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South African Journal for Research in Sport, Physical Education and Recreation

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Quality of services in fitness centres: importance of physical support and assisting staff

Nebojša Maksimović, Radenko Matić, Snežana Tovilović, Stevo Popović, Branka Maksimović, Sanja Opsenica

Abstract


The aim of the study was to determine the differences between expected and perceived service quality, as well as the relationship between dimensions of service quality, customer satisfaction and purchase intentions of users in fitness centres. For this purpose, 323 users of fitness centres in private ownership in Serbia were surveyed. Results of the analysis of the SERVQUAL questionnaire showed that the biggest gap between expected and received quality service exists in the context of the factor of ‘Cleanliness’, while the smallest gap exists within the factor of ‘Equipment’ and conditions for exercise and factor of ‘Staff’. Furthermore, the structural analysis indicates that customer satisfaction is largely determined by the ‘Cleanliness’ and characteristics of the ‘Staff’, and that the satisfaction has a high predictive impact on future purchase intentions (β=0.63). In conclusion, it can be determined that the managers of fitness centres in Serbia must give priority importance to recruiting and training of the employees, with effective attention paid to the cleanliness of facilities.

Keywords: Fitness centres; Consumers; Perception; Satisfaction; Purchase intentions.




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