Tips From the Top Fitness Brands on Instagram | Learn: Your Fitness Business Resource

Tips From the Top Fitness Brands on Instagram

The top fitness brands on Instagram use a variety of tactics to get more followers. Using strategic branding, popular influencers, and targeting a specific audience, Instagram's most popular fitness brands showcase their strengths by using assertive content that's unique yet diverse . Check out some of the top fitness companies on Instagram below to see how you can emulate them and expand your Instagram following.

Thomas Barnett is a writer for and a Professor of Exercise Science at Keiser University. He has over eight years of experience working in rehabilitation, personal training, and strength and conditioning. Additionally, Thomas holds a Master's Degree in Human Performance, a Bachelor's Degree in Exercise Science, is an NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), a Certifi...

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UPDATED: Mar 16, 2021

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  • Small fitness businesses can gain millions of followers on Instagram using strong tactics.
  • Increase Instagram traffic for your gym by including strong hashtags, being interactive, and using high-profile networking.
  • Targeting a specific audience and providing them with relatable content can help pique their interest.

Small fitness businesses face a constant battle against increasing competition to maintain a lucrative business. Growing a successful business doesn’t necessarily mean you need an enormous facility with millions of dollars in equipment. However, using some tips from the top fitness brands on Instagram can help build your business no matter the size. 

Throughout this article, we’ll cover some of the top gyms on Instagram, the best ways to promote fitness businesses, and more. We’ll also show you how you can use’s gym management software so your business can boost its activity on Instagram, your personalized website, and other social media. Book a demo today to see our software in action.

Secrets From the Top Fitness Brands on Instagram

Some people still believe that social media accounts like Instagram don’t matter for business development. In some cases this can be true, but why would you limit your potential outreach and business development potential? The more followers you have, the more likely people are to see your business and give it a shot whether they’re visiting or locals.

If you’re asking yourself, “What should I post on my fitness Instagram?” this will depend on who your target audience is. Increasing your gym’s followers on Instagram isn’t quite as easy as just posting pictures and throwing out hashtags. However, there are a few tricks to help improve your following, and the most effective fitness brands on Instagram employ those tricks well.

So, what is the most effective brand on Instagram? And what can you learn from them? Let’s dive into, not only the most effective brand, but the most effective fitness brands to see how they’ve managed to capture such a wide and loyal following.

Nike Women (7.4 Million Followers)

Nike is a popular brand, we get it. They have at least eight verified Instagram pages that are all different branches of the Nike brand. Nike Women follows just 150 accounts and has still accrued millions of followers of their own, but how? Nike has taken full advantage of its brand to continue reaching a more specific population, women.


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A post shared by Nike Women (@nikewomen)

The Nike Women Instagram page uses a few simple techniques to increase its following which includes:

  • Simplified Branding
  • High-profile Networking
  • Specifying Target Audience

Using the well-known Nike logo is the first step. Everyone knows the logo. The profile picture is literally the trademark Nike symbol, nothing fancy. Everyone knows that this profile is a branch of a leading fitness brand. Each of their posts, as shown below, also features women wearing Nike products with a visible logo.

Catering your Instagram content is one way to help promote your brand to a plethora of people. With, you’ll be provided a custom-branded website with features that allow you to link to every social media site you have. You’re also provided a custom-branded mobile fitness app to help incorporate your brand and products while maximizing convenience.

The Nike Women profile follows only 150 other Instagram users, so how did they get so many followers? They followed other popular verified accounts like surfer Sky Brown, gymnast Simone Biles, and basketball star LeBron James. As soon as other people see those stars following Nike Women back, they tend to follow. Using influencers is a strong marketing tactic on Instagram.

So many people browse Instagram and skip right over the posts or stories that have information that doesn’t appeal or relate to them. With so many male-dominant sports, Nike was smart to find a way to promote their products to a major but specific demographic without losing followers by posting a ton of unrelated content.

Rogue Fitness (2.4 Million Followers)

Rogue Fitness is another unique fitness brand that has been very successful in generating a large following on Instagram. They specialize in providing fitness equipment, typically designed for CrossFit, box gyms, or strength and conditioning settings. They aren’t necessarily the most popular fitness equipment brand.

How does Rogue set themselves apart to create a larger following?

