Fewer people willing to use leisure centres, survey finds
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Fewer people willing to use leisure centres, survey finds

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Outdoor activities and budget gyms have possibly led to fewer people willing to use local leisure centres, according to the latest Health and Fitness Omnibus Survey (HAFOS) 2016 report.

While the desire to keep fit and the proportion of people exercising appear to have risen since 2012, the trend in willingness to use local leisure centres has dropped.

More than a third of the 2,309 respondents surveyed (39 per cent) said they would consider using a leisure centre - 13 per cent lower than the 52 per cent who made the same claim in 2012.

Writing in latest issue of Health Club Management, Mike Hill, director of Leisure-net Solutions, which published the report, said: "This is surprising, given the investment that has been made in many local public sector facilities; however, it may reflect the impact of independent outdoor activities, such as cycling and running, as well as the ongoing rise in the popularity of budget gyms."

The survey suggested that more people than ever are not happy with their activity levels. Just under half of respondents (47 per cent) said they were not as active as they wished - up 6 per cent from 41 per cent in 2012.

However, results also showed those doing no physical activity each week fell by more than half in 2016 compared to 2012, implying that people's levels of exercise have moved up a tier, with some progressing from no activity to some, and others moving from some activity to regular.

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Outdoor activities and budget gyms have possibly led to fewer people willing to use local leisure centres, according to the latest Health and Fitness Omnibus Survey (HAFOS) 2016 report.
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Outdoor activities, such as running, may have impacted the willingness of those to use leisure centres / Shutterstock
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