5 Ways the Pandemic has Changed Exercise for Good

Let’s face it—the global pandemic has significantly impacted our businesses, relationships, and health. From closed gyms to equipment shortages, Covid has even changed the way we work out. Gyms have enhanced their cleaning protocols and implemented social distancing guidelines, smaller class requirements, and policies on face coverings. Lockdowns are gradually lifting, and many aspects of our lives have shifted back to normal, yet some changes will have a lasting effect. Here is a list of 5 ways the pandemic has changed exercise for good. 

  1. Redefined Routines. One of the most pervasive changes from the pandemic is a change in our habits. In a survey[1] of 12,913 participants across 139 countries, data revealed how exercise routines have changed during the pandemic. There were three groups of participants: average, moderate, and avid athletes. Results showed that average athletes, or those who exercised 1-2 times weekly, increased their physical activity by 88%. Moderate athletes who worked out three times a week increased by an average of 38%. The group who worked out less since the onset of the pandemic were avid athletes who had an exercise routine of four or more times per week. On average, this subset decreased their physical activity by an average of 14%.

 

  1. Simplified Approach. It’s no surprise that the pandemic caused a rise in home-based exercise. With gyms mandated to close their doors, the market for gym equipment boomed. Even as gyms began to reopen, there was a marked shift in consumer habits. Many found that they did not want to trade the convenience of working out at home or the pleasure of exercising outdoors for the time back in the gym. This simplified approach to fitness became a trend that simply isn’t going anywhere. In a survey[2] conducted by UpSwell Marketing, a firm specializing in boosting gym memberships, 40% of consumers said they would rather work out in a gym vs. home or outdoors. 17.3% said that they wanted to get back to the gym as soon as possible. 19.6% of those who held gym memberships said that they’d never return.

 

  1. Fitness As Therapy. Prioritizing mental wellness is arguably the most positive impact the pandemic has had on exercise. As the virus rapidly spread, so too did the awareness that physical and mental health are deeply connected. According to Mindbody Business, 46% feel that their mental wellness is worse than before the pandemic. Meditation and mindfulness app downloads have surged. In a SensorTown[3] data report, the top 10 mental wellness apps, such as Calm and Headspace, received nearly 10 million downloads in April 2020 alone. This figure represents a 24.2% increase over January 2020. Beyond the tools for mental support, attention shifted to the usefulness of exercise in improving mental health. Most notably, data has shown that routine exercise has an immediately impactful and lasting effect on mental health for those suffering from clinical anxiety.[4]

 

  1. Supplements Explosion. 29% more Americans began taking dietary supplements at the onset of the pandemic. Before Covid-19, less than half of all Americans claimed to use supplements regularly. Today, in a poll[5] conducted for the Samueli Foundation, most supplement users cited immune support as their primary motive for taking supplements. Seeking control of their health, improvement in sleep, and support for mental health were the other motives for supplementation. Consumers continue to seek out proven ingredients like CarnoSyn® beta-alanine to gain a variety of health benefits. When looking to add supplements to their routine, consumers are researching to ensure they are choosing the best possible ingredients. Safe and free from banned substances, CarnoSyn® is the only globally patented, scientifically proven beta-alanine on the market.

 

  1. Virtual Communities. Mandated gym closures and social distancing created a massive void. As a result, people began to turn toward virtual communities for several reasons: connection, motivation, and support, to name a few.
  • Many found that the next best thing to working out with a partner or group in-person was working out together virtually.
  • Some people are intrinsically motivated to exercise. The vast majority rely on others to fuel their motivation to maintain their regimen.
  • Many personal trainers and fitness coaches transitioned to virtual sessions to remain connected to their clients. Fitness apps offering support saw a surge in downloads as well.

What’s Next? As the fitness industry continues to ride the wave of pandemic growth, the natural next question is: what’s next? The reality is, these changes seem to be here for good. There are a few ways that new trends within these changes will continue to emerge. Consumers will continue to seek more interactive equipment, space-saving apparatus, apps with additional features or ease of use, flexible gym membership options, and supplements targeting whole-body wellness. For more information on how to incorporate CarnoSyn® into your new approach, learn more at carnosyn.com

 

[1] https://runrepeat.com/exercise-covid-19-study

[2] https://upswellmarketing.com/fitness/upswell-research-uncovers-what-consumers-need-to-rejoin-gyms

[3] https://sensortower.com/blog/top-mental-wellness-apps-april-2020-downloads

[4] https://www.inquirer.com/health/wellness/exercise-behaviors-pandemic-change-20210608.html

[5] https://www.eurekalert.org/news-releases/807544