Fitness technology has been an empowering fad that started gripping the Indian populace much before the start of the pandemic in 2020. The last two years have been a witness to more and more people switching to technology, wearable devices and platforms with a greater zeal towards keeping themselves fit.
While the fitness outlook for the year 2022 seems upbeat and promising, let us first analyse the major developments of 2021 that have set the ball rolling. One must acknowledge that during these tough years, what has worked in the favour of the industry has been its resilience and adaptability. There has been a massive shift to digital fitness. The year saw the launch of digital fitness platforms where consumers had access to a growing number of virtual training options. From simple fitness sessions by trainers on Zoom, the industry moved to specialised digital offerings from small as well as large players.
As per estimates, the at-home fitness market in India is Rs. 1,400 crores growing at 40% CAGR. India, when compared to other large markets like China and the US, has an at-home fitness penetration at 0.5% while it is 5% and 20% in China and the US respectively. This signifies a huge potential for fitness platforms to take their digital offerings at the grassroots level, indeed, the outlook for 2022 is buoyant.
So what are the key trends for 2022?
2022 is going to be the year of fast-paced digitisation, Artificial Intelligence, and Individualised service across all genres of the Fitness Industry.
HYBRID learning, hybrid memberships: An amalgamation of limited offline sessions with personalised online classes is being predicted as the successful model to run a fitness business in 2022. Online workouts have gained popularity. The online fitness industry is projected to be worth more than $59 billion by 2027. Statistics show that gyms that offer virtual classes also increase their in-person class attendance by 12%. Gyms and fitness providers will need to evolve to provide hybrid memberships.
Low-Impact Outdoor exercises: Now this is something everyone has been longing for … venturing out after having been confined to homes for months. Low impact workouts like Yoga, Pilates, walking, running in outdoor spaces is another trend that fitness layers may like to keep a close watch at.
Healthy mind, healthy body: This age-old saying never looked so true until today. Keeping a strong mental health, finding out ways to ease stress and anxiety shall lead to the establishment of yet another strong vertical in the fitness practice, that of counselling and mentoring.
At-Home Personal Training: Now, this is a trend that is not to die down. It’s clear that convenience-based wellness and fitness services are in demand as they provide a whole new level of accessibility to customers. With more and more people opting for personalised training at home, the year 2022 will see the fitness industry open its doors to several fitness platforms that offer customised solutions. However, platforms that can understand this need and change rapidly shall emerge winners. Technology shall continue to be the key driver.
Needless to say, there are various opportunities within the industry to meet consumer demand. Fitness players need to be equipped with the right technology and an advanced mindset to ace the game as we step into another year.