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165,000 fitness clubs attract almost 140 million members worldwide

165,000 fitness clubs attract almost 140 million members worldwide
June 11, 2014

In 2013, the global fitness club industry totalled US$78.1 billion in revenue as more than 165,000 clubs attracted 138.7 million members – an increase from 131.7 million members in 2012.

These members made in excess of 5 billion visits to fitness clubs last year.

Commenting on the visitation, IHRSA President and Chief Executive Joe Moore stated “there is no question that surpassing five billion health club visits is impressive.

“It’s proof-positive that every day the health club industry plays an integral role in helping millions of people achieve their health and wellness goals.”

The figures, released by the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA) in the 2014 IHRSA Global Report: The State of the Health Club Industry provide a comprehensive overview of the health club industry worldwide.

Introducing the Report, IHRSA Executive Vice President of Global Products Jay Ablondi explains “building upon strong performance in leading markets, the industry continues to post solid growth.

“While economic challenges remain in some countries, strong markets in The Americas and Europe have facilitated global growth.”

Altogether, 17 markets in The Americas serve more than 73 million members at nearly 90,000 fitness clubs. Brazil, alone, is home to more than 30,000 clubs, second only to the USA in club count. Roughly 32,000 clubs are located in the USA, indicating that the USA and Brazil, combined, account for more than two-thirds of all clubs in The Americas.

The IHRSA Global Report also shows strong performance in European markets. Overall, the European health club industry generates $32.9 million from nearly 50,000 health clubs, and serves 44.9 million members. Five of the top 10 global markets are in Europe: the UK, Germany, Spain, France, and Italy.

Specific findings on the industry’s performance in the Report show:

• Entrepreneur magazine placed Anytime Fitness at the top of its 2014 Franchise 500 list;

• Franchise Times named Snap Fitness and Founder and Chief Executive Peter Taunton a Dealmaker of the Year in February 2014;

• Anytime Fitness plans to open more than 1,500 clubs in the next five years

Trends identified in the Report show:

• 40% of departing members left their last club due to price;

• 64% go to a club to stay healthy

Clive Caldwell, President and Chief Executive of Cambridge Group of Clubs, and one of the several leading club operators interviewed in the report, adds “although there are many options besides joining a fitness club, it remains the one place where you can meet with others who share your passion for health and fitness and where social opportunities become available.”

IHRSA Senior Research Manager Melissa Rodriguez concludes "the IHRSA Global Report not only contains the most up-to-date statistics on the global health club industry, but it also recognises leading health club companies and provides insights from club operators, analysts, and other experts.

"As a comprehensive reference, it’s easy to understand why this report is the most popular publication among industry stakeholders and investors."

The Report is divided into four sections:

• The Industry Overview section details the industry's performance in 2013, along with analysis and insights from industry experts and leading club operators.

• The Industry Research section includes data on revenue, number of facilities and number of club members, and highlights the top ten global markets in these categories. Markets are also ranked by region. For the US market, there is a breakdown of data for the number of health clubs by state, and club consumer insights into why Americans join, stay members of, and leave health clubs.

• The Company Profiles section highlights nearly 400 leading health club companies from around the world.

• The Supplier Profiles section features fitness equipment manufacturers and suppliers, whose innovative products and services help club operators to be more profitable.

For more information go to

IHRSA 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 one of the world's leading authorities on the commercial health club industry, IHRSA is the source of the world's only primary consumer research and industry economic and operating studies.

For more information on IHRSA research, visit


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