Review of post-lockdown gym member behaviour finds a decrease in average member age and significant increase in number of gym-goers

Village Health & Wellness Clubs have been carrying out an end of year review of pre and post-lockdown member behaviour to determine the impact that COVID19 has had on the UK fitness industry.

The Village Gym team found that:

  • The average age of members has decreased from 44 years to 41 years post-pandemic.
  • Post-COVID figures significantly outperform pre-COVID figures with a 68% increase in new membership sales.
  • More men have started to hit the gym since the pandemic began. 
  • On-demand fitness was crucial for fitness fanatics during lockdown, with 7 times more members accessing live fitness classes over this period.
  • Dance-inspired workouts are the most popular form of group fitness, with Zumba topping the charts across Village Gyms.
  • Personal training post-pandemic has shifted towards home-based training and online support.

The average age of members has decreased from 44 years to 41 years post-pandemic.

It seems that younger people are keener than ever to keep their health in check and their immune systems strong. 

There has been a significant increase in young people and students joining Village Gym clubs, possibly down to the need for social contact and an injection of post-lockdown fun. 

Village Gym say, “This could be due to many having more time to accommodate a workout when working from home, or the desire to shift a few lockdown pounds.  Public Health England suggests that more than 40% of British adults gained an average of 3kg during the pandemic.” 

“Members are also committing to a new fitness lifestyle, with an increase in long-term memberships rather than flexible, short-term options. This offers a positive insight into the notion of making fitness a habit, and that members are not as focused as they once were on ‘quick fixes’ and short-term goals.”

Post-COVID figures significantly outperform pre- COVID figures with a 68% increase in new membership sales.

More people in the UK are now putting their health and fitness first, with a 68% increase in new members across all 32 Village Gym clubs. This comprises of those keen to get back into fitness after a long break, as well as those just getting started on their fitness journey. 

“Members are keen to improve their cardio health, at this especially crucial time when lung function is vital. Given the national weight gain observed after months of sedentary lifestyles, another common goal is weight loss.”

More men have started to hit the gym since the COVID pandemic began. 

Prior to the pandemic, Village Gym reported a female membership base of over 50%. Now, male members dominate the demographics, with many keen to get into shape and expand their social circle of fitness fanatics. 

Village Gym say, “Our investment of new weight training kit, plus functional training spaces has become popular with men who enjoy weight lifting, strength training and bodyweight workouts.”

On-demand fitness was crucial for fitness fanatics during lockdown, with 7 times more members accessing live fitness classes during this time.

Online fitness classes were a godsend for many Village Gym members during lockdown when clubs were closed due to Government restrictions. 

With a vast selection of both virtual and live workouts, Village Gym saw a huge spike in the number of members engaging with on-demand fitness. 

“Since clubs have re-opened, members are keen to enjoy the sociable aspects of fitness, with classes in the studio rather than being cooped up at home.” 

Dance-inspired workouts are the most popular form of group fitness, with Zumba topping the charts across Village Gyms.

Members are choosing fun, upbeat, and sociable fitness classes, with a 20% increase in attendance for Zumba classes compared to pre-lockdown figures. Plus, older adults are getting back into group fitness, seen via a 19% increase in Aqua Aerobics sessions. 

“Low-impact workouts such as Aqua classes are ideal for older members to stay limber and ensure their cardiovascular health is maintained. Members also love to catch up after their morning Aqua class over a cuppa and a good old catch up.” 

Personal training post-pandemic has shifted towards home-based training and online support.

The number of members booking personal training sessions has reduced, though this is to be expected due to social distancing and the emergence of virtual, online personal training options. 

“Many members now feel comfortable taking the fitness programmes planned by their personal trainer, and putting it into practice themselves, simply returning for regular progress reviews to ensure they are still achieving their goals.”

This aligns with the latest survey of Fitness Trends, which highlighted that online training was the top fitness trend for 2021.

In summary, there’s no better time to start thinking about future health, and it’s clear our members are aware of this. From fitness newcomers, to those whose gym routine took a backseat during lockdown, the nation is getting up and moving. 

“Young people enjoy the social camaraderie that comes from group exercise sessions, and older adults rely on their regular gym sessions for the social aspect that relieves the loneliness caused by months of isolation. “

“We’re planning for a fitter future. In the face of the global pandemic, we’ve realised how important our health is and we’re taking the steps to ensure our bodies are on top form. Not just for the summer… but for the future.”

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