IHRSA recently partnered with ChinaFit to commission an evaluation of the Chinese fitness industry as a benchmark for post-pandemic analysis.
The comprehensive study – The 2019-2020 China Health and Fitness Market White Paper – focuses on market size data from the top 18 cities in China, including Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Shenyang, Tianjin, Jinan, Qingdao, Hangzhou, Suzhou, Nanjing, Chongqing, Chengdu, Wuhan, Changsha, Xi’an, Zhengzhou and Kunming.
Overall, these cities had a total of 8.8 million members and 27,600 health and fitness clubs in 2019, generating US$4.9 billion in revenue (33.7 billion RMB).
Only about 3.8 per cent of these gyms were managed by one of the top ten industry brands, according to the report, showing that the industry has a low concentration ratio, and has yet to establish strong leading brands in the region.
China’s member penetration rate in the 18 cities studied reached between 3-6 per cent in 2019. The gap with developed Asian markets (~10 per cent penetration rate in Japan and Korea) is gradually narrowing, and there is still considerable room for improvement compared with penetration rates of 10-20 per cent in Europe and North America, according to Deloitte.
“The report is a valuable resource for industry stakeholders across the globe,” says Melissa Rodriguez, senior research manager at IHRSA. “The in-depth analysis of the unique fitness landscape in China provides club operators, suppliers, and investors with the intel needed to evaluate development and expansion opportunities.”
Overall, the report shows an industry that is rapidly growing and, despite the pandemic, a positive long-term outlook.
“China’s fitness market is becoming more and more attractive to investors both at home and abroad,” said Alan MacCharles, Deloitte China commercial strategy and research partner. “In order to deep dive into the Chinese fitness industry and understand the market dynamics and future trends, we are honoured to be commissioned to conduct research and analysis on the Chinese fitness industry and to author this report.”