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Study Shows Less People Will Go to the Gym in 2021

09:00 December 10, 2020
By: Abbey Hebert

RunRepeat conducted a study to discover how gym members have adapted during the pandemic—particularly, how they plan to achieve their fitness goals this coming year. Just in time for the upcoming "New Year's resolution season," they asked 1,990 gym members from 120 different countries how they intend to stay fit in 2021. This study was conducted from November 4 - 23, 2020.

According to the study, only 15.18% of gym members plan on utilizing their gym membership to achieve fitness in 2021, which is a 63.31% decline from 2020. People are finding other ways to fulfill their fitness goals, such as running, doing outdoor activities, using at-home workout equipment, and participating in online fitness courses and classes. From 2020 to 2021, the number of gym memberships will plummet from 41.4% to 15.2%, the participation in outdoor activities will increase from 35.8% to 49.9%, the use of at-home workout equipment will increase from 8.8% to 19.0%, and the use of online fitness courses, classes, and subscriptions will increase from 1.5% to 2.9%. This means that 3.2 times more gym members will rely on outdoor activities to accomplish their fitness goals instead of utilizing their gym membership, which is a major change from this year.

RunRepeat then analyzed the differences between the answers of men and those of women and found that more men plan to use at-home workout equipment to reach their fitness goals than women (19.5% men vs. 15.32% women). One of the most drastic differences between the answers collected from men and from women is that men are 6.6 times more likely to use sports as a way to keep up with their fitness goals: Nearly 7 % of men reported that they'd primarily use sports, while less than 1 % of women plan to do so. Women said that they are more inclined to use online courses, classes, and subscriptions to stay in shape

For the men, gym memberships were designated as the third most desired option to stay fit, with only 15.1% of men answering that the gym is the way that they plan on keeping fit next year. Using home workout equipment as well as playing a sport are preferred options over going to the gym.

Women, on the other hand, favor gym memberships slightly more than at-home workout equipment, with 15.74% of women reporting that they would utilize a gym membership in 2021 and 15.32% reporting that they are planning to use at-home equipment. The most favored option for women was outdoor activities, which increased from 35.3% in 2020 to 51.5% for next year.

Regardless of gender, all of the answers provided by subjects of the study showed an exponential decrease in gym memberships for 2021. A quarter of all gyms are expected to close permanently at the end of 2020. Considering that January is the time when 12% of all new members usually join a gym, and COVID-19 cases are steadily increasing now, it isn't looking promising for many gyms this coming year.

However you choose to exercise this coming year, stay safe and take care of yourself.

To read the whole study, click HERE.

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