While the number of Americans considered overweight or obese is on the rise, so is the number of Americans
who belong to health clubs. Memberships grew from 21 million in 1991 to 30.6 million in 1999, according to the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA). A consumer study sponsored by IHRSA found that health club members currently visit the gym an average of 89 times per year.

And consumers appear to be satisfied with their memberships. Complaints registered against health clubs in the United States decreased by
32 percent between 1991 and 1999, according to the Annual Inquiry and Complaint Summary, published by the Council of Better Business Bureaus.