Music Licensing for Fitness & Health Clubs
BMI Makes It Simple to License Music in Fitness & Health Clubs
A BMI music license gives you copyright permission to play over 20.6 million songs from BMI’s
award-winning repertoire. Here’s how you can get started:
Call (888) 689-5264 to get
a license over the phone.
Fill out our Online Form and a BMI Representative will get back to you with more information.
License and Report Form
For multiple locations, visit the Franchise Page.
Music Matters in Fitness
Music and working out go hand-in-hand. Nearly 90% of gym-goers feel more energized, more focused on working out and more likely to extend gym sessions when their favorite tunes are playing, according to a study by BMI and Leger, The Research Intelligence Group1. Regardless of whether the music is playing overhead from a streaming service, on TV or radio, during a group fitness class or coming through the equipment used at the gym, permission must be granted from the copyright owner. This is where BMI can help.
BMI’s Music License Saves You Time & Money
- SAVE TIME & MONEY A BMI license saves you the time and expense of contacting each songwriter or composer for the permission you need to play music in your facility.
- 5% Timely Payment Discount if you return your payment within 30 days.
- Simplicity Eliminates complex reporting and allows you to make music use changes online or over the phone.
- Pay your bill online securely and easily.
- Schedule your payments by choosing the billing plan that is right for your business. You can also opt for automated payments.
IHRSA Members Are Eligible for Additional Savings
The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association and BMI have worked together to bring IHRSA members additional savings on your BMI music licensing fees. Not a member of IHRSA? Join IHRSA now.
Exclusive Association Discounts
- One-time 10% BMI licensing fee discount for all IHRSA Members who license and pay by phone or online.
- Yearly 5% BMI licensing fee discount for all IHRSA members who pay their subsequent BMI Licensing fees by phone or online.
All BMI Fitness Customers Are Eligible For:
- Yearly 5% BMI licensing fee discount
Common Questions About Music Licensing in Fitness Clubs-
If you have additional questions, please review our full list of Licensing FAQs or contact a BMI customer relations representative at (800) 925-8451.
Q: Are performing rights included on the audio files that we buy specifically for group fitness and health club use?
No, although some companies claim to provide copyright clearance, this does not apply in the U.S. You must have a BMI license to publicly perform BMI music from digital tracklists that you purchase, even those specifically designed for fitness club use. In addition, any music that may be generated by certain types of equipment such as treadmills, stationary bikes, etc. must be licensed by you through a BMI license as those companies have not secured licensing for the music they provide.
Q: Is a fitness studio or health club covered if they pay for a streaming service like Spotify or Pandora?
Services like Spotify, Pandora and TV/Film streaming services are for personal use and do not include rights for any re-broadcast or public performance. While certain streaming services and TV/Cable providers may be sold as “commercial services,” they still typically do not include rights for public performance. In addition, commercial music services, which are licensed with BMI, provide BMI music for background use only - in your locker or dressing rooms, open gym, lounge, or lobby area. Once you use music to accompany aerobics or other instructional classes, your performance of music falls outside the scope of coverage afforded by your CMS agreement.
Since it’s your business or organization that’s benefiting by the performance of music, you are responsible for ensuring that your fitness club is properly licensed. This responsibility cannot be passed on to anyone else even if the instructors hired are independent contractors.
Q: Our club already pays for cable TV. If I have TVs, or play the radio in my business, do I still need a BMI license? Aren’t TV, cable, and radio stations already licensed with BMI?
Yes, but those agreements do not authorize the performance of TV, cable and radio to the public by businesses and other organizations. However, there are certain exemptions provided by copyright law, including the size of your establishment, how many TVs you have in each room, their screen size, how many speakers you have and if you charge a cover charge. Contact a BMI Representative to learn if these uses need to be licensed for your business.
Q: There are TVs built into my health riders (treadmills, ellipticals, etc.) where headphones are used. Would this need to be licensed?
Even though headphones are used, this would still be considered a public performance of music as this music is being made available for use for the members by the fitness club.
Q: Does an individual need to get a digital license to host fitness classes with music on Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft teams, etc.? Or is a digital music license for clubs only?
Video conferencing technologies like Zoom, Skype, and Teams generally do not have a blanket license with BMI and require the user to obtain any rights needed. A BMI music license ensures that independent instructors who are not affiliated with a specific club/studio have the proper digital license to cover the music played during their online classes from BMI’s repertoire of over 20.6 million musical works. Since there are various online platforms that are utilized, BMI works closely with each individual to help secure the most appropriate music license needed. If you have questions, it is best to contact a BMI customer relations representative directly by phone (800) 925-8451.
Q: Is the online content that a personal trainer creates to use at a club covered in my BMI license?
If a personal trainer is creating digital content used by an online fitness service, the online fitness service would typically have to obtain a license from BMI.
Q: Does a BMI digital music license extend to live, and on-demand programming offered in the club or does it only cover a digital platform like Zoom, a website or an app?
BMI’s license for online fitness classes includes live stream and video on-demand.
Typically, a BMI fitness license only covers the physical premise, and does not include digital rights. However, BMI works with business owners to ensure they can operate their traditional brick-and-mortar businesses online as well. Please contact BMI directly to learn more about using music in your business.
Q: What can club/studio owners do to ensure that the music they utilize does not get their videos or live streams taken down due to music copyright violations?
If an instructor is hosting a virtual class through online platforms, the public performance of BMI music may already be covered through licensing agreements between the online platforms and BMI. In that case, additional licensing by BMI would not be required. However, it is important to note that BMI only licenses the public performance of a musical composition. There are other music rights that may be implicated by the intended use and require additional licenses. Any additional licenses such as sync or mechanical would need to be cleared through the record label or publisher(s) of the musical works used in the online dance classes. IHRSA members are eligible for a discount on their BMI Fitness Club license. To see if your fitness facility qualifies for a BMI Digital License extension, please contact BMI at (800) 925-8451.
1A survey of 2,244 Americans was completed online between May 17-24, 2016. A probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of +/-2.1%, 19 times out of 20.