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Feature Article - June 2018

Health, Fitness & Sports Clubs

A Look at Trends in Health, Fitness & Sports Clubs

By Enter Author Here


Revenues & Expenditures

The percentage of health club respondents who saw their revenues increase fell from 2016 to 2017, and the number whose revenues decreased also grew. From 2015 to 2016, 55.4 percent of health club respondents said their revenues increased, and 12.2 percent said their revenues fell. From 2016 to 2017, 46.9 percent saw an increase, and 21.9 percent reported a decrease in revenues. (See Figure 53.)


Health club respondents always tend to be optimistic when considering their future revenues, and this year is no exception, with 47.7 percent expecting revenues to increase in 2018, and 56.5 percent projecting an increase for 2019. Another 46.2 percent and 40.3 percent, respectively, said they expect revenues to remain the same in those years.

From 2016 to 2017, health club respondents' average operating costs fell at a slightly faster rate than the average for all respondents. While all respondents saw their average operating cost drop by 11.9 percent in that time period, health club respondents' average cost fell 12.4 percent, from $1,804,000 in 2016 to $1,580,000 in 2017. Looking forward, health club respondents expect further decreases, projecting that their operating costs will fall a further 9.5 percent, to $1,430,000 in 2019.

On average, health club respondents report that they recover 65.1 percent of their operating costs via revenue. This compares with 48.5 percent of operating costs recovered via revenue for all respondents. Health club respondents were more than twice as likely as non-health-club respondents to report that they recover at least 91 percent of their operating costs via revenues. Some 14.1 percent of non-health-club respondents said they earn back at least 91 percent of their operating costs, while 34.8 percent of health club respondents said they earn back 91 percent or more of their operating costs. Some 21.3 percent of health club respondents said they earn less than 30 percent of their operating costs back via revenues. Another 7.5 percent earn back 31 percent to 50 percent of revenues, and 6 percent earn back 51 percent to 70 percent of revenues. Some 46.9 percent of health club respondents earn back at least 71 percent of their operating costs via revenues.

The percentage of health club respondents who said they have taken action to reduce their operating expenses increased this year, one of the only facility types that was more likely in 2018 than in 2017 to take such action. Some 80.8 percent of health clubs had taken action in 2017, but in 2018, 86.4 percent of health club respondents said they have acted to reduce their operating costs. The most common actions they have taken include: improving energy efficiency (48.5 percent); increasing fees (34.8 percent), reducing staff (33.3 percent), putting construction or renovation plans on hold (22.7 percent), and cutting programs and services (16.7 percent).

Health Club Facilities

The percentage of health club respondents reporting an increase in the number of people using their facilities fell in 2018, though a majority going forward are expecting increases. From 2015 to 2016, 55.3 percent of health club respondents said the number of people using their facilities increased, and from 2016 to 2017 48.5 percent reported an increase. In that same time frame, the percentage reporting a decrease in usage grew from 11.8 percent to 16.7 percent. (See Figure 54.)


Looking forward, health club respondents grow more optimistic about membership increases over the next year, as is typically the case with this group. Some 56.5 percent of health club respondents said they expect to see utilization of their facilities increase from 2017 to 2018, and 63.3 percent are expecting increases from 2018 to 2019.

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