Whole Foods, H-E-B, Meijer, and More Incorporate Gyms Into Grocery
- by Chandler James
NEW YORK, NY - When it comes to getting in shape, some people turn to a low-carb, veggie-forward diet, while others go full-on Crossfit in search of some washboard abs. Natural grocers like Whole Foods and H-E-B have capitalized on the former for years, but many are now turning to the latter in hopes of widening their target. According to CNN Business, multiple retailers have now partnered with workout studios in order to bring new exercise formats to the retail sector.
Most recently, Hy-Vee partnered with the high-intensity training studio OrangeTheory, aiming to build customized studios attached to two locations. The news source also stated that a New Jersey ShopRite location opened a new store featuring a fitness studio with yoga and zumba classes for its loyalty card holders. Whole Foods, however, may have been the first to the party, partnering with barre, spin, and yoga studios near its flagship store in Texas to offer classes on its rooftop.
Retail Analyst Diana Sheehan commented on the concept, stating that she predicts H-E-B and Meijer will be the next entities to adopt this unorthodox format, although H-E-B already sponsors free yoga classes at some locations. According to the news source, a study done by the industry trade group IHRSA found that exercise studio memberships have increased by 70 percent over the past four years, which is a big reason that retailers are jumping on this train. Combining health and convenience, this strategy is expected to attract time-strapped shoppers with their sights set on health.
Is this the future of grocery shopping? To see how other retailers are upping their game, stay tuned to ANUK.