  • Effective Hashtags
  • Interactive Account
  • Diversifying Content

Hashtags can be an effective way to gain more followers, but they have to be precise so that people will see them. Rogue Fitness, like Nike Women, targets a specific audience with their hashtags knowing that there is already a large following. For example, their profile description includes hashtags for CrossFit, USA Weightlifting, and The World’s Strongest Man.

They have also created their own catchy hashtag that they include in all of their posts, “#ryourogue”. This translates to “Are you Rogue?”. This is a creative concept that can get other followers involved with your brand.

Rogue Fitness is also very interactive. This doesn’t simply mean that they respond to comments and post frequently, though they do. This interactivity refers to events and challenges that they promote via their Instagram. For example, they advertise the Rogue Invitational months in advance.


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A post shared by Rogue Fitness (@roguefitness) 

They also use challenges, such as the Cliffhanger Challenge, to get their followers involved. How do they know that people will join? Refer back to point one. Their target audience is full of competitors.

Rogue Fitness and Nike Women are a little different because they are large brands that are more-so designed to promote their products. Even if this isn’t your intended goal, don’t forget that selling fitness products can be a lucrative business and can be tied directly into the fitness services you provide. integrates gym ecommerce software into your mobile app, website, and point of service system. Since all of your sites can be linked together, your clients can find and purchase your products just like Rogue Fitness and Nike Women.

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The last thing that stands out about the Rogue Fitness Instagram page is the diversity. This means to be sure that you aren’t posting the same exact thing every post. Rogue alternates consistently by posting challenges, events, products, athletes, and even variations of testimonials in the form of gym set-ups people have created using their products.

Diversifying your posts helps to break up monotonous content. It’s one thing to get followers but another to retain them. If you continuously post the same thing, people can get bored and hit the “unfollow” button rather quickly.

Squat University (1.4 Million Followers)

We’ve included Squat University because this account resembles the American dream. This account should serve as a reminder to many fitness enthusiasts that there is hope, despite the size of your establishment. Squat University is operated by Dr. Aaron Horschig, a physical therapist, author, and Instagram enthusiast.

What’s most important about Squat University as it relates to our readers is that it is run by Aaron himself. Sure, he probably has some help with the production of videos, but in the vast majority of his content, it’s him with his products, his clients, and his gym. It goes to show that you don’t necessarily need a huge name brand in a major establishment to gain followers. So how does Aaron do it?

  • Providing a Unique Product
  • Challenging Ideas
  • Diversifying Content

First off, Squat University takes squatting to the next level for many trainers, coaches, or potential clients. A lot of people know what a squat should look like, but don’t know how or why they are experiencing hip shifts, knee valgus, or low back pain while squatting. Regardless of your views on these topics, Squat University addresses these concepts which are relatively common.


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A post shared by Squat University (@squat_university)

Squat University provides detailed videos that are still understandable to most of your everyday Joes. There are typically some 3d models included which can also help some trainers who may have some understanding of the issues at hand but don’t know why they’re occurring. This type of product is rare to find in our field and comes from someone with strong credentials.

Now, not everyone is a fan of the theories instilled at Squat University. Posting assertive content can be a way to increase your followers. Using this method, you’ll need to be prepared to defend your stance and stay true to it. If you look at Squat University’s posts, you’ll see that there are some naysayers, but that doesn’t take away from having over a million followers.

Did we mention diversifying content? With Squat University, the content diversification is cyclic. This page rotates a basic post, an Instagram TV session, and an educational post like clockwork. Those three items are posted daily to keep a consistent flow of traffic and provide users a variety of content.

Sometimes the basic posts are words of encouragement or those aforementioned controversial ideas. The IGTV and educational posts are often some sort of tip to help improve mobility, reduce pain, or improve strength. These are all obvious necessities for fitness business management.

Top Fitness Brands on Instagram: Wrapping it Up

Growing your fitness brand via social media has some obvious benefits. If you learn how to increase your followers on Instagram, you’ll likely increase the overall traffic and support of your business.

You can improve your Instagram following by diversifying your content, targeting a specific audience, posting assertive content, and other techniques depending on your brand. To learn more about how to execute these strategies, check out our article “Instagram Marketing for Gyms and Fitness Professionals“.

The truth is, you don’t need a huge studio to become a household fitness brand on Instagram. You’ll need to develop a plan and be sure that you’re maximizing your traffic. Thankfully, can take a lot of the legwork out so you can focus on creating quality content. Don’t wait to book an demo to see how fitness business management software can help you attract more clients.


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