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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


The percentage of health club respondents who are planning construction over the next few years has been increasing gradually over the past few years, and saw a big increase in 2018. In 2017, 59.2 percent of health club respondents said they had plans for construction, and in 2018, that number grew to 66.7 percent. Some 45.5 percent of health club respondents are planning to renovate their existing facilities. Another 21.2 percent are planning additions, and 19.7 percent are planning to build new facilities. (See Figure 55.)


Health club respondents in 2018 are planning to spend an average of $3,010,000 on their construction plans. This is a 20.4 percent increase from 2016, when these respondents had budgeted $2,500,000 for construction.

The features most commonly included among health club respondents' facilities in 2018 include: fitness centers, locker rooms, exercise studio rooms, Wi-Fi services, indoor aquatic facilities, childcare centers, indoor sports courts for sports like basketball and volleyball, classrooms and meeting rooms, indoor tracks and concessions.

The percentage of health club respondents who said they have plans to add features at their facilities over the next three years grew substantially from 2017 to 2018. In 2017, 19.7 percent of health club respondents had plans to add features, and in 2018, 30.3 percent have such plans. This compares with 43.7 percent of non-health-club respondents who plan to add features in 2018.

The most commonly planned additions among health club respondents include: bleachers and seating, fitness centers, indoor sports courts for sports like volleyball and basketball, indoor tracks, exercise studio rooms, climbing walls, outdoor courts for sports like tennis and basketball, fitness trails and outdoor fitness equipment, and walking and hiking trails.

Programming

Offering engaging, innovative and effective programs is one of the keys to a successful health club business, as it gets new members in the door and keeps existing members coming back for more.

The top 10 programs currently offered among health club respondents' facilities include: fitness programs (provided by 93.8 percent of health club respondents); mind-body balance programs such as yoga and tai chi (89.2 percent); personal training (83.1 percent); nutrition and diet counseling (63.1 percent); programming for active older adults (60 percent); aquatic exercise programs (49.2 percent); holidays and other special events (43.1 percent); educational programs (40 percent); sport-specific training such as golf lessons or tennis instruction (30.8 percent); and therapeutic programs (27.7 percent).

Programming types that saw growth from 2017 to 2018 include: fitness programs (up from 90.7 percent); mind-body balance (up from 80 percent); personal training (up from 81.3 percent); nutrition and diet counseling (up from 60 percent); and active older adult programming (up from 53.3 percent). Programs that did not appear among the top 10 most common programs in 2017 include educational programs and therapeutic programs. They replace swimming programs and day camps and summer camps.

The percentage of health club respondents who plan to add programs at their facilities fell from 32.9 percent in 2017 to 30.3 percent in 2018. This compares with 31.8 percent of non-health-club respondents who are planning to add programs at their facilities.

The most commonly planned program additions among health club respondents include:

  1. Programs for active older adults (up from No. 6)
  2. Teen programming (up from No. 4)
  3. Nutrition and diet counseling (down from No. 2)
  4. Fitness programs (down from No. 3)
  5. Mind-body balance programs (no change from 2017)
  6. Sport-specific training (did not appear in 2017)
  7. Personal training (up from No. 9)
  8. Educational programs (down from No. 7)
  9. Adult sports teams (did not appear in 2017)
  10. Individual sports activities such as running or swim clubs (down from No. 1)

New to the list in 2018 are programs for sport-specific training and adult sports teams. These programs replace special needs programs and swimming programs.

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