With over 100,000 visitors and 700 exhibitors spread across 8 halls (yes that is EIGHT MASSIVE HALLS) #FIBO is the worlds leading fitness trade fair for all things fitness wellness and health. Needless to say as your favourite industry consultant it was important that I took myself there to find out what was new and whats happening in our industry right now. (I was also scoping out cutting edge kit for my new fitness studio – Corner Shop Gym Rathdowney *squeals* but more on that later!).
This event has been running for 30 years now in Germany and the current host city, Cologne, is equally as vibrant as fit pros so it really is the perfect destination to host this. As with all such events there is a fair amount of networking both during and after the show so I managed to see a bit of the city at night despite spending the majority of my time navigating the exhibition halls.
Probably my biggest obstacle – I literally had just one word of German (Danke) and while generally most Germans speak perfect English they seem somewhat reluctant to do so! I think I would like to make more of an effort before my next trip as I always feel desperately rude when I can’t speak the local language! Never the less this didn’t really impair the success of the event for me as everyone seems to know what FIBO is so getting there is easy and once inside the event its a multi national event so english serves you well!
The trade fair is cleverly divided up into specific areas of products/services to help navigation and the “pocket” guide (a whopping 70 pages plus a fold out double sided map) means that it is actually quite easy to get around and not nearly as overwhelming as I expected. I focused mainly on Hall 9 which housed Functional Training and Group Fitness and also Training Equipment which spread to Hall 6 and 7 as well. Practically all of the stands are super interactive with challenges and courses and it is expected that you will check out the kit, pick it up, jump on it and try it out… my kind of event!!
FIBO Power, part of the massively successful Body Power brand was spread across 2 halls with loads of cool fashion and supplement stands and lots of “all the pretty people” and “all the buff people” but all of whom are super passionate and helpful when it comes to talking with you about their products.
I saw some funky kit, some questionable items and the beautiful new Keiser spin bikes… check ’em out below!
My Favourite Stand?
I love, love LOVED the Jordan Fitness stand, their kit is top quality, it is colourful and vibrant and therefor very enticing to train with! The stand team were engaging, funny and clearly believed in the product they sold. Definitely the winner of the event for me!
Other brands who had awesome displays were TRX, TriggerPoint Therapy and RockTape. As an existing FMT1 & FMT 2 RockTaper it was great to see live taping demos.
Lucky me, I had a pass to the International Lounge from my lovely Clients (and Friends!) Ireland Active so we had fantastic range of complimentary food to choose from. I stuck to fruit salads, coffee and water. There was however the usual cafes and shops with options for the health conscious.
What to wear?
This is a funny one but I was asked a lot about what I wore and wether I dressed for business or leisure. As I only had one full day at the exhibition I decided to wear business attire as I wanted to network and felt more comfortable doing so dressed professionally. Usually when I go to LIW (Leisure Industry Week) I mix it up and do a day or two professional attire and the final day in sports kit. I wore beautiful powder pink stilettos with my black leather pencil skirt and a matching pink blazer and needless to say about 4 hours in the shoes were swapped for flip flops. To be fair anything goes really and as FIBO Power was on at this event fitness gear really is very acceptable!
It’s back again from 7th – 10th April 2016 and I really recommend you check it out if you are in the market for kit or just want to see what is out there. Let me know if you are travelling and we can arrange a meet up out there #IrishFitFam style!