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GoodLife founder inducted into Canadian Business Hall of Fame

FILE PHOTO: A general view of a 24 hour GoodLife Fitness storefront at night in downtown Toronto. The Canadian Press Images/Christian Lapid

The founder and head of GoodLife Fitness has been inducted into the Canadian Business Hall of Fame.

The honour comes 42 years after David Patchell-Evans opened his first gym in his hometown of London.

“Gyms offer a social connection, and a third space along with home and work, that people are going to need as they re-enter society after months and months of isolation,” Patchell-Evans said.

“The pandemic has made it clear how important taking control of your health should be. Fitness is the key to getting back to better physical and mental health coming out of this.”

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More than four decades after opening his first gym, GoodLife now has almost 500 clubs across Canada as the company operates fitness centres under the GoodLife, Fit4Less, EconoFitness and Oxygen Yoga and Fitness banners.

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“The fitness industry employs hundreds of thousands of skilled professionals who are dedicated to supporting people in their health. I want the recognition I’m receiving to go to the thousands of associates in my clubs,” Patchell-Evans said.

“I couldn’t get here alone, and they’ve all played a critical (role) helping GoodLife contribute to a healthier, happier, more productive population.”

With more than 1.5 million members, it is the fourth-largest fitness chain in the world.

David Patchell-Evans says people’s health has been suffering over the last year, and gyms play a clear role in keeping people happy and healthy.

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He expects the fitness industry to come back stronger in a post-pandemic society

“Conditions have been incredibly challenging when it comes to staying active and taking care of your health. Stay-at-home orders and other pandemic safety protocols have restricted our movement and presented barriers for many people who want to exercise, but just can’t,” Patchell-Evans said.

He is one of four to be inducted into Junior Achievement Canada’s Canadian Business Hall of Fame last week, and is the first fitness club owner to receive the honour.

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