Things Are Looking Up for Health Clubs, Says IHRSA Report

Some 68.9 million consumers ages 6 and older were members of a fitness facility in 2022, an increase of 3.7% over 2021 and a record number of the industry, while overall facility users (a combination of members and non-member users) rose 8.1% to 82.7 million people. This, according to the 2023 U.S. Health & Fitness Consumer Report from IHRSA, the Health & Fitness Association, a global community of health and fitness industry leaders. The member number is higher than in 2019, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic when the U.S. industry had 64.2 million members.

"A growing number of Americans are joining gyms because they know that science confirms exercise's key role in improving physical and mental health," said IHRSA President and CEO Liz Clark. "The data on this report helps operators identify key trends in consumer behavior so they can remain in tune with consumers and better evaluate opportunities that exist today to better serve their communities and be successful."

The 2023 U.S. Health & Fitness Consumer Report shares data about active U.S. consumers ages 6 and older, focusing mostly on their use of fitness facilities. During the past few years, consumers have engaged in new health and wellness behaviors. Insights from the report can help fitness business operators better understand those behaviors and adapt operations.

Report highlights include:

  • Studio membership growth of 37%

  • More members than ever belong to more than one facility type.

  • A drop in the age of the average member from 39 to 37 years old.

  • An increase in average membership dues from $58 per month to $59.

  • Growth in average attendance from 72 days to 75 days.

  • Higher visit rates among older members than younger adults.

  • Hispanic membership growth highest of any ethnicity.

  • Hispanic member dues highest of any ethnicity.

  • Treadmills, free weights (dumbbells/hand weights) and resistance machines remained the three most popular types of fitness equipment in 2022.

  • The top three fitness activities were yoga, swimming, and high-intensity interval training.

The report is divided into chapters focused on membership trends, member usage and activity and member demographics. Data for the report, which focuses on people who used a fitness facility within the past 12 months, came from a rolling online survey of 18,000 people ages 6 and older conducted throughout 2022 by Sports Marketing Surveys USA. Global strategy consulting firm L.E.K. Consulting analyzed the data and wrote the report.