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Changing Demographics of Gym Members

06 Nov 22

By Hattie


Typically, when you think of gym goers you may be inclined to think of ripped muscle heads, grunting in the weights section… But the face of gym members is changing.

In 2019 more than half of UK gym members were female. As of 2021, 10.3 million people held a gym membership, that is over 15% of the total UK population.

As you would’ve expected, a report by IHRSA shows that 18–34 year olds hold the majority of gym memberships (30.9%), closely followed by 35-54 year olds (30.7%) but memberships held by 55+ are now the fastest growing demographic.

In fact, older members now visit their clubs more often than their younger counterparts. A recent IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report found that Baby Boomers (born from 1945 to 1964) visit most frequently, on average of times over the course of the year (approximately 11 times per month). So what does the demographics of gym members look like today?

Why are more older people using the gym?

There’s more of them

It is predicted that, by 2030, the number of people in the UK aged 60 years or over will be 20 million, up 31% compared to today’s figure of 15.3 million. By 2040, nearly one in four people (24.2%) will be aged 65 or over; one in seven of us will be aged over 75.


Throughout the pandemic, we’ve been made aware that your fitness affects your ability to fight coronavirus. As the older you are increases your vulnerability, physical health is the only change-able attribute to increase your immunity. Because of this, there has been an increase in older people attending the gym.

Gym Atmosphere

The gym environment is shifting to a space where everyone feels comfortable and confident enough to achieve their fitness goals. With the atmosphere of the gym changing, we predict a wider variety of people joining the gym, creating a new environment for brands and organisations with an older target market as their core consumer.

Opportunities for businesses

As the demographics of gym members change, the opportunities for advertising change too. Our Messenger units – which are currently in over 600 gyms nationwide – provide the perfect opportunity to share your health and wellbeing messages with consumers. They combine a digital screen (compatible with social media & user-generated content) with a touch-free dispenser for hand sanitiser. With a variety of goal-focused consumers at your fingertips, the possibilities for advertising are endless.

We have over 30 years experience in the health & wellness industry and have worked with leading brands like JD Sports, Flexiseq, Movember & Danone. We have specialist insight into member profiling in our network (age, gender, and ethnicity) – allowing us to discover the best location to target your ideal audience. IDS Media UK can help raise brand awareness, increase sales and encourage interaction with your target market.

For more information, please visit our gym network page or call 01489 860000.


77 Gym Membership Statistics, Facts, and Trends [2020/2021]

Fitness industry in the United Kingdom (UK) – statistics & facts | Statista

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