Young females are key customer group for boutique fitness market

A new report has revealed that women in their late 20s and early 30s are the key to growth for boutique fitness operators.

The study, a joint venture between global online scheduling software Zingfit and ukactive, looked at trends from gym goers in New York, London, Los Angeles and Mexico City.

Customer data from all four cities showed a clear gender bias towards female customers. New York and London had identical customer gender splits of 83% female and 17% male. Los Angeles’s gender distribution was similar, at 81% female but Mexico City stood out from the rest, with nearly one third of registered customers being male (32%).

All four locations showed a big skew in the age distribution of their customers towards the younger age groups, with each having less than 8% of customers in the 45-and-over bracket.

In Mexico City, half of customers are aged 25-34, and a further 28% aged 15-24. In Los Angeles, the average age was nearly five years older than Mexico City, and the city also had the highest proportion of customers aged 35 or over.

The report also looked at key differences in the most popular class times, with Mexico City having a much bigger percentage of pre-work bookings than any other city (40%).

Lunchtime classes were popular in London, representing 17% of bookings, but less so elsewhere. New York, London and Los Angeles all showed two peak times: before work (5am-8am) and post-work (5pm-7pm). There were two distinct quiet periods across all cities – afternoon (2pm-4pm) and late evening (8pm-9pm).

John Bogosian, founder and chief executive ofZingfit, commented:

“Consumer attitudes in the UK are changing rapidly – a growing number of group fitness concepts and inspirational brands have emerged to meet this rising group of consumers.

“British boutique fitness is leading the way when it comes to brands with high-touch customer engagement - New York, Miami, LA and Sydney you have been warned!”