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What Are Boutique Gyms And Why Are They Becoming More Popular?

It’s no secret that, over the past several years, the number of boutique fitness studios has skyrocketed. According to IHRSA data, the percentage of people who visited boutiques quadrupled in only one year, from 21% in 2013 to 42% in 2014. Additionally, since 2010, boutique chains have opened new studios at a pace of 450% annually, according to Piper Jaffray, an investment firm that focuses in fitness.

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A boutique fitness studio is often thought of as an 800- to 3500-square-foot small gym with a concentration on group exercise and one or two fitness specialties. The high pricing point of boutiques is one of their most notable features. Soul Cycle, a well-known group cycling studio, costs about $32 for an hour-long group session; other boutiques charge $20 or more on average.

What then is the attraction? Will this quick growth continue? What does this imply for conventional health clubs, which have ruled the fitness industry for many years?

Why do fitness enthusiasts adore boutiques?

What motivates someone to pay more than $30 for a lesson varies from person to person. However, almost all of the participants would tell you that the boutique experience is everything.

Imagine enrolling in a class that specializes on your preferred kind of exercise or combines many of your favorite forms into one. You’re in a social setting with people who know you, surrounded by lively individuals. The room itself is sophisticated and appealing. The lecturer in charge of the lesson is great. You’re pushed to your limits for an hour as they play upbeat music, experiencing a special mix of intensity, joy, and friendship (with maybe a little collective pain).

The experience in the boutique is personal. It’s stylish, exciting, intense, and you leave with a slight sense of exhilaration that lasts the rest of the day. You feel like you gave your best performance.

Will the expansion keep up?

Although the unique experience that boutiques provide is the reason for their growth, there is another factor that is sometimes overlooked. According to research, the majority of individuals are willing to travel 10 minutes or less—or drive three miles or less—to a gym in order to work out. One of the key factors influencing where people work out is still proximity. Boutiques may appear almost anywhere because of their small footprint, and that is exactly what they have done.

This implies that there will be plenty of room for the boutique industry to grow until there is essentially “a gym on every corner.” Is this tremendous growth coming to an end? Indeed. The market will eventually become saturated, competition will drive down the average price per class, operators’ economics will no longer be as strong, and facility build-outs will eventually reach a plateau. However, most indicators suggest growth in the near future.

Should conventional health clubs be concerned?

Because they serve a completely different purpose throughout the fitness spectrum, less expensive clubs don’t need to be as concerned about. Gyms that cater to the target market for boutiques, which consists of consumers who are prepared to pay a premium for atmosphere and experience, must, nonetheless, take note.

Fitness enthusiasts and dedicated exercisers are drawn to boutiques. Boutique clients workout several times a week and maintain their routine, in contrast to others who join after making a New Year’s goal and stop after a few months. Furthermore, studies reveal that a sizable percentage of them presently belong to numerous gyms.

It seems improbable that this occurrence will continue at the current rate. One of these kinds of establishments is likely to lose a sizable portion of those multi-member clients. How many other goods or services come to mind that fall short of fulfilling the demands of their most significant client, the one who pays most and is, coincidentally, the most devoted to the good or service over time? There aren’t many since someone generally figures things out, produces a superior good or service, and comes out on top.

Who will adjust, is the question?

Will stores be able to decipher the code and prove to dedicated fitness enthusiasts that they can work out in its whole without having to visit other rival locations? Will established clubs change their business plan and provide engaging events to engage members in fresh ways? Or will something entirely else materialize that surprises them both?