Press Release - 2014 State of the UK Fitness Industry Report


4th June 2014

  Number of UK Fitness Members exceeds 8 million for the first time

- 4.5% rise in total membership and 3.9% rise in value

- Total market value now estimated to be £4.08 billion 


The 2014 State of the UK Fitness Industry Report reveals that the UK health and fitness industry has more clubs, more members and a greater market value than ever before. For the first time ever, member numbers have exceeded 8 million, market value is over £4 billion and the penetration rate is at an all time high of 13.2%.


The 2014 report highlights that the industry has experienced another year of growth over the twelve month period to the end of March 2014, with increases of 3.9% in value, 1.5% in the number of fitness facilities and a 4.5% rise in the number of members.


The growth in the industry continues to be driven by strong performance from the rapidly growing low cost market. The low cost sector saw another year of growth across the three key performance indicators - number of clubs, member numbers and total market value. This expanding market now accounts for 7.7% of the total number of private clubs, 7.3% of the private market value and an impressive 18.7% of the private sector membership. However with less new openings than the 12 previous months, is their growth starting to slow? The next 12 months will certainly be interesting to see whether this sector continues to expand.


Summary of Key Facts

  • Total market value (public and private sectors combined) is estimated at £4.08 billion, up 3.9% on 2013.
  • 13.2% of the UK population are now registered as members of a private health and fitness club or a publicly-owned fitness facility contrasting with 12.6% in the previous year.
  • Total industry membership base is the strongest growth indicator, up 4.5% to 8.3 million over the past 12 months.
  • 177 new public and private fitness facilities opened in the 12 month period ending 31st March 2014, up from 167 in 2013.
  • There are now 6,112 fitness facilities in the UK, up from 6,019 last year.


Commenting on the figures, David Minton, Director of The Leisure Database Company said: “On the face of it these are another set of great figures for the industry but the devil, as usual, is in the detail. The figures, while all going in the right direction, are at the same time pedestrian and failing to have the desired impact on the health of the nation. The industry has become an idle industry and is looking to ‘best practice’ and ‘common sense’ to solve a current, insoluble problem. Although we’re coming out of the malaise which started in 2008, the industry is now ripe for disruption”.


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The State of the UK Fitness Industry Report is compiled from the most comprehensive review of the UK fitness industry, involving individual contact with all sites. The reporting period is the 12 months to 31st March 2014. The audit and resulting figures are compiled by independent leisure market analysts, The Leisure Database Company who have been monitoring the performance of the fitness industry for over 30 years. Further details of the report can be found here 2014 State of the UK Fitness Industry Report.


Further Information:

The Leisure Database Company

The Leisure Database Company is a leading independent database specialist and market analyst. Established over 30 years ago, the company is contracted to Sport England and Sport Wales to maintain their respective Active Places databases covering over 20 types of sports and fitness facilities. The company also works with a wide range of fitness operators providing member profiling reports, new site analysis and latent demand estimates.

Tel: 020 3585 1441