UK Gyms Make New Gains

Third Space

The UK fitness market keeps climbing.

What’s happening: According to a Leisure DB report, the industry reached a record £5.9B between Q2 2023 and Q1 2024, fuelled by a rise in private gyms and memberships.

  • The number of clubs increased by 0.2% to ~7K+.
  • Memberships rose 4.1% to a record ~10.7M.
  • Penetration rate climbed 3%, with ~15.9% of Brits belonging to a gym.

Surpassing pre-pandemic levels (excluding the current number of clubs), the data reflects a robust market poised for continued growth.

HVLP. Bulking up, PureGym, SLM (Everyone Active) and JD Gyms added ten or more sites over the year, driven by consumer demand for high-value, low-price fitness offerings.

Accounting for 30% of clubs and 60%+ of memberships and market value, budget brands also dominated the market’s 10 biggest operators, with PureGym (379 sites), The Gym Group (234), Anytime Fitness (190) and JD Gyms (89) targeting further UK expansion.

Opposites attract. Despite 4.5% of the UK population choosing low-cost gyms, premium players also posted gains.

An emphasis on holistic health and high-end amenities pushed membership growth for David Lloyd (102 sites) and Third Space (12), highlighting a polarised market. For big-boxes like Virgin Active, a renewed focus on social wellness is bolstering engagement.

Takeaway: In good health, private fitness operators delivering value across price points are driving industry-wide growth. But, with public services still lagging and a considerable proportion of Brits completely inactive, a united approach is needed to unlock the sector’s full potential.

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