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  • Roger Yao

Fitness Equipment Industry Weekly News – 2024 Week 2

Tesla Cyberhammer

1. Xponential Fitness Expands Club Pilates Reach into the UK Amidst Surging Popularity


Xponential Fitness is set to introduce its renowned Club Pilates brand to the United Kingdom, marking the inauguration of two new locations in London. This strategic move reflects the escalating demand for reformer Pilates workouts in the fitness industry.


Anthony Geisler, the CEO of Xponential, emphasized that the growth potential of the Club Pilates brand shows no signs of slowing down. Geisler stated that there is room for an additional 800 Club Pilates studios in the United States alone, highlighting the sustained enthusiasm among franchisees.


Xponential Pilates

Initially estimating the capacity for 900 to 1,000 Club Pilates locations in 2019, Geisler revised his projections in 2023, suggesting that the U.S. could support approximately 1,700 studios. The brand has proven to be a cornerstone of Xponential's success, constituting over 900 of its 3,000 studios and contributing to one-third of its overall revenues.


Club Pilates, founded in 2007, holds the distinction of being the oldest brand within Xponential's portfolio of 11 boutiques. Known for its Reformer-based workouts that seamlessly integrate cardio, strength, and interval training, the brand has successfully expanded its reach to various countries, including the U.S., UK, Canada, Australia, Japan, the Dominican Republic, and Germany.


2. Total Fitness launches The Women’s Gym


Total Fitness has introduced a groundbreaking women-only concept, 'The Women's Gym,' in Manchester, UK. In response to extensive user consultations, the space is designed to empower women and deliver personalized fitness experiences. Members can opt for solo or group workouts in mirrored or mirror-free areas, catering to individual preferences for motivation.


Sophie Lawler, Total Fitness CEO, emphasizes the significance of The Women's Gym, stating,"It's a space where women can achieve progression and enjoy a full, uninterrupted workout, no matter the occasion, their frame of mind, or life stage." The gym provides purpose-built, private spaces for women to take control of their fitness journeys and aligns with Total Fitness' commitment to helping members exceed their expectations.


Women fitness equipment gym

Located within the Whitefield club, The Women's Gym operates as a club-in-club setup with its own access control and entrance. The original Total Fitness health club floorplan remains unchanged.


Existing members can access The Women's Gym with a £12.50/month bolt-on subscription, while non-members have a £10 pay-as-you-go option.


Curated with the support of Total Fitness thought-partner Yonder Consulting and designed in collaboration with partners like Studio Twenty, the gym features equipment tailored for the female body from suppliers such as Life Fitness, Precor, Pulse Fitness, Origin Fitness UK, True Fitness, and TRX Training. The layout ensures an inviting and free-flowing environment by evenly distributing cardio and weight equipment.


To support women through various life stages, staff members are being upskilled to provide assistance during pregnancy, perimenopause, menopause, and menstruation. Total Fitness plans to expand its educational content and digital workout offerings, enabling members to access information and workouts outside the club.


Kerry Curtis, Brand Development Director, highlights the demand for women-only facilities, citing an 82% year-on-year increase in searches for 'women-only gyms' based on Google search data over the last 12 months.



3. F45 launches Vaura Pilates concept with first location in New York City


In an effort to revitalize its business, troubled fitness franchise F45 Training has introduced a new reformer Pilates brand called Vaura Pilates. The inaugural studio, situated in New York City's Upper East Side, represents the company's latest venture into the Pilates market, featuring 50-minute class formats such as Total, Stretch, Circuit, and Fusion.


F45 Training's CEO, Tom Dowd, expresses excitement about Vaura Pilates, emphasizing its athletic approach to reformer Pilates. Dowd asserts, "We're creating a new full-body sensory experience unmatched by any other exercise regimen." This move comes after the success of F45's FS8 Pilates concept launched in Australia in 2021.


Pilates equipment brand

Acknowledging the potential of Pilates as a lucrative model, Dowd states, "We're thrilled to add another unique Pilates concept to the family of F45 offerings for our growing fitness community, along with our other Pilates concept, FS8." The 1,800-square-foot space on the Upper East Side, franchised by Travis Frenzel, CEO of Club Sports Group, features 28 Pilates reformers, showers, and a beauty bar.


Vaura Pilates offers four distinct 50-minute classes, with "Total" being the signature class that combines strength, endurance, and stretch for a full-body conditioning workout suitable for all fitness levels. Prices for these classes start at US$42, and various class packs are available, with the option to book classes on ClassPass.


Dowd, who assumed the role of F45 CEO last year amid legal challenges and financial losses, acknowledges the past struggles of the company. Despite referring to it as a "slow-motion train wreck" in the past, Dowd promises a new era, stating, "The days of shooting from the hip are over; it’s a much more professional company run by real adults."


