2019 Showed Continued Uptrend of U.S. Health Club Industry

According to the 2019 Health & Fitness Industry Report conducted by Wellness Creative Company, the US is the world’s largest health and wellness market at an estimated $30 billion, with 38,477 clubs and an annual growth rate of 3.6%. Industry revenue is growing at a slightly higher rate of 6.1%.

Over 55.3 million Americans belong to at least one health club, many of whom hold memberships to both traditional and boutique facilities. Visits to health clubs, gyms, and studios have surpassed five billion, which equates to an average of 90 visits per person.

Although the fitness industry has a reputation for high turnover of members, the numbers indicate that is no longer the case. The average retention rate is an impressive 72.4%.

Consumers are spending more money on their health and experiences instead of traditionally popular areas like fashion, contributing to the significant growth of the market.

Six Reasons the Fitness Industry is Booming

In a Forbes article on September 26, 2018, the following six reasons were credited for the boom in the US fitness industry:

  1. Health Insurance Costs – Many employers and insurers are now covering the costs of a health club membership or studio classes to decrease insurance costs due to healthier employees and policyholders.
  2. New Demand for Healthy Foods – Consumers are more conscious of the food they eat, which leads to an overall increased interest in fitness.
  3. Wearable Fitness Gadgets – Devices such as Fitbit and Apple Watch have consumers in tune with how their body works and ways to improve their health.
  4. Streaming Exercise Classes – Online fitness classes are now mainstream, providing a beneficial option when hitting the gym isn’t an option.
  5. Boutique Gyms – Boutique fitness studios and high-value, low-price (HVLP) health clubs are responsible for the majority of the industry’s growth.
  6. Outdoor Obstacle Races – Large fitness events like mud runs draw huge crowds; participants use their gym as a place to train for these fun events.

Trends for 2020

In addition to the six areas listed above that are dominating the market,  industry experts predict more consumers will train with a coach in the coming year to help them better meet their fitness goals. And, boxing is predicted to continue to reign supreme. Boxing has maintained its cult-like following due to its calorie-torching, strength-building affects and the fact so many celebrities swear by it.

Whether looking for long-term health or wanting to look amazing for a selfie, athlete-level training and programming are more accessible to consumers than ever. In 2020 and beyond, a growing number of consumers will look to a combination of fitness clubs and technological devices to achieve their overall fitness goals.

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