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An analysis of leisure centre attendance

An analysis of leisure centre attendance

Research Area
Workforce; Health; Tackling Inactivity


Summary of Findings
This report looks at who attends together and which days, times and activities are most popular, using insight derived through the DataHub where leisure centres, sports venues and community sports programmes can record information about those visiting their sites. Overall there are more female (54%) than male (46%) leisure centre members. 23% of members are aged 25-34 compared to 17% of the UK population. In contrast 23% of members are aged 55+ compared to 37% of the UK. 26% of members are from a BAME background compared to 14% of the UK. 81% of all visits can be classified as swimming (42%), group workouts (17%) or fitness visits (22%). Swimming is significantly more popular with non members (62% of visits) than members (26% of visits). 76% of group workout participants are female while 63% of fitness visits were made by males. The most popular group workouts are aerobics based and indoor cycling/spinning each accounting for 11% of all group workouts. Group workouts that have had more than a 20% increase in visits between 2017 and 2019 include rebound UK, pump fx, clubbercise, body works, virtual classes, chair based exercises and HIIT. 19% of visits are categorised as sports visits with football being the most popular at 27% of these. Children's programmes make up 9% of sports visits.

This data shows the current state of participation in physical activity at leisure centres. This could be used to influence new programmes both in terms of what is working well and also where gaps exist. Additionally, as leisure centres prepare to reopen following the coronavirus-enforced lockdown, future gaps in previously popular provision are a possibility that will need to be monitored.