Fitness Industry Icon, and Dear Friend, Michael Scott Scudder Gone Too Soon
By Sara Kooperman, JD
The fitness world lost an industry icon on June 30, 2017 as Michael Scott Scudder sadly passed away due to complications with a hip replacement surgery. Our hearts are heavy with the news of his unexpected death. Michael was a mentor to the small business owner and a friend of the common man and woman. He was the CEO of MSS Network, which provided weekly advice and expert evaluations of changing trends in our fitness industry. He was the soothsayer.
His priceless insights into tomorrow involved constant surveys and leaps of faith based on personal experience and professional evaluations. To put it succinctly, people trusted Michael. People shared with Michael, and everyone loved Michael.
His ability to not rely on only one opinion was his gift. His four decades of experience in the fitness/wellness industries include achievements as a “Top 100 Club”, one of the Top Ten Health Club Managers in the U.S. and inclusion in the “Who’s Who in International Fitness.” In his career, he had advised over 700 fitness facilities providing insightful and valuable information to all his contacts though his consulting services and his MSS newsletter.
Yes, at times some might disagree with his opinions, but we all listened intently to what he had to say. He did not pin his positions on prejudice or the past, he looked beyond and most importantly he learned. Michael carefully evaluated all angles of history and predictions and did his best to integrate a quickly evolving landscape based upon fact. His surveys were watched carefully by all. Big business, small business, and the budding studio industry – everyone listened. Everyone learned.
Michael shared his wisdom at all eight of SCW Fitness Education’s MANIA® Fitness Professional Conferences and inspired me (and SCW) to develop and run our Business Summit at every MANIA®. We are grateful for the knowledge, wit and passion he brought to MANIA® and the lasting impressions he made on our faculty and attendees. He was truly one of a kind.
In Michael’s honor, SCW Fitness Education will be offering a free MANIA® and Business Summit attendance to worthy Fitness Facility Owners, Managers or Directors needing business advice. We also will award free attendances to Personal Trainers and Group Ex Instructors needing financial support and educational encouragement. The Michael Scott Scudder Scholarship is open to all at www.scwfit.com/Scudder.
Michael was my friend. He would sit with me for hours on the phone or at a convention discussing the growing boutique studio trends. He would ponder over the future of HIIT programming and ruminate of the growing Active Aging market. I shared all the summaries of our MANIA® Convention evaluations, of which there were thousands. I just shared, openly, because it was Michael. It was Michael and he commanded trust.
Micheal helped shape our fitness world of today and will be truly missed for decades to come.
Rest in peace, dear friend.
Sara Kooperman, JD
About Sara Kooperman, JD
Sara is an international favorite IHRSA, CanFitPro, IDEA, AFC, Club Industry, YMCA, AYP, MFA, ICAA and AB Show Conference presenter. Sara is the owner and Executive Director of SCW Fitness Education and founder of the eight MANIA® Fitness Instructor Training Conventions along with WATERinMOTION®. Sara is an attorney who was selected as a Gold Medal winner distinguishing her as a business leader who has contributed to the economic health of her community. She also received the state honor as Business Woman of the Year. Sara is a former lecturer for NASM and ACSM and is the proud recipient of AEA’s Global Award for Contribution to the Aquatic Industry. Sara has served on the Gold’s Gym Think Tank and has been inducted into the National Fitness Hall of Fame.
About the Scholarship
This scholarship was established to honor the life and professional career of Michael Scott Scudder by offering a MANIA® Convention FREE attendance to a worthy budding studio owner needing business advice and industry education. This scholarship is open to those who reflect the passion, high-standards and desire to succeed in the fitness industry set forth by Michael. Preference given to those with financial need.
About Michael Scott Scudder
Michael was the CEO of MSS Network. His four decades of experience in the fitness/wellness industries included achievements as a “Top 100 Club”, selection as one of the Top Ten Health Club Managers in the U.S. and inclusion in the “Who’s Who in International Fitness.” In his career, he advised over 700 fitness facilities providing insightful and valuable information to all he contacts within the fitness industry. Michael passed away June 30, 2017.
Michael Scott Scudder Scholarship
Purpose: SCW honors the life and professional career of Michael Scott Scudder by offering a FREE MANIA® Convention to a worthy Club or Studio Owner, Personal Trainer or GX Instructor needing business advice and industry education. This scholarship is open to those who reflect the passion, high-standards and desire to succeed in the fitness industry set forth by Michael Scott Scudder.