If you’re looking for new fitness business ideas to launch in 2024, we’ve got you covered with 7 fresh fitness business opportunities.
Close your eyes, and picture a fitness business.
You’re probably thinking of your bog-standard gym or personal training studio—which isn’t a bad thing, ‘cause those are awesome. The fitness industry is so much more diverse than that, though. There are countless fitness subfields where gym owners, personal trainers, and fitness influencers like you can build thriving careers. When you’ve got a bird’s-eye view of all the different types of fitness businesses, you’ll be able to spot fresh ways to win and know when to stick to your current game plan.
At ABC Trainerize, our whole focus is helping gym owners and personal trainers grow their fitness businesses, so we know a thing or two about the industry landscape. We’re happy to share what we’ve picked up, too. Here, we’ll explore why there’s so many niches within fitness, and discuss unique fitness business ideas for you to consider launching in 2023. Whether you’re a seasoned studio owner or a trainer fresh-out-of-school, you’ll leave with the 360° view of the fitness industry you’ve been looking for.
Why are there so many different types of fitness businesses?
Some people like pumping iron alone, some people love stretchy yoga classes, and some people want to sweat with a whole community. Everyone has different fitness goals and preferences, so gyms and trainers provide a wide variety of fitness services that speak to each group’s unique needs. From powerlifting gyms to dance studios to yoga centers, our industry’s got something for everyone.
It’s not just programming, though. Different client bases have specific goals and expectations that we’ve evolved to support—spanning everything from weight loss to athletic performance and general wellness. This’s how you get extra-special services like performance coaching for athletes, health coaching for seniors, and live streaming fitness for folks who aren’t ready to leave the house.
So pay attention to these next few sections, ‘cause they’ll really give you a strategic advantage over the competition. You’ll scope out all the markets and niches, and you might just find one that lines up with your exact skills and passions.
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7 fitness business ideas you can steal for yourself
Let’s dive into seven business models for the fitness industry (beyond the obvious “open-a-gym” one that everyone already knows about).
1. Become a Personal Trainer
This is a classic fitness business model. When you’re a personal trainer, you spend your days working 1:1 with clients to help them smash their fitness goals. No two days are exactly alike, either. You might spend one day designing customized workout plans, another providing nutritional advice, and another offering support and motivation throughout their journey. To build a personal training business that lasts, you’ll need excellent communication skills, expert-level knowledge of exercise, anatomy, and nutrition, plus the ability to modulate your style to fit any client.
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The revenue model is simple, too. Personal trainers make money by offering individual sessions or package deals, as well as by launching online training programs. When you’re getting started, you’ll need proof points to build your client base. We’d recommend earning a personal training certification and building a presence on social media that shows the results you’ve helped clients achieve. Your reputation will grow over time, and you’ll eventually be able to scale up by hiring trainers or partnering with gyms.
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2. Open a specialty gym
Speciality gyms laser-target their services to a narrow clientele that knows exactly what they’re looking for. This isn’t a bad thing, though—specialization allows your niche expertise to shine! (Plus, the SEO for specialty gyms goes crazy.) Here’s a few of the core specialty niches:
Pilates studios focus on… you guessed it, Pilates. Each Pilates class centers exercises that build athletes’ core strength, flexibility, and balance. When you’re getting started, you’ll need a Pilates instructor certification, excellent teaching skills, and a well-equipped studio to teach out of. You’ll likely want to focus on teaching group classes, but you can also offer private sessions or 1:1 workshops for aspiring instructors. (Diversification is always key.)
Opening a CrossFit studio means you’ll be providing high-intensity workouts in a supportive community environment. CrossFit is the best type of chaotic, and it takes the old concept of muscle confusion to new heights. You’ll need CrossFit Level 1 Trainer certification, a suitable training space, and a passion for intense workouts—which is full of limit-pushing fitness challenges. You’ll build revenue through memberships, group classes, and one-on-one personal training.
C. Martial Arts
Martial arts studios teach disciplined self-defense. There’s many martial arts forms, from classics like karate, taekwondo, and Brazilian jiu-jitsu to smaller forms like Muay Thai kickboxing and krav maga. You can’t improvise your way through starting a martial arts studio, though—you’ll need to be a self-defense (and teaching) expert before you start. If you’ve got the chops, you’ll be able to build serious revenue streams through memberships, belt testing fees, and gym merchandise sales. Hiiiii-yaaah!
