Demand for gyms low in Turkey despite rise in supply
Ceyhun Kuburlu - ISTANBULThe number of gyms has been rising rapidly in Turkey, but the number of gym members is quite low compared to developed countries, according to sector representatives.
While an average of 277 people are members of a gym in Turkey, the figure is above 600 in developed countries, said sector players.
“The preferences of customers are now changing. Sport facilities which contain a pool, beach volleyball, a basketball court and a tennis court stand out the most. Members now prefer large facilities which function with a ‘community center’ mentality,” said Orhan Koral, CEO of Sports International, stating the market grew 5 percent in a year.
Indicating the fact the world gym market has reached a magnitude of $84 billion, Koral said, “There are 1,550 recorded gyms [in Turkey]. The number of members enrolled in these gyms exceeds 450,000. Most of these gyms are situated in 1,000-square-meter locations. In these gyms you can’t do activities for long durations. There are 45,000-square-meter gyms in the U.S. Such facilities extend the continuity of the members while providing them the opportunity to spend more time in the gym. Customers are now choosing facilities that function with the mentality of a ‘community center.’ Group activities are gaining more importance compared to the individual ones.”
Koral said the continuity rate of gym subscribers is also low in Turkey.
“Continuity in long memberships descends to around 25 percent. However, customers who use the gyms and get acquainted with them later try different gyms and enroll in larger clubs. This has a positive impact on the sector,” he said.