The Wellness Boom

The trillion-dollar industry transforming fitness and health

There is no doubt that people are willing to spend when it comes to fitness. According to the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA), in 2019, global industry revenues totaled $96.7 billion, but in recent years it’s become obvious that the fitness industry is just one piece of the puzzle in the growing wellness industry.

McKinsey & Company, a global management consulting firm, estimates that the global wellness market is valued at more than $1.5 trillion, growing 5 to 10% each year. The Global Wellness Institute estimates the value is even higher, growing from $4.3 trillion in 2017 to $4.9 trillion in 2019. In 2020, the Global Wellness Institute also found that the wellness economy represented about 5.14% of the total global GDP.

The desire for a more holistic approach to health and wellness isn’t slowing down anytime soon. McKinsey & Company completed a survey in August 2020 of around 7,500 consumers across six countries and found that 79% said they believe that wellness is important and 42% say it’s a top priority. Plus, consumers in every market reported that they have substantially increased their prioritization of wellness over the past two to three years and expect to increase their purchases of both wellness products and services over the next year.

Not only are consumers asking for these additional wellness services, but they also complement existing fitness businesses perfectly. The average gym-goer has more information at their fingertips than ever before about how to maximize their workouts and why recovery is just as important in a fitness routine. The optimal rest time after working muscles is between 48 and 72 hours, but recovery doesn’t always mean no physical activity. Exercise like walking, stretching, yoga, and even light swimming is considered active recovery and can help loosen tight muscles and provide a break from higher intensity workouts.

With an industry as all-encompassing as the wellness space, there are an endless number of ways it could be segmented — recovery and even physical activity as a whole are just one piece of the larger picture. McKinsey & Company, breaks it down into 11 sectors, with more than 60% of the wellness economy concentrated in three sectors — healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss; personal care and beauty; and physical activity. These three sectors also account for more than half of the wellness economy in 189 of the 218 individual countries included.

The wellness industry prioritizes a holistic approach to looking, feeling, and being your best self, and there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution for everyone. Similarly, there isn’t one right way to incorporate wellness products and services into your business. It runs the gamut from businesses solely dedicated to wellness, offering only specialty services like stretching, saunas and steam rooms, IV therapy, cryotherapy, and more, to fitness centers, studios, clubs, and gyms that incorporate similar wellness benefits into their existing offerings.

One thing is clear, though. Fitness centers, studios, clubs, and gyms are one small segment of a trillion-dollar industry. If you’re not incorporating wellness services and products into your business, you’re missing out on the bigger industry picture and bigger profits.

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