4. Gympass Collaboration Boosts Apple Fitness+ Accessibility Worldwide


Corporate wellness platform Gympass, valued at $2.4 billion, has announced its integration with Apple Fitness+. This partnership enables over two million employees worldwide to access the fitness subscription service through Gympass. Effective immediately, Gympass subscribers in the U.S., U.K., Germany (on the Basic Plan and above), and Brazil (on the Silver Plan and above) can enjoy Apple Fitness+ at no additional cost through the Gympass app.


Gympass Apple Fitness+

Gympass boasts a vast network of over 50,000 gyms, studios, classes, personal trainers, and wellness apps, offering users a comprehensive wellness experience. With access to Wellness Coaches and partnerships with more than 15,000 companies, Gympass provides employees with discounted fitness classes, gym memberships, and various wellness perks.


Cesar Carvalho, CEO and co-founder of Gympass, highlighted the company's ability to significantly increase employee engagement with wellness, emphasizing the competitive pricing of their plans, which cost 30-50% less than traditional gym memberships. Gympass aims to leverage its partnership with Apple Fitness+ to further enhance the wellness experience for over 15,000 corporate clients and millions of employees globally.


The move towards prioritizing employee wellness is emphasized by Gympass' recent State of Work-Life Wellness report, revealing that 87% of employees would consider leaving a company that neglects their wellbeing. Additionally, 93% of respondents value wellbeing as much as their salaries. Gympass advocates for integrating wellness solutions into company culture, citing the potential to reduce turnover and save companies healthcare costs.



5.Planet Fitness Ends 2023 on High Note with 18.7 Million Members and Strong Growth


Planet Fitness, Inc. has announced robust results for the year ending December 31, 2023, reporting a significant increase in its year-end membership to approximately 18.7 million members. This marks a notable rise of 1.7 million members since the close of 2022. Additionally, the company achieved an 8.7% year-over-year increase in system-wide same-store sales.


Throughout the year, Planet Fitness expanded its footprint by placing equipment in 135 new franchised locations and inaugurating 165 new Planet Fitness stores. Among these, 18 were corporate-owned, contributing to a system-wide total of 2,575 stores by the end of 2023.


Craig Benson, interim CEO, expressed satisfaction with the company's performance, highlighting the positive momentum in member growth and ongoing recovery from the impact of COVID-related disruptions. He emphasized the success of the New Growth Model, designed to reduce capital requirements for opening and operating Planet Fitness locations. Benson emphasized the company's commitment to a disciplined, data-driven approach aimed at enhancing store-level returns.


As the company navigates a dynamic macro-economic environment, Benson affirmed the commitment to long-term sustainable growth while ensuring a balance among the needs of various stakeholders, including the franchisor, franchisees, shareholders, and most importantly, the members. The search for a new CEO is underway, with the Board focused on finding a leader capable of guiding the company to seize growth opportunities in the future.



6. Tesla Ventures into Fitness with 'Cyberhammer': A Unique Addition to the Cybertruck-Themed Merchandise Line


In a bold departure from its automotive roots, renowned electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla Inc has set its sights on the fitness equipment market. The company recently filed a trademark application for a gym hammer named 'Cyberhammer,' drawing design inspiration from its iconic Cybertruck. This distinctive product is poised to join Tesla's expanding line of Cybertruck-themed merchandise, which includes unconventional items like Gigabeer, a Cyber Whistle, and a branded tequila introduced in November 2020.


Tesla fitness equipment hammer

Cyberhammer: A Novel Entry into Tesla's Merchandise Collection

The Cyberhammer symbolizes Tesla's foray beyond automobiles, featuring the unique design elements of the Cybertruck. Filed under the fitness equipment category, this move indicates Tesla's strategic expansion into the gym equipment sector. While awaiting official trademark approval from the US Patent and Trademark Office, the intriguing Cyberhammer is projected to hit the market within the next year.


Anticipated High-End Pricing Strategy

In line with Tesla's pricing strategy for its accessories, the Cyberhammer is expected to occupy the higher end of the pricing spectrum. Despite the premium pricing, Tesla's innovative products have gained significant traction among enthusiasts who appreciate the company's distinctive design philosophy and unwavering commitment to quality.


Best Product Ever: The Cybertruck

Elon Musk, Tesla's CEO, consistently hails the Cybertruck as the company's 'Best Product Ever.' Chief Designer Franz von Holzhausen echoes this sentiment, defending the vehicle's unique design as a reinforcement of Tesla's brand image. The introduction of the Cyberhammer, drawing inspiration from the same design ethos, serves as a continuation of this philosophy.

Tesla fitness equipment model

Uncertain Launch Date, Imminent Online Presence

While the exact launch date for the Cyberhammer remains uncertain, its anticipated appearance on Tesla's online shop is imminent, indicated by the recent trademark filing. This strategic move not only diversifies Tesla's product portfolio but also elevates the brand's appeal among its global consumer base, showcasing a seamless blend of innovation and unique design aesthetics.


We provide weekly fitness equipment industry news and updates.



  • The founder of FITQS/FQC 

  • The columnist of magzine <China Fitness Equipment>

  • 20 years in fitness/sporting equipment OEM/ODM technical, quality control and sourcing management.


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