In these times of pandemic, a large part of the population has come to consider sport an escape route through which they can relieve stress and anxiety. For many, it has helped keep their minds occupied and generate endorphins, albeit whilst doing so at home.
According to the report “Estudio de las pasiones de los españoles” (Ipsos Group S.A.), last year Spanish consumers chose to go walking (58%), running (22%) or cycling (17%). These activities have become fashionable largely thanks to the appeal of influencers, who have transformed the most sedentary of consumers into people who cannot live without sport.
Two notable stars of the small screen shone brightly throughout the pandemic. The most successful fitness youtuber of the moment in Spain, Patry Jordan, reached more than 10 million subscribers and more than a billion views through her GymVirtual platform, Youtube and her Instagram live shows.
In the field of meditation and yoga, Xuan Lan Yoga, the leading proponent of mindfulness meditation Yoga in Spanish, went mainstream during the months of the pandemic. She currently has more than 1 million subscribers and followers around the world. Thanks to her videos on Youtube, many people have joined the world of mind and body wellness.
As for regular sportsmen and women, the gyms they used to go to have had to close down progressively. Among fitness centres that have not yet closed down, only 23% have managed to keep are keeping their annual subscriptions at half of what they were before. However, many of them have modernized by bringing fitness “in-house” through the use of technology. 71% of gyms started offering classes in real time via video calls, and 50% of them had pre-recorded video courses. Study of the passions of Spaniards conducted by Hubside at the end of 2019.
This new fitness concept – practiced both at home and outdoors- has had such an impact on consumers that they have sold out of sports equipment. Examples of such items include, yoga matts, road bikes and rollers to stretch or exercise. Such has been the demand that Amazon has become the most visited sports website by consumers, ahead of specialized shops such as Decathlon, where items like dumbbells and mats sold out, within a few hours.
Is this sports fever a once – off event, or will it be a permanent change in our behaviour? It seems that this trend will continue for at least another year. According to the report “Estudio de las pasiones de los españoles” by Ipsos, 87% of those surveyed confirm that they will continue to practice sport. In fact, 47% of them are clear that in case of a new lockdown they will opt for video classes instead of the sofa. These results show how incorporating the gym at home seems to be an affordable and easy way to overcome laziness and improve our health. When the pandemic is over, we shall see whether, doing sport at home will prove to still be stimulating, or whether it will remain a mere anecdote to be remembered.