Fitness businesses are getting creative with their online services as they continue adapting to virtual workouts, and despite the impacts of COVID-19, Orangetheory Fitness continues to lay tracks for future growth.
The $94 Billion Fitness Industry Is Reinventing Itself as COVID-19 Spreads
As the coronavirus continues to spread, fitness studios around the country are shutting their doors and adjusting to a new reality. The sudden shift has inspired creativity and flexibility for gyms and studios, which are largely dependent on physical locations and on-site staff.
The changes have rocked the fitness industry, which was worth $94 billion in 2018, according to The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association.
Some studios — such as Modo Yoga, which has locations in the United States, Canada, Australia and France — are offering free classes on Instagram Live. Other studios, including SoulCycle, closed all of its locations globally, hoping to reopen when conditions improve and the curve flattens. The cult-favorite cycling studio doesn’t have any online classes, but bikes are available for pre-order with a price tag of $2,500, and the company will release on-demand virtual classes later this year.
And as gyms and boutique fitness studios continue to close, fitness instructors are getting creative and amping up their side hustles.
Orangetheory Fitness Reveals Its UK Growth Plans
The doors to its 1300+ franchise locations might currently be closed, but longstanding boutique fitness brand Orangetheory Fitness is raring to get back to its global growth strategy.
As one of the world’s fastest-growing fitness franchises, with a presence in over 23 countries, at last check, its heart-rate based interval training had helped to generate the company $180 million in annual revenue.
A recent partnership with Apple Watch, which will enable members to track their heart-rate data during workouts, has also helped to create a more seamless brand experience. By further tapping into consumer demand for more personalised and real-time performance data, it continues to demonstrate its ability to evolve alongside the market. And despite the fact it has been forced to migrate to digital workouts as it rides out the effects of COVID-19, the brand continues to lay the tracks for future growth — with the UK firmly in its crosshairs.
Almost Overnight, the $100 Billion Fitness Industry Goes Virtual
For thousands of exercise brands both big and small, the pivot to streaming is a huge risk they have to take.
Reese Scott started boxing 17 years ago and dreamed of setting up her studio for almost as long. In 2018 she started Women’s World of Boxing, the first female-owned boxing gym in New York and, according to ClassPass Inc., the most popular workout in Manhattan on its app.
Last week, as social distancing measures took hold across the city—and then the country—she temporarily closed her 2,300-square-foot, exposed-brick studio and, for the first time, streamed her workout on Instagram. From her Harlem apartment she maneuvered lighting and camera frames to best display her full 5-foot-4-inch frame in a 2-by-3-foot space. Especially challenging, she says, is that clients need to be able to see her footwork.
Coronavirus Drives Trainers to Get Creative With Online Fitness Opportunities
The closure of gyms and fitness centres across Australia has taken a massive toll on the industry, but trainers are utilising new apps and running classes online to connect with clients to try to remain viable during the coronavirus pandemic.
Fitness Australia, the national not-for-profit industry association for fitness professionals, estimated more than 20,000 people involved in the exercise industry had lost their jobs.
Technology could help alleviate some of the pressure businesses were currently dealing with.
New apps, which work much the same way as dating apps, connect people with the type of personal trainer they are looking for in their area.
How Fitness Insiders Are Helping People Stay Connected And Active While Social Distancing
Sadie Kurzban is wearing an orange leotard dancing to Madonna, Britney Spears, N’SYNC and Katy Perry. As the songs play, she teaches the choreography to thousands of people who have tuned in on YouTube Live to take her ’80s ‘90s ‘00s Throwback Cardio Workout class from their homes while social distancing.
Kurzban is the CEO and founder of the cardio dance workout 305 Fitness. Before it was government-mandated in many states, Kurzban decided to temporarily close studios nationwide in response to the coronavirus pandemic. “People in our community are generally young and healthy. They are not at risk of severe illness or of death and that’s why deciding to close ahead of any kind of formal announcement was bold and courageous,” she says. “It was really taking a stand for other people — people who are not necessarily in our community like the elderly, the immunodeficient and undocumented. It was really about keeping those people safe, appreciating that the people who were taking our class were probably using public transportation, were walking around the city and were coming into contact with people.”
Coronavirus Inspires Fitness Buying Binge That Tops New Year’s
Many Americans skipping their usual trips to the gym during the coronavirus outbreak face the challenge of staying fit at home. That’s led to a spike in online orders for products like kettlebells, treadmills and stationary bikes.
Ecommerce sales of fitness equipment jumped 55% in a five-day period ending March 15 compared to sales earlier in the month, according to data from Adobe Analytics. The surge far exceeds even the increased demand that typically comes amid New Year’s resolutions or before swimsuit season in the summer, Vivek Pandya, lead analyst with Adobe’s digital insights team, told CBS MoneyWatch.
Last year, online sales of fitness equipment rose 70% from February to March. This year, by comparison, sales increased 535% during the same period, according to Adobe.