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Independent health clubs in the UK recovered 2019 membership numbers by the end of 2020
29 Apr 2021 . BY Tom Walker
The recovery of membership levels was significantly better at independent clubs / Shutterstock/Jason Sponseller
Independent gyms in the UK have fared better during the pandemic than larger corporate operators in holding on to their members, according to new research.

Net member movement among independents was generally positive during key times in 2020 – in spite of being negative for the wider sector.

The finding comes from a new study, titled Independent Fitness Clubs Benchmarking Report, by 4global, ukactive and GGFit, which outlines the impact of COVID-19 on independent fitness clubs.

Among the key findings is that membership levels bounced back significantly better at independent clubs, both in terms of visit throughput and active member percentage.

The report is based on a study from July to December 2020, using data from 627 independent clubs, representing a total of 289,000 members, 3.9 million visits, and revenue of £32m.

It shows that the percentage of active members at independent clubs was clearly lower in July and November 2020 – when compared to 2019 levels – due to clubs being in lockdown for most of the time during these months.

By December 2020, however, the level of active members recovered to within 1 per cent of 2019 numbers, showing a healthy appetite for returning to the gym.

Interestingly, independent clubs achieved much higher joiner rates during these six months – sometimes by a factor of three.

The report suggests that this was due to a combination of re-engagement campaigns, re-joiners, and the ‘local’ business effect of independents reaching out to their community during the pandemic.

"Many independents were able to adapt and pivot quickly, to deliver what their members needed during lockdown," the report reads.

Commenting on the findings, Huw Edwards, CEO of ukactive, said: “We know that independent fitness businesses have been hit hard by the pandemic but with the support of their members they have proven to be agile and adaptable to change, which is clearly demonstrated in this report.

“It is our hope that we can continue to support the growth of independents across the physical activity sector by sharing our insight and data, and working together with our members to drive change.”

Utku Toprakseven, Partner at 4global, said: “This report represents the first collaborative dive into the independent gyms collective data and is an exciting opportunity to assess the value of the rich diversity delivered across the sector.

“We very much look forward to working with even more independent operators and system providers in the coming months, with an aim to deepen our collective understanding of the critical impact that independent gyms have to the wider health and physical activity agenda.”

To download and read the full report, click here.

• A special webinar discussing the findings of the report and plotting the next steps for the sector will be held at 10am on Thursday 6 May, hosted by ukactive with support from 4global and GGFit. To register for the webinar, click here
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Jobs   News   Products   Magazine
PRODUCT NEWS
Independent health clubs in the UK recovered 2019 membership numbers by the end of 2020
29 Apr 2021 . BY Tom Walker
The recovery of membership levels was significantly better at independent clubs / Shutterstock/Jason Sponseller
Independent gyms in the UK have fared better during the pandemic than larger corporate operators in holding on to their members, according to new research.

Net member movement among independents was generally positive during key times in 2020 – in spite of being negative for the wider sector.

The finding comes from a new study, titled Independent Fitness Clubs Benchmarking Report, by 4global, ukactive and GGFit, which outlines the impact of COVID-19 on independent fitness clubs.

Among the key findings is that membership levels bounced back significantly better at independent clubs, both in terms of visit throughput and active member percentage.

The report is based on a study from July to December 2020, using data from 627 independent clubs, representing a total of 289,000 members, 3.9 million visits, and revenue of £32m.

It shows that the percentage of active members at independent clubs was clearly lower in July and November 2020 – when compared to 2019 levels – due to clubs being in lockdown for most of the time during these months.

By December 2020, however, the level of active members recovered to within 1 per cent of 2019 numbers, showing a healthy appetite for returning to the gym.

Interestingly, independent clubs achieved much higher joiner rates during these six months – sometimes by a factor of three.

The report suggests that this was due to a combination of re-engagement campaigns, re-joiners, and the ‘local’ business effect of independents reaching out to their community during the pandemic.

"Many independents were able to adapt and pivot quickly, to deliver what their members needed during lockdown," the report reads.

