It’s no surprise that local gyms have been struggling to keep member numbers up while people are being told to social distance. Less members means less income for public gyms. This can force them to lay off employees, or even declare bankruptcy. Both have been on the rise since the pandemic started.
Times were especially hard when gyms were forced to close during mandatory quarantines that kept people at home while COVID spiked throughout the country. According to the National Health & Fitness Alliance, The U.S. fitness industry lost $29.2 billion in revenue from March 2020 through June 2021, and 1.5 million gym and studio employees were laid off.
The good news is that while people may not be heading out to the gym as often as they did before, they are working out in general more than ever, especially at home. From boredom to a newfound appreciation for good health, people have been finding all sorts of good excuses to get more exercise as they continue to cope with the pandemic. It’s a great way to stay sane, fight depression, and boost one’s confidence.
Sales of fitness gear, gadgets and apparel have skyrocketed during the pandemic as homebound consumers have scrambled to build home gyms, loaded up on sneakers, and downloaded fitness apps by the millions.The Washington Post
This has changed the market as well. While large gym company stocks have fallen, home equipment company stocks have increased. It’s not a bad idea to adjust your portfolio to include a few stocks that match this trend.
As for the future of the brick and mortar gym? That remains uncertain. Many predict that the trend of virtual/at home workouts will continue to rise even as quarantine restrictions continue to ease. People are finding that for the same cost of a gym membership they can stock their home with the equipment they need to exercise. Many gyms have adapted to this and started offering virtual classes, personal one-on-one training, and other ideas to keep in touch with members. Here is a fun list of class ideas if you are interested. Stay healthy out there!