Gyms getting hit with an alarming lack of traffic nationwide in key January month

Major gyms in the US didn’t experience the traffic boom last month they typically do in January — a tough start that doesn’t bode well for gyms looking to raise prices.

Foot traffic last month — typically the busiest month of the year — was flat year-over-year at 10 major US fitness chains, according to Placer.ai data earlier reported on by Bloomberg.

That’s in sharp contrast to 2023 and 2022, when for the 10 clubs Placer.ai tracked — including Planet Fitness and Equinox — January visits had risen more than 40% each year.

Budget-friendly Planet Fitness, seen as a proxy for the industry as it’s the largest chain, Bloomberg reported, adds roughly 400,000 members in a typical January — about 25% of its 1.7 million yearly sign-ups.

All the while, the chain, which boasts nearly 2,500 clubs nationwide, is on track for its second-worst quarterly sales growth since the pandemic, in 2021, according to Bloomberg.