How can you use the fitness trends of 2019 to your advantage in your business this year? Chris Marhefka shares below.
Technology and wearables were huge in 2018, and they will continue to impact the fitness industry in 2019 from two angles.
First, fitness enthusiasts will continue to buy up wearables in 2019 to track everything, including heart rate variability, body composition, sleep, steps, workout performance and more. Quantifiable data is all the rage and encourages self analysis and also promotes community interaction when results are displayed or compared.
Run mileage, step or points challenges to encourage activity outside the gym. Use nutrition, stress management, and sleep tracking apps to help coach and hold your members accountable to healthy habits.
Second, online coaching programs and virtual fitness classes have made the fitness community, world class coaches and programming more accessible to everyone. Now, anyone can spin with their best friends and favorite instructor right from their living room Peloton. This will continue to give fitness enthusiasts even more options to choose from and may be easier for your members than getting to your gym.
Partner up with a program you trust to provide to your members or use a coaching program to boost the credibility of your current offerings. In our gym, we use Healthy Steps Nutrition to bring professional nutrition coaching to our members and a ROMWOD gym membership to always have on-demand mobility session access. You could also use a programming system from a coach or gym you trust. Live stream a class for your members over the holidays or for when they can’t make it into the gym.
Last year brought the rise of even more hybrid boutique gyms repackaging and rebranding high intensity interval training. Kickboxing blended with CrossFit. Yoga and kettlebells. ‘Cardio Abs’ class and everything in between are going to continue popping up on the scene as consumers continue the mass migration from big box gyms to a more personal offering – I’m still still waiting on that Zumba+Powerlifting concept.
Stand out in the market by doubling down on knowing your customer. Think about your ideal client and their needs. Build your program to serve them. ‘Talk’ to them in your emails and social media and solve their problem better than anyone else. DO NOT try to replicate every fitness option in the market to attract everyone; this is the fastest way to being mediocre at a lot of things and great at none.
For awhile, it was acceptable to provide a great workout and a few high fives and be seen as a good Coach. That has changed over the last few years with more emphasis on mobility and nutrition. In 2019, your clients will be inquiring about even things like sleep and circadian rhythms, stress management, breath work, meditation, longevity, fulfillment, and mental and emotional health. The ‘tip of the spear’ in the health and fitness industry have been talking about “Total wellness” for years, but it will become mainstream in 2019.
Recommend resources like sleep tracking, meditation or breathing apps like “Take 10” or “Oak.” Start having deeper and more honest conversations with your clients. Ask more “why” questions and don’t be afraid to be a little vulnerable yourself. If you are not sure where to start, check out the new program from Mike Bledsoe of Barbell Collective called “Strong Coach” or Anat Peri’s “Training Camp for the Soul.”