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How COVID-19 Has Changed the Way People Workout

The coronavirus pandemic has transformed the fitness industry. Personal trainers and fitness instructors have had to shift to a digital fitness offering seemingly overnight. The home fitness revolution isn’t new; it had already begun before the pandemic. But what’s different now is that the spread of COVID-19 has changed the way home fitness is perceived. Consumers are now much more accepting of the convenience and effectiveness of home fitness. 

During lockdown, the only option was to work out at home. Governments all over the world encouraged the public to exercise regularly from home for months. That entire time will have a lasting impact on the industry. With increased cleaning and demand for a contactless experience, the fitness industry will have to adjust to a “new normal.” 

Coronavirus has emphasized the importance of fitness on both mental health and your immune system. A massive takeaway from the last few months is that people need movement in their lives. Let’s take a look at how the events of 2020 have changed the way people workout.

Digital Fitness Becomes the “New Normal”

Amidst the pandemic, fitness apps saw a surge in downloads. During the week of March 22, 2020, health and fitness apps set a record number for weekly downloads with a 40% increase. Apps like Nike Running Club, Asana Rebel, and Strava experienced a jump in downloads as people wanted to stay fit both mentally and physically. 

Gym-goers are looking for new ways to stay fit. They are looking for motivation, accountability, and accessibility. With more people staying or working from home, savvy fitness brands are taking the opportunity to connect with clients and strengthen relationships through digital fitness. 

With competition heating up in the digital fitness sector, now is the time to leverage technology in a way that allows you to connect and support clients. Even as restrictions begin to ease throughout the world, there has been a clear shift in consumer thinking and mindset, with many people turning to home fitness to stay fit and healthy. 

With the potential for another spike in COVID-19 cases, it’s important to be in a strong position if a second wave or lockdown were to hit. Because of this, the new era of digital fitness looks set to become part of the “new normal” in the fitness industry.  

Changing Consumers Expectations

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Consumer expectations are changing. With a big demand for smaller, more controlled environments, boutique studios are more attractive than big box gyms with lots of people. The pandemic has changed the way we work out. Rigorous cleaning, limited gym capacity, and contactless payment are crucial factors for consumers when deciding where to work out next. While some people can’t wait to get to the gym, others are nervous and anxious about the situation. The demand for fitness instruction, accountability, and motivation, combined with increasing anxiety around the spread of COVID-19, means that the consumer mindset has shifted. 

Throughout the pandemic, another shift has taken place. Social justice has become a significant influencer in consumer decisions. People want fitness brands to support racial and social justice and fight for equality. In the future, consumers are much more aware of issues in the world and want to support brands that are actively encouraging justice.

The last few months have emphasized the role community has to play in fitness. The social aspect of fitness is super important. Consumers want to connect and engage with other like-minded individuals. Whether it’s a fitness community on social media or in your yoga class, community plays a big part in movement and exercise. This is something to take away and apply to your own business.

Major Drive in Home Fitness

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The demand for home fitness is at an all-time high. Peloton’s membership base hit a whopping 3.1 million at the end of June, more than double the previous year. With sales topping $500 million in its recent quarter, Peloton has hit a new milestone. It looks like the demand for home fitness will remain strong despite fitness facilities beginning to re-open. 

That’s not to say gyms need to close their doors forever. Clients want the option to workout from home and in-person. There’s a huge need for innovative and effective workouts that leverage technology to deliver an immersive at-home fitness experience. 

It’s more important than ever to offer the convenience and flexibility your clients crave. You don’t need to create a brand new digital platform to shift to digital fitness. If you’re looking for a way to teach online classes, Ruoom Live makes it easy for fitness instructors to create and share live stream and on-demand video content. 

No one can know what the future holds but the spread of COVID-19 has impacted many aspects of our lives. Despite the financial losses that fitness businesses have faced, the fitness industry continues to flourish. The industry has adapted to lockdown life, and those changes could not only remain but grow. As digital fitness continues to rise in popularity, people are looking for more ways to workout from home effectively to stay fit and healthy.

Jenny Weller

Jenny Weller

Jenny is a creative freelance health and fitness writer. She has a passion for wellness and a degree in journalism. In her spare time, you can catch her playing badminton, rock climbing, and drinking coffee.

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