Commenting on the findings, Huw Edwards, CEO of ukactive, said: “We know that independent fitness businesses have been hit hard by the pandemic but with the support of their members they have proven to be agile and adaptable to change, which is clearly demonstrated in this report.

“It is our hope that we can continue to support the growth of independents across the physical activity sector by sharing our insight and data, and working together with our members to drive change.”

Utku Toprakseven, Partner at 4global, said: “This report represents the first collaborative dive into the independent gyms collective data and is an exciting opportunity to assess the value of the rich diversity delivered across the sector.

“We very much look forward to working with even more independent operators and system providers in the coming months, with an aim to deepen our collective understanding of the critical impact that independent gyms have to the wider health and physical activity agenda.”

To download and read the full report, click here.

• A special webinar discussing the findings of the report and plotting the next steps for the sector will be held at 10am on Thursday 6 May, hosted by ukactive with support from 4global and GGFit. To register for the webinar, click here
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Leisure centres open their doors for free in aid of Armed Forces Day
Service men and women across the country are being invited to get active for free at Everyone Active centres in celebration of Armed Forces Day.
More digital for the restart of fitness clubs
After months of lockdown, people all over the world are returning to the gym with great enthusiasm. They are doing it rapidly and with an unprecedented digital awareness, gained over the past year.
FunXtion enhance interactive workouts with the launch of Virtual Player
Digital meets personal with the new Virtual Player from FunXtion, experts in interactive fitness, which allows clubs to stream and schedule world class virtual classes anytime, providing an interactive workout experience on the gym floor, functional area or directly to members at home via an app.
Eleiko to build state-of-the-art logistics centre in Halmstad
Eleiko, a leading manufacturer and supplier of strength equipment, is set to build a new 18,000 sqm state-of-the-art logistics centre expanding its footprint in Halmstad, Sweden.
Feel better for longer with Power Plate
Aligning fitness and healthcare as part of the wider health and wellbeing needs of the ageing population has never been more important.
Is broken gym equipment killing your business potential?
You’re pumped and ready for your workout. Then you see it, the dreaded ‘out of order’ signs hanging from treadmills, weight machines or cross-trainers.
Being active helps Parkwood Leisure customers save the NHS £16m
Parkwood Leisure, one of the UK’s leading public leisure facilities operators, helped prevent more than 7,000 cases of stroke, dementia, depression and type 2 diabetes in 2019, saving the NHS £16 million, a new social value report has shown.
Celebrating the return of group exercise – Les Mills to host free ‘Fastest Way Back’ livestream event for the industry
Last month (May) saw the welcomed return of group exercise classes. Group exercise is the heartbeat for so many clubs, with in-studio and instructor-led live experiences at the pinnacle.
Everyone Active bolsters Everyone on Demand and enters second year with five new partnerships
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Active IQ launches two industry-ready health and fitness diplomas
Active IQ has launched two new qualifications – the Level 2 Diploma in Health and Fitness and Level 3 Diploma in Health and Fitness – to help engage learners in an industry-ready training experience that can be tailored to suit local employer needs.
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As gyms begin to reopen, cleanliness and hygiene remain an essential part of ensuring staff and members are confident to return.
Puraclenz launches air purification systems to help spas and gyms instil confidence in returning guests
Health and wellness tech start-up Puraclenz has launched a collection of ionic air and surface purifiers to help spas, gyms and leisure facilities reopen after lockdown.
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COMPANY PROFILES
FunXtion International BV

With our digital member solutions, branded app and branded virtual classes your clients can now enjo [more...]
+ More profiles  
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+ More catalogues  

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The new Excite line makes training more fun and inspiring for any age or fitness level with lots of workouts and entertainment options. Find out more...
+ More videos  

DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

21-23 Jun 2021

World Spa & Wellness Asia Online Conference

Online,
24-24 Jun 2021

Post Covid Recovery Conference

Vrtual,
+ More diary  
 


ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media
Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2021

ABOUT LEISURE MEDIA
LEISURE MEDIA MAGAZINES
LEISURE MEDIA HANDBOOKS
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LEISURE MEDIA PRODUCT SEARCH
PRINT SUBSCRIPTIONS
FREE DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTIONS