"Fitness in times of Corona" is the title of the representative survey presented by the German Industry Association for Fitness and Health (DIFG) at the end of May 2020. The top trend: the own health is at the top of the list for most of the respondents. Although 68 percent are in favour of the reopening of fitness studios in most German states in the meantime. However, 40 percent make their visit dependent on the introduction of health protection measures.
DIFG boss Ralph Scholz also knows: "The corona crisis will massively change the fitness economy. This makes it all the more important for all players to set the right course for the future. These are the most important fitness trends that ISPO.com and Scholz have identified for the year 2021.
Many people have stayed in shape during the lockdown period with running, walking, fitness exercises on their own or free digital services. Of these, a proud number of 73 percent intend to maintain this alternative training in the future. Although most fitness enthusiasts want to go back to the gym in the future, they place the condition that training is not associated with the risk of corona infection.
"The survey has shown that many people are concerned about having the highest possible standard of protection. It must therefore be in the studios' own interest to ensure exactly that," says Ralph Scholz in the ISPO interview. So the basic condition for studio operators in 2021 is to win back the confidence of fitness fans.
The experience of a pandemic, which is unique for everyone, has brought the topic of health into focus for many people much more than before. In principle, this is good for the fitness industry. Fitness strengthens the immune system. In fact it also needs the right and safe offers to do so.
What is needed, therefore, is the "change from a gym to a health-oriented fitness facility", as Ralph Scholz calls it. The topics "company fitness" and "company health management" will also continue to gain in importance.
View this post on Instagram
❓With #stayathome, who of you is exercising in his/her home gym? • This treadmill by abilica, exhibited at ISPO Munich 2020, definitely steps up the home gym game: With an incline of up to 15% and a top speed of 30 kph, it lets you train at high speed on both easy and difficult inclines. And the best thing? You can run, use roller skis or even your bike. • #ISPOmunich #homegym #abilica #treadmill #treadmillworkout #treadmillskating #sportstays
The trend towards topics such as yoga, mental training or Pilates already existed before Corona. But it has been intensified by the pandemic. More and more people want to combine physical training with mental relaxation.
This desire is triggered not only by job-related stress, also by the strenuous homeschooling with children or financial and health fears in connection with the pandemic. "We must therefore also strengthen the sport psychological level in our offers", demands Ralph Scholz.
Whether it's in media use, buying behavior or travel: individualization is advancing in all areas of life. This also applies, of course, to the fitness wishes of the clientele. Whether Beer Yoga, fastest possible self-optimization through high intensity training or the new workout trend Glide Fit: differentiated and target group-oriented training is mandatory.
All-round fitness studios will continue to exist. Nevertheless boutique and micro studios with tailor-made offers are attracting more and more customers. In these difficult times, specialisation can also be financially attractive for fitness studios. Scholz: "The interesting thing is that the more special you are, the more money you can demand from customers."
For corona risk groups and senior citizens, health and fitness are just as important as for the rest of the population. It makes seniors a core target group that must be wooed with special offers and training opportunities. This can range from individual training or workouts in small training groups to special premises and digital offers for risk-free training at home.
Rather go to the gym to train on workout devices or jog outside? For many fitness freaks this used to be a real question of faith. The Corona period, including the closure of the studios, has accelerated the resolution of this either/or situation. Many equipment trailers turned to alternative indoor and outdoor offers.
"In the perception of the end consumer, this belongs together, if only because of the many new apps and wearables. That is why it is also important to develop holistic offers. In a sense, the gym is the pilot in this process," says Scholz.
In the era of closed fitness studios, even more sports and fitness fans have turned to online offers. With the so-called peloton bike - a spinning bike with which you can connect with spinning fans all over the world via the Internet - you can, for example, do your cardio training in virtual competition with many like-minded people around the globe.
The topic of outdoor fitness is also gaining in importance precisely because of Corona: Intensive training in particular is much less dangerous outdoors than indoors because of the draught. This can contribute to the fact that more and more equipment and activities are being moved from gyms to the outside.