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Survey suggests Australian gyms facing massive membership decline

Survey suggests Australian gyms facing massive membership decline
June 15, 2020

As gyms reopen after the Coronavirus crisis, a global survey of fitness club members has found that over 30% of Australian gym-goers have no intention of returning to facilities.

The survey, conducted by RunRepeat, looked at global trends with a particular focus on Australia, Canada, the UK and the USA.

Finding that nearly half of all gym members globally will not return to their gyms upon reopening (46.67%), the Australian figure of 31.34% was more positive than the other nations.

However, Australia was found to have the highest percentage of gym members who had either already cancelled or were considering cancelling their gym membership (41.15%).

RunRepeat, which in an earlier study found that exercise levels had risen significantly during the Coronavirus pandemic, surveyed 10,824 gym members to learn if they plan to return to gyms upon reopening and whether they will be keeping their memberships or not between 24th April and 1st May, including respondents from 116 countries.

Impact of COVID-19 on gyms memberships

It found Americans are the least likely to return to their gyms upon reopening (50.16%), that more than a third of all gym members globally have already cancelled or are considering cancelling their memberships (36.57%) and that women are less likely to return to the gym when reopened (52.25%) in comparison to men (45.75%).

When asked about their plans regarding their gym memberships, over one third (36.57%) of respondents globally said they have already cancelled (12.39%) or are considering cancelling their memberships (24.18%).

Commenting on the findings, RunRepeat Fitness Research Director Nicholas Rizzo told nine.com.au, "with gyms closed for such a long time, it forced people to drastically changed their exercise habits and find new ways to stay active."

Members who will not return to gyms after COVID-19

Suggesting members are likely to be cautious about the potential health-risk of returning to the gym, Rizzo added "people are also aware that they are not going to be able to enjoy all of the same luxuries that their gym may have offered them prior to the pandemic while still paying the same price.

"Not being able to get that same value in return is leading to some members to decide to cancel."

With RunRepeat's earlier research finding rising exercise levels while gyms were shut during the Coronavirus pandemic, Rizzo suggested "(people learned) how convenient it is to be able to squeeze in great workouts from the comfort of their home, when it wouldn't be possible to make it to the gym otherwise."

Click here to view RunRepeat's report.

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