Summary of our market study

The global fitness market, after facing a slight decline, has been showing robust growth with an expected compound annual growth rate of 7.67% from 2023 to 2030, as per Verified Market Research. Despite setbacks due to fitness center closures during the health crisis, the market is poised for expansion, with a valuation of over $91 billion in 2021 and a projected increase in the fitness equipment industry to $15 billion by 2022. Growth drivers include rising health awareness, the battle against obesity, and increased public healthcare spending. The USA dominates the market, but Europe also represents a significant share with an estimated value of 22.9 billion euros in 2021, according to Research and Markets, despite a decline reported by Deloitte.

The fitness market is seeing increased competition and digitization, with apps like Formation Nike Club becoming popular. The Belgian fitness market recovered well post-crisis and is characterized by a variety of players, including the segment leader Basic-Fit which commands a substantial portion of the Belgian market, with around 500,000 subscribers. New entrants like &AElite Club and SQUAD are innovating with premium and boutique gym experiences respectively. Regulations in Belgium focus on safety, hygiene, and consumer protection in the fitness industry.

Dynamic Fluctuations and Health-Driven Growth in the Belgian Fitness Market

The Belgian fitness market has experienced a myriad of dynamic trends that reflect larger societal shifts and health concerns. Interest in fitness has demonstrated clear cyclicality, with searches for "gym" peaking notably in January and September, aligning with periods post-summer vacation and after the holiday season when individuals are motivated to return to their fitness routines. Yet it is the burgeoning digital fitness space that has significantly reshaped the market. In 2021 alone, Europeans poured between $350 and $400 million into sports and fitness apps, indicating an emerging preference for digital fitness solutions. Belgians, tracking closely with their European counterparts, spent between $4 and $5 million on sports apps, an adaptation that suggests a digital transformation in the pursuit of personal fitness. Health trends have undeniably molded the fitness landscape. Public awareness around obesity—which affects between 15 and 20 percent of the Belgian population—and other chronic conditions has surged, feeding into the expansion of the fitness sector. This has been coupled with an increasing consumer inclination toward organic and health-conscious diets, further entwining fitness with overall lifestyle choices.

In turn, the regulations governing the Belgian fitness market are stringent, reflecting the seriousness with which the nation approaches public health and safety in fitness environments. Ranging from certifications of conformity and fire safety standards to mandates for qualified staff and hygiene protocols, the regulatory framework encapsulates a comprehensive strategy to safeguard consumer well-being. Entering this rigorously supervised market are innovative gyms that dare to redefine the fitness experience. Among these are &AElite Club and SQUAD, novel establishments presenting eco-friendly solutions, tech-forward equipment, and luxurious amenities that have elevated the standard for what constitutes a modern fitness center. Amidst fluctuating demand and digital assimilation, the Belgian fitness market—which was estimated to range from $240 to $660 million in value for 2023—continues to adapt and thrive. The market's responsiveness to digital trends, health concerns, and regulatory auspices suggests a sector poised for sustained growth and transformation.

Key Fitness Market Players in Belgium: Diverse Offerings and Expansive Reach

As the fitness market in Belgium continues to flourish, a variety of major players have established their presence, providing a range of services tailored to different customer needs. These names have become synonymous with wellness and exercise, catering to the evolving demands of fitness enthusiasts across the country.

  • Basic-Fit: Topping the list of influential names in the Belgian fitness landscape is Basic-Fit, a Franco-Dutch powerhouse that has cemented itself as a market leader. This gym chain boasts about 219 state-of-the-art fitness centers scattered throughout Belgium. With modern equipment, a variety of classes, and amenities that cater to a wide demographic, Basic-Fit appeals to half of all fitness club members in Belgium. Their inclusive approach aims to make fitness accessible to everyone, reflected in their sizable membership base and widespread facilities.
  • Ælite Club: Embracing the trend of Premium fitness, Ælite Club is a new entrant that has made waves in Waterloo. Offering an expansive 2,200-square-meter space dedicated to high-end fitness experiences, it stands out for its use of cutting-edge Technogym equipment and an eco-conscious philosophy. Their focus on environmental sustainability is evident in their use of green technologies and local suppliers. Ælite Club offers a holistic wellness journey, providing not only fitness equipment but also value-added services like nutritional consulting, massage therapy, and rigorous personal coaching.
  • SQUAD: In the heart of Brussels, SQUAD has redefined the boutique gym experience by mirroring the high-energy and close-knit dynamics of bootcamp workouts. Each of their classes, designed for small groups, provides a blend of cardio and strength training punctuated by invigorating music and lighting. Beyond the workout space, SQUAD's amenities extend to well-appointed changing areas and a social café where members can unwind with healthful refreshments. Moreover, the gym's collaboration with fashion and beauty brands underscores its commitment to a lifestyle that merges fitness with style and community.

