Up-to-date fitness industry statistics are invaluable for business planning. If you want to launch a new product, expand your range, or target a different segment, then market data can help you assess the viability of your idea.
In this article – we’ve collated the latest fitness industry stats from across the world into one handy resource.
It includes the latest data on growth, current trends (including boutique studios), global markets, and equipment industry stats to make your research quick and easy…
- Industry Overview 2021
- Current Industry Trends
- Online Training Market
- Boutique Fitness Statistics
- Growth Markets
- Fitness Equipment Industry
- Analysis & Summary
- 2021 Industry Report
Latest Fitness Industry Statistics
Here are topline stats that provide a quick fitness industry overview…
- How big is the fitness industry? According to the latest IHRSA report, total industry revenue was $96.7bn in 2019, up from $94bn in 2018.
- Is the fitness industry growing? In revenue terms, the industry growth rate was 2.9% globally (pre-Covid).
- Will this growth continue? The industry was hit hard by recent global events but there are positive macro signals that it will continue to grow.
Industry revenue was originally predicted to hit $102bn in 2021. But this has been revised downwards as a result of global gym closures.
However, not all countries were growing prior to 2020. Some markets outperformed others, with the US continuing to but others remaining flat. Scroll down for our analysis of predicted growth markets around the world.
The industry grew to approximately 210,000 clubs globally, serving 184 million members. However this data is restricted to health clubs only, so doesn’t account for boutique studios, community recreation facilities, or gyms located in other venues such as hotels.
IHRSA is due to release its next report in May 2021, which will include industry statistics from the previous year.
However, a new wave of digital trends is being driven by technology, demographic changes, and recent global events. ‘Online training’ was the ACSM’s #1 trend for 2021 with ‘virtual training’ at #6. Neither of these were in the top 20 previously, which shows how much the industry changed in 2020.
On-demand fitness services such as Peloton, Aaptiv, and Les Mills’ new offering are taking advantage of improved internet connectivity and streaming capabilities. But they’re also tapping into Millennials’ desires for personalisation, freedom, and experiences over material things.
A Nielsen survey found that 81% of Millennials exercise or would like to, vs only 61% of Boomers. For this reason, Millennials have caught the attention of boutique studios, wearable developers, and equipment manufacturers.
“For Millennials, wellness is a daily, active pursuit. They’re exercising more, eating smarter, and smoking less than previous generations… And this is one space where they’re willing to spend money on compelling brands.”
– Goldman Sachs –
Millennials use fitness apps more than other age groups, with women using them twice as much as men. 46% want as much quantifiable data about their health as possible, and 54% are likely to buy a body-analyzing device.
Although the Nielsen survey is now several years old, the insights are still relevant for industry brands looking to stay ahead in 2021…
⇒ Want to learn more about millennials? Or target a different segment entirely? Then check out these additional resources…
Virtual & Online Fitness Stats
Let’s start by clarifying the terms. Although sometimes used interchangeably, online, digital, and virtual refer to different fitness sectors.
- Online – where consumers follow online workout guidance in the form of videos, blog articles, or programs.
- Digital – fitness products and activities that involve digital technology, such as wearables, apps, and interactive heart rate training.
- Virtual – workouts that incorporate virtual reality.
While all three areas had been increasing prior to 2020, it’s online fitness that’s seen the greatest increase since then. Here are some key online fitness industry statistics that demonstrate the growth potential in this segment…
- Prior to the pandemic, the online fitness market was valued at $6bn.
- It’s predicted to grow at 33.1% CAGR.
- This means it would be worth $59bn by 2027.
However, our research shows that the situation is more nuanced than these numbers initially suggest. Our report also reveals that the online workout industry faces similar challenges to bricks and mortar gyms, particularly in terms of retention.
Boutique Fitness Trends
The rise of boutique studios looks set to continue throughout 2021 and beyond, albeit at a slower rate than previously seen. They’re perfectly positioned to service Millennial members, offering personalised training and unique fitness experiences.
Although they charge 2-4 times more than traditional health clubs, they have lower member attrition rates. Their higher-margin operating model is proving popular with fitness entrepreneurs and investors alike, especially in developing markets like China.
⇒ Wondering what this means for the mid-market club segment? Or looking for more detailed boutique fitness statistics? Then check out these industry resources…
- Fitness Studio Operating & Financial Benchmarking Report
- UK Boutique Fitness Studio Report
- Health Club Industry Mid-market Report
- Boutique Boom Report
You might also like… our article on Yoga Industry Insights, Growth Areas & Trends.
Fitness Industry Growth Markets
Despite the rapid expansion and an influx of investment, Asia still has huge potential for growth.
Despite 3800 clubs and nearly a million members, penetration is only 0.12%. As average incomes increase and the rise of the middle-class becomes reality, penetration rates should rise in line.
Whilst the industry in China has experienced high-level growth across the board, boutique studios are now stealing the march on big-box establishments.
Expansion is happening at lightning-quick speeds, so brands should act quickly to seize opportunities before they disappear. With 2700+ traditional health clubs and increasing studio-style establishments, the biggest growth opportunities are now in tier 3 and 4 cities (or satellites) rather than already saturated hubs.
In Europe, the IHRSA report highlighted Russia, Poland, and Turkey as having the biggest potential for growth. It also identified the Middle East, North Africa, and Latin America as being regions with development opportunities.
⇒ Detailed global reports featuring useful industry stats can be found here…
Fitness Equipment Industry Stats
The fitness equipment industry continues to mature and consolidate, with the biggest players vying for podium positions. Although cardio and strength machines remain club staples, functional training equipment is seeing the greatest expansion.
However, as the boutique studio sector grows, there’s a question mark over how equipment manufacturers should adapt. Studios spend a lot less on equipment than traditional clubs which means less revenue…
– The Association of Fitness Studios –
Accessories account for the majority of their spending, so cardio and strength manufacturers may need to rethink their product offerings or focus their efforts on other sectors.
⇒ Additional resources, research reports, and stats can be found here…
You might also like… Nutrition Industry Stats, Growth & Trends 2021.
There’s no question that last year was a tough one, but based on current stats the future of the fitness industry still looks promising.
As cardiovascular disease and the obesity epidemic continue to rise, the industry will play an increasingly important role in the health of global populations. Fitness businesses that adapt to meet this challenge should find security over the long-term.
The statistics shared in this article also provide glimpses as to where the future may take us. As Millennials increasingly drive consumer spending, providing services that appeal to their values will be crucial.
But that doesn’t mean that other generations should be neglected at their expense… The active-aging segment is another growth area that gains immense health benefits from regular fitness activity, so there are huge opportunities in this area too.
2021 Fitness Industry Report
This is the most comprehensive and up-to-date industry research report available. Unlike others, you get extended access to the 2021 edition, including any updates that are made as new market data becomes available. Ideal for business planning, the report includes;
- Industry growth, revenue & future predictions
- Online & virtual fitness market developments
- Impact of recent global events & estimated recovery timelines
- Number of gyms, members & retention statistics
- Growth markets, segments & audiences including Millennials
- Latest industry trends & how to capitalise on them
- Financial information for the largest club operators globally
- Biggest & fastest growing fitness franchises
- Insights into the personal training & boutique market segments
- Data on fitness product, equipment & wearables markets
- Evidence-based predictions for the future of the industry
- 14-day money-back guarantee, no questions or hassle
Note: Data is correct at the time of publishing, but it’s important to do your own local research when making business decisions.