Gym Owner Monthly

National Fitness Day: Stats, Commentary, 5 reasons why people are returning to IRL experiences AND new classes, gyms and studios

On the 22nd September, we will celebrate National Fitness Day, so I wanted to get in touch to reveal that the UK has become a fitter nation throughout the pandemic.
Among users who have returned to class, usage is up 10% compared to pre-pandemic – meaning once we go back to in-person classes, we keep going back, according to new research from ClassPass,  the world’s leading fitness and wellness membership and a global provider of corporate wellness benefits.
ClassPass also found that following the easing of restrictions:

  • ClassPass revealed that there was a 600% increase in week-on-week new ClassPass members in the UK. There has been a tremendous desire from both new and existing members to head back to in-person classes and experiences.
  • Since reopening indoor classes, London-based studio Digme, had ten times the number of in-person ClassPass reservations compared with their online classes from the weeks prior.
  • There was a 6% increase in the number of UK people signing up for a ClassPass trial in July 2021 vs July 2019, pre-pandemic. After almost two years working out in our living rooms, people are interested in switching up their routines, trying out boutique studio classes in their neighbourhood and being surrounded by a community.

Kinsey Livingston, VP of Partnerships at ClassPass says: “ClassPass data reveals that as a whole, we have become a more health-conscious nation. With usage up 10% above pre-pandemic levels, it’s been fantastic to see that people are building healthy routines, including adding group fitness classes to their calendars since we were able to return to UK studios in May. For those that have returned to class, strength training has quickly climbed the ranks and become the favourite genre for group fitness, likely due to two-thirds of surveyed ClassPass members stating that access to equipment is one of the main reasons they are headed back to gyms. The same survey revealed that four in five people say they work out harder in a group class setting and that guidance from an instructor is one of the best reasons to return to class.”


ClassPass surveyed members in June 2021 to better understand the motivation that drives people back to in-person experiences. Here are the things we most missed about in-person classes and the reasons we’re going back, according to the members surveyed:

Better access to equipment

  • Since it can be hard to fit a Pilates reformer in a studio apartment, two-thirds of people say access to equipment is one of the main reasons they are heading back to class.

  • 4 of the top 5 fitness genres with the highest recent reservation volumes use equipment that is typically not found in home gyms.

Feeling Good Physically And Mentally

  • 60% of people say in-person classes and appointments are better for their mental health than an at-home digital routine – and let’s face it, after a tough year, self-care is now more important than ever.

Pushing Ourselves To Achieve More

  • 81% of people say they push themselves harder in class than they do on their own – which makes sense considering there’s not a tempting couch or needy pet nearby.

Receiving Guidance From Instructors

  • 74% of people prefer to have an instructor’s direction and encouragement when working out. Shoutout to our faves!

Greater Accountability

  • 67% of people say in-studio classes make it easier to work out regularly and keep up a routine – and ClassPass makes it easy to pencil it in.

New classes and studios available on ClassPass:

The ClassPass network includes 40,000 gyms, studios and spas and we are regularly adding new classes and experiences to our network. Here’s a few of our favorite UK experiences that just got added:

PSYCLE has just joined ClassPass and is offering their signature Ride, Barre, Strength and Yoga classes at multiple locations. They offer four immersive, energetic workouts, which are each designed to be truly complementary to each other. Their four boutique London studios are hubs of energy and social connection, where you can come to sweat, let go, and tap into their incredible team and community. During September, ClassPass members can also get 40% off all PSYCLE yoga classes. Don’t miss out!

1Rebel has a new studio in Hammersmith offering a range of strength training and HIIT classes. They have also introduced a new class called RIG, where functional fitness meets HIIT for 45 minutes of the physical and mental intensity you never thought possible. Custom created programmes will have you moving through four zones; bike, row, bench + rig. Prepare to test your endurance as you tackle the cardio killers that are the assault bike and rower. These are interspersed with rounds on their infamous Rebel bench, where you’ll get down and dirty with weight sequences, and time on the rig, the ultimate playground for bodyweight, kettlebell and pull up bar moves. Designed to work your full body, boost your fitness and endurance, and build and tone muscle, for a complete sweat inducing session.

TRIB3 has a new studio in Manchester Circle Square. Get ready for an unforgettable high-intensity class that includes live heart-rate tracking, three unique zones and a full-body burn.

NUFFIELD HEALTH is now available to ClassPass members in selected locations throughout the UK. Through a day pass, ClassPass members will be able to access Nuffield Health’s fitness and wellbeing centres to use their cutting edge facilities including the gym floor, swimming pool and spa facilities.