These main players in the Belgian fitness market demonstrate a spectrum of offerings, from the vast network and affordability of Basic-Fit to the upscale, eco-friendly services of Ælite Club, and the exclusive, community-focused SQUAD. Each of these companies caters to unique segments of the market, showcasing the diversity and adaptability of fitness solutions available to consumers in Belgium.

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Summary and extracts

1 Market overview

1.1 Definition and scope of study

The fitness market encompasses all sports centers where you can enjoy physical activity linked to the well-being of your body. Typically, fitness centers offer individual exercise, group classes, personalized supervision and relaxation, with spa and zen rooms, for example.

In addition to fitness clubs, the fitness market has recently come to include apps offering personal trainers, outdoor fitness communities, as well as apps and connected objects for measuring performance.

The global fitness market is experiencing significant growth, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.67% forecast for the period 2023-2030. Several factors are contributing to this expansion, including the gradual emergence from pandemic-related confinement, the importance attached to physical appearance, and the role of social networks in encouraging the quest for an aesthetically pleasing body. [Deloitte]

The Belgian market is undergoing a similar evolution. Although the health crisis and the successive confinements that accompanied it had a major impact on the fitness business, it has now recovered well and is once again showing good growth prospects.At the same time, as the market develops, competition increases, putting pressure on prices. At the same time, the range of services on offer is constantly evolving, with more personalized and affordable solutions.

The Belgian gym market is characterized by a diversity of players, including both new entrants with innovative concepts such as premium or women-only gyms, and long-established players such as the Franco-Dutch company Basic Fit, one of Europe's leading players in the sector.

1.2 Robust growth on the global market

Size of the fitness market World, ****-****, in billions of USD Source: ****

In ****, the global fitness industry is valued at over ** billion USD, down slightly from **** after a period of growth between **** and ****. Growth in demand is mainly due to increased health awareness, and in particular the fight against obesity, which ...

1.3 A geographically concentrated European market

The European market is worth mentioning for its size ; although smaller than the US market, Research and Markets estimates the European fitness market in **** at **.* billion euros, for a total of around **.* million members in European fitness centers. European fitness market Europe, ****-**** Source: Research and Markets In its **** report on ...

1.4 The Belgian gym market

In ****, Le Soir estimated the number of fitness enthusiasts in Belgium at over one million. In Wallonia and Brussels, it is estimated that there are between ***,*** and ***,*** fitness enthusiasts in between *** and *** clubs.

Based on Combien-coute.net, which lists the price of a gym membership in Belgium at between €**.** and €**, we ...

2 Demand analysis

2.1 Sporting activities in Belgium

Lack of exercise is a major risk factor for various chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes, leading to increased morbidity and mortality. On the other hand, regular physical activity, when it reaches a certain level, can have considerable health benefits. According to World Health Organization recommendations, adults aged ...

2.2 Demand trends

Interest in fitness is highly cyclical

Searches for "gym" on Google Trends France, ****-****, in index of google trends searches Source: ****

The graph above depicts the proportion of searches for a given term in a given region over a given period of time, relative to when it was most searched for ...

3 Market structure

3.1 Market overview, the different structures: gym, fitness center, sport-health centre

According to the Robert dictionary, fitness is a "set of activities designed to maintain physical fitness by means of exercises performed with the aid of equipment". However, several places and gyms exist, so here's a quick overview :

Source: ****

All these centers and gyms generally offer cardio, strength training and stretching equipment. ...

3.2 Basic-fit: the Belgian leader

According to the Basic-Fit website, the company has around ***,*** subscribers in Belgium, representing around **% of the country's total membership (***).

Distribution of fitness club members Belgium, ****, in Source: ****

Basic-Fit is well established in Belgium. The Franco-Dutch company owns *** of the *,*** clubs in the country, employs *,*** of the *,*** employees in Europe, and has ...

