At ClassPass, our team works with the top studios in dozens of cities around the world to understand the ongoing trends, pain points, and characteristics that make our 39 markets unique. Now, we want to share some of those insights with you, our readers.

In the next edition of our series of market profiles, we take a look at one of our beloved cities down under: Sydney!

The Sydney fitness market is continuing to grow in the two years ClassPass has had a presence there. With such beautiful weather for the majority of the year, boutique fitness owners face a unique challenge in acquiring customers to work out inside as opposed to doing outdoor activities, such as hiking, biking or running, on their own (especially in the summer). Check out the top trends we’re noticing in the market below.

At a Glance: Sydney

Top 3 Workout Genres

  • Yoga
  • Strength Training
  • Pilates

Yoga, strength training and Pilates are the most popular boutique genres on ClassPass in Sydney. Over the past year, Pilates in particular has seen tremendous growth, growing 81% in the share of reservations taken by ClassPass members. With the addition of KX Pilates and barre studios that also offer Pilates, there’s been an increase in volume for ClassPass, but overall Pilates has just taken off in Sydney as one of the most popular workouts. Even though yoga reservations have decreased in proportion to other genres by about 20% since last year, it continues to be the top genre on ClassPass. Strength training has remained consistently popular as well, growing 5% in the past year.

Top 3 Neighborhoods

  • Sydney CBD (Central Business District)
  • Surry Hills
  • Bondi

Sydney’s Central Business District, or CBD, has seen significant growth in the past year, with an increase in the share of reservations in that neighborhood of around 20%, with popular studios such as Scenic CycleCREW Boutique Rowing Studio and Barre Body having a presence there. Other popular neighborhoods include Surry Hills and Bondi, though their reservation levels in proportion to other neighborhoods have dipped slightly since this time last year, by about 15% and 6% respectively.

Top 3 Workout Times

  • 6pm
  • 5pm
  • 6am

The most popular workout times for ClassPass members in Sydney are 6pm, 5pm, and 6am. This can vary just a bit by season, with 6am becoming more popular than 5pm during the December-February months, but overall these three times consistently see the most reservations through ClassPass.

For more of the trends we’re noticing take hold in the market, read on:

Unique In-Studio Experiences

As mentioned, with such beautiful weather in Sydney and an overall gorgeous locale, Sydney studio owners must build a super unique in-studio experience to lure active members indoors. The spaces are often sleek and urban-feeling, with lush amenities and conveniences for members, such as BodyMindLife (shown below).

In addition, many studios focus on providing the type of bespoke experience you won’t be able to find anywhere else. Humming Puppy, for instance, injects their yoga classes with a combination of humming frequencies designed to enhance and deepen the experience of the class, while W1LL (formerly known as Urban Yoga) broadcasts beautiful visuals of landscapes and scenery on a large screen in a dimly lit room to make the class experience truly immersive.

Community Focus and Local Feel

Aside from the traditional big box gyms, Sydney’s fitness scene lacks a corporate presence — you won’t find SoulCycle here just yet. As such, each studio tends to focus on creating a very genuine, localized community. All the top teachers are active on social media, as engaging with and establishing relationships with members is a priority for studios. BUF Girls does a great job of celebrating their community on social media, as seen below.

And while studios are beginning to focus more on expansion, it’s often to open an additional location in a different part of town as opposed to growing across regions, such as Dynamic Pilates, which features locations in CBD, Manly, Crow’s Nest and Glebe.

Events and Influencers

As in any region, marketing is key for studio owners to grow and build their community and business. In Sydney, a large part of marketing is focused around hosting events and engaging with health and fitness influencers.

Studios host events year-round that aren’t traditionally season-inspired, but rather celebrate milestones at the studio (such as an anniversary party), or just to have fun! Silent discos, glow-stick parties, and the like amp up the energy and excitement around what a studio has to offer.

Beyond these fun events, studios also host workshops or classes outdoors to continue to engage members year-round.

Want to know more about how to host a successful event? Check out our webinar hosted by Natasha Prasad, General Manager for ClassPass Australia, where she shares her secrets for pulling off a stellar event.