A gym open all day and all night, 7 days a week, every day of the year: what for many is a utopia, for others it means flexibility. While until a few years ago it was unthinkable to find activities open even at night, today things have changed, to be in line with the new needs of users. Consumers demand total availability: working and living hours are no longer as marked as they were in the past and, for many, attending a 24-hour gym is the only way to train while reconciling work and family life.
Here’s How a 24-hour Gym Reflects the New Daily Needs
Times are now more fluid, longer and more irregular: even free time no longer has a definite time of day. A study carried out by Barclays in England has shown precisely this shift in leisure time, which sometimes is reduced to the night. According to the research, a quarter of the people interviewed stated that they would prefer to visit museums in the evening between 6 p.m. and 11 p.m.; one in ten, about 13%, would like to go to the cinema between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m.; one in five, about 19%, would like to order food at home between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m., i.e. after closing time.
If people could find an answer to these needs, the economic benefits would be many: it has been estimated that the hospitality sector alone would gain about 6.76 billion pounds a year more.
In Great Britain, some sectors such as the wellness sector have already been able to grasp the new needs of users by adapting fairly quickly: almost a fifth of the operators in the sector (18%) have, in fact, taken action to change the opening hours.
The same happened in other countries. This is also the case in Italy, where clubs and gyms have decided to extend their opening hours, sometimes extending them to the whole night to provide a service accessible to users, such as opening a 24-hour gym.
The Innovative Services of a 24-hour Gym
In a market such as that of fitness, which is very competitive, gyms must be able to evolve, offer new services, meet the needs of the market. Technology, in this, helps. Not only to offer users innovative services, able to support and improve their user experience, but also to better manage the structure. Different technological solutions can, for example, be useful to ensure that opening hours can be extended, without, however, affecting the company budget too much. With the advent of the night economy it will be possible to replace the workforce to be employed at night with virtual lessons.
Barclays’ research has also highlighted this aspect: 27% of companies in England operating in the wellness and hospitality sector, including fitness clubs, have already started a technological upgrade to meet the various needs of customers. In particular for gyms, one in five (19%) respondents would access the service more frequently if there were an automatic entry/exit procedure. The figure suggests that people are increasingly inclined to use services that can always be available, without time constraints.
Abroad, the 24-hour gym has long been a reality. Insiders detach after a certain hour and are replaced by automated access services and virtual instructors. Then there are the security systems to ensure the safety of users and people show that they like this organization.
Such a service is appreciated by regular users, but also by all those who have a life marked by irregular hours and who, if they want to train, can only do so at night. This is one of the advantages of a 24-hour gym.
Possessing a key to enter at will, at any time of day or night, can also create an idea of familiarity, as if that place were home.
There are those who go to the gym at night, due to problems with working hours; those who prefer it to find fewer people in the locker room; those who need it to relieve the stress of the day. There are also those who love to play sports before entering the office and, therefore, in the early hours of the morning, when the sun is still far from rising. Everyone, in short, has their own motivations, the fact is that in a society where the pace of life of people are changing, services can only adapt.