Fitness Trends for 2018 – The Rise of Group Training
According to ACSM’s worldwide survey, group training ranks second on the list of the top 20 fitness trends predicted for 2018, rising from sixth in 2017. Before that, group training didn’t trend at all.
“Group programs are designed to be effective sessions for different fitness levels and are motivational with instructors having leadership techniques that help individuals in their classes achieve fitness goals.”
Should gyms and fitness centres be more focussed on using group training to their advantage? From Les Mills programmes, to CrossFit, pilates and spin studios, the number and variety of group exercise offering is consistently on the increase. We researched the growing popularity of training with others, and what positive affect this fitness trend can have on your gym business.
What is it about group training that members love?
Group training is currently ranking above personal training, outdoor activities and sport-specific training. So how come this market has been so effective to the fitness industry?
Group training gives members the potential to achieve great results whilst having fun. New and innovative formats for group exercise will keep on coming to keep participants engaged and interested – the possibilities are endless. Being lead by qualified instructors who are inspiring role-models can be really motivating, especially for those new members who may have less experience in the gym.
According to Les Mills UK:
Group exercisers are 26% less likely to cancel than gym-only members.
35% of group exercisers remain loyal for 1 to 5 years versus only 29% for total gym attendees.
84% of group participants recommend their club to friends and family.
So, how can your group training offer stand out?
Richard Tidmarsh, owner of Reach Fitness, suggests that positioning yourself effectively is absolutely key. As the rise of group training in the UK continues, you have to think ‘what does my business do well at?’, stick to your principles and follow that through.
The Future of Member Retention May Lie in Group Exercise Instructors
Although some fitness brands are known purely for their group training, is there any harm in adding group classes to your facility’s offering as an addition to the traditional gym floor space? Group exercise instructors can be effective marketing tools – both in person and online they can act as influencers and add huge value to your brand.
Emma Forward, Chief Operating Officer of EMD UK, the national governing body for group exercise, is extremely passionate about the value of group exercise instructor within fitness businesses:
“Consider the value to your business of Group Ex instructors training in your facility in between classes or on a day off. They will be talking to members, chatting and advising about their classes and others on the timetable, helping new class goers, helping other instructors (in the case of any injury or technical issues, for example) and even assisting in emergencies. And yes, they will most probably buy a coffee or two. Basically, providing great customer service and positively impacting on member retention. For free, in their time off, and in many cases paying for the privilege.”
Watch the full video interviews with Emma Forward, Geoff Bamber and Rich Tidmarsh, exclusively to The Fitness Network.