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Industry News:

USA Fit Postpones Marathon Training Program for One Year

No Time Remained for Membership Drive in Rush to Launch Program

By Robert "Just the Factoids" Burnson

Due to low turnout, USA Fit has pulled the plug on its first-ever inline marathon training program and says it will probably wait until next year to launch its next one.

Only five skaters registered for San Francisco Inline Fit. All registered skaters will receive refunds.

"Unfortunately, we have decided not to continue with the program this year due to lack of participants," said USA Fit's national program director Christina Mintner.

USA Fit has a long history of organizing marathon training programs for runners and walkers. With San Francisco Inline Fit, the Houston-based organization had hoped to graft its successful formula onto the inline world.

But it apparently didn't give itself enough lead time to get the program going.

It designed San Francisco Inline Fit to prepare skaters for the Napa Valley Inline Marathon on Aug. 7th. In order for the 12-week program to run its course before the marathon, it had to begin no later than May 14th, which is when it started.

But that did not give USA Fit much time to mount a membership drive. The first (and only) ad for San Francisco Inline Fit only appeared a week before the program started.

"It was a little disappointing, but we learned some lessons," Mintner said "We really rushed it." ... Next year, "we will take some more time planning."

USA Fit had planned to launch three inline marathon training programs this year. But in light of what happened in San Francisco, it has decided to move ahead more slowly.

"We probably will not be starting any new programs in 2005, unless it is late in the year," Mintner said. "The bulk of the inline season is in early Fall, so we have probably missed our window."

Mintner said that ultra-marathon champ Kim Perkins would return next year as organizer of San Francisco Inline Fit.

She also said that USA Fit is moving forward on plans to start an inline instructors certification program. "Kim is going to collaborate with us on this area as well."

(posted on June 3, 2005)

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Related reading

USA Fit Plans Inline Marathon Program

USA Fit Launches Its First Inline Marathon Program

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