Fitness: The Big Picture

December 08, 2020 by Well + Good

After workout spaces closed their doors in mid March, it didn’t take us long to realize that the gym is wherever you can lay your mat. According to the media analytics company Comscore, March 2020 saw a 147 percent increase from the prior year in consumption of on-demand fitness videos on streaming apps, subscription platforms, and cable. Then in June, YouTube announced that since March 15, daily views of videos with “home workout” in the title saw a 515 percent uptick. And Well+Good’s own YouTube fitness videos likewise surged in popularity, generating 350 percent more views in 2020 than in 2019.

With this newfound appreciation for sweating it out at home, we’ll see a major flip-flop of the fitness industry in 2021: In BC times (before COVID-19, that is), Americans largely associated exercise with a trip to the gym or a fitness studio. But into next year, digital workouts will become the norm, with fitness brands embracing an “omnichannel” approach that gives users access to IRL sessions, live-streaming classes, and on-demand libraries. "The businesses that will survive will be those that can adapt to this trend via hybrid memberships inclusive of both in-person and virtual offerings. Ninety-one percent of group fitness businesses are offering or planning to offer virtual services in 2020," says Josh McCarter, CEO of the fitness booking platform Mindbody.

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