As we say goodbye to 2021, we are looking to see what fitness trends have in store for the fitness industry in 2022. Life in the fitness industry during 2021 was quite uncertain, a little like gambling online. Now in 2022 things are looking different. There have been a number of advances in technology making things more certain. These advances include online class integrations, on-demand content and content hosting. Gym and fitness studio owners have made a great effort to provide services for their members. Studios and gyms returned to normal scheduling and fitness enthusiasts were able to return to their favorite venues.
At the beginning of a new year, it is usually the time when people look back at the previous year to see how things panned out and what this may imply or predict for fitness trends. The previous year we saw much more live streaming and classes online. Many workouts were equipment-less and we saw many celebrities investing in fitness via apps and/or branding.
In this article we are going to look at some of the top trends expected in the fitness industry this year. These include the importance of mental health, and also encompass the social aspects of exercise and many more things besides.
The choice will be for small group personal training as opposed to large gym complexes
During the lockdowns and the need to isolate, it was almost impossible for fitness enthusiasts to carry on with their exercise routines. Many people did manage to keep up with some form of exercise at home and using online classes and it was important for people to keep to their fitness goals. During the past 18 months we saw the growth of small fitness studios offering clients the possibility of creating a bespoke training program with a personal trainer.
This took the place of large commercial gyms where people were basically on their own. These smaller gyms that range from two to ten people means that members are able to receive more one- on-one time from trainers and also enables member to socially interact with one another, creating a rapport which is less likely to happen in large commercial gyms.
Fitness studios are now becoming important venues for socializing
Today, more than any time before, friendship and companionship are the main focus in terms of fitness centers. These fitness studios and gyms are becoming important as hosts to social activities and not only for workouts. Members encourage friends and family to join them for classes creating a sense of belonging and unity which makes fitness activities more attractive.
Nick Wardle, the owner of Body Transformation Centre, says “I think people are more compliant when they’re both doing something together because they are on the same journey and same thinking around the same stuff. The support is generally better.”
Mental health is becoming a real talking point and is creating some division
There has been much talk in different media outlets about how people’s mental health has been seriously affected over the last two years. This has caused a lot of people to become worried and anxious and is not really helpful. It would be useful if fitness studios and gyms would offer support to their members, encouraging them to get back into some sort of exercise pattern thus supporting their mental health as well.
Hybrid appears to be the new normal
These online classes and on-demand content made it possible for fitness studios and gyms to carry on during the lockdowns. Clients were able to keep to some form of a routine. Even though lockdowns are no longer occurring, online fitness classes are continuing because by offering hybrid classes, owners of fitness businesses are able to increase the size of their classes – teaching an in-person class and live-streaming makes it possible for more people to join in.
Another feature, on-demand content, is also likely to continue. For those who want to access a class at a time that suits them makes this an ideal option and will encourage them to take out a membership.
Fitness enthusiasts have become used to working out on their own
Throughout the pandemic people got used to working out alone aided by things like Peloton, Mirror and Apple watches. This pushed studios and gyms to get online classes going and to introduce on-demand content. This situation has become very comfortable for fitness enthusiasts and it is now up to fitness businesses to find a way to entice their customers back into the old way of working out and physically come to the centers.
Many are fed up with being stuck indoors
So many of us are craving fresh air and the outdoors. It is an added bonus for fitness enthusiasts if there are classes taking place outside. Offering these classes will be an added bonus and encourage people to join. The outdoor option also provides a safety element in terms of social distancing – giving people safety and freedom, also meaning more people are able to join in. Obviously online classes and on-demand benefits those who are travelling also as they are able to workout anywhere and have you, the instructor, with them!
Clients are more aware of the meaning of time and effort and its relationship to exercise
Fitness enthusiasts have learned that shorter and more rigorous workouts can provide them with the same results as their previous more traditional workouts. Those with busy schedules have been using workouts like HIIT and other programs. 30- minute Tabatas are a good way of drawing in those with tight schedules or those mostly at home.
Customers of gyms and studios are now more focused on Hygiene. It will be important for studios and gyms to provide certification and/or proof that all the health and safety measures are being adhered to.
Studios should look to develop a more holistic approach
Customers are looking for something more tailored to their individual needs. Working with customers to build their individual program that suits their needs and wellbeing. Having an instructor help them with their particular nutritional requirements and helping to build a program for them will be very attractive. It means studio owners have to invest more time in learning about their customers so as to provide a better service.
Restrictions will scare people off
Too many rules will not encourage people to return nor tempt new customers. Following safety regulations is of course required but don’t go overboard with the rules.
Expectations for 2022
Things are slowly returning, and there is a sense of normality in the air. People are eager to get back to their previous routines and they want to set themselves new fitness goals. But some things may not ever return to how they were.
The use of online fitness classes has become very popular and will likely continue and demand may well increase. Outdoor classes and fitness sessions are also likely to be more sought out and those returning to indoor gyms will be seeking a higher level of hygiene in their classes and sessions.