consideration when thinking about whether to join, a comfortable workout environment runs a close second in importance. That must be achieved while keeping energy consumption in mind.  A well-regulated environment with clean and dehumidified air and the appropriate temperature contributes to hygiene, improved workout returns, and a generally appealing social environment. That’s the basis for optimizing HVAC.

Plus, remember all of that’s not only good for members but also the staff. Nobody wants to join a smelly gym or risk injury in a weight room that’s too hot or cold, and few people want to work in one, either!

How to optimize your HVAC in the fitness and leisure market

When it comes to HVAC, properly optimized HVAC is important to long term commercial success in the fitness and leisure industry.  As in other industries, installing the wrong system and taking system performance for granted is not a recipe for building a long-term, loyal customer base, perhaps even more so than usual in the leisure sector. Gym owners and managers must think about the following:

  • Their space: the dimensions of the facility impact optimal performance and using the right-sized HVAC is the first step to recognizing this. Is there one large gym floor or multiple smaller studios? Is there a pool? Treatment rooms? How are all of the above used? HVACs that are too big or too small won’t deliver the best or the most cost-effective results, and their performance will be harder to optimize.
  • Automate: Energy Management Systems are a good start, allowing the desired temperature to be adjusted automatically and eliminating discomfort regardless of the facility’s overall dimensions. Always take control of how the system runs.
  • ROI: Air conditioning is expensive, so the costs incurred should match the benefits they deliver. As we’ve seen, temperature significantly impacts performance; people invest in gym memberships to make fitness gains, and an optimized HVAC directly helps them to reach their goals.

More importantly, consider whether your existing HVACs are delivering their full potential. Are they optimized for your needs and environment? Do they consume more energy than they should?

Likely, the answer is yes. That’s because most HVACs are pre-configured to run at default factory settings. As a result, their fans run too fast, and they consume too much energy. In addition to some or all the above, the top of your agenda should be exploring ways in which you can adjust what you have to make it run better.

NexRev’s solutions can be retrofitted to any HVAC deployment and tune fan speeds to what you really need – saving costs and ensuring they are fully optimized for your business. With HVACs consuming up to 42% of a building’s energy use, our DrivePak solution can save you more than 20% of your energy costs!

The NexRev advantage

To summarize the above, HVAC is an essential component of a successful fitness facility for owners, managers, and members alike. Optimizing HVAC energy consumption with a tailored approach delivers better performance while saving costs and enhancing customer experiences.

That’s where NexRev’s solutions come in. By enabling effective, real-time energy management to be achieved, they can enable gyms to:

  • Efficiently manage comfort while lowering costs.
  • Maintain constant temperature and humidity essential for the health and safety
  • Reduce heat stress and avoid exhaustion with a safe environment
  • Deliver consistent experiences for members

At NexRev, we’ve been unlocking the power in facility and energy management data with over a million connected devices across North America. Our team of experts focuses on helping you deliver more with your budgets, infrastructure, and assets to create sustainable savings in operations and energy, reducing your risk and increasing operational confidence.

To discuss optimization and more options to lower your costs, please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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NexRev, LLC

601 Development Drive
Plano, TX 75074

+1 (972) 578-0505
+1 (866) 601-5520

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