3. Start offering nutritional coaching
A nutritional coaching business involves working with clients to create customized meal plans, offer dietary advice, and support them in achieving their health goals. To excel, you’ll need a solid understanding of nutrition, excellent communication skills, and the ability to motivate and inspire your clients.
You can make money by offering one-on-one coaching sessions, creating online courses or meal plans, and hosting workshops or seminars. Obtaining a nutrition certification or a degree in a related field can boost your credibility and attract clients. Market your services through social media, a professional website, and networking within your community.
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4. Become a fitness influencer
As a fitness influencer, you’ll leverage social media platforms like Instagram, YouTube, or TikTok to share your fitness journey, workout routines, and healthy lifestyle tips with a broad audience. By building a loyal following, you can monetize your online fitness business through sponsored content, affiliate marketing, or by selling your own fitness products and services.
To succeed, you’ll need a unique personal brand, engaging content, and the ability to connect with your audience. Invest time in honing your social media skills, collaborating with other influencers, and consistently posting high-quality content that resonates with your target audience. And as that audience grows, you’ll open up new revenue streams—like affiliate marketing. Check out TZ Storefront powered by WRKOUT for more about how you can earn cash rewards for recommending products.
@michellelewinA fab workout routine for 🍑 and🦵🏻 – And to all those girls training with me (and all guys training with Jimmy) on the app @FITPLAN_app… You are so 🏻😍 It’s amazing to follow your efforts and see your progress🙌🏻🙌🏻 Keep it up! (Gym @ELEV8TIONfitness – Video & music by @jimmy_lewin )♬ sonido original – Michelle Lewin
5. Offer health and wellness coaching
Fitness goes way deeper than the gym, and many health and wellness coaches have built thriving practices. By taking a holistic approach to physical fitness, you’ll help clients strengthen their emotional and mental wellbeing through goal-setting, developing action plans, and providing ongoing support.
Grumpy grumps need not apply. To excel in this field, you’ll need gentle communication skills, strong emotional intelligence, and a deep understanding of wellness theory. Just like with any fitness field, you’ll be able to earn money by offering one-on-one coaching sessions, group workshops, or delivering online courses through a platform like ABC Trainerize. (We’ve even got a guide to online fitness delivery right here, wink wink nudge nudge.)
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6. Launch an online fitness platform
We touched on this just above, but launching your own online fitness subscription platform is a fantastic business model—and possibly the most scalable out there. For a lil’ monthly fee, users will get access to a variety of workout classes, tutorials, and fitness resources that you’ve curated for them. This business model allows you to cater to a wide audience with diverse fitness interests, from yoga and Pilates to strength training and dance workouts. All you’ve gotta do is plan it, record it, and promote it!
To succeed, you’ll need eye-catching content, an easy-to-use platform you can host it on, and effective marketing strategies to attract subscribers. You can create your own workout videos or collaborate with other fitness professionals to offer a diverse range of content. This is another place where ABC Trainerize shines, ‘cause we can help you with every part of your online fitness program delivery from course creation to marketing.
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7. Drive to your clients with mobile fitness
Last, you can bring the fitness right to your clients with a mobile gym. When you offer mobile fitness, you’ll spend your days leading on-site training, group fitness classes, or corporate wellness programs. The location will vary from session-to-session. Sometimes you’ll be training in a client’s home, and sometimes you’ll be training in a massive corporate office!
To thrive in mobile fitness, you’ll need a vehicle packed-to-the-brim with fitness equipment, savvy marketing skills, and the ability to adapt your programming to fit into any setting. Going the literal extra mile for clients can really pay off, and you’ll be able to differentiate your services and drive serious revenue—especially through long-term contracts with corporate clients.
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So, what’s next?
Now that your mind’s racing with new fitness industry knowledge, you’re probably wondering what tools you’ll need to break into your dream niche. And you know what the good news is? You’re actually… already in the right place. ABC Trainerize’s flexible platform makes it easy to deliver specialty gym services, online training and coaching, and even nutritional plans—so you’re covered, no matter whether you’re heading.
With all your client information inside our bone-simple dashboard, you’ll be able to create training appointments, marketing emails, and stand-out services like custom meal plans to your clients. You’ll be able to keep your clients happy and scale your personal training business with only a fraction of the effort. (And we love to see it.)