The Millennial generation is for the most part responsible for the massive changes in how fitness is now being offered and being experienced. If you are running a fitness business of any kind you should be aware of how these changes will impact your business both positively and negatively. Budget clubs are among the fastest growing part of the fitness industry at the moment. These low cost clubs help make it easy for people to get started and 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 on the opposite extreme—being small in design and high in price—are also rapidly growing. This group of exercisers belong to boutiques because it represents to them a ‘lifestyle’ and they do not mind paying to get exactly what they want. Virtual fitness classes has shown significant growth around the world and provide owners and operators with opportunities for members to ‘customize’ their own workouts and create their own communities. Virtual classes (both in-club and via Apps) have been shown to engage members in ways that live group fitness 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 and boutique itself, even more is happening out-side of the bricks and mortar of your business. Today, more than fifty percent of club members have, and use, at least one exercise App and close to fifty percent of consumers, who are not fitness members, also have and use a fitness App. Virtual coaching (on-line or through a 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. Therefore it is time to pay attention and get connected. Learn how to leverage technology to help support the member community that you have created already. Get with your team of trainers and instructors and brainstorm ways that you get better connected with your members. Help your training staff learn how to engage and leverage technology (including social media) so that they can connect with their clients and class participants and trust me they will win as will your business.
Written by Mo Hagan
Maureen (Mo) Hagan is vice president of program innovation for canfitpro and GoodLife Fitness. She is a global fitness ambassador and has been recognized for her work in fitness that spans over three decades. Mo is a #1 best-selling author, member of the Board of Directors for Prescription to Get Active and Women in Fitness Association (WIFA) and a Reebok sponsored athlete.