The State of Kuwait is a small country but a large player in the fitness landscape of the Middle East. While its population ranks 14th overall in the region, it ranks 5th in the number of gyms. From 2012-2017, the fitness industry grew by 6%, and by 2022, it is projected to grow in Kuwait by another 9%. Undoubtedly, fitness is a big deal in the nation! Let’s take a look.
1. Wealth and Stability
With an educated and wealthy population base, the idea of cosmopolitan fitness centers is a draw. Kuwait is a safe country in a region where that is not always guaranteed. The population is well traveled and has had exposure to fitness trends worldwide. The gyms have excellent cardio and strength equipment and innovative classes. The fitness centers are now set up in repurposed warehouses for an edgy feel or seaside overlooking the Persian Gulf for a spa like experience.
In addition, the government has implemented the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) since 2014, which eases the the restrictions around opening businesses. This has helped the fitness industry gain a foothold in the country.
Personal training is big industry here, providing 20% of revenue in 2017. Trainers guide exercisers on their fitness path with fitness assessments to reach goals and explanations and adjustments to equipment and exercises. Gyms are also catering to middle income Kuwaitis, offering all inclusive memberships with access to a full gym. Fitness centers with classic gym equipment catering to bodybuilding are also popular. In addition, blended workouts are on the rise that may combine yoga with spin bikes or boxing with free weights.
3. Female Fitness
With more females in the overall population, gyms catered specifically to women are on the rise. In the past, fitness was seen as more of a men’s game but societal norms are changing and women are getting in on the lifestyle choice.
4. Health Concerns
As the Middle East is exposed to more western influence, the rise of obesity has been inevitable. Incidences of heart disease, diabetes and other conditions have brought enough awareness for a change in lifestyle. Along with recommendations for a healthy diet, gyms are meeting the demand for a healthier Kuwait.