Sports & Fitness Industry Association

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Sporting & Fitness Industry Association
Abbreviation SFIA
Legal status Trade Association
Region served

The Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA), formerly the SGMA, is a trade association for manufacturers, retailers and marketers in the American sporting goods and fitness industry. As of 2013, the SFIA represents over 750 member companies in over 3,000 locations, generating about $150 billion in domestic revenue wholesale sales.

Early history[edit]

Founded in April 1906, the SGMA (Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association) was founded by six sporting goods manufacturers, but that number quickly expanded as the demand for sporting goods increased.

In 1941, the SGMA developed several sport-specific organizations to help meet the needs of the workers in the individual sports. These organizations include the National Golf Foundation, The Athletic Institute, The Tennis Industry Association and the World Federation of the Sporting Goods Industry. All of these organizations have provided support for the workers of each sport or industry they represent.

In 1957, the SGMA developed and launched The Sporting Goods Fair, which was a convention used to showcase new sporting goods and merchandise. Later, in 1986, the fair was renamed The Super Show. At its peak, The Super Show was the largest sports and fitness marketing event.


The goal of the SFIA is to provide member companies with access to information, insight and connections within the sporting goods industry while promoting sport and fitness participation by way of the 4 Pillars of Products and Services:

  • Thought Leadership – A series of informative events and activities that educate SFIA members in the growing sport and fitness industry and create a sense of community among industry associates
  • Public Affairs – The Sports & Fitness Industry's Voice On Capitol Hill and in the Media, encouraging legislation to improve sport and fitness industry businesses and to promote healthy living amongst the public
  • Research – The SFIA, in partnership with Sports Marketing Surveys USA, works to provide its members with current information & insight on industry and product categories through the publication of industry reports each year
  • Member Services - An array of resources that provide members with assistance and direction to overcome business obstacles and keep companies running efficiently.[1]

Change of name[edit]

On October 5, 2012, the SGMA membership reformed its bylaws to officially change the name of the association to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA). The name change from Sporting Goods to Sport and Fitness reflects the commitment of the SFIA to creating a healthy environment for the fitness industry by embracing brands that promote fitness and an active lifestyles. The new SFIA focuses on executing its refined mission statement and promoting sports and fitness participation and industry vitality through several rebranding initiatives. Some of these initiatives include but are not limited to:

  • The implementation of PHIT America, a national campaign that concentrates on increasing sport and fitness participation.
  • The inclusion of the pioneer grassroots participation study “The Journey of Sports Participation in America”, which provides information on the key motivators and inhibitors of sport and activity participation.
  • The development of Thought Leadership programs such as the SFIA Industry Leaders Summit (ILS), a 36-hour event targeted at sport and fitness industry executives that assists company executives in finding solutions to pressing issues concerning the sporting goods industry. The SFIA Industry Leaders Summit provides an active learning and networking environment for participants to apply to their businesses in order to prepare for the future.[2]

Recent events and public policy[edit]

The SFIA has made several advances in their efforts to promote healthy living in individuals, one being the PHIT (Personal Health Investment Today) America Campaign. This is a marketing and media campaign that works year-round to increase participation in sport and fitness activities and “Get America Moving”. Within this campaign, the SFIA has established the Physical Education Program (PEP) and the Personal Health Investment Today Act.

The Physical Education Program provides grants for organizations to purchase fitness equipment and train Physical education teachers in innovative methods of physical education. In 2012, the PEP received a total of $78 million in level funding, and was able to award organizations with new grants despite budget cuts.[3]

The PHIT Act provides the public with a financial incentive to participate in physical activity by proposing the use of money in pre-tax medical accounts to reimburse physical activity expenses. On March 5, 2013, the PHIT Act was re-introduced by Congressman Ron Kind with the number of co-sponsors in the double digits.[4]

Additionally, the SFIA hosts the National Health Through Fitness Day, the pinnacle of the year round effort to encourage sport and fitness participation and to pass major U.S. legislation to “Get America Moving”. Each year about 150 leaders in the sports and fitness industry and 15-20 sport celebrities convene in Washington D.C. to persuade Congress to pass key legislation that will take action against epidemics such as obesity and sedentary lifestyles. As of 2013, the SFIA has successfully hosted this event for 14 years.[5]


  1. ^ "About SFIA Overview". Retrieved 30 June 2015. 
  2. ^ "SGMA Membership Approves Name Change to Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA)". Retrieved 30 June 2015. 
  3. ^ "Carol M. White Physical Education Program (PEP)". Retrieved 30 June 2015. 
  4. ^ "Personal Health Investment Today Act (PHIT)". Retrieved 30 June 2015. 
  5. ^ "SFIA's 2016 National Health Through Fitness Day - Washington, DC". Retrieved 30 June 2015.