2021
9
UK Exercise Trends Market Report 2021
2021-06-08T04:02:25+01:00
OX1050281
2195
139250
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Report
en_GB
“Moving forward, fitness operators will need to adhere to consumers’ demand for a more holistic approach to fitness, for instance by incorporating reward schemes to their digital offerings and tailoring…

£ 2,195 (Excl.Tax)

Report Summary

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the UK Exercise Trends market including the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

COVID-19 has boosted usage of and interest in apps that allow consumers to track their exercise and monitor their progress. 53% of consumers who plan to exercise at a gym post-pandemic currently use exercise-tracking apps and a further 26% would be interested in using them in future. This presents fitness operators with a great opportunity to expand their offering by providing members with a more holistic service that doesn’t start and finish at the gym door.

Although COVID-19 caused a major decline in the fitness industry following the initial lockdown in March 2020, the pandemic has pushed health and fitness up consumers’ priority list. People were forced to find new ways to exercise whilst venues were closed and events cancelled, which saw many purchase home exercise equipment and explore online services to help them maintain or improve their fitness during lockdown.

Despite a successful vaccination rollout in the UK, some consumers will remain apprehensive about returning to indoor venues due to COVID-19 fears. Outdoor exercise is set to remain a more popular choice than it was prior to the pandemic, meaning brands that are able to cater to this preference are more likely to be favoured.

Quickly Understand

  • The impact of COVID-19 on consumers’ exercise habits.
  • What types of exercise consumers participate in and how frequently they exercise.
  • Where consumers exercised prior to and during COVID-19, and how this is likely to change in future.
  • Consumers’ motivations for exercise.
  • How increased awareness of the importance of physical and mental wellbeing will impact the fitness industry.
  • Usage of and interest in online health and fitness services/apps.

Covered in this report

Brands included: David Lloyd, Black Box VR, Digme, SwimAR, Actic Outdoor Box, British Rowing, Technogym and more.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Narmada Sarvanantha, a leading analyst in the Leisure sector, her extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Moving forward, fitness operators will need to adhere to consumers’ demand for a more holistic approach to fitness, for instance by incorporating reward schemes to their digital offerings and tailoring their products to include diet plans. In order to appeal to consumers’ changing fitness priorities, brands must maximise use of outdoor spaces and reframe their fitness services to include outdoor group HIIT classes and personal training sessions.

Narmada Sarvanantha
Leisure Analyst

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • Key issues covered in this Report
    • COVID-19: market context
    • Economic and other assumptions
    • Covered in this Report
  2. Executive Summary

    • Impact of COVID-19 on the health and fitness sector
      • Figure 1: Expected impact of COVID-19 on the health and fitness sector, short, medium and long term, 17 May 2021
    • The market
    • Lockdown measures boost outdoor fitness
    • The pandemic has accelerated consumers’ need for ‘total wellbeing’
    • Many younger consumers are still in a healthy financial position
    • Companies and brands
    • Fitness operators have made outdoor fitness options very accessible
    • Interactive technology enhances consumers’ fitness experience
    • Fitness operators continue to encourage participation in live and on-demand home workouts
    • The consumer
    • Lockdowns encouraged more people to take part in regular exercise
      • Figure 2: Exercise frequency, March 2020 and March 2021
    • Low-impact workouts have increased in popularity
      • Figure 3: Exercise types, March 2020 and March 2021
    • Prevention and fat loss are key motivators
      • Figure 4: Exercise motivations, March 2020 and March 2021
    • Fitness operators can maximise outdoor spaces to promote escapism
    • Gyms’ audience has shrunk by two thirds during the pandemic
      • Figure 5: Consumers’ exercise locations, March 2021
    • Number of gym-goers expected to return to previous rate when COVID-19 risk is low
    • Consumers plan to spread their workouts across more locations in future
    • A third of exercisers use exercise-tracking apps
      • Figure 6: Consumers’ usage of and interest in online and fitness services, March 2021
    • Young and affluent consumers are more likely to use fitness apps
      • Figure 7: Proportion of consumers currently using exercise-tracking apps, by age, March 2021
    • COVID-19 has made health and fitness a long-term priority for consumers
      • Figure 8: Impact of COVID-19 on exercise habits and attitudes, March 2021
    • Consumers want fitness brands to cater to both body and mind
      • Figure 9: Attitudes towards exercise, March 2021
  3. Issues and Insights

