HOW THE RISE OF ACCESSIBLE HOME-WORKOUTS IS CAUSING TRADITIONAL BRANDS TO “BREAK A SWEAT”
“Whether it be for 10 minutes or a full hour-long routine, there is something very gratifying about discovering the convenience of just rolling out of bed, enjoying a pre-workout drink, and immediately pushing ‘Play’ on a workout of your choice.” – Carl Daikeler, CEO of the Beachbody Co.
With the inevitable mass-closing of gyms during the Covid-19 pandemic, the shift from regularly hitting the gym, to rolling out the mat in front of the living-room TV was largely accelerated. Instagram-Live workout sessions are replacing the traditional “Yoga-Class” and convey to be a “here-to-stay” trend.
Working out has become more affordable and accessible than ever, with the sudden availability of free-workout programs by fitness influencers heavily disrupting the whole industry. It’s a safe guess that almost every one of us was exposed to Instagram-friends showing-off their quarantine quads and stay-at-home home squats.
Especially in times that are defined by social distancing, it inherited some kind of magic, that suddenly everybody shared their virtual achievements. The battle between paid-subscriptions and online Influencers such as Pamela Reif, who increased her follower base by 2 million during April and August, has just begun and the decision making comes as a quality-price trade-off for customers.
One brand that has perfectly understood the rapid change within the industry dynamics and delivered immediate answers is the US-American high-end home cycle brand Peloton.
The firm’s global membership base surpassed the 3 million mark by the end of June, as gym closures due to Covid-19 boosted demand for at-home workouts. With ongoing live-classes and an instructor portfolio made of well-known fitness influencers, Peloton rose to an early celebrity fanbase for their exercise bikes and remote workout classes and experienced an immense demand surge during the pandemic. This high-end at-home experience comes at a price of $1,895 with monthly expenses of $39 that gain unlimited access to the world of Pelotons curated classes. With a 93% retention rate and an increase in member workout frequency of averaging more than 24 workouts per month, compared to 12 one year ago, Peloton climbs to be one of Covid-19 biggest profiteers and should remain a role-model for the whole industry.
While traditional gyms are increasingly breaking a sweat, to believe that no one will return to enter the gym-ring again is delusional.
However, it is evident that the overall awareness of the endless virtual-home-workout possibilities has been evoked. In order to stay in the game, fitness brands, need to remain flexible and respond to the continuous rise of on-demand and connected fitness. One of the biggest challenges is the decrease in willingness to pay for gym memberships and personal training through the immense rise in accessibility and awareness that sports can be done for free any- and everywhere.
The importance of clear P-O-D communication in terms of quality, supervision, and tailored workouts has thus become more important than ever to assert as an irreplaceable core-element within the fitness industry.