As one person can make a difference, one club can have a significant impact on many people and a local environment. Eco-friendly operations are important and consistent with wellness. There are numerous things a club can do, and here are few ways to get started.
Proactively make everyone aware of green goals. Make sure the staff is trained and members are oriented about green operations. Recycle bins need to be very visible, or items can be accidentally thrown away.
Check your procedures to reduce, reuse and recycle. Regardless of your situations, you can likely improve some areas. Do you have the most efficient LED lights? Are electronic fitness machines shut down when they are not in use? Have you done a water consumption audit?
Less can be more with equipment. Body weight and functional training are some of the best ways to exercise and require zero to minimal equipment. Fitness centers do not need to be packed with machines, and some open space can save you dollars.
Consider options before discarding. You can trade-in some used cardio equipment, and these machines can be refurbished and resold to other users. Old tennis balls can be pressurized again or make great donations for dog clubs and schools.
Avoid Styrofoam and plastics. Although these materials can be recycled, both require petroleum to make and are connected to carcinogens like benzene. Use drinking fountains that eliminate the need for cups.
Strive for paperless departments. The electronic solutions are vast, and include iPad based waivers, sign-ins and program tracking. Implement effective solutions to go paperless.
Select the right materials. Floorings can use recycled rubber and tile. Choose formaldehyde free insulation and no VOC paint. Everyone will breathe easier, and those with allergies and asthma will benefit greatly.
Choose energy star rated computers and energy efficient air conditioning. Also, secure the thermostats, so only staff can adjust and set to optimal temperature. The long-term savings of better machines can make them worthwhile.
Recognize the stars. Applaud staff and members who do green activities like walking, biking or carpooling to the club. Continuously strive toward greener operations. The incremental effects of eco-friendly choices add up and positively impact a club and everyone’s health.
Chris Hagman ACE, USPTA