Exercising to strengthen one’s mind and body while also reducing stress is now part of everyday life, especially for the millennials, those born between 1980s and early 2000s. According to 2014 data, the fitness industry in the U.S. has annual sales of over 24.2 billion dollars with 34,000 fitness clubs across the nation.
Among the lifestyle businesses, the fitness industry is known for constantly creating new trends. In the past, you joined a gym by paying the initiation fee, then monthly fees. Or, if you were interested in a particular class, you bought a DVD and exercised at home. However, in the past few years, online and ondemand fitness services have been on the rise, completely overturning the industry’s traditional business model. With these new services, you don’t need to take the time to go to the gym. Instead, you can use any of your digital devices, whether it be a computer, tablet, or smartphone, and work out wherever you want, whenever you want.
Ondemand services are particularly popular among the millennials. Seeking to attract this age group – who also make up a quarter of the American population – thousands of classes are made available online for a fee, or free of charge. The New Yorkbased Crunch Gym, which was founded in 1989, has 155 fitness centers and 400,000 members nationwide. In addition to their workout facilities, the company offers many online programs, including yoga, aerobics and spin classes, which can be accessed in 30 countries. These classes are available to members free of charge, and to nonmembers for a monthly fee of $9.99.
The competition among fitness clubs is becoming fiercer. The success of each company depends on how attractive their class offerings are. We are beginning to witness the fitness business transforming into a type of media business providing new contents.