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UK Trails behind in Global Fitness League

Dec 27 2013

 

UK Trails behind in Global Fitness League

Research reveals that Britons are the least likely to keep their New Year Resolutions

 

London, 27 December 2013 – Research by TomTom (TOM2) reveals that Britain is trailing behind in the exercise league.  The study across eight Western countries shows that fewer Britons set fitness goals than any other country - just 61 per cent.  This equates to nearly four in 10 people never planning a new exercise regime.

The research also revealed that 48 per cent of Brits may make New Year Resolutions about improving their fitness levels in January, but few will manage to stick to them.  Of those who do set fitness goals, only six per cent ‘always’ achieve them and just 17 per cent ‘almost always’ do.  Over half of Britons (54 per cent) give up an exercise regime within six months - or have never even had one in the first place.

TomTom conducted the research into exercise and fitness ambitions with 1,000 in each country, across the UK, US, France, Spain, Netherlands, Italy, Sweden and Germany.  Britain emerged poorly, showing that not only do many people not exercise at all, but more than one in ten (11 per cent) plan to do less exercise in the future.

Corinne Vigreux, Managing Director, Consumer, at TomTom, said: "We know that this time of year is when people think about their New Year Resolutions and setting personal goals.  Having the right information helps to keep motivated and is critical to achieving these goals.”

Across the countries surveyed, an average of 72 per cent of people set fitness goals and four per cent succeed in achieving them every time.  While nearly a third (29 per cent) claim to hit their target most of the time, five per cent always fail.

Good intentions seem to lag well behind actual behaviour.  Four in 10 (39 per cent) of Brits asked claim they will increase exercise in the coming year.  Yet only a quarter (26 per cent) say they have actually done so over the past 12 months.

 

Notes to editors:

  • 44 per cent of British respondents cited getting fitter in general compared with the survey average of 54 per cent when asked which exercise goals they had set for themselves in the last 12 months.  40 per cent of Brits wanted to lose weight versus 44% elsewhere;  and only 11 per cent had a specific performance goal (such as beating a certain time or being ready for a race event) as against the global average of 16 per cent.
  • 23 per cent exercise two to three times a week, while 11% do so at least once a day but 22 per cent never take any exercise at all.
  • Americans lead the fitness league, exercising 135 days a year compared with an average of 112, while Britons exercise for an average of just 108 days a year.
  • Losing weight, a sense of accomplishment and how much fun an activity is were the biggest motivators to keep exercising for 75% of people across the study - whilst improving their looks and making sure they had the right equipment to train effectively also ranked highly.
  • Weight loss is the biggest motivator for women to exercise, spurring on 41% - but just 28% of men.  Twice as many women (33%) worried about how they looked in certain clothes compared with men (16%).

Table 1

Average number of days exercise/participation in sport per year (average 112 days)

US

135 days

Spain

131

France

116

Sweden

115

UK

108

Germany

101

Italy

96

Holland

93

 

Table 2

Percentage of people setting an exercise related goal in the past 12 months (average 72%)

Spain

82%

Italy

81%

US

75%

Sweden

75%

France

70%

Germany

70%

Holland

62%

UK

61%

Note:

The poll was carried out for TomTom by Ipsos Mori in September 2013.  One thousand people were interviewed in each of eight countries – US, UK, France, Germany, Sweden, Italy, Spain and Holland, with 8000 respondents in total.

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