Fitness Industry Roundup: Summer Happenings

Buckle up! We’re covering two months worth of health and fitness industry news. From a successful grassroots campaign, pickleball, 2024 trends, and more, get caught up on recent stories, partnerships, and events.

Wherever you are in the Northern Hemisphere, we hope that you’ve thoroughly enjoyed your summer! As for those of you in the Southern Hemisphere, hang in there—spring is here and summer is just around the corner. This Fitness Industry Roundup covers news and happenings over the course of the last two months. Here’s what you missed while we took some time to soak up the sun.

IHRSA Launches Get Active During August Recess Campaign to #PassPHIT

During August, the U.S. Congress was in recess, but for the health and fitness industry, this month was integral to continue spreading the message to promote PHIT. The PHIT Act (H.R. 1582/S. 786) makes it possible for Americans to use their Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) to pay for gym memberships, fitness equipment, and youth sports fees. This piece of legislation is highly beneficial for our industry as well as the 66 million American members and consumers that use fitness facilities. We created resources and messaging to make it easy for our industry to take action every week in the month-long grassroots campaign and urge elected officials to co-sponsor the bill. Just because August is over, doesn’t mean the campaign has to end—passing PHIT is still essential!

FIR July August 2023 PHIT Column Width

Check out the toolkit for resources.

Pickleball Gains Official Recovery Technology Partner

As the fastest growing sport in the U.S., pickleball is getting more people moving, but it has also led to thousands of injuries, mainly for those aged 50 and older. For the professionals, the Carvana Professional Pickleball Association (PPA Tour) recently named Hyperice, an IHRSA member, as its Official Recovery Technology Partner, making it available to all tour players. Connor Pardoe, Founder and CEO of the PPA Tour, said, “Pickleball is an incredibly fun, but oftentimes demanding sport. Knowing that Hyperice is always there to help will definitely be a source of comfort for any player on-site who needs a boost during or after a long, hard day on the courts.”

Read more.

Strength Training & Wellness Events Are Increasingly More Popular

In its second edition, the Mindbody 2024 Predictions Report details fitness, wellness, and beauty trends to keep an eye on and incorporate into your business strategy. To no one’s surprise, strength training continues to be the main focus for active consumers, while low-intensity movement remains popular. Plus, consumers are looking for wellness businesses and events for their ability to create community connection. Regarding the survey results, Mindbody, an IHRSA member, notes, “Global surveys reveal that wellness is a top priority for people worldwide, and despite an uncertain economy, consumers continue to increase their spend on health and well-being.”

FIR July August 2023 Strength Column Width Listing Image

View the report.

Fernwood Fitness Addresses Domestic & Family Violence

To provide new beginnings for women and children fleeing domestic and family violence, Fernwood Fitness partnered with RizeUp Australia, an organization dedicated to providing life-changing, practical support for the families affected. Fernwood Fitness stated, “As a community, it is up to us to respectfully challenge the behaviors and attitudes that allow this violence to occur.” To make a difference, all Fernwood Fitness clubs donated a portion of their July onboarding fees directly to RizeUp.

Find out more.

ISSA Rolls Out Inclusivity Course

The International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA) launched a new course,Fostering Inclusivity in Fitness, to provide fitness professionals with the tools needed to create inclusive environments that are accessible to all. The course is open to any practitioner who wants to learn more about incorporating diversity and inclusion in their practice. Fitness Industry Inclusivity Champion Chrissy King told Club Industry, “Prioritizing diversity and inclusion matters in every facet of life, but even more so in the wellness space because health and wellness are such an integral part of our lives.”

FIR July August 2023 ISSA Column Width

Read more.

Gympass Valuation Sky Rockets Amidst Growing Success

It’s been a record year for Gympass. As featured in Athletech News, the wellness platform grew its customer base by 80% and surpassed two million employee subscribers. The company’s success has led to a new valuation of $2.4 billion after raising $85 million in a recent funding round. Cesar Carvalho, co-founder and CEO of Gympass, noted his company’s success is due to cultural changes. “Organizations are shifting from reactive and traditional healthcare benefits that increase costs to more holistic and preventative wellness benefits that reduce costs and improve employee well-being and productivity,” he said.

Learn more.

New AI Software Assists Fitness Coaches

OPEX, a fitness coach education provider, recently released an all-in-one software platform to help optimize important tasks. The company explains the AI technology, CoachRx, as the “magic of human interaction combined with tech wizardry to create a fitness journey that’s as unique as each client.” As highlighted in Athletech News, CoachRx allows fitness coaches to invest time in forging meaningful connections while assisting in three main areas:

  • Program Design,

  • Lifestyle and Nutrition Prescriptions, and

  • Communication.

FIR July August Coach Rx Full Bleed

Find out how the software works.

Affluent Americans Are Willing to “Heavily” Spend on Wellness

In the past year, affluent Americans spent more than $200 billion on personal care and wellness, according to Ipsos. On par with most consumers nowadays, overall wellness is clearly king for affluent Americans who ensure physical fitness is parallel with emotional and mental health. This cohort is one to keep an eye on and target in your advertising and communications strategy—they’re willing to spend for quality resources and training. Take notes from Monarch Athletic Clubs in Los Angeles, offering members an intimate, boutique environment with all inclusive top of the line healthcare.

Watch the webinar for the full research results.

Has your health or fitness-related business been featured in the news recently? We want to know! Send a link to any news article or video that highlighted your business to, and we may include it in a future issue of the Fitness Industry Roundup.

Author avatar

Sami Smith

Sami Smith is IHRSA's Senior Manager of Digital Communications, working to shape the organization's image on various digital platforms. On a typical day, she creates content, delivers impactful communications, and executes targeted marketing efforts to keep IHRSA at the forefront of the industry. Outside of the office, you can find her exploring new destinations, indulging in food, or participating in just about any sport.