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New fitness and lifestyle shows look to exploit post-COVID market opportunities

New fitness and lifestyle shows look to exploit post-COVID market opportunities
March 9, 2021

With businesses looking to the resumption of industry events following the disruptive impact on the convention and exhibition sector of the Coronavirus pandemic, the fitness industry is set to be catered for by a suite of events during the remainder of 2021.

Banking on exhibitors and attendees/delegates returning to live events, largely new organisers are filling dates in the calendar with events in every mainland state.

Following on from 2020, when, as of July, Reed Exhibitions announced that it was to "discontinue" The Fitness Shows that it ran in Sydney and Melbourne, in January this year, Event Director Tony Doherty advised that the Arnold Sports Festival Australia (scheduled to run from 19th to 21st March) would not run for the second year in a row.

At the time, Doherty advised “given the fluid nature of the COVID-19 situation both globally and within Australia, it’s been very difficult to predict what the situation will be in Victoria in March.

“For the sake of our international guests, athletes, exhibitors and commercial partners it has been pertinent to take time to assess the situation and ensure we make the right decision.”

New Events
With established events not running, new shows are entering the market.

The most ambitious of these, the Health, Wellness & Fitness Expo 2021 will run one-day events in Perth, Brisbane, Sydney, Adelaide and Melbourne from May to November.

Organiser, the Bilson Event Agency, manages and markets over 30 events annually across Australia including the Wedding Expos Australia, The Food & Wine Festival and The National Wedding Directory and advises that the Health, Wellness & Fitness Expo “is Australia’s favourite health and wellness event showcasing over 100 of the industry’s leading vendors. 

On its website the company advises that the “Expo is the place to go for the latest in fitness, wellness, nutrition, health, psychology, education and more (and) is Australia’s favourite showcase of wellness solutions and is a unique learning forum for thousands of health-conscious visitors.”

And while Reed Exhibitions is no longer running its Fitness Show, and has been forced to postpone the 2021 edition of its FIBO convention in Germany, it has advised of a fitness and wellness element in its Life Instyle event which will be co-located with the Reed Gift Fair from 17th to 20th April at Sydney’s International Convention Centre (ICC Sydney).

Another Sydney event is the Naturally Good Health & Wellness Expo 2021, also running at ICC Sydney on 30th and 31st May 2021.

Recognisable Names
Among more recognisable names, Australia’s only Technology Summit for the Fitness and Recreation Industry is to return as a face-to-face event on 21st and 22nd July in Sydney.

Cancelled last year because of the Coronavirus pandemic, the Fitness and Recreation Industry Technology Summit (FRITS) Is set to be the country’s first face to face fitness business event of the year, with the Summit also linking to a new monthly webinar series.

Justin Tamsett, Managing Director of Active Management and founder of the FRITS, explained “the success of the 2019 event meant we would always do it again and we are excited that in 2021 we have three unique aspects to the event that we know delegates will truly value.”

Perhaps the year’s biggest fitness event will come in November, with the staging of the inaugural Business of Fitness Conference and Fitness + Wellness Australia trade show.

Organised by National Media and former Fitness Show Director, Shaun Krenz the event will run at the ICC Sydney from 11th to 13th November.

In additition, the Fitness Australia-backed FILEX convention, which only ran in an online format in 2020, is returning in 2021 with both virtual and in person events.

When to go?
Of course, uncertainty clouds , uncertainty clouds the convention and exhibition sector with ongoing lockdowns and reluctance to commit to travel meaning organisers require strong nerves when committing to dates.

As has been seen in New Zealand just today, the organisers of the LiveFit Festival have had to postpone their event, due to have been held this weekend as a result of recent short term Coronavirus lockdowns in Auckland.

Click here for information on fitness industry events in the Australasian Leisure Management industry Calendar.

Click here for details of the Bilson Event Agency's Health, Wellness & Fitness Expo 2021 events.

Images: The Fitness Show (top, credit: Reed Exhibitions) and promotion for the Health, Wellness & Fitness Expo 2021 events (below, credit: Bilson Event Agency).

About the author

Nigel Benton

Co-owner / Publisher, Australasian Leisure Management

Nigel Benton is the co-owner and publisher of Australasian Leisure Management, Australia and New Zealand’s only magazine for professionals in all areas of the leisure industry. Having established the magazine in 1997, shortly after his relocation to Australia, he has managed its readership rising to over 11,500 and its acceptance as the industry journal for professionals in aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues.

As of 2020, he has launched the new Asian Leisure Business website.

Among a range of published works and features, his comments on a Blog (blogspot) from 2007 to 2011, when this website went live in its current form, may be interesting to reflect back on.

Click here to connect with him via LinkedIn.

Read more from this author

Related Articles

9th March 2021 - LiveFit Festival announces new dates for 2021

25th February 2021 - FIBO 2021 postponed again and will now run in November 2021

18th February 2021 - Manhattan fitness studio owner Mark Fisher to address first FILEX virtual summit of 2021

5th February 2021 - Healthy Ageing Summit returns in 2021

25th January 2021 - Australia’s Fitness and Recreation Industry Technology Summit to return as an in-person event in July

15th January 2021 - LiveFit looks to present New Zealand’s largest health, fitness and wellness event

19th November 2020 - Global Wellness Summit reveals the power of the hybrid conference

15th October 2020 - National Media announces November 2021 date for new fitness trade show and conference

28th July 2020 - Reed Exhibitions Australia announces discontinuation of The Fitness Shows in Melbourne and Sydney

22nd July 2020 - Shaun Krenz to drive new business-to-business event for Australasian fitness

21st July 2020 - Australian Fitness Show creator Shaun Krenz departs Reed Exhibitions

30th June 2020 - Coronavirus concerns sees cancellation of FIBO USA 2020

22nd April 2020 - FIBO CHINA 2020 suspended to prevent spread of COVID-19

17th March 2020 - Reed Exhibitions announce postponement of 2020 Fitness Show Sydney

16th March 2020 - Arnold Sports Festival Australia announces ‘postponement’ of scheduled 2020 event

6th December 2019 - 2020 to see launch of LiveFit Health and Fitness Festival in Auckland

23rd June 2016 - Arnold Classic Asia marks expansion across six continents

16th March 2016 - Arnold Schwarzenegger returns for Melbourne’s Arnold Classic


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