The Covid-19 pandemic put the fitness industry, and pretty much every other aspect of society, on hold. Social distancing and gym closures in 2020 saw a fall in revenues. Specifically, they fell by 15.5%, to $738 billion in 2020 from $874 billion in 2019. Fortunately, this fall didn’t last very long thanks to hybrid fitness training.
It’s clear that hybrid fitness training set-ups have dominated the fitness segment of the wellness industry. Revenue from fitness technology increased by 29% to $49.5 billion. Nonprofit organization GWI goes as far as to anticipate a nearly doubled growth in the near future. That means going from $738 billion in 2020 to $1.2 trillion in 2025.
What does this mean for the fitness industry in the long run? And what does it mean for you and how can you successfully employ hybrid personal training?
Rebounding from COVID-19
Home gyms lack the variety of machines and social environment that a gym provides. However, the appeal of an accessible and private exercise zone continued even after Covid-19 died down. Health company Beachbody reveals that 9 in 10 Americans will continue at-home workouts even after they feel comfortable returning to a gym. One reason for this is how easy it is for trainers and clients to use software for personal trainers that helps with remote training. This creates a seamless online training program that can be done anywhere. Over 60% of Americans also claim that they will now use a combination of working out in a hybrid setup.
This is a common turnout across multiple industries in the US that have similarly flourished by adopting hybrid set-ups. In healthcare, telehealth usage increased by over 8,000% during the pandemic with telehealth provider Wheel allowing clinicians to connect with their patients in company contracts on everything from disease management to clinical documentation, at any hour of the day.
This provides physicians more flexibility while enabling continuous treatment at a safe distance for all. Similar practices have been enabled even in education. Hybrid learning was put to the test in 2020 and 2021. Experts have found an increase in student engagement and achievement. Additionally, many students gained a more positive view of the learning process.
It’s clear that going hybrid is growing more popular. Instead of trying to recreate the past, industries should adapt and take steps forward into a productive future.
Hybrid Training Considerations
There are certainly initial investments that fitness trainers will have to consider when going hybrid. It’s important to establish a clear fitness model. Additionally, it’s important to create different strategies to suit individual clients, along with your personal schedule.
Invest in technology
With hybrid’s need to sometimes go remote, trainers should consider extending their services through an established application. One example is the FitSW app for personal trainers. It has numerous features for personal trainers that make training remote or in-person easy. Additionally, it saves personal trainers hours per week with its automated client messages, fitness program builder, exercise library, and more.
Trainers can design and deliver workouts with help from a library of thousands of exercises. Trainers and clients can also take of additional services like live fitness classes and nutrition tracking features. Over 100,000 users have already downloaded the app from Google Play and the Apple App Store.
Reconsider rush hour
How many classes do you offer in person? When? How often? These are questions that will only be answered when you consider your target demographic profile. You will also have to think through the changes that hybrid fitness training will have on their schedules.
For instance, data platform Wejo details how rush-hour traffic is more spread out. It has generally shifted later in the morning. Drivers in many regions experience significantly less traffic from 6 AM to 8 AM than before the pandemic.
Most gyms are the busiest right before people head off to work and when they’re coming back home. The former used to be around 7 AM to 10 AM. However, with recent rush hour changes, fitness trainers may want to consider hosting their in-person classes much earlier. At the same time, reserving corporate classes for the afternoon for when people need that mid-day break may be the most optimal strategy.
It is important that fitness trainers get a competitive head start in the industry by exploring and catering to the demands of their clients. For the foreseeable future, hybrid fitness models are here to stay.