Feature Article - June 2020
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Trends in Health, Fitness & Sports Clubs

A Look at Trends in Health, Fitness & Sports Clubs


Offering innovative and effective programs is crucial to the health club business, helping drive new memberships while keeping existing members engaged.

The top 10 programs offered in 2020 at health club respondents' facilities include: fitness programs (provided by 91.9% of health club respondents); group exercise programs (89.2%); functional fitness programs (78.4%); personal training (78.4%); mind-body balance programs like yoga and tai chi (73%); nutrition and diet counseling (62.2%); programs for active older adults (54.1%); educational programs (40.5%); holidays and other special events (37.8%); and aquatic exercise programs (35.1%).

Programming types that saw growth from 2019 to 2020 include: group exercise (up from 83.3%); functional fitness (up from 75%); and nutrition and diet counseling (up from 52.1%).

The number of health club respondents in 2020 who said they were planning to add programs at their facilities was up slightly. Some 29.7% of health club respondents said they had such plans, up from 27.1% in 2019. This compares with 35.3% of non-health-club respondents in 2020 who were planning to add programs at their facilities.

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

  1. Special needs programs (did not appear in 2019)
  2. Functional fitness programs (did not appear in 2019)
  3. Fitness programs (up from No. 5)
  4. Group exercise programs (no change)
  5. Mind-body balance programs like yoga (did not appear in 2019)
  6. Programs for active older adults (down from No. 3)
  7. Swimming programs (did not appear in 2019)
  8. Nutrition and diet counseling (down from No. 2)
  9. Aquatic exercise programs (down from No. 8)
  10. Personal training (no change)

New to the list in 2020 are: special needs programs; functional fitness; mind-body balance; and swimming programs. These programs replaced holidays and other special events; day camps and summer camps; sports tournaments and races; and youth sports teams. RM