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The millennial generation is, for the most part, responsible for the massive changes in how fitness is now being offered. You should be aware of how these changes will impact your business and the fitness industry as a whole.
Budget clubs are among the fastest-growing part of the fitness industry. These low-cost clubs help make it easy for people to access fitness, and while there is no service offered, they do fill the demand for almost half of the exercising population at this moment.
Boutiques are the opposite extreme — being small in design and high in price — and are also rapidly growing. This group of exercisers belong to boutiques because it represents a “lifestyle,” and they do not mind paying to get exactly what they want.
Virtual Group X classes have also shown significant growth and provide operators with opportunities for members to customize their own workouts and create their own communities. Virtual classes have been shown to engage members in ways that live group classes do not. They are available anytime and are less intimidating for members.
In addition to what is erupting as far as change within the club, even more is happening outside of the bricks and mortar in the fitness industry. Today, more than 50 percent of club members have, and use, at least one exercise app — and close to 50 percent of consumers, who are not fitness members, also have and use a fitness app. Virtual coaching (online or through an app) is also demonstrating significant growth.
Finally, wearable technology is all around us and while nothing can replace the live, face-to-face connections that a personal trainer or a group fitness instructor can create, technology is coming close.
Therefore, it is time for the fitness industry to pay attention and get connected. Learn how to leverage technology to help support members. Get with your team of trainers and instructors and brainstorm ways you can better connect with your members. Help your training staff learn how to engage and leverage technology so they can connect with their participants and trust me, they will win, as will your business.
Mo Hagan is the vice president of program innovation for GoodLife Fitness and canfitpro. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.