Discovery Communications has announced that it plans to transform its fitness-oriented network, Discovery Fit & Health, into Discovery Life, AP reports. The new network, which will focus on life events and family relationships, is set to launch Jan. 15 of next year. The move follows A+E Networks, which just this week relaunched its BIO channel as the lifestyle-centric FYI.
According to Variety, Discovery Communications is hoping that a “focus on life events — pregnancies, emotional moments of transition, relationships and unexpected turning points — will draw a wider crowd to the network’s offerings.”
While the network will retain some of Fit & Health’s programming, it will also introduce a slate of new shows. One of them, Ripped Kids, will focus on children who compete in strength competitions and the parents who raise them; another, Tales from the Maternity Ward, aims to give viewers an insider view of delivery rooms.
The transformation of the Fit & Health, which launched in 2011 after a rebranding of FitTV, parallels other recent changes Discovery Communications has made to its programming. In 2012, the company switched its Planet Green network to Destination America. Back in 2008, Discovery Times became Investigation Discovery — a transformation, Variety that spurred considerable growth and allowed the network to reach some 85 million homes.
Discovery executive Henry Schlieff pointed to similar hopes for Discovery Life, telling Variety: “We want to go from a modest success to an immense success.”
At present, Discovery Fit & Health reaches some 47 million homes.
Marketing around the re-launch will begin in the fourth quarter of 2014.