Older adults have revealed what they want from the fitness and leisure sector to encourage greater participation, in a major new report published by ukactive. Adults aged 55 and over shared what measures they felt would incentivise them to exercise more within the sector’s facilities, including feedback that the sector should focus on ability rather than age in the delivery and marketing of activities.
The Life In Our Years report, carried out by the ukactive Research Institute in partnership with EGYM, is designed to help reverse the trend of older adults being underrepresented in gyms, leisure centres and pools, making the findings essential reading for organisations of all types and sizes.
COVID-19 has widened health inequalities and been particularly damaging for vulnerable groups, including older adults. It has also exacerbated the pressures on the NHS and social care in the UK, meaning that more than ever, fitness and leisure facilities have an essential role to play in reducing the burden on health systems. Despite the known benefits of regular exercise, only 54% of adults over the age of 55 complete the recommended 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity per week. Just over a third (34%) complete less than 30 minutes per week and are therefore classified as inactive.