3.3 New entrants

Numerous fitness gyms are opening in Belgium with the ambition of thinking outside the box. Here are just a few examples:

Ælite Club: Ælite Club is a new fitness club in Waterloo, created by two Belgian entrepreneurs with a passion for sport, Amaury Corthouts and Yves Bastin. The club offers ...

4 Offer analysis

4.1 Room comparison: room rates, activities

Different fitness packages

4.2 The digitization of supply

Like most sectors, the fitness market is no exception to the trend towards digitalization, which has been further accentuated by the COVID-** health crisis and confinements. Practising at home with the aid of CDs, watching classes on TV or on the Internet, has been around for years, but "digital fitness" has ...

4.3 Prices for a monthly gym membership

In ****, the average price of a gym membership in Belgium was €**.**. Prices range from a minimum of €**.** to a maximum of €**, reflecting the diversity of offers and services provided by the various establishments in the sector.

Price of a gym membership Belgium, ****, in €/month Source: ****

According to Combien-coute.net, the average ...

5 Regulations

5.1 Gym regulations in Belgium

Regulations governing gyms and fitness centers in Belgium are mainly based on laws and regulations relating to safety, public health and consumer protection.

- Certificate of conformity: gyms and fitness centers must obtain a certificate of conformity issued by the municipality in which they are located. This certificate attests that the ...

6 Positioning the players

6.1 Player segmentation

  • Basic-Fit
  • Fitnastic
  • i-fitness
  • Fitness Paradise
  • Curves Bruxelles
  • Keepcool

List of charts presented in this market study

  • Past trends in the health and fitness club market
  • Size of the fitness equipment market
  • Fitness market forecasts
  • Geographical breakdown of the fitness market
  • Fitness market size by country
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Latest news

How Basic-Fit, Europe's leading fitness company, made its mark in France - 25/01/2024
  • The Dutch king of low-cost fitness has opened 800 clubs in France since 2014. It is aiming for 1,200 by 2030.
  • 1400 clubs in six countries, 60% of them in France.
  • Listed on the stock exchange, Basic-Fit expects to exceed sales of one billion euros in 2024, after completing more than 200 openings in the year.
  • The sector (5,000 gyms in France) ended 2023 on a record high, with sales of over 2 billion euros (+5% on 2019)
  • Thanks to 5 million subscribers (+1.5%). Basic-Fit is in first place, ahead of Keepcool-Neoness, Fitness Park and L'Orange Bleue.
  • These players control half the sector, according to Union Sport & Cycle, the industry's professional organization.
Basic Fit: Rapid rise of the gym leader - 23/01/2024
  • Basic-Fit has opened its 800th French establishment on the Champs Elysées.
  • Basic-Fit has been present on the French market for 10 years.
  • The gym chain has almost 2 million members.
  • In France, only 9% of people work out indoors, compared with over 20% in the United States.
  • Basic-Fit gyms are typically 1,500 m² in size, with seven large training areas.
  • The group has set up 90 new clubs in 2020, and 81 in 2021.
  • With 135 new units in 2023, Basic-Fit has opened the most stores in France, even ahead of Action supermarkets.
  • The gym chain plans to open around 100 new clubs in 2024, to reach 1,200 clubs across France by 2030.
  • Basic-Fit first targeted towns with populations of over 30,000, and now those with less than 30,000, where over 38 million French people live.
Basic-Fit gradually regains its cruising speed | Basic-Fit regains its cruising speed - 01/08/2022
  • Basic-Fit has gained 900,000 subscribers in one year and should have 3.5 million by the end of the year.
  • The fitness chain made its first profit in June since the start of the pandemic.
  • The number of Basic-Fit subscribers rose from 2 million in the first half of 2021 to 2.9 million in the first half of 2022.
  • Revenues rose from 53 million to 355 million euros in one year.
  • In Belgium, sales reached 71.8 million euros.
  • Belgium is Basic-Fit's 3rd largest market behind France (177.5 million euros) and the Netherlands (83.9 million).
  • The chain currently has 213 clubs in Belgium, with plans to expand to 300.
  • the total number of clubs is 1,122, an increase of 149 units.
  • The company aims to have 2,000 gyms by 2025, notably by expanding into the German market.

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

Basic-Fit
Fitnastic
i-fitness
Fitness Paradise
Curves Bruxelles
Keepcool

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The fitness market | Belgium

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