The Pulse

Insights Into the Home Fitness Equipment Industry in the US

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Thanks to the boom in home gym equipment sales, home fitness is one of the most notable opportunities. COVID-19 pandemic had some serious implications on the healthcare services and people’s health along with businesses and the economy. Its impact on the market of home fitness equipment is undeniable. With lockdowns enforced all over the world and gyms remaining closed, it is highly likely that the culture of home workouts will remain in trend and the demand for home fitness equipment will increase.

In 2020, the market of fitness equipment exceeded $10 billion and it is expected that from 2021 to 2027, this will expand at over 11% CAGR. by 2027, the global shipments are expected to cross 25 million units. The virtual fitness market is expanding and it has spurred the demand for fitness equipment of high quality that can be installed at homes easily. Busy working professionals are preferring online fitness sessions so that they can enjoy exercising at their convenience and in the comfort and safety of their homes. In response to this growing need for home fitness equipment, several major players have already launched digitally connected solutions for their consumers and many are on the way. Consumers are taking advantage of the digitally connected fitness equipment and using online workout classes for enjoying a personalized training experience.

One of the industries that were hit the hardest from the coronavirus pandemic was the fitness industry. Because of the provisional closures of gyms and health clubs following the global lockdown, the industry suffered a temporary downfall. The demand for fitness centres declined due to the concerns regarding the virus spreading through physical people. Even when the gyms were opened after some time, people avoided visiting. However, this resulted in an increased demand for home fitness equipment as people want to exercise indoors for safety reasons. The market will be supported by the reopening of gyms and health clubs in 2021 coupled with the rollout of vaccines.

Home Fitness Equipment

The home fitness equipment market mainly covers the sale of fitness equipment that can be used at home. Some of the most common home fitness equipment are the machines and devices that can be used to monitor and perform physical exercises at home for weight management, developing muscle strength, burning excess fat, treating or recovering from an illness, maintaining overall fitness and health, and improving personality and appearance. Companies that manufacture and sell these home fitness equipment are the ones generating revenue in the market.

In September 2019, a Chinese sports product company named Anta Sports acquired Amer Sports for about $5.2 billion. Amer Sports is a leading sporting goods company that has a strong portfolio full of globally recognized brands. It is also Precor’s parent company that designs and manufactures gym products like elliptical machines, running treadmills, and indoor cycling bikes. By acquiring Amer Sports, Anta Sports was able to add some of the most popular sports brands like Salomon ski boots, Arc’teryx outdoor gear, and Wilson tennis rackets to their portfolio as well as their fitness equipment.

There is no denying that the growth of the home fitness equipment industry will be limited by the space limitation in homes. People who live in cities are usually confined to small apartments or homes for managing their expenses which limits the space they can use for fitness equipment. As per the American Council on Exercise, an elliptical machine or a treadmill occupies 30 sq. ft., a rowing machine takes up 20 sq. ft., free weight occupies 20 to 50 sq. ft. and a stationary bike occupies 10 sq. ft. of space. Moreover, a simple weight bench has an average size of 50 inches in length and 19 inches in width. So, it will be very difficult to adjust all the equipment in a small space. The space limitation for home fitness equipment caused by reduced space in homes might hinder the growth of the market.

The emerging trends in the market of home fitness equipment that people use to get physical workouts are virtual reality fitness equipment, apps, and accessories. These can motivate and inspire people to keep up with their fitness goals with real-life training scenarios and fun games. These also inspire people to work out and firm up their body without saving thousands of dollars on stationary bikes, treadmills, and cross-trainers. An example of this is the VR Fitness Company that is creating the first reality gym experience in the world by providing VR fitness machines designed to give a fun and safe aerobic session to all people for all fitness levels. This also makes exercising much more exciting and fun.

Increased demand for cardiovascular equipment

Over the past year, the demand for cardiovascular equipment has increased. In fact, the US cardiovascular equipment market is expected to grow at over 11% CAGR through 2029. This increase in growth is propelled by the rise in obesity rates resulting in cardiac arrests, hypertension, and diabetes. In the month of March 2021, out of 71,491 adults that were hospitalized because of COVID-19 in the US, 28% were overweight and 50% were obese.

As society is becoming more aware of the consequences of obesity such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart strokes, the demand for high-performing fitness equipment has spurred. With so many fitness centres and health clubs incorporating advanced equipment catering to the continuously changing customer demands and health patterns, the market will be gaining significant traction.

It is estimated that the Chinese Market will witness about 16% CAGR by 2027 because of the increase in the number of fitness centres that are attracting consumers by incorporating high-end fitness equipment. In 2019, the gym membership penetration degree was about 5% in the top 19 cities. China also had the highest number of deaths by heart disease in 2021. All these factors have resulted in people becoming more aware of their health and wellbeing which has boosted the number of fitness clubs. The increase in the rates of health club membership will encourage high-performance fitness equipment adoption which will fuel the market growth.