    • Consumers want fitness brands to cater to both body and mind
    • Safety concerns put consumers off returning to gyms
  4. The Market – Key Takeaways

    • The pandemic has accelerated consumers’ need for ‘total wellbeing’
    • Younger consumers have cut back on overall exercise time during the pandemic
    • Many younger consumers are still in a healthy financial position
  5. Market Drivers

    • Lockdown measures boost outdoor fitness
      • Figure 10: Level of consumer comfort doing leisure activities, April 2021
    • The pandemic has accelerated consumers’ need for ‘total wellbeing’
    • Younger consumers have cut back on overall exercise time during the pandemic
      • Figure 11: Consumers who prefer to exercise with others than on their own, by age, March 2021
    • Many younger consumers are still in a healthy financial position
      • Figure 12: Financial situation, by age, January and April 2021
  6. Companies and Brands – Key Takeaways

    • Fitness operators have made outdoor fitness options very accessible
    • Interactive technology enhances consumers’ fitness experience
    • Fitness operators continue to encourage participation in live and on-demand home workouts
  7. Launch Activity and Innovation

    • Interactive technology enhances consumers’ fitness experience
    • Black Box VR transforms the gym experience
    • British Rowing partners with Asensei
    • Wearable technology SwimAR positively impacts consumers’ wellbeing
    • Outdoor fitness options are in high demand
    • David Lloyd has made outdoor fitness options very accessible
    • Actic Outdoor Box facilitates outdoor training
    • Fitness operators continue to encourage participation in live and on-demand home workouts
    • Digme makes new upgrades to improve home workouts
    • Technogym boosts live and on-demand classes
  8. The Consumer – Key Takeaways

    • COVID-19 has led to consumers prioritising healthy living and exercising
    • Lockdowns encouraged more people to take part in regular exercise
    • The pandemic has changed consumers’ motivations for exercising
  9. Impact of COVID-19 on Consumer Behaviour

    • COVID-19 has led to consumers prioritising healthy living and exercising
      • Figure 13: Consumer priority levels for exercising and eating healthily, February 2021
    • Younger consumers are eager to resume a more social exercise routine
    • Consumers may be reluctant to return to indoor venues due to COVID-19 fears
    • Consumers will continue to be price-conscious
  10. Exercise Frequency

    • Lockdowns encouraged more people to take part in regular exercise
      • Figure 14: Exercise frequency, March 2020 and March 2021
    • Flexible working boosts daily exercising
      • Figure 15: Exercise frequency, by working status, March 2021
  11. Exercise Types

    • Low-impact workouts have increased in popularity
      • Figure 16: Exercise types, March 2020 and March 2021
    • Younger consumers are more likely to take part in flexible workouts
      • Figure 17: Participation in flexible workouts, by age, March 2021
  12. Exercise Motivations

    • Prevention and fat loss are key motivators
      • Figure 18: Exercise motivations, March 2020 and March 2021
    • Fitness operators can maximise outdoor spaces to promote escapism
      • Figure 19: Reasons for exercising, by locations where consumers expect to exercise once the risk of COVID-19 is very low, March 2021
  13. Exercise Locations

    • Gyms’ audience has shrunk by two thirds during the pandemic
      • Figure 20: Consumers’ exercise locations, March 2021
    • Number of gym-goers expected to return to previous rate when COVID-19 risk is low
    • Consumers plan to spread their workouts across more locations in future
  14. Online Health and Fitness Services

    • A third of exercisers use exercise-tracking apps
      • Figure 21: Consumers’ usage of and interest in online and fitness services, March 2021
    • Young and affluent consumers are more likely to use fitness apps
      • Figure 22: Proportion of consumers currently using exercise-tracking apps, by age, March 2021
  15. Exercise Behaviours and the Impact of COVID-19

    • COVID-19 has made health and fitness a long-term priority for consumers
      • Figure 23: Impact of COVID-19 on exercise habits and attitudes, March 2021
    • Consumers want fitness brands to cater to both body and mind
      • Figure 24: Attitudes towards exercise, March 2021
  16. Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

    • Abbreviations
    • Consumer research methodology

About the report

This market report provides in-depth analysis and insight supported by a range of data. At the same time, introductory and top-level content is provided to give you an overview of the issues covered.

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