Feature Article - June 2011
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State of the Industry 2011

A Look at What's Happening in Recreation, Sports and Fitness Facilities

By Emily Tipping

For the past several years, the results of our annual State of the Industry survey have been heavily marked by the economic downturn and its aftereffects. This year, as most economic signs point to recovery, our results also show an increasingly positive outlook.

That said, there's no denying that many respondents—particularly those from segments of the market that are still feeling the effects of the economic fallout, including schools, municipalities and other local government entities—are still reporting lower-than-expected revenues and decreasing budgets. At the same time, many are finding ways to adjust and improve their operations—by renovating existing facilities rather than building new, or by adopting energy-efficiency measures to reduce costs—rather than simply throwing in the towel. And plenty of respondents report that they have plans for expanding their offerings—with more facilities, more amenities, more programming, more staff, and so on.

Overall, more than 2,000 professionals from the managed recreation, sports and fitness market responded to our 50-plus-question survey. In these pages, we tally the results and report back to you on the current state of this industry.

Survey Methodology

This report is based on a survey conducted for Recreation Management by Signet Research Inc., an independent research company. An e-mail was broadcast and respondents were invited to participate on the Web site. From the launch of the survey on Feb. 10, 2011 to the closing of the survey on March 1, 2,025 returns were received. The findings of this survey may be accepted as accurate, at a 95 percent confidence level, within a sampling tolerance of approximately +/- 2.2 percent.