COVID-19 shakes up the fitness and health club industry



Fitness is an important part of our lives. Many of us participate in physical activity to relieve stress and stay healthy.

Gyms are an important part of this, providing us with the space and equipment to train regularly. But since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the gym landscape has changed dramatically.

In 2019, the International Health, Racquet, and Sportsclub Association (IHRSA) established the total number of fitness clubs in the United States at 41,370. In July 2021, that number was approximately 32,269, a decrease of about 22%.

Investment implications

These changes were not only visible in the data, but also in national headlines. Throughout 2020, companies such as 24 Hour Fitness, Gold’s Gym and YogaWorks have filed for bankruptcy, shutting down hundreds of sites.

Meanwhile, home fitness solutions have taken off. Companies like Peloton (stock symbol: PTON) have sold equipment to households across the country, registering record subscriptions and commitment to fitness. In Peloton’s report last week, they bragged about 2.5 million fitness subscriptions (almost double from a year ago) but declining engagement.

On the other hand, Planet Fitness (ticker symbol: PLNT) reported a record number of net additions with a membership total reaching 15 million as they continue to implement their vision. Going forward, it’s interesting to think about what the future of fitness will look like and which companies are well positioned.

Twitter: @_SeanDavid

The author or his company may hold positions in the titles mentioned at the time of publication. All opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not represent the views or opinions of any other person or entity.



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