Global Fitness Brands Unveil Gains, Losses and New Classes

Body Fit Training

We’re tracking the latest developments as gym and studio operators push international expansion.

Here’s what to watch:

Pumped up. Global HIIT franchisor Orangetheory Fitness debuted Strength 50, a new class combining its signature heart rate-based interval training with an emphasis on weight training to build functional strength. This comes as exercisers seek out strength training for longevity as part of a holistic fitness regimen.

Cash crunch. High-end health club operator Equinox is questioning its UK business – suffering nearly £18M in losses last year, up from a negative £6.6M pre-pandemic. Meanwhile, plans for a Shoreditch club have stalled while Equinox-owned SoulCycle was sued for failing to pay rent at an unopened Chelsea location.

Not alone, premium brands including 1Rebel, KX Life, and Gymbox are racking up debt according to the Evening Standard, signalling a slowdown in the UK’s luxury fitness market.

Budget battles. At the other end of the price spectrum, low-cost chain PureGym notched new growth, approaching 1.9M members and £40M in operating profit for the six-month period ending in June. It also added 57 new gyms to reach 582 locations.

Scaling up, Basic-Fit posted strong growth in H1’23, surpassing 3.6M members and 1.3K clubs while swinging from a £21M loss to a £2.4M profit YoY.

New territory. Breaking new ground, Basic-Fit joins a host of operators targeting Spain. The Netherlands-based company recently opened 22 new clubs in the country, days after debuting 31 gyms in France.

Meanwhile, as F45 Training tries to right the ship, the functional fitness brand introduced new studios in Marbella, Ibiza and Mallorca. F45 rival Body Fit Training (BFT) is also opening in Spain, with Barcelona and Madrid locations in development.

Looking east, BFT launched its first Hong Kong studio as it expands in the APAC region. Similarly, boxing and strength concept UBX recently opened three locations in Japan, while Australia-born S30 entered Singapore.

Looking ahead: Back to business, brick-and-mortar fitness is finding which formats, locations and amenities resonate with members. Continuing to adapt, the global industry hopes to notch new gains in a post-pandemic world.