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Holistic Industry Trends in Fitness, Hospitality, Corporate & Health  


Paul Bowman, Wexer CEO, and Ross Stewart Campbell, CEO & Founder of Beyond Activ, discuss the Beyond Active 2023 Industry Report with key insights on the holistic trends shaping the health, fitness, wellness, hospitality, corporate, health and spa industries. Every industry experienced transformation in 2023, especially in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) and Middle East regions. 

Read more: Holistic Industry Trends in Fitness, Hospitality, Corporate & Health  

Beyond Activ is building the world’s largest health, fitness, wellness, and sports ecosystem. By building a community of brands collaborating knowledge and expertise in an environment of promoting industry development and investment.


The corporate health/well-being industry and the fitness wellness industry are actually set very far apart. Part of the mission of Beyond Active is to try and blur those lines.”

~ Ross Stewart Campbell, Founder & CEO, Beyond Activ ~

The Market Insight pages of this report will walk you through the past year’s trends encompassing our industry’s ecosystem; from Big-Box, Boutique Fitness, Hotel & Spa to Medical Wellness, Corporate Wellness, Technology and more. While also offering an understanding of some of the biggest players in each of these sectors.

Ross will cover global holistic opportunities in the fitness, hospitality, medical, and corporate sectors, capital investments in specific geographical areas, and the exciting future of digital fitness and technology within every industry.

Global Industry Transformations

Insights from various regions, including Asia Pacific, the Middle East, and Australia, reveal dynamic shifts of emerging fitness industry trends. Notably, there’s a surge in investment and growth, with a focus on boutique concepts, franchise expansions, and a move towards holistic services.

The Middle East stands out with its diverse landscape of traditional big box clubs, wellness resorts, and the emergence of franchisors. Moreover, Paul and Ross delve into the evolving dynamics of corporate health and wellbeing. They emphasize the need for innovation, hyper-personalized content, and collaborations between the traditional fitness industry and employee health solutions.

Fitness Industry Growth

In the global fitness market, momentum is building in the Asia Pacific (APAC), Australian, and Middle East markets, marked by renewed confidence among operators and increased investment. This points to a shift towards holistic services, with the integration of wellness and fitness to achieve holistic health. Investment trends reflect a dynamic landscape, where ambitious and well-capitalized investors are driving growth, particularly in newer markets that may start from a lower base.

“I think what you also have now are really ambitious and well-capitalized investors. They see the opportunity and they’re chasing that down.”

~ Ross Stewart Campbell, Founder & CEO, Beyond Activ ~

Paul and Ross also acknowledge the experimentation and rapid growth facilitated by the absence of significant existing infrastructure in certain regions. Overall, fitness industry trends and the investment dynamics depict a sector in flux, adapting to changing consumer demands and capitalizing on emerging opportunities.

1. Big Box Fitness Market

In 2023, larger fitness operators experienced a resurgence. New memberships, member visits, and revenue per member all increased. Some even exceeded pre-pandemic numbers. Operators achieved this by optimizing costs, focusing on strength and conditioning workouts, and embracing revamped group exercise formats. The Middle East saw new big-box clubs opening, but APAC lagged behind in new builds.

2. Boutique Fitness Market

Boutique fitness studios evolved to offer personalized experiences and eco-friendly practices. There was a shift away from high-intensity workouts towards strength and conditioning. Gen Y and Gen Z gravitated towards studios with authenticity and sustainability. Flexible membership models and AI-driven coaching became common, fostering a sense of community within studios.

3. Technology Enhanced Fitness Workforce

Fitness Industry Staffing Challenges

The growing demand for fitness services outpaces the available workforce, necessitating a reevaluation of traditional staffing models. This all supports a turning point where fitness businesses might need to consider incorporating virtual or on-demand classes to supplement their current workforce. Businesses need to address not only the scarcity of skilled professionals but account for factors like sickness, holidays, and increasing competition for qualified coaches.

“If I was to take the collective ambition of all of the clubs and businesses that we work with and then add that all together in terms of the manpower needed. There is probably 10% of the manpower needed currently available in the workforce.”

~ Ross Stewart Campbell, Founder & CEO, Beyond Activ ~

The pervasive issue of workforce shortages within the fitness industry emphasizes the significant challenges faced by businesses aiming for ambitious growth. With a collective ambition to expand operations, open new clubs, and venture into additional countries, the industry confronts a critical manpower deficit. This scarcity extends across various roles, including instructors, therapists, clinicians, coaches, and personal trainers.

