China's rapidly aging population is fueling a promising and fast-growing market for companies providing recreational classes and activities for the elderly middle class, from yoga to African drumming and smartphone photography.

The growth potential of the industry contrasts sharply with the decline of the after-school private tutoring sector following a government crackdown in 2021 aimed at boosting record low birth rates by lowering education costs.

"Education industries are transitioning to the silver economy," said Qiu Peilin, the Beijing head of Mama Sunset, an elderly learning business which has opened five centers in the Chinese capital since launching in April 2023.