They may make up 84% of the top names in the industry, but female Instagram fitness bloggers are still being paid less than their male counterparts.
A study based on The Fit List rankings, which lists the highest-earning ‘fitstagrammers’ in the industry, found that 42 of the top 50 bloggers are women.
But while Sommer Ray, who has 16.9 million Instagram followers, is ranked as the most influential fitstagrammer, it is British body coach Joe Wicks, with 1.9 million followers, who is earning the most money – perhaps proving that the gender pay gap is still alive and well even in the most modern of careers.
“Fitness is big business,” Forza Supplements managing director Lee Smith told Elle. “Clearly female fitstagrammers are far more popular on social media and 42 of the top 50 are women, and none of the top 10 is a man.”
Yet despite this, Ray, who is estimated to earn around £4 million a year, sees her earnings dwarfed by Wicks of Lean In 15 fame, who earns over triple the amount, at roughly £12 million a year.
Thanks to the popularity of his fitness regime and cookbook series, Wicks is thought to earn around £33,000 a day.
“There is a clear gender pay gap amongst the very highest earners because Joe Wicks is making three times as much as the highest ranked female on the list,” said Smith.
“Joe Wicks may be the top earner now, but I suspect he is going to get toppled by a woman in the next few years, thanks to the power of Instagram,” he added.
Even though women are topping the tables, it is clear that their potential earning ability is being ignored, though it’s not clear exactly what is behind the lag.
And this of course, is not a problem in the fitness industry alone.
At the current rate of progression, it will take the UK another twelve years to close the gender pay gap, according to the Fawcett Society.
The current overall mean gap between the genders for full-time workers is 13.9%.