Virtual & Digital Solutions For Fitness Staffing

With an evident scarcity of qualified staff, clubs and businesses are grappling with the challenge of meeting their expansion goals. A strategic shift toward incorporating virtual or digital solutions for instructor-led or on-demand classes provides an opportunity to offer fitness and wellness anytime and anywhere. Fitness businesses can provide fitness and wellness content for members, build brand and instructor loyalty, and expand into more markets outside their facility and meet the demand for content 24/7.  

Paul and Ross suggest that this integration is not only a response to staffing challenges but also a proactive measure to accommodate factors like helping businesses cover staffing shortages, sickness and holidays, but also build loyalty in a competitive landscape where coaches are frequently sought by other companies. Emerging fitness industry trends that blend virtual and physical offerings is a practical solution to scale operations, ensuring that ambitious growth targets can be achieved even in the face of workforce shortages.

Fit-tech expanded with personalized AI-driven health and fitness programs. Wearables and trackers monitored stress, sleep, and mental health indicators. Technology platforms enhanced member training experiences and holistic well-being. Feature enhancements, like body scanning technology, improved the fitness experience.

Digital fitness and wellness reached new heights in 2023. AI-driven platforms personalized fitness plans, wearables monitored physical and mental health, and virtual mental health support gained traction. Virtual reality made workouts engaging, while telehealth and remote diagnostics continued to thrive.

Franchising experienced explosive growth, becoming more diverse and competitive than ever. High-Value/Low-Price (HVLP) franchisors expanded rapidly, offering a wide range of concepts. Franchisors adapted models to ensure faster profitability for franchisees. However, some franchisees hesitated due to economic uncertainties.

Digital & Hyper-Personalized Corporate Fitness and Wellness

Corporate wellness took center stage in 2023, emphasizing proactive health measures and holistic well-being. Companies adopted personalized well-being programs, optimized remote work structures, and provided wellness apps and resources. Progressive policies such as shorter work weeks and unlimited paid time off reflected the shift towards holistic employee well-being.

“Relevant content, if you can put that into someone’s day then you are addressing and engaging the larger employee base.”

~ Ross Stewart Campbell, Founder & CEO, Beyond Activ ~

In the context of corporate health initiatives, Paul and Ross underscore the shift towards hyper-personalization delivered to employees via digital fitness and wellness content. Employees demand work-life balance, tailored guidance, and accessible personalized content available anytime and anywhere. Traditional corporate health and well-being offerings are depicted as two-dimensional, often limited to discounted fitness memberships or generic marketplaces.

The emergence of digital platforms is a crucial step in bridging the gap between the fitness and wellness industry and the employee health and well-being sector. However, there are challenges in navigating a market with diverse offerings. This creates the need for innovative solutions that provide engaging, digital, personalized content to address the varied health and wellness needs of employees.

Importance of Wellness In The Hospitality, Spa & Medical Industry

Hotel occupancy rates in APAC and the Middle East exceeded pre-pandemic levels in 2023. Lifestyle hotels and wellness hospitality were in high demand. Traditional spas continued to evolve, offering boutique spaces and community events. In-room fitness and wellness services were in their early stages.

The importance of rest and recovery in overall well-being gained recognition in 2023. New offerings included sleep retreats, AI-integrated solutions, and sleep monitoring wearables. Other recovery solutions like cryotherapy and massages continued to grow. A global surge in sleep tourism was anticipated.

Wellness technology focused on mental well-being and sleep optimization. Wearables dominated this space, providing sensor-driven analytics and AI-driven content and coaching. DNA testing added personalized health content. Increased competition and acquisition costs marked the future of this burgeoning sector.

Health-tech embraced AI for diagnostics, treatment precision, and personalized medicine. Telehealth became a core practice at healthcare institutions. Augmented and virtual reality enhanced healthcare experiences. Aggregators, booking apps, and health-tracking apps gained popularity, promising a future of convenience and accessibility.

The demand for medical tourism, telehealth, and personalized lifestyle medicine continued to grow. Innovations included AI in content, regenerative medicine, and wearable health data tracking. Social media, medtech aggregators, and government support fueled innovation in this space.

Future Industry Growth

The Beyond Activ 2023 Industry Report paints a vivid picture of the transformative holistic industry trends in the health, fitness, wellness, hospitality, and spa industries in the APAC and Middle East regions. As we move forward, these insights provide valuable guidance for businesses and professionals looking to thrive in these dynamic and evolving markets. The future promises continued innovation, greater accessibility, and a strong focus on holistic well-being for individuals and communities alike.

Ready to learn how to take advantage of the Industry Trends? Let us help you utilize your data, virtual technology, and AI to develop your digital technology strategy. Email usINFO@WEXER.COM

For More Information:

Paul Bowman

Beyond Activ

Ross Stewart Campbell on LinkedIn



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