The fitness equipment market of Europe accounts for more than 30% of the market revenue share and is expected to have steady growth through 2027. Thanks to increasing disposable income and high awareness of fitness, the adoption of digitally connected home fitness equipment have propelled. In response to this high demand for advanced equipment, manufacturers are creating new solutions that cater to the changing demands of the customer. For example, Technogym S.p.A. launched MyRun in February 2021. It is a home treadmill that comes with on-demand training experiences created to offer customized running or walking programs. It is suitable for users of different levels including beginners and sports enthusiasts. This increased awareness about health is going to support the demand for connected fitness equipment.

Innovative products will be part of a key strategy among major market players

Top fitness companies are working on launching differentiated products that will solidify their position in the home fitness equipment industry and capture a larger market share. In October 2019, Nautilus Inc. unveiled their digital platform named JRNY that incorporated AI to provide customized workouts that can be automatically adjusted. Matrix Fitness is also offering a training console that will offer a guided workout for strength training. All the people subscribed to the premium ultra-series of Matrix can get the intelligence training console. With this launch, Matrix Fitness plans to provide an enhanced, intuitive, personalized, and digitally connected strength training solution.

In 2019, Wattbike Atom was launched by Wattbike in the United States that had real ride-feel technology. With Atom, people can have an intelligent, adaptable, and authentic indoor performance training experience in their home. This is also perfect for any fitness enthusiast or cyclist.

The increased competition among top market players is going to boost the overall competitiveness in the market forcing companies to innovate their home fitness equipment. These key fitness equipment market players include Johnson Health Tech, Technogym S.p.A, Icon Health & Fitness, Hoist Fitness Systems, True Fitness, Amer Sports Corporation, Torque Fitness, Peloton Interactive Inc., Nautilus Inc., among others.

COVID-19 and the home fitness equipment industry

The impact of COVID-19 on the field of home fitness equipment is undeniable. With the social distancing norms and continuation of quarantines, gyms had to be closed for a long period of time. This, in turn, has boosted the home workout culture and the demand for home fitness equipment.

Many fitness studios and gyms all over the world had to close because of the pandemic. However, this wasn’t going to let fitness enthusiasts fall behind on their fitness goals. After all, being stuck at home didn’t mean that they couldn’t work out. This was the perfect opportunity for home fitness equipment manufacturers. More and more people were motivated to develop a fitness routine at home. And, this routine will most likely extend beyond the social distancing mandates. Another reason for the increasing preference for tailored workout regime and timing is precautionary healthcare. People want to work out in a comfortable and home-friendly environment. And to do this, they need home fitness equipment so that they can exercise daily.

The increase in the home fitness equipment market growth in the past few years can also be the result of the inconvenience people face while commuting to the gym, using the machines, membership fees, and trainer fees. These factors are some of the main reasons behind the increasing growth in the home fitness equipment industry, especially in developing countries.

The one factor limiting the growth of the home fitness equipment industry is the space limitation, especially for bulk fitness equipment like an exercise bike, massage chair, cross, and exercise treadmill.

Increased customers’ interest in tailored home workout regimes

The long working hours and busy schedule, problems with vehicle parking, and crowded fitness centres have resulted in more and more consumers inclining towards home workouts. With the home fitness equipment, the inconvenience of going to the gym for using the machines is eliminated. This is also cost-effective in the long run. Some of the major factors that promoted this inclination towards home fitness equipment have been the small, recurring cost of transportation, trainer fees, membership fees, and workout equipment.

Furthermore, with so many manufacturers launching their apps, customers have many platforms to find a personal trainer who could either visit their home or provide online classes for their customized fitness requirements like bodybuilding. A company called MIRROR launched one-on-one personal training. They are the ones who created the first, almost invisible and interactive home gym in 2019. The one-on-one training allowed the members to have the top trainers in the country come to their home with the help of MIRROR’s immersive technology.

Currently, the home fitness equipment market is extremely competitive on the global level, with so many global and local players operating in the market. Owing to the several marketing strategies development, the market will be witnessing significant growth in the coming years. These strategies mostly rely on a partnership with other companies in order to expand their product portfolio, expansion across different regions, and product innovation.

Additionally, when emerging companies are adopted by a large fitness company, it offers them legitimacy in the market. For example, Leisure Fitness Newark, Delaware was acquired by Johnson Health Tech so that the latter could expand its product portfolio. Moreover, the agreement increased the retail footprint of Johnson Health Tech’s 315 stores all over the world.

Conclusion

The home fitness equipment market in North America has witnessed significant growth, mainly because of the increased health awareness among people and the growing adoption of exercises that are related to physical wellbeing, improved body stamina, increased muscular strength, and weight management. The major factors currently driving the market of home fitness equipment in the country is the increasing health concern and the rising percentage of the obese population.

Furthermore, the increase in augmenting healthcare costs and preventative healthcare measures have enabled the consumers to remain fit through regular workout. Additionally, manufacturers all over the world are trying to meet the growing demand by expanding their presence and achieving an advantage in the market.

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