Pre-Workout Blends: Achieving optimum market stimulation

Published July 2019. A growing proportion of gym-goers and other athletes swear by pre-workout blends to boost performance. Half of the most popular sports nutrition brands carry PWB versions. Lumina’s data dive found 200+ brands in 20 countries and much potential for expansion beyond the gym-going hardcore toward energy drinks and non-powder formats – even as its ratings underperform against other sports nutrition categories over quality and efficacy concerns. We report on a challenging but potentially lucrative category.


What this report gives you:

  • A summary of the global pre-workout landscape including leading brands, reception by consumers, formats, science, ingredients, demographics, brand positioning, claims and labelling.
  • Pre-workouts in the content of the online space: how many companies take their online presence seriously, which countries are particularly engaged online, trends and opportunities.
  • An examination of pricing, proprietary ingredients and positioning in the competitive landscape, including case studies of leading brands embracing pre-workout blends.
  • A deep-dive on particularly countries and regions: China, US, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Brazil, Mexico and Europe.

Quick facts:

  • In Lumina’s 20-country data capture consumers reviewed Pre-Workout Blends (PWBs) 136,000 times with NutraBolt, JYM, Cobra Labs, Optimum Nutrition and Kaged Muscle out front in terms of online engagement.
  • Use of amino acids including branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) is nearly mandatory with B-alanine present in 75% of 206 PWB brands we captured, often in branded ingredient form. Creatine is another key nutrient. Caffeine is present in 73%, and more than 50 botanicals formulated in varying ways into 61% including ginseng and green tea.
  • PWBs incorporating proprietary ingredients (as opposed to proprietary blends) are scoring higher with consumers in a category that is one of the worst performing in the world of sports nutrition. While average star ratings are above 4/5, other categories like protein powders and BCAAs outperform it.

Preview – 2 slides of 73:


  • Global pre-workout landscape & product analysis
  • Digital disruption & the rise of the review
  • Competitive landscape
    • Nutrabolt/Cellucor
    • Cobra Labs
    • BSN
    • Kaged Muscle
  • Country focus
    • China
    • US
    • Japan/South Korea/Australia
    • Brazil/Mexico
    • Europe
  • Conclusions
  • Appendix of studies

Total slides = 64

Got questions about the sports nutrition market?

We examine the key players, trends and target consumers in 20 countries, as well as explore how Lumina can help you form a fact-based business or NPD strategy.