Latest Data Shows U.S. Health Club Industry Serves 70.2 Million

    New IHRSA research shows that more than 70 million consumers visited health clubs in 2017 and 60.9 million Americans are health club members.

    Boston — March 16, 2018 — Health clubs attracted more than 70 million consumers in 2017, a record-high since IHRSA began tracking health club consumer statistics in 1987. The number of individual members totaled 60.9 million, up 6.3% from 57.3 million in 2016. Of the 298.3 million Americans age 6 and older, 20.3% were health club members in 2016.

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    “We’re proud to highlight that the health club industry in the U.S. has surpassed the significant milestone of serving more than 70 million people last year. This includes 60.9 million members who use their clubs, on average, more than 104 days a year,” said Joe Moore, IHRSA president and CEO. “As these numbers demonstrate, the dedicated professionals who work in the health club industry play crucial roles in helping millions of people live happier and healthier lives.”

    Based on a study conducted by The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA) as part of the Physical Activity Council (PAC), results show that more than one out of five Americans belonged to at least one U.S. health club or studio. Since 2008, membership has grown by 33.6%, while the total number of club-goers has increased by 31.5%. The total number of health club visits has also increased, amounting to 5.9 billion visits in 2017, up from 4.3 billion in 2008.

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    “The health club industry experienced steady growth once again as consumers flock to clubs and studios in order to reduce stress, exercise, and improve their overall well-being,” said Jay Ablondi, IHRSA’s executive vice president of global products. “Club operators continue to find innovative ways to engage consumers in order to meet their increasing demands for fitness programs, training instruction, and wellness services.”

    Later this year, IHRSA will release the 2018 IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report, which will provide analysis of health club consumer growth, demographics, utilization, and trends as well as insights and applications for club operators. The 2017 edition is available on IHRSA’s website.

    Methodology: Each year, IHRSA conducts an annual health club consumer study as part of the Physical Activity Council (PAC). The PAC is made up of six of the leading sports and manufacturer associations that are dedicated to growing participation in their respective sports and activities. During 2017, a total of 30,099 online interviews were carried out with a nationwide sample of individuals and households from the US Online Panel of over one million people operated by IPSOS. The total panel is maintained to be representative of the US population for people ages six and older. Oversampling of ethnic groups took place to boost responses from typically under responding groups.

    About IHRSA

    The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association is a not-for-profit trade association representing health and fitness facilities, gyms, spas, sports clubs and suppliers worldwide. Its mission is to grow, promote and protect the health and fitness industry. As the leading authority on the commercial health club industry, IHRSA regularly conducts primary consumer research and industry economic and operating studies.

    Next week, March 21-24, the global health club industry will gather in San Diego for the 37th Annual IHRSA International Convention & Trade Show.

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    Melissa Rodriguez

    As IHRSA's Senior Research Manager, Melissa Rodriguez oversees research initiatives for the health club consumer, club operations, and international markets. The best part of her job is helping members better understand how IHRSA research can help them improve and expand their business. When she's not analyzing data and statistics, Melissa enjoys spending time with family, watching superhero series, poring over NBA and NFL box scores, and reading a good book.