Consumer Research


Consumer Reports

IHRSA Trend Report Archive

The IHRSA Trend Report is brought to you by IHRSA and the Leisure Trends Group. These trend reports are useful for many reasons: to track past trends, analyze the findings, highlight areas of opportunities, and address what needs to be done to increase member participation. Each report gives a current percentage of Americans that are members of a health club, the main reasons members join, stay at, and leave health clubs.

An opportunities section in each report is an important feature to highlight the main message and key take-aways from the research. Learn how to leverage the trends and market for success by downloading the IHRSA Trend Reports today!

View Trend Report Archive.


Consumer Statistics

Health Club Member Attendance
Roughly 24 million members visited their clubs at least 100 times in 2011. Learn More

European Fitness Activity Participation
A 2007 survey of six major European countries noted that, overall, 47% of European health club exercisers participate in cardio fitness activities, while strength training and group exercisers total 31% and 22%, respectively, of total fitness participants. Learn More

Health Club Membership by Club Type
Statistics from the 2012 IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report. Learn More

U.S. Club Membership by Gender
Women accounted for 50 percent of health club members in 2011. Learn More

Membership Growth and Attrition
Membership attrition is measured on an annual basis. Since memberships are added and dropped each month, the attrition formula is best calculated using the average opening monthly membership for a rolling twelve-month period. Learn More

U.S. Club Membership by Annual Household Income
Statistics from the 2012 IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report. Learn More

U.S. Health Club Membership by Age
Over the past several years, one of the defining characteristics of industry change has been the growth in the population of older health club members. Learn More



Consumer FAQs

1.     How many personal trainer users are there in the U.S.?

Based on the 2012 IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report, there are 6.4 million personal trainer users in the U.S.

2.     How many health club members are there in the U.S.?

According to IHRSA’s annual health club consumer study, 51.4 million Americans six and older are health clubs members.

3.     How many “core” health club members are there in the U.S.?

“Core” health club members visit the health club clubs at least 100 times a year. In 2011, 24.1 million of the 51.4 million members were core health club members. This represents the 47% of total membership (Source: IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report).

4.     What percent of U.S. health club members use group exercise?

More than 2 out of five (44%) health club members participate in group exercise, according to the IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report. This amounts to roughly 22.6 million members.

5.     What percent of health club members use personal training?

Among health club members, roughly 12.5% use personal trainers. Most personal training users are between the ages of 25-54 (Source: IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report).

6.     Why do members join health clubs?

The top four reasons members joined health clubs in 2012 were as follows: need to stay healthy (59%), feel better about themselves (46%), want to stay in shape (44%), maintain strength (44%). (Source: IHRSA Trend Report)

7.     Why do members quit health clubs?

In 2012, the economic aspect (cost of membership) is still the leading reason members are quitting health clubs. 46% of former members think it is too expensive to keep training in health clubs. Other factors include: actual usage of membership (some members just do not show up enough and are no longer interested in membership) and the ability to exercise in an alternate location for free.  (Source: IHRSA Trend Report)

8.     Why do members stay at their health clubs?

According to the IHRSA Trend Report, apart from reaching personal fitness goals and a healthy status, members also continue using their health clubs for the variety of equipment and convenient location. Half of members (50%) cite a convenient location for continued usage, while more than a one-third (38%) select “the variety of equipment: both strength and cardiovascular” as a reason for staying. 

9.     Why don’t people join health clubs?

The IHRSA Trend Report highlights cost as the number one barrier to joining: 59% of non-members cited this reason. One out of four (25%) of non-members select “I exercise somewhere else for free.” One out of five (19%) cited “no time” as a barrier to joining the health club.