August 20, 2020
Few industries have been hit as hard by the pandemic as owner/operators of fitness centers. With gyms still unable to re-open in much of the United States, fitness enthusiasts have been creating home gyms and taking to the great outdoors to work up a sweat, build stamina and otherwise improve their overall health. This is good news to those companies who make it their business to provide products and services to the health-conscious consumer looking to keep fit outside of the gym.
The first thing you want to do before beginning an outdoor adventure is ensure you have proper attire with not just the preferred look but gear that is sturdy and comfortable as well. Perhaps best known for its Wolverine, Keds, and Hush Puppies footwear lines, Wolverine Worldwide (Tii:WWW) also has a major presence in the active lifestyle, outdoor sport and athletic wear segments. The company’s Merrell line of hiking boots and trail running shoes holds strong appeal to the outdoor fitness enthusiasts as does its line of rain jackets, thermal wear and similar apparel designed to insulate and protect its wearer from the elements.
If you are one of the millions of step-counters out there, the good news is there is a slew of devices to suit the needs (and budgets) of beginners and seasoned athletes alike. Though the first fitness tracker was invented way back in 1965 with the Manpo-kei (which translates to '10,000 steps meter’) by Dr. Yoshiro Hatano, a Japanese professor, it was the Fitbit (Tii:FIT) that became the first activity tracker to garner mainstream attention when it debuted in 2009. Since then, several electronics manufacturers have gotten into this large and growing segment. Among the publicly traded players in this space is Apple Inc. (Tii:AAPL), Garmin Ltd. (Tii:GRMN) and Fossil Group, Inc. (Tii:FOSL).
Many people subscribe to the ‘you are what you eat’ philosophy. With literally thousands of health and nutrition products – many of which are owned by large conglomerates, let's take a look at some of the smaller niche players. They include BellRing Brands, Inc. (Tii:BRBR), the company behind the Premier Protein, PowerBar brands; Natural Alternatives International (Tii:NAII), which manufactures nutritional supplements such as Juice Plus dietary supplements; and The Simply Good Foods Company (Tii:SMPL), which was created by the business combination of Conyers Park Acquisition Corp. and Atkins Nutritionals, Inc. (remember the Atkins craze?). In fact, there are so many options in this space that the hardest part is deciding which tastes and works best for the particular consumer.
Let’s not forget footwear, an essential item for outdoor runners, power walkers or just the casual strollers looking to burn off a few calories. Caleres, Inc. (Tii:CAL), the ubiquitous Nike, Inc. (Tii:NKE) and Skechers U.S.A., Inc. (Tii:SKX) are among the publicly traded companies that have footwear options for consumers of all levels of fitness.
If you’re more of an indoor person and working out in the great outdoors is not so great to you, no worries. Products by Nautilus, Inc. (Tii:NLS) and Peloton Interactive, Inc. (Tii:PTON) have you covered. A leader in home fitness solutions, Nautilus is the company behind the popular Bowflex, Nautilus, Octane Fitness and Schwinn Fitness brands of exercise bikes, cardio equipment and strength training products. With a community of more than 2.6 million members, Peloton boasts to having the largest interactive fitness platform in the world. Through its Peloton Bike, Peloton Tread, and Peloton App, the company offers a range of technology-enabled fitness equipment and a virtual subscription-based platform offering instructor-led